Best Indian B-Schools for HR Professionals

Each time an interviewer, with his self-assured attitude and a smirk on his face, spills out the words, “So, where do you see yourself five years from now”, I undergo a dire craving to retort with, “In your chair!” I am sure each one of you can relate to me at the moment. While we all imagine ourselves in THAT chair and daydream of taking interviews some day; how many of us dare to sincerely contemplate what it takes to actually be in the interviewer’s shoes? Is his job as easy as we perceive it to be? Or for that matter is taking interviews all that he does the entire day?

Human Resource Development may sound very swanky and uncomplicated; we might think that all one requires is ‘people-skills’. If we do think so, then we are far from reality. So, what is HRD all about? What are the other aspects of HRD that we so often overlook?

Conventionally HR has been defined as “Organised learning activities arranged within an organisation in order to improve performance and personal growth for the purpose of improving the job, the individual, and the organisation”, which would ideally mean that the goal of HRD is to improve the performance of the organisation by maximising the efficiency and performance of its people by developing knowledge, skills, actions, standards, and motivation, incentives, attitudes and work environment.

However, that is not all. Let’s take a look at the various activities that constitute HR.

The functions can broadly be categorised as:

  • Human Resource Management
  • Organisational Planning and Development
  • Employee and Industrial Relations

These would involve training and development, career and organisational development. Human Resource Management encompasses HR research and information systems, union and labour relations, employee assistance, compensation, benefits, selection and staffing, performance management systems, HR planning, and organisation and job design. Besides this, the HR department is responsible for recruitment, employment law compliance and employee benefits. Let me also show you the flip side of HRD. It is not responsible only for all the pleasant activities mentioned above but also handles grievances, disciplinary measures, dismissals and redundancies.

If now, you find it interesting, read on.

You might be wondering where HR will take you if you opt for it as a career. To begin with, HR- related degrees always facilitate entry into this sector. On the post- graduate level, there are a couple of reputed institutions that offer specialisations in HR and we have discussed these later in this article. After completing post-graduation, a new entrant would usually start out as an HR assistant and would deal with work related to administration, documentation, paperwork involved in employing people and so on. Over a period of time one moves to the level of officer, executive or manager, which would entail greater responsibility in terms of conceptualising strategies & channelising organisational resources besides handling the complexities of employment law.

In this issue we will discuss a few of the best institutions in India that offer a post-graduate specialisation in Human Resource Management.

Xavier Labour Relations Institute (XLRI) Jamshedpur

XLRI offers not only the regular post graduation in HR but also an Executive post graduation programme for working executives. The Exec-PG programme provides executives with an opportunity to earn a Postgraduate Diploma in Business Management without interrupting their career.

Fr. Cashimir Raj, Director XLRI says

  • The PM & IR course has been designed in such a way that it leaves no stone unturned when it comes to the basic management concepts. We have a module on general management and related concepts, which is mandatory for all students. Only when are sure that the foundation has been laid, do we proceed with the modules on PM & IR specialisation.
  • The campus placements at XLRI have always been a matter of pride for us. Our students have always proved their potential and today, they have made it big in the industry, In fact, this year the placements for PM & IR, at XLRI, were even better than for other general management courses.
  • Xavier’s has always promoted a culture of ethics, which is why we have included Business Ethics and similar subjects as separate mandatory modules and we invite corporate and renowned personalities from world over to lecture on them.

Eligibility: A three-year “Bachelor’s degree in any discipline. Postgraduate applicants in any discipline are also eligible.

Candidates applying for the three year Executive Postgraduate programme

  • must hold a Bachelor’s Degree from a recognised University in India/abroad in any discipline,
  • be employed in a full-time job,
  • must have at least two years of relevant managerial experience in an organisation of repute after completing graduation and
    have the permission from the employer for pursuing this programme.

Selection Procedure: The candidates are selected on basis of their score in XAT (XLRI Aptitude Test), which is held every year in the month of January.

Pedagogy: Students are taught through classroom education in core subjects like Labour Law, Organisational Behaviour and so on, coupled with an exposure to the socio-economic environment and the ethical and legal framework within which business operates in India. Students can also pursue elective courses dealing with the functional areas of their interest. During the summer vacation at the end of the first year, all students of the PM&IR are required to undertake a project assignment with an organisation. During the second year of the two-year programmes, students take up elective courses in their specialisation areas and are encouraged to undertake research studies in their field of interest as term papers.

“I am glad I chose XLRI for HR. It not only helped in broadening my perspective but also strengthened my fundamentals in HR. The course not only added value in terms of education but also taught us how to handle people. After all, that is what HR is all about. The modules were so designed that they always afforded an opportunity for theoretical application of concepts to projects or training programmes. All in all, it added to our perspectives, a new dimension, which helps us understand the human psyche well.”
Shweta Mehrotra, Associate Manager, Sales – HR, India, Colgate. (XLRI 2002)

Fee Structure: The fee for the course, inclusive of living expenses, comes to Rs. 1.43 lakhs for the first year and Rs. 1.33 lakhs for the second year.

