Human Resources Management


Certificate Overview

  • 4.5 month duration
  • 9 two-week courses
  • 5-7 hours per course

Whether you’re a generalist, specialist or new to the world of human resources, there are core competencies that every HR professional should know. A Certificate in Human Resources Management gives you the foundation needed for a successful career by providing ways for you to align your HR department to your organization’s goals. The 9 courses within the program are result-oriented and practical, with real-world examples and exercises. By the end of the series, you will have the skills necessary to develop and implement successful HR practices that will help your organization improve its performance through better overall people management.

  • Train managers on how to deliver effective performance feedback, rate employees accurately, and mitigate legal risk
  • Recognize and apply elements of the Total Rewards Framework
  • Analyze labor relations environments, understanding regulatory and organizational elements and how they affect relationships between management, unions and employees
  • Identify effective planning, recruitment, and selection practices to align selection and staffing strategies with business strategies
  • Diagnose root causes of suboptimal levels of engagement among different employee groups and identify hypotheses about appropriate solutions
  • Choose training methods, technologies and content that are appropriate for the learner population
  • Recognize unconscious bias and how it affects the way that people perceive, evaluate, and react to others
  • Launch an internal consulting relationship based on a written or verbal contract
  • Line-level HR professionals with 0-5 years of experience
  • People who are seeking to enter the HR field
  • Global professionals from a diverse range of organizations, including for profits large and small, NGOs, and governmental agencies

Faculty Authors

John Hausknecht
Linda Barrington
Kevin Hallock
Stephanie Thomas
Alex Colvin
Harry C. Katz
Lisa Hisae Nishii
Brad Bell
Diane Burton
Christopher Collins

Certificate Courses

Develop the skills needed to assess and address the performance management needs of your organization.

Course Description

Based on the research and expertise of John Hausknecht, Ph.D., you will evaluate the possibility of working with or without a system, identify the properties and benefits of different systems, and explore different approaches to performance management. Steps to mitigate risk will be outlined, common rating and feedback errors will be examined, and support in delivering feedback will be provided using tools such as a Communication Plan. With the completion of an action plan at the end of the course, you will be ready to apply what you learn to your own organization.

The conversation around employee pay has changed from one of base salaries, bonuses, and cash compensation to a “total rewards” approach that seeks the right blend of monetary and non-monetary elements that will engage each employee and benefit the organization.

Course Description

Cornell University ILR School professors Kevin Hallock, Linda Barrington, and Stephanie Thomas are the thought leaders behind Cornell’s prestigious Institute for Compensation Studies. This team of authors and educators offers a learning experience that combines real-world case studies with an evidence-based, social science approach to the field of compensation. This course equips HR professionals with the tools and insights they need to apply a total-rewards view to compensation that aligns with their organization’s strategic goals and operational realities. This includes the Compensation Calculator, created by the Dean of the ILR School, Kevin Hallock, offering a method of job comparison that incorporates the total rewards view.

This course prepares new and aspiring human resource professionals to deal with the challenges of employee and labor relations.

Course Description

Drawing on their deep knowledge of labor relations and conflict management, Professors Alex Colvin and Harry Katz guide students through a series of activities that apply labor relations concepts to their own workplace (or a workplace with which they are familiar).

The course examines the regulatory and organizational labor relations environment and assesses the current state of relations between management and workers. Students learn how to prepare for possible labor disruptions and look at effective negotiations and conflict management. Videos by Colvin and Katz, backed up by additional interviews with industry experts, provide informative content that assists students as they complete a five-part course project aimed at applying the concepts in a practical manner.

While union environments are a significant focus of the course, many of the concepts can be applied to non-union environments as well.


This course develops the skills needed to align HR staffing practices with the strategy of the larger organization, based on the research and expertise of John Hausknecht, Ph.D.

Course Description

HR professionals need to adapt to changing objectives and market conditions to recruit, select, and retain employees with the necessary skills to further organizational goals—all while steering clear of legal and other risks. Professor Hausknecht draws on his research, teaching, and consulting experience in staffing to provide a relevant and rigorous overview of the field. He offers numerous practical examples to help build the skills needed to staff modern-day organizations and grounds his recommendations in the latest research findings.

Research shows that engagement is the key factor that promotes higher performance. Engagement impacts an organization’s turnover rate—and its bottom line. Learn what engagement is and how to encourage it in your own organization.

Course Description

People may assume that it's employee satisfaction or commitment to their job that promotes higher performance, but it's engagement. In this course, you will examine the foundational drivers of engagement and explore the components of successful engagement initiatives. When completed, this course will help you identify strategies for bringing about engagement in organizations.

In companies where 60-70% of employees are engaged, shareholder returns are approximately 24%. Compare that to companies where only 50-60% of employees are engaged: shareholder returns are as low as approximately 5%. Similarly, teams with high engagement experience 4.1% turnover, as opposed to approximately 14.5% turnover for teams with low engagement.  These figures clearly illustrate the significant impact that managers and HR professionals can have if they better understand what impacts the engagement of employees.

Training and development are used to support strategic initiatives and address a variety of performance needs. Learn how to best address your organization’s training needs.

Course Description

In this course, you will learn when training is the right course of action and how you can design and deliver instruction  to meet your training needs. Professor Bradford Bell of Cornell's ILR School will take you from the analysis stage to the evaluation stage, as you explore training within your organization. In the process, you will conduct your own analysis, create a training plan, incorporate instructional events that facilitate learning transfer, and determine evaluation methods and measurements for your program.

Despite decades of legal and social reform aimed at reducing discrimination in the workplace, inequality continues to be a significant problem in all societies and most workplaces. Learn how to address and bridge that gap.

Course Description

In this course, you will learn about perceptual and psychological processes that impact the way that individuals interact with people who are demographically dissimilar from them. You will examine psychological processes that impact personnel decision making within organizations. This understanding will help HR professionals to design better practices and will help line managers to more effectively leverage the potential among employees from diverse backgrounds.

The course will also help you understand why “Diversity” is now often referred to as “Diversity & Inclusion” by explaining what inclusion is and how it differs from diversity. Why is inclusion so important, and what are its building blocks?

Besides technical and legal responsibilities within an organization, human resources staff have a moral responsibility to the individuals in the organization they serve.

Course Description

In this course, developed by Professor Diane Burton, Ph.D. of Cornell University’s ILR School, you will learn the skills necessary to reassert your HR role as a trusted, neutral advisor to employees at all levels within your organization. Students will develop coaching skills and learn how to foster a coaching culture while managing organizational HR needs with the most effective response for each situation.

Learn the skills needed to be a dynamic internal HR consultant by taking part in numerous consulting scenarios.

Course Description

This course develops the skills needed to be an effective internal HR consultant, based on the research and expertise of Christopher Collins, Ph.D.  Learn how to define the scope and nature of a consulting relationship, work with clients to diagnose problems and identify the root cause, present findings and recommendations, and determine appropriate solutions. Take a close look at implementing solutions and managing change.  By completing the multi-part course project, you’ll gain practical experience by applying what you’ve learned to an actual or simulated consulting scenario.