human resources

plural noun

Definition of human resources

1 : personnel sense 1a hiring more human resources
2 : personnel sense 2 Human resources will contact you about your interview. the company's human resources department

Examples of human resources in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Staff recommended the district approve a position for director of human resources to manage the day-to-day operations of the department. Daily Pilot, "Around Town: Civil War Days re-enactment returns to Huntington Beach," 29 Aug. 2019 Renee Zoladz is the new the director of human resources at New Trier High School. Marissa Plescia,, "Shout Out: Renee Zoladz, New Trier human resources director," 29 Aug. 2019 There is reason to believe that the intense work-home relationships would aid in team building, said Lisa Pook, an organization development manager with human resources service MRA. Sarah Hauer, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "This Milwaukee startup's staff lives and works together from one east side Milwaukee apartment," 23 Aug. 2019 In the functional area or by application, candidates can choose focuses on supply chain management, data analytics, and human resources, for example. Valerie Sweeten, Houston Chronicle, "Steps to getting an MBA: Make the journey," 22 Aug. 2019 The company's human resources manager, Jose Humberto Gonzalez, pleaded guilty to a similar federal criminal conspiracy charge, the agency said. Ray Sanchez, CNN, "Indictments of workers mount after the Mississippi immigration raids, but no employers have been charged," 21 Aug. 2019 Most of Uber’s Dallas employees will work in finance, human resources and sales, Miller said. Melissa Repko, Dallas News, "Uber makes it official: It will set up major hub in downtown Dallas by end of year," 20 Aug. 2019 Employees have been informed of the layoff, according to the letter to the state from Penny Finley, Nestle USA director of human resources. Marcia Heroux Pounds,, "Nestle to lay off nearly 70 in Weston," 19 Aug. 2019 The heads of operations, human resources and communications are all women, as are both of Momofuku’s construction project managers, and over half of its restaurant general managers. Elizabeth G. Dunn, New York Times, "Momofuku’s Secret Sauce: A 30-Year-Old C.E.O.," 16 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'human resources.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of human resources

1915, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for human resources

Last Updated

12 Sep 2019

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The first known use of human resources was in 1915

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More Definitions for human resources

human resources

plural noun

Financial Definition of human resources

What It Is

Human resources is an organizational function related to the procurement and retention of talented employees.

How It Works

All companies deal with human resources in some form or another, even if they don't have dedicated human resource departments. That's because human resources goes far beyond hiring; the function also deals with (among other things) maintaining morale within the organization; creating motivational compensation plans; creating and maintaining performance-appraisal programs; ensuring that important information about benefits, laws, and employment issues is disseminated; and helping employees maintain and develop their skills.

Sometimes the payroll function is part of human resources; sometimes it is part of accounting.

Why It Matters

Human resources recognizes that people are assets rather than liabilities in companies. In order to keep these assets optimally productive, human resources is there to make sure a company hires the right employees, fires the wrong ones, develops employees with potential, keeps everyone happy, and ensures that companies and employees are fulfilling their legal obligations to each other.

One can measure the effectiveness of the human resources function through various ratios such as cost per hire, employee turnover rates, training return on investment (ROI), and benefit costs per employee. However, human resources is as much of an art as it is a science because it deals with some of the more emotional aspects of labor management.

Source: Investing Answers

human resources


English Language Learners Definition of human resources

: a department within an organization that deals with the people who work for that organization
: a group of people who are able to do work

Comments on human resources

What made you want to look up human resources? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to make a temporary encampment

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