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Become An Employee Relations Specialist

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Working As An Employee Relations Specialist

  • Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • $56,000

    Average Salary

What Does An Employee Relations Specialist Do

Labor relations specialists interpret and administer labor contracts regarding issues such as wages and salaries, healthcare, pensions, and union and management practices.

Duties

Labor relations specialists typically do the following:

  • Advise management on contracts, worker grievances, and disciplinary procedures
  • Lead meetings between management and labor
  • Meet with union representatives
  • Draft proposals and rules or regulations
  • Ensure that human resources policies are consistent with union agreements
  • Interpret formal communications between management and labor
  • Investigate validity of labor grievances
  • Train management on labor relations

Labor relations specialists work with representatives in a labor union and a company’s management. In addition to leading meetings between the two groups, these specialists draft formal language as part of the collective bargaining process. These contracts are called collective bargaining agreements (CBAs), and they serve as a legal and procedural guide for employee/management relations.

Labor relations specialists also address specific grievances a worker might have, and ensure that all labor and management solutions comply within the relevant agreement.

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How To Become An Employee Relations Specialist

Applicants usually have a bachelor’s degree in labor relations, human resources, industrial relations, business, or a related field. However, the level of education and experience required to become a labor relations specialist varies by position and employer.

Education

Labor relations specialists usually have a bachelor’s degree. Some schools offer a bachelor’s degree in labor or employment relations. These programs focus on labor-specific topics such as employment law and contract negotiation.

Candidates also may qualify for labor relations specialist positions with a bachelor’s degree in human resources, industrial relations, business, or a related field. Coursework typically includes business, professional writing, human resource management, and accounting.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Many positions require previous work experience. Candidates can gain experience as human resources specialists or generalists before specializing in labor relations.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Some colleges and universities offer labor relations certificates to specialists who prefer greater specialization in certain topics, such as mediation. These certificates give participants a better understanding of labor law, the collective bargaining process, and worker grievance procedures.

Important Qualities

Decisionmaking skills. Labor relations specialists use decisionmaking skills to help management and labor agree on decisions when resolving grievances or other disputes.

Detail oriented. Specialists must be detail oriented when evaluating labor laws and maintaining records of an employee grievance. 

Interpersonal skills. Interpersonal skills are essential for labor relations specialists. When mediating between labor and management, specialists must be able to converse and connect with people from different backgrounds. 

Listening skills. Listening skills are essential for labor relations specialists. When evaluating grievances, for example, they must pay careful attention to workers’ responses, understand the points they are making, and ask relevant followup questions. 

Writing skills. All labor relations specialists need strong writing skills to be effective at their job. They often draft proposals and must be able to convey complex information to both workers and management.

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Employee Relations Specialist Jobs

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Employee Relations Specialist Career Paths

Employee Relations Specialist
Human Resources Supervisor Account Manager Staff Accountant
Accounts Payable Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Human Resources Generalist Human Resources Supervisor Human Resources Manager
Administrative Director
8 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Vice President Senior Consultant Finance Manager
Business Operations Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Manager Program Manager General Manager
Business Owner
6 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Business Partner Senior Human Resources Generalist Human Resources Manager
Compensation Director
13 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Business Partner Human Resources Manager
Director Of Human Resources Operations
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Consultant Subject Matter Expert Team Manager
Group Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Director Of Human Resources Assistant Vice President Controller
Human Resources Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Human Resources Generalist Director Of Human Resources Chief Operating Officer
Managing Member
8 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Professor Faculty Nursing Director
Patient Relations Director
10 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Professor Instructional Designer Performance Consultant
Performance Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Supervisor Recruiter Recruitment Manager
Program Manager And Recruiter
6 Yearsyrs
Service Representative Claims Representative Claims Adjuster
Senior Claims Adjuster
7 Yearsyrs
Service Representative Case Manager Employment Specialist
Senior Employment Specialist
6 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Consultant Human Resources Business Partner
Senior Human Resources Generalist
8 Yearsyrs
Director Of Human Resources Senior Consultant Manager
Service Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Consultant Human Resources Manager Plant Manager
Site Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Manager General Manager Account Executive
Territory Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Employee Relations Manager Director Of Human Resources
Vice President Talent Management
14 Yearsyrs
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Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Top Careers Before Employee Relations Specialist
Recruiter 4.8%
Internship 2.4%
Top Careers After Employee Relations Specialist
Recruiter 3.7%
Manager 1.9%
Consultant 1.7%

Do you work as an Employee Relations Specialist?

