Human resources management, as a function, is growing ever more powerful after years in the doldrums thanks to recent developments like mass allegations of sexual harassment in the workplace following the #MeToo movement. Meanwhile, with employers gathering unprecedented data on workers, an exciting new frontier of people analytics is opening up.
Because of this, MBA programs in Human Resources Management are shifting and adapting. Technology and artificial intelligence are rapidly reshaping HR, cutting out mundane tasks like CV sifting and freeing up time for higher value work. HR may prove popular given that it has evolved from simply hiring and firing to guiding the culture and even strategic direction of the entire organization. HR professionals are also playing an increasingly important role in ethics and social purpose, which are more important to employees today than ever before.
MBA programs have long covered HR in the core curriculum, but many business schools have now added specialist tracks offering a deeper dive into the increasingly important function. Here are the 10 best MBA programs for human resources management:
MBA students at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management can major in human resources management. The courses on negotiations, conflict resolution, decision-making and more, are run by Kellogg’s management and organizations department, where faculty do cutting-edge research that informs teaching in the MBA. Kellogg is also one of America’s best business schools, ranked highly be key publications.View School Profile
Human capital has been central to teaching at Chicago Booth for centuries. The school’s revered generalist MBA covers human resources management in great depth, with the content aiming to help managers understand how they can inspire the people they lead. Students learn from a star-studded line up of stellar faculty, some of whom are Nobel Laureates.View School Profile
Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management offers 20 MBA specializations – optional, deep dives into niche subjects. The Human and Organizational Performance (HOP) specialization focuses on getting students jobs in human capital consulting or corporate human resources management through a rigorous sequence of courses.View School Profile
USC Marshall has dedicated career service team members with backgrounds in human capital management who help students get jobs via advice, training and networking. MBA students at the school can also take classes from USC Marshall’s Center for Effective Organizations (CEO). Founded in 1979, the Center has produced research that influences how corporations are managed.View School Profile
At Michigan Ross, there’s a Management and Organizations (MO) area that sets MBA students up for corporate and consultancy roles in human capital management. The classes cover a wide range of subjects including ethics and leadership. The MO area is also cross-disciplinary, featuring faculty members from other Michigan departments such as psychology, sociology and education.View School Profile
Wisconsin runs an MBA specialization in strategic human resource management which is ranked highly by the Princeton Review. The coursework from top faculty covers compensation, employee relations, labor relations, staff, negotiations and change management. There are also practical learning opportunities on offer, as well as internships that can give students a career advantage.View School Profile
Krannert business school at Purdue has a full-time human resources management specialization for MBA students who want to pursue a career in this niche. It provides a broad understanding of HR topics and how they impact both individual and organizational performance. The courses go over HR technology systems, rewards, industrial relations and staffing tools.View School Profile
Brigham Young’s Marriott School is ranked very highly by the Princeton Review. It has a human resource management department that puts on courses covering employee benefits, wellness programs, disciplinary systems and more. Students can focus on consulting senior managers to change their leadership styles, or work internally on an organization’s entire structure, culture, even strategy.View School Profile
Katz at Pittsburgh has a one-year MBA concentration in organizational behavior and human resources management. It covers how HR has evolved from personal administration to strategic management of people development. It also explores business ethics and social performance, areas of HR that have been given a renowned focus in recent years, as well as cross-cultural management.View School Profile
Nebraska’s business school runs a concentration in human resource management that teaches MBA students how to manage employee recruitment, selection, retention, development and compensation. It melds theory and practice and is also interdisciplinary, drawing on insight from the fields of communication, psychology and business.View School Profile