Alumni: Percy Siganporia (MD, Tata Tea), Sugato Palit (Head – Organisation Capability, Seagram India), Pratik Kumar (Corporate Vice President – HR, Wipro)

Placements: The campus recruitments are good and happen with corporates of repute, like Accenture, Procter & Gamble, ABN Amro, Infosys, McKinsey & Co. etc.

Salaries: The average salary drawn by a Management Trainee is over 6 lacs.

Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) Mumbai


  • Two-year full-time Master of Arts in Personnel Management and Industrial Relations (PM & IR)
  • Two-year part-time Diploma in Personnel Management (DPM)

Eligibility: Three years of Bachelor’s degree in any discipline with a minimum aggregate of 50%.

“I was, like everyone else, a fresh college graduate, completely confused about my future. I was not sure whether my choice was as good as it sounded. But TISS helped me get rid of such uncertainties. What I like most about this course is that we get a practical exposure to everything we learn during our theory sessions. The professors are not only masters in their subject but also motivate us to be so. The environment is truly inspiring. When you are surrounded by people who are constantly striving to achieve, you tend to learn more. And this is only my first year at TISS.”
Monish Dutta, First Year – PM & IR, TISS

Selection Procedure: Besides the academic background of the student, the student also has to take an essay test; group discussion and a personal interview, all of which are a part of the selection procedure.

Pedagogy: The institute believes in dissemination of knowledge and exchange of ideas in social theory and practice through seminars and conferences held at the Institute. The students also take up projects outside the Institute.

Fee Structure: The fee for the course, excluding hostel expenses, comes to Rs. 37,000.

Symbiosis Centre for Management and Human Resource Development (SCMHRD) Pune and Nashik

Course: Two-year full time Post Graduate Diploma in Management with specialisation in Human Resource Management.

Eligibility: Three years of Bachelor’s degree in any discipline with a minimum aggregate of 50%.

“The pedagogy is one thing I really appreciate about my college. Students are given so much flexibility to design the courses and get involved in teaching that it really opens your mind. Since we are an autonomous institution, we can change our syllabus anytime to suit market dynamics. Self-learning is encouraged. All the hostel rooms are equipped with a mini library which takes care of study requirements in the hostel. In addition, a student has to spend 20 hours regularly in the library per week. The college is gradually moving towards the case method of teaching. Regular seminars and workshops are also held for various specialisations so that it helps the students to understand practical realities of a career in that specialisation. What I gained from SCMHRD is something invaluable.”
– Anunay Shrivastava (Alumnus – 2004 batch)

Selection Procedure: It comprises of two stages. In the first stage students undergo a written test, which they have to clear in order the reach the second and final stage. The students short-listed from the first stage appear for Group Testing/ Psychological Evaluation/
Personal Discussion.

Pedagogy: The philosophy followed at SCMHRD is to empower students with knowledge, which is why the classroom education is supported by practical knowledge.

Fee Structure: The fee for the course, including hostel expenses, is approx. Rs. 1, 20,000.

Placements: ICICI, Kotak Bank, Infosys, Mahindra & Mahindra, L&Tand so on.

Salaries: The average salary of a fresh MBA graduate from SCMHRD is Rs. 4.20 lacs p.a.

Management Development Institute, Gurgaon, Haryana.

Course: Two year full time Post Graduate Program – Human Resource Development

Eligibility: graduate from any background.

Selection procedure: The candidate has to appear for the CAT exam. Once he clears, he has to go through a group discussion and personal interview. However, MDI lays a lot of emphasis on their internal exam. This exam is conducted on students by their Assessment Centre and tests candidates for analytical abilities, team spirit etc through various activities and written tests.

Fee structure: Approx 2 lakh for the course.

Placements: IBM, Oracle, TCS, Wipro Technologies and Infosys, JP Morgan Chase & Co., UTI AMC, SBI Caps, IDBI Caps and GE Caps, Nestle, BMC, like Reckitt Benckiser, Nestle, Bharat Shell, Dabur, Maruti, Philips, ICI Paints, BMC, Bharti Televentures and Agrotech foods, Hewitt Associates and Times group

Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management (IISWBM) Kolkata


  • Two-year full time PGDBM (HR specialisation)
  • Two-year full time Masters in Human Resource Management (MHRM),
  • Three-year part time Post Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management (PGDHRM)

Eligibility: Three years of Bachelor’s degree, professional degrees in engineering etc from a recognised university. The candidates should also have work experience as executives, supervisors for atleast one year, drawing a minimum monthly salary of Rs. 3000/-, be sponsored by their respective employers

Selection procedure: A good score in MAT examination, Group Discussion and Personal Interview ensures admission in the institution.

Pedagogy: Equitable mix of theory and cases are used to bring out the complete range of perspectives to an issