What is the HR Business Partner Career Path?

A typical career path is defined as a series of jobs that helps employees to achieve their personal life or career goals.

Similarly, the HR business partner jobs pathway is the series of job roles an individual takes in their life to reach the HR business partner post and progress further in this career. 

Organizations prefer a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in human resources for an HR business partner position. 

HRIS certifications and suitable qualifications relevant to the HR field elevate your chances of landing a better HR business partner job and becoming an expert business partner professional. 

To learn more via video, then watch below. Otherwise, skip ahead.

This article provides information on what job options are present to become an HR business partner and what the career path for the HRBP position looks like. Let’s start. 

What Does an HR Business Partner Career Path Look Like?

An HR professional has many options to review and become a better HR business partner in the HR department. Here are mentioned some clear career choices you can review to become an HR business partner:

HR Business Partner Associate

An HR business partner role for an associate provides recommendations and assists senior and junior HRBPs in developing, interpreting, and implementing human resources policies and procedures to meet organizational needs and comply with federal and state laws.

They are responsible to partner with the people operations team, which includes senior HR business partners, talent development, talent acquisition, and workplace services, to support the manager and employee population.

Perks of HR business partner model

The position centers on developing relationships to support strong company culture and help solve organizational challenges with the HR operational support function. 

Job Responsibilities

Here are the mandatory job responsibilities for an HRBP associate:

  • Partner with the Senior HRBP to identify solutions for improving employee experience, promoting our culture, employee engagement, succession planning efforts, developing leaders, and retention of critical talent with alignment to our company’s cultural values
  • Provide support on various HR-related areas such as onboarding, benefits, performance management, training opportunities, and HRIS tasks, and help guide employees on how to best navigate the firm’s flat organizational structure
  • Guide new managers to strengthen and support their leadership skills in performance coaching, addressing difficult conversations, and general employee relations challenges & opportunities
  • Execute HR operational procedures with a flexible mindset approach, such as merit and bonus, employee transfers, leave management administration, and termination events within Workday’s global HRIS system
  • Partner with the international people operations team to assist with identifying solutions for improving succession planning efforts, employee engagement, and retention of talent aligning with our company’s values
  • Deep understanding of HR policies, best practices, and HR compliance knowledge with domestic employment law requirements, such as training compliance, Employee handbook updates, and employment agreements such as non-solicitation, non-compete, and confidentiality obligations
  • Act with integrity, transparency, and confidentiality while providing ad hoc support for the global HR teams

Preferred Skills and Qualifications

Here are the required skills and qualifications for an HRBP associate:

  • Education: Bachelor’s degree in business administration, human resources, or any other related field
  • Experience: At least 2-3 years working within an HR function (prior experience in technology or services industries) with experiences in HR generalist activities, such as employee relations, talent management, compensation, performance management, and recruitment. Experience with HRIS systems such as Greenhouse, Culture Amp, and other methods such as Confluence and JIRA. 
  • Proficiency: Expertise in employee immigration, benefits, payroll, mobility, and compensation to cross-train with other colleagues. Proficient in managing and thriving in ambiguity by dealing with issues that do not always have a process or system
  • Skills: Creative, growth-minded, collaborative, and people-focused contributor who demonstrates proven success with relationship building, accountability, creativity, follow-through, and detail orientation

Junior HR Business Partner

The Junior HRBP supports the operational HR team with people-focused activities, collaborates with others to provide day-to-day HR services, and provides strategic HR advice.  They also work with HR groups and people managers to support the business with strategic HR interventions and the HRBP model. 

HR business partner duties you should be familiar with

The junior HR business partner is a versatile self-starter who partners with business leaders, enabling teams to do their best work, and increasing employee satisfaction and engagement.  

Job Responsibilities

The primary job responsibilities for a junior HR business partner include: 

  • Cultivate an understanding of our performance metrics, business, and the teams you will support
  • Serve as a partner to VPs and managers, making data-driven recommendations for performance, engagement, and retention improvements
  • Advise and coach managers to evaluate performance, motivate the team members, and make decisions aligned with the company’s philosophy
  • Manage operational processes, including reviewing performance documentation and probation letters for employee relations cases
  • Support the HR manager with employee relations and underperformance and issues with good judgment and discretion
  • Collect, report, and synthesize people data for the group
  • Create HR training for managers in international places delivering on employment and law legislation
  • Take ownership of specific industries and projects as directed by the HR manager
  • Build relationships and trust with individual contributors, leaders, and managers
  • Maintain strict confidentiality to ensure confidence in the organization and the human resources function

Preferred Qualifications and Skills

Here are the preferred HBRP skills and qualifications:

  • Education: Minimum of a bachelor’s degree with HR certification
  • Experience: 1 to 3 years in an HR role
  • Skills: Skills in demonstrating results in coaching and counseling effective employee relations
  • Proficiency: Flexible and comfortable with multitasking. Results-oriented with the ability to work within demanding time frames. Proficient knowledge of labor law and compliance
  • Abilities: Self-starter with a proven ability to work. Detail-oriented, creative, and possess strong analytical, problem-solving, and decision-making abilities 

Senior HR Business Partner

A senior-level HR business partner is an experienced human resource professional who works with an organization’s senior leadership, like HR managers or the HR director, to develop and direct strategic HR projects that support business goals and objectives. 

