HR Director Job Descriptions, Average Salary, Interview Questions

What Does an HR Director Do?

HR directors are senior leaders who oversee the human resources department by developing employee policies and supporting human resources staff members. HR directors are primarily responsible for overseeing the HR staff, hiring, negotiating employment contracts, managing employee benefits, and designing training programs. HR directors should have a strong background in human resource management and an extensive knowledge of labor laws and regulations.

This role involves a wide range of responsibilities and duties. HR directors must be able to deal with employee grievances effectively and continue to work to improve job satisfaction companywide. HR directors can eventually take on different roles and be offered higher HR positions, such as vice president of human resources or even chief human resources officer.

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National Average Salary

HR director salaries vary by experience, industry, organization size, and geography. To explore salary ranges by local market, please visit our sister site

The average U.S. salary for an HR Director is:


HR Director Job Descriptions

When it comes to recruiting a HR director, having the right job description can make a big difference. Here are some real world job descriptions you can use as templates for your next opening.

Example 1

[Your Company Name] is looking for an experienced human resources director to ensure that all human resources operations are carried on smoothly and effectively. You will be responsible for developing HR strategies and providing advice to senior management or executive positions on all related subjects. An HR director must be an experienced professional with deep knowledge of all matters concerning HR departments. You should be able to manage programs and lead staff while also possessing a strong strategic mindset. As an ideal candidate, you have proven experience in a leadership role, excellent communication skills, and strong knowledge of labor regulations and HR practices.

Typical duties and responsibilities

  • Develop and implement HR policies and programs for an organization
  • Ensure that all policies comply with legal regulations
  • Develop and manage departmental budget
  • Report on the performance and progress of the HR department to senior stakeholders
  • Direct change management and organizational development
  • Collaborate with senior leadership on staffing, recruiting, and retention strategies
  • Oversee the administration of HR functions, including compensation, benefits, leave, disciplinary matters, disputes, recognition, occupational health and safety, and training
  • Identify staffing and recruiting needs and develop best practices for hiring
  • Review metrics from the human resource information system (HRIS) or talent management system

Education and experience

  • Bachelor’s degree in human resources, business administration, or related field
  • Masters degree preferred
  • 5+ years of human resource management

Required skills and qualifications

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Thorough knowledge of labor laws and HR practices
  • Strong leadership qualities
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Exceptional interpersonal and negotiation skills
  • Strong analytical and problem-solving skills
  • Ability to prioritize and delegate tasks
  • Proficient with Microsoft Office Suite or related software

Preferred qualifications

  • Master’s degree
  • Experience developing effective training programs
  • Experience utilizing technology to enhance and measure the results of human resources programs
  • Hands-on experience with an HRIS or HRMS 

Example 2

Provide coaching and guidance to site leaders and associates regarding employment issues in such areas as policy and procedure interpretation and application, dispute resolution, corrective action, leaves of absence, harassment, and terminations.

Primary responsibilities

  • Analyze findings and review trends with senior management and recommend actions to ensure positive organizational changes
  • Review, interpret, administer, and ensure compliance with federal, state, and local employment laws, and company policies and procedures
  • Develop and maintain the site’s Affirmative Action Program (where applicable), complete required Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) reporting, and ensure Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) compliance
  • Perform investigations and prepare written responses to EEOC claims, unemployment claims, etc.
  • Work with site leaders to create and maintain workforce staffing plans. Coordinate recruiting efforts with Sysco Business Services (where applicable) to ensure that competent, diverse, and skilled workers are hired, and workload levels are appropriate and maintained to minimize turnover
  • Direct resources and activities to support a culture of prevention awareness and accountability across the organization
  • Support the development of Health, Safety and Environmental (HSE) plans to meet operational goals to reduce accidents, injuries, and incidents
  • Provide day-to-day direction and support to site HR staff including proactive guidance, troubleshooting support, and issue escalation

Education required

  • Bachelor’s degree with major or emphasis in Human Resources, Business Administration or a closely related field

Experience required

  • At least 7 years (10 preferred) of demonstrated HR leadership and management experience in distribution/manufacturing environments

License and certifications preferred

  • Human Resource Certification Institute (HRCI) Professional Human Resources (PHR), Senior Professional Human Resources (SPHR), SHRM-CP, or SHRM-SCP certification preferred

Additional requirements

Reasonable accommodations will be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of this job

Example 3

The HR Director facilitates organization and leadership development efforts, working with employees and managers to address root causes of human resources issues. The HR Director may play a significant role in administering talent management and succession planning activity within client organization. Duties also include resolving employee relations issues through a systematic approach. The HR Director assists senior management in the development of solutions through cultural and process perspective organizational development.


