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How to Get a Human Resources Job Interview and 7 Questions They May Ask

by | Apr 26, 2021 | Operations & HR

If you are looking to join the human resource field, the good news for job seekers is that HR positions are needed in nearly every company! Now get ready to learn how to prepare to apply for HR internships or entry-level HR positions

Human Resources Resume

False resumes of James Bond and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Image by Oli Lynch from Pixabay

The Society of Human Resources has a multitude of resources and advice from experienced HR professionals. Their main suggestions are- to have a branded headline, be specific about your experiences, emphasize your achievements, use HR-specific words, consider the Applicant Tracking System (ATS), and share what makes you YOU. But overall, the entire resume should be written clearly and concisely. 

Specific keywords to include in an HR Resume

By using these keywords, assists in making your resume and cover letter ATS friendly, but also highlights the HR-specific traits, skills, and processes that are best for entry-level positions. 

To describe traits and skills:

  • Active listening
  • Adaptable
  • Committed
  • Cross-functional
  • Focused
  • Efficient
  • Initiative
  • Innovative
  • Mindful
  • Negotiations
  • Partnering
  • Prompt
  • Resourceful
  • Responsive
  • Skill-set

Terms and processes to talk about:

  • Behavioral interviewing
  • Benchmarking
  • Coaching
  • Collective bargaining
  • Consultant
  • Conflict resolution
  • Culture Management
  • Development
  • Employee retention, engagement, orientation, surveys, mediation
  • Grievances
  • Headhunter
  • Incentive Programs
  • Leadership survey
  • Management style
  • Planning
  • Policies
  • Problem-solving
  • Program development and management
  • Succession planning
  • Talent management
  • Teamwork
  • Team players
  • Training
  • Workforce planning and review

HR Experience

Two hands shaking with a table in the background.
Image by Tumisu from Pixabay

Before jumping into an entry-level position, you will need some experience. In order to get this, you want to participate in internships and clubs during college and beyond. 


Some companies offer internships in their human resource departments. This allows you to usually work under a full-time HR manager or recruiters to gain hands-on work experience. This work environment typically consists of HR interns updating employee records, scheduling out interviews, and screening resumes. 

Human Resource Clubs

This is where you can develop yourself professionally in college, and then continue with that professional development after graduation as well. To be in human resources, it is a great idea to stay up to date on current HR-related news and laws. 

  • Society for Human Resource Management is an organization that has chapters on college campuses, but also has a national organization for everyone! They offer both certifications and memberships. This allows HR team members to stay connected in a community by using advisors, tools, samples, and networking opportunities. 
  • Association for Talent Development offers a variety of training videos on topics such as blended learning, and how to build and facilitate virtual training. It allows you to constantly be learning about how to improve the skills of current employees in your organization. 

7 Specific Human Resources Interview Questions

Two women shaking hands.
Image by Sue Styles from Pixabay

Within the interview process, a hiring manager will ask a variety of behavioral interview questions. When a hiring manager is asking you these questions, they are thinking about how you would be as a partner but also how you would support employees in the company. 

  1. What interpersonal skills are important to have while working in human resources?
  2. What human resource systems have you worked with before?
  3. Tell me about the biggest challenge you faced while working in HR and how you resolved it.
  4. What is your favorite component of working within human resources?
  5. What do you contribute to an HR department?
  6. How do you stay updated with specific labor laws and regulations?
  7. Describe a good company culture.

To stay up to date on best resume practices, unique interview questions, and more, read the Scholars blog and tune into The Internship Show. The Internship Show frequently has HR professionals like recruiters and hiring managers, giving exclusive information!

About Scholars

Scholars helps companies build engaging candidate experiences at scale. Create personalized journeys for all of your candidates from application through onboarding.

About Scholars

Internships and early-career jobs are unlike any others. They are often accepted months, if not years, in advance of the start date leaving plenty of time for candidates to change their minds and decide to work elsewhere, costing your team time and money.

There are two ways that have been proven to decrease renege rates for any company: keeping candidates engaged by sharing personalized information and helping them make connections with their future teammates. Companies use Scholars to accomplish both of these at scale.