A good business partner knows what a business needs to hit its financial goals.

HR business partner career path

These professionals must exhibit proficiency in recruiting, managing, and employees benefit principles. As a result, the role places a much higher emphasis on strategy development than other job titles within the HR department.

Job Responsibilities

The primary job responsibilities of a senior HR business partner include: 

  • Conducts weekly meetings with respective senior HR professionals
  • Consults with line management, providing HR and business strategy advice when needed
  • Analyzes metrics and trends in collaboration with the HR group to develop programs, solutions, and policies
  • Manages and resolves complex employee relations issues. Conducts effective, thorough, and objective investigations of company policies
  • Maintains advanced knowledge of legal requirements related to the daily management of employees, ensuring regulatory compliance and reducing legal risks
  • Partners with the legal department as required
  • Provides regular performance management guidance to management, such as counseling, disciplinary actions, coaching, and career development
  • Works with employees and management to build morale, improve work relationships, and increase productivity
  • Provides HR policy interpretation and guidance
  • Develops contract terms for promotions, new hires, and transfers
  • Assists local and international employees with HR-related matters
  • Provides input and guidance on succession planning, business unit restructuring, and workforce planning
  • Identifies training needs for individual executive coaching needs and business units
  • Participates in monitoring of training programs and evaluation to ensure success. Follows up to ensure training objectives are met

Responsibilities of Senior HR Business Partner

Preferred Qualifications and Skills

Here are the mandatory qualifications and skills for a senior HR business partner:

  • Skills: Excellent written and verbal communication skills, customer service, and interpersonal skills, attention to detail, and organizational skills. Time management skills and an ability to meet deadlines. Excellent problem-solving skills and analytical skills
  • Abilities: Ability to interpret, apply and comprehend sections of applicable ordinances, guidelines, regulations, and policies. Ability to acquire a detailed understanding of the organization’s qualifications, jobs, hierarchy, and practices related to these factors
  • Proficiency: Expert in Microsoft office suite or related software. Working knowledge of numerous human resource disciplines, including organizational diagnosis, compensation practices, employee and union relations, performance management, diversity, and federal and state employment laws
  • Experience: Minimum of 5 to 8 years of experience in resolving employee relations issues
  • Education: Bachelor’s or master’s degree in strategic human resource management or a relevant field

Our top-rated HRBP certifications provide insightful information on HRBP job roles, HRBP skills, and duties. Take a look here:

HR Business Partner Certification


HR business partner role is an excellent career choice to progress in human resources. If you want to excel in the human resources business partner career, upskill your knowledge based on this role’s objectives, advanced skills, knowledge, and long-term goals.


Here’s a list of the most asked questions regarding the HRBP role:

Is HR Business Partner a Good Role?

A general HR professional or HR recruiter has a median salary of $53,820 per year in the United States, as per Glassdoor. The most likely range of an HR business partner is higher than the average salary, inclusive of all the allowances and bonuses. This salary range is pretty appealing for an individual to consider the HRBP career path. Hence, based on these salary figures, the HR business partner’s role is rewarding. 

How Important Are HR Business Partners for the HR?

The human resource department relies on the HR business partners to know about workforce productivity and the strategies to extract even more from the employees. A human resources department doesn’t do well if the HR business partners do not provide valuable insights into how the employee’s complete performance affects the organization.  

What Industries Need Human Resources Business Partners?

Almost all businesses need human resource professionals and business partnering to walk in the right direction by finding the best-suited talent based on the organizational objectives and goals. 

All industries need HR such as:

  • Software 
  • Medicine
  • Health care
  • Government
  • Insurance
  • Manufacturing
  • IT


If you are new to Human Resources and are looking to break into an HR Business Partner role, we recommend taking our HR Business Partner Certification Course, where you will learn how to build your skillset in the human resources business partner realm, build your HRBP network, craft a great HRBP resume, and create a successful HRBP job search strategy.

Josh Fechter
Josh Fechter is the founder of HR.University. He's a certified HR professional and has managed global teams across 5 different continents including their benefits and payroll. You can connect with him on LinkedIn here.