  • Strategic business partner and change agent responsible for implementing people initiatives and cultural change at the department level
  • Partner with the assigned client groups to manage employee relations issues, consult on organizational design, coach employees, and managers and support HR functional processes
  • Drive the performance management process
  • Lead the engagement survey roll out and all the supporting initiatives associated with increasing employee engagement at a company-wide level
  • Actively participate in establishing long and short term goals and strategies for the function
  • Special projects will be assigned to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the function

Basic requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience
  • 12+ years of experience in related, progressive roles

Surescripts embraces flexibility through its hybrid work model where most positions are eligible to work a mix of days in the office and from home. For eligible positions, our hybrid model provides employees with scheduling options. In general, employees may work either 2 days a week in the office and 3 days from home or 8 days a month in the office and the remaining workdays from home.

Example 4

Key responsibilities

  • Establish HR Strategies to meet objectives of the business
  • Drive and improve HR processes across all client groups
  • Own, monitor and improve HR Metrics and KPI’s
  • Drive a culture of performance, results, and positive employee relations
  • Coach leaders on talent management, and performance differentiation
  • Execute staffing processes at all levels within the business and develop staffing strategies to ensure a robust pipeline of quality candidates
  • Deliver talent management processes, organizational assessments, earning strategies, and leadership development
  • Implement competitive compensation, benefits, and reward and recognition programs
  • Direct the planning and maintenance of communications
  • Ensure legal compliance throughout human resource management


  • Bachelor’s degree
  • 5+ years of progressive Human Resource Generalist experience
  • 3+ Human Resources experience in a matrixed OR commercial organization (ex. pricing, sales excellence, marketing, offering management, etc.)

Preferred qualifications

  • Master’s degree or MBA in Human Resources
  • Strong data analytical skills (ex. process data, make data cohesive, tell a story with the data)
  • Proficiency in MS Office software including solid experience working with Microsoft Excel (generating and interpreting pivot tables, graphs, and V-lookups)
  • Strong organizational design (OD) experience
  • Demonstration of ability to positively influence others, particularly leadership development and coaching
  • Ability to partner across businesses/LOBs
  • Strong business sense and acumen
  • Ability to deal tactfully and confidently with internal and external customers
  • Strong bias for action, a keen sense of urgency, and the ability to drive impactful results in a highly matrixed organization
  • Strong written/verbal communication skills and understanding of executive conciseness
  • Solid knowledge of employment laws and regulations

Candidate Certifications to Look For

  • Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR). The (SPHR) is designed for candidates who are working in a senior HR position. Offered by the HR Certification Institute, this credential can help advance candidates to the next level. To be eligible,  they must have a minimum of four, five, or seven years of professional-level HR work experience. The amount of experience depends on their educational background. The course covers leadership and strategy, talent planning and acquisition, learning and development, total rewards, and employee relations and engagement. Candidates must pursue continuing education to maintain the credential.
  • Senior SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP). The SHRM-SCP is designed for HR professionals with advanced knowledge of HR strategic planning and how those strategies meet company goals. Topics covered are behavioral competencies, technical knowledge, people, organization, workplace, and strategy. An SHRM-SCP certified individual is well equipped to deal with employee performance or efficiency metrics and to successfully execute, deploy, and install HR projects. The requirements to sit for the exam include five or six years of working experience or less if candidates have a bachelor’s degree. 
  • Global Professional in Human Resources® (GPHR). To be eligible for the GPHR, candidates must have global HR experience, such as having direct, cross-border HR responsibilities for two or more countries or regions. Eligibility for the GPHR depends on their level of education and their current experience in an HR role. The exam covers a number of topics, including strategic global human resources, global talent management, global mobility, and risk management and compliance. 

Sample Interview Questions

  • What experience do you have with HR software?
  • What KPIs do you use to measure the effectiveness of the HR department?
  • How do you consolidate HR strategies with overall business objectives?
  • What can HR do to influence company culture?
  • What steps would you take to ensure diversity in the organization?
  • How do you deal with challenges, labor disputes, and violations?
  • How do you stay current with employment laws?
  • What are the qualities that make a good leader for an HR team?
  • What is your knowledge of the current federal and state overtime laws?
  • If one of the managers under your supervision made a serious mistake, what would you do?
  • What policies have you developed? Were they successful?
  • Has a manager come to you with a problem they couldn’t solve? What did you do to help?
  • How would you investigate possible causes and implement solutions to high turnover rates?

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