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Recruiter Vs HR Generalist Job-Which is Better
All people whether MBA or not, who aspire to take up a job in HR field face this question in their life- which is a better job career- Recruitment or HR Generalist ?
HR Generalist is a word that is used for no fixed job profile it may be totally a payroll profile or totally a recruitment profile or a training and development profile or a time office kind of profile or it can be a mix of multiple roles. I work for an Executive Search Firm as Senior Manager Recruitment and here I share my knowledge about the various HR job profiles vs the recruitment job/ career profile.
Let's first look at some of the main job roles that an HR Generalist might do as a fresher or as an HR when he has upto 3 to 5 years of experience:
1. Payroll- This role involves maintaining and preparing salary and its record for various employees in an organisation
2. Time office- It involves maintenance of attendance, leave and related records
3. MIS- It may involve keeping record of various employees, their appointment letters, on boards, resignations, interviews, etc.
4. On boarding - It may involve managing and streamlining the joining of new employees in an organisation and keeping its records
5. Staff welfare- This may involve managing various staff welfare activities going on in the organisation or facilities being provided to the employees in the organisation
6. Administration- It involves managing facilities, transportation, security, canteen and other facilities in an organisation besides doing laisioning and some purchases
Some Senior level HR Generalist roles includes profiles like:
1. Making and defining HR policies and standards
2. Doing performance evaluation, management and appraisal
3. Training and Development
4. Managing compensation, benefits, increements, promotion and incentives for various staff members
5. Recruitment
IF we look at the above two set of activities, we find that first 6 activities are the ones which normally a fresher or, say, a 1-4 year experienced person does in an organisation as an HR. The next set of 4 out of 5 activities are high end activities which are normally entrusted to, only very senior HR people with 5 to 25 years of experience. The last activity i.e recruitment usually is assigned to HR at all experience levels. Again if we look at the first set of activities deeply, we may be able to understand that most of them are not really activities that a highly qualified or an intelligent person is expected to get involve in, as most of these activities can be alternatively done by usual office staff or graduates . Those are mainly coordination or MIS or record keeping kind of activities. Real HR Generalist profile and important roles only come up after person has gained substantial experience and/ or confidence of the management.
Now, let's look at the Recruitment role:
A recruiter is responsible to source, coordinate/ conduct interviews to get final selection done in the company. Manpower is the most important resource for any company and hence finding good candidates become an extremely important role. Each new position come up with a new job description and a challenge is on the recruiter to find a right kind of person for the position. If a recruiter is able to find good employees for the company he/ she immediately gains importance and attracts appreciation from not only from immediate seniors but also at times from the top management. Recruitment is an interesting job profile and being an important role, it can get you high job satisfaction, better salaries, increements and incentives. Recruitment at times is dreaded because of targets that some consultancies have for their employees in the recruitment role. You can get further details on comparison of HR Generalist with Recruitment Jobs here . You can also check salaries prevailing in India for HR in general here . You can also check comparison of salaries in HR Generalist and recruitment roles here .
So my suggestion to HR people in the initial stages of their career is that, they should not run after the word HR Generalist role, totally sidelining recruitment roles without understanding the actual job content/ job profile that is involved therein. Do look at the job role properly before deciding whether to take up or discard a job role or position.
Sharing of analyses by people on the above topic or your opinion or contradictory views on the above post is welcome and I will try to answer any queries regarding the same.

From India, New Delhi
kamal preet kaur
good analysis. I agree with you fully
From India, Delhi
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