Human Resources Management Essentials

Online Human Resources Certificate

If you are looking to refresh your current human resources knowledge or supplement your business skills and education with HR classes, our online Human Resources Management Essentials Certificate can help prepare you to take the next steps in your career. Through flexible online classes, you'll cover human resources essentials on your schedule, from home.

  • Our online Human Resources Certificate can prepare students who have relevant previous experience in business or human resources to refresh or refine their skills and knowledge in the field.
  • Online classes cover topics such as managerial decision-making, labor relations, employee benefits, and compensation management.
  • Our online programs are flexible enough for you to finish them at a pace that works for you, based on how much time you can dedicate to your coursework each week.
Self Paced

Save up to $150 Ends 4/30/2024

Cost of Program


$997 Save $150


$49/month, Start for as low as $29

1-800-275-4410 (9AM - 9PM ET)

two human resource professionals talking at work.

What You Will Learn

  1. How to plan training methods to bring out the best in employees within the workplace.
  2. How to understand various compensation strategies, calculate appropriate pay increases, and analyze features of total compensation.
  3. How to make effective decisions as a manager and a leader.
  4. How to understand and discuss various types of employee benefits including health insurance, pension plans, and more.
Full Program Goal & Outcomes

HR Management Essentials Career Outcomes

Human resources professionals are needed in every industry to hire, train, retain, and manage the type of employee talent that can help businesses succeed. The completion of a certificate-level program does not typically qualify a student for employment. However, combined with previous relevant work experience or education, our online Human Resources Management Essentials Certificate can help prepare you to refresh your HR skills or learn new skills that can help you advance in your career.

State Licensing Requirements

Licensing and/or certification requirements for jobs in certain fields are not the same in every state and may include educational, testing, and/or experiential requirements beyond those offered by your Penn Foster Program. You should contact the state professional licensing board or similar regulatory body in the state(s) where you plan to work to determine their requirements before enrolling in your program. See the State Licensing page for contact information for state licensing/regulatory boards and certain industry licensing information.

Please review your state board requirements that are applicable to your field of study. State boards may impose a variety of different requirements.

Online Human Resources Certificate Curriculum

  • 5 courses
  • 57.8 continuing education units (CEUs)
  • 21 exams
  • 2 submitted projects

Estimated completion time:

  • Fast track = 4 months
  • Average time = 16 months

With Penn Foster, you can learn at whatever pace works best for you. Some learners will be more comfortable moving faster, and dedicating more time, and the fast track estimate will apply to them. The average track will apply to most learners who can dedicate a few hours per week to completing their coursework. The estimated completion times are based on completion times for learners enrolled in this program from May 2021 - April 2022, excluding withdrawals.

In our Human Resources Management Essentials Certificate courses, you'll cover foundational HR topics that can help you prepare to refresh your current skills or add new ones to your resume to advance in your career. Your online HR management classes include:

  • Principles of Management
  • Human Resources Management
  • Compensation Management
  • Employee Benefits

Show Full Curriculum

Human Resources Certificate Student Stories

Penn Foster’s online Human Resources Certificate Program can help prepare you to refresh current skills or gain new ones that are relevant to taking the next steps toward a career in HR. This program has helped recent graduates learn at their own pace and find new jobs. Learn more about Penn Foster graduates' experiences and how Penn Foster worked for them.
View Student Success Stories
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Quianna R.

Penn Foster Graduate, 2023

“It was very convenient and worked perfectly with raising kids and working.”

Looking for training for your workers?

Penn Foster currently works with hundreds of leading employers to meet their unique organizational needs.
Learn More

Online Human Resources Certificate Tuition

Take the first steps toward learning new skills or advancing in your current career with our online Human Resources Management Essentials Certificate. Simply choose from one of our low-cost customized payment plans below and get started today!

Option 1: Pay in full

Save up to $150 Ends 4/30/2024

Cost of Program


$997 Save $150

  • Best price. Best value.
  • Pay the full cost today
  • No monthly payments
Enroll Now

Option 2: Monthly Auto Pay Plan

Save up to $30 Ends 4/30/2024

Cost of Program


$997 Save $30

  • Pay $49 per month
  • Start for $29 down
  • All major credit and debit cards accepted
Enroll Now

Option 3: Monthly Mail Pay Plan

cost of program


  • Pay $49 per month
  • Start for $39 down
  • Mail your payments
Enroll Now

California residents please click here for Required California Disclosures.

Need more info or ready to enroll?

Looking for more information on transfer credits, military benefits, or our refund policy? Find this information and more about tuition and enrollment here.

Tuition & Payment Options

We're here to help. Call 1-800-275-4410 (9AM - 9PM ET)

Request Info

Our Proven Human Resources Management Learning Model

Empowering students to reach their professional goals


  • Start anytime
  • No exam due dates
  • Self-paced


  • Digital study guides
  • Self-check quizzes
  • Simulations and videos


  • 24/7 access to online resources
  • Online student community
  • Dedicated Learner Center


  • Expert faculty
  • Dedicated student services
  • Robust learning resources

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Online Human Resources Certificate FAQs

How can earning this certificate help me with my career in HR?

Those working in HR come from a variety of educational and work backgrounds. Many start with a degree in human resources or a similar field, like business management. Adding an HR credential to your resume can potentially help you stand out when applying to human resources jobs. However, since it's a certificate-level program, it may not qualify you for a job in the field without a relevant work background or degree. For those already working in HR, our online Human Resources Management Essentials Certificate can act as a refresher course, allowing you to refine and update your HR skills.

What is the current outlook of the HR field?

Every industry requires a human resources department, so there are often many opportunities to work in the field. While career outlook can vary based on where you live, what company you work for, and more, the outlook should remain positive for most positions in the workforce.

Can I work in HR from home?

Generally, those working in HR tend to work in an office workplace setting. This can be especially important in HR roles that require you to work one-on-one with employees and their managers. However, more than ever before, many industries are reconsidering what jobs can be done remotely. With that in mind, depending on your employer and your position, you may have the opportunity to work from home on a limited or even permanent basis.

What types of soft skills are required for the HR field?

Since those working in HR deal closely with employees and managers, people skills are a must. From strong verbal and written communication skills to an ability to handle conflict, HR employees need to be able to seamlessly move between offering advice to employees and working to meet the hiring needs of managers.