Employee Relations Specialist Demographics

Gender

Female

69.3%

Male

28.4%

Unknown

2.3%
Ethnicity

White

62.1%

Hispanic or Latino

15.6%

Black or African American

11.5%

Asian

7.4%

Unknown

3.5%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

59.0%

French

12.8%

German

6.4%

Portuguese

3.8%

Gujarati

2.6%

Arabic

2.6%

Italian

2.6%

Swahili

1.3%

Filipino

1.3%

Chinese

1.3%

Romanian

1.3%

Dutch

1.3%

Deseret

1.3%

Hindi

1.3%

Tagalog

1.3%
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Employee Relations Specialist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

24.1%

Villanova University

7.4%

Michigan State University

6.2%

Pennsylvania State University

6.2%

Webster University

5.4%

Cornell University

5.1%

Troy University

4.3%

Ashford University

3.9%

University of North Texas

3.5%

George Washington University

3.5%

Indiana University of Pennsylvania

3.5%

Liberty University

3.5%

Capella University

3.5%

Strayer University

3.1%

Oklahoma State University

3.1%

Franklin University

2.7%

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

2.7%

University of Cincinnati

2.7%

University of Maryland - College Park

2.7%

Texas State University

2.7%
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Majors

Business

30.5%

Human Resources Management

28.1%

Psychology

5.6%

Management

5.5%

Law

5.2%

Communication

3.1%

Marketing

2.4%

Counseling Psychology

2.4%

Education

2.0%

Public Relations

2.0%

Political Science

1.6%

Criminal Justice

1.5%

Liberal Arts

1.5%

Public Administration

1.4%

Finance

1.4%

Accounting

1.4%

Sociology

1.3%

English

1.2%

International Relations

1.1%

School Counseling

1.0%
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Degrees

Bachelors

38.9%

Masters

33.9%

Other

11.8%

Doctorate

5.3%

Certificate

5.0%

Associate

4.5%

Diploma

0.4%

License

0.1%
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Internship
Temporary

Real Employee Relations Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Employee Relations Specialist KLA-Tencor Corporation Milpitas, CA Aug 04, 2014 $91,000
Emplopyee Relations Specialist KLA-Tencor Corporation Beaverton, OR Nov 07, 2011 $80,340
Employee Relations Specialist KLA-Tencor Corporation Milpitas, CA Sep 27, 2010 $78,000
Employee Relations Consultant MacQuarie Holdings (USA) Inc. New York, NY Dec 14, 2009 $75,000
Employee Relations Specialist Southeastern Recycling Corp. Miami, FL May 19, 2010 $50,000
Employee Experience Specialist Spectrum Health System Grand Rapids, MI Feb 18, 2013 $48,000
Employee Relations Liaison Skyway Precision, Inc. Plymouth, MI Oct 01, 2012 $46,155 -
$55,000
Employee Relations Specialist Uneed Solutions Inc. New York, NY Aug 25, 2015 $45,600 -
$50,400
Employee Relations Specialist Uneed Solutions Inc. New York, NY Sep 02, 2015 $45,600 -
$50,400
Employee Relations Specialist Lauraine Murphy Jericho, Inc. Jericho, NY Aug 09, 2011 $44,871
Employee Relations Specialist Lauraine Murphy Jericho, Inc. Jericho, NY Aug 18, 2011 $44,871
Employee Relations Specialist Lauraine Murphy Jericho, Inc. Jericho, NY Sep 10, 2011 $44,871
Employee Relations Specialist Lauraine Murphy Jericho, Inc. Jericho, NY Jul 05, 2011 $44,871
Communications/Employee Relations Specialist Built Rite Contracting Corp. NY Nov 01, 2010 $41,850
Employee Relations Specialist Purdue University West Lafayette, IN Mar 01, 2011 $40,917
Employee Relations Specialist Preferred Valet Parking, LLC San Diego, CA Jan 09, 2016 $40,822

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AVERAGE SALARY FOR An Employee Relations Specialist

Average Yearly Salary
$56,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$39,000
Min 10%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$81,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Google
Highest Paying City
San Francisco, CA
Highest Paying State
Alaska
Avg Experience Level
3.0 years
How much does an Employee Relations Specialist make at top companies?
The national average salary for an Employee Relations Specialist in the United States is $56,719 per year or $27 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $39,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $81,000.

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Top Skills for An Employee Relations Specialist

  1. Performance Reviews
  2. Company Policies
  3. Corrective Action
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Conduct annual evaluations and performance reviews for bonus and wage compensation; implement management and team member developmental plans for advancement.
  • Administered and trained on company policies, established and implemented safety and personnel policies including disciplinary producers.
  • Conducted internal investigations and extended disciplinary/corrective action recommendations.
  • Develop and maintain Affirmative Action Plans (AAP), EEO-1 reports and related records.
  • Generated HRIS reports and managed personnel files, management information, and candidate data utilizing standardized reporting systems.

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Top 10 Best States for Employee Relations Specialists

  1. District of Columbia
  2. Virginia
  3. Massachusetts
  4. New York
  5. California
  6. Delaware
  7. Rhode Island
  8. Texas
  9. Connecticut
  10. Washington
  • (133 jobs)
  • (332 jobs)
  • (336 jobs)
  • (527 jobs)
  • (1,186 jobs)
  • (32 jobs)
  • (20 jobs)
  • (646 jobs)
  • (98 jobs)
  • (227 jobs)

Top Employee Relations Specialist Employers

Jobs From Top Employee Relations Specialist Employers

Employee Relations Specialist Videos

Revision: Human Resources

(Employee and Labour Relations)

Career Advice on becoming an Internal Communications Manager by Sophie M (Full Version)

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