Why study a master’s degree in Human Resource Management and the Future of Work?

MSc Human Resource Management and the Future of WorkThe Future of Work has become one of the defining debates of our generation. Whilst the greening of our economies will create millions of jobs, many traditional forms of work will disappear. The digital economy fosters greater connectivity and access to technologies, but also has the potential to disrupt labour markets. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown millions of people across the globe out of employment, increased inequality and led to a degradation in labour rights. In short, the Future of Work creates many challenges. However, countless opportunities exist to improve the quality of working lives and reverse the damages inflicted by the pandemic, global inequality, and the climate crisis. The role of Human Resource Management in the Future of Work is central in ensuring that these opportunities are realised.  

The MSc in HRM and the FoW responds to the increasing demands of HR managers and experts who have the necessary skills and expertise to adapt to a rapidly changing world of work. Whether this is the rise of the gig economy, algorithmic management, artificial intelligence, green jobs or, more recently, the changing practices of organisations as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic it is clear that HR managers have a leading role to play in responding to the crisis. 

Why study Human Resource Management and the Future of Work at the University of Bristol? 

Our Programme has been created in direct response to the major challenges and opportunities facing the world of work. The Programme is taught by leading experts who are at the forefront of their field. It provides students with the opportunity to work on real-life HRM issues, where possible, in partnership with private, charity, and public sectors’ organisations. Students will gain a critical understanding of organisational, societal, and ethical issues in HRM. These issues are crucial for many organisations that are emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic into a unique and challenging environment. As a recent report notes, what sets the current pandemic apart from previous crisis such as the financial crisis of 07-08 is that the COVID-19 crisis is a human one, which places HR managers in the central role of enabling organisations to exit the crisis successfully 

Who is this Programme aimed at? 

Our MSc Human Resource Management and the Future of Work suits graduates or early career professionals who wish to pursue a career in HRM and the Future of Work across organisations in the private, public or third sector. This programme will appeal firstly to those wanting to go into HR managerial roles but also those interested in becoming managers in other areas, such as accounting, marketing or operations, and who need to have an understanding of HRM to be able to function effectively. There’s also is a third subset of people who do not aspire to become managers at all but are interested in finding out more about work and HRM if only to understand more about the pressures that beset them in their own daily lives. 

We consider applications from graduates with an upper second-class honours degree (or international equivalent) in an Social Science related field. We also consider applicants from different backgrounds who do not meet the entry requirements but have relevant work experience. 

What skills do we teach? 

The programme is particularly attractive in its skills and employability offerings through its engagement with internal initiatives such as the Bristol Skills Framework and inclusive and state-of-the-art assessment promoted by Bristol Institute for Learning and Teaching (BILT) but also through connection with local organisations. Alongside the credit-bearing units, several separate events are being planned such as a mock arbitration court, CV workshop, mock assessment centre, model United Nations and a short non-assessed capstone project.  

We aim to guide, teach and develop analytical and confident critical thinkers through research-led teaching. You will gain insight into the nature of HRM and the complexity of organisations from a variety of disciplines and will be armed with the relevant knowledge to apply theory to practice. Group work, presentations and innovative assessments based on real-life organisations will develop the teamwork and communication skills expected in today’s workplace. 

What career opportunities could this lead to? 

The MSc Human Resource Management and the Future of Work programme responds to the increasing demand for skills in HRM both in the UK and abroad. Career paths in the private sector include HR and personnel managers in a variety of sectors and organisations. Students will also find the knowledge and skills gained will be useful for public sector organisations such as the civil service as well as international organisations such as the United Nations. The programme is also relevant for those wanting to continue to do a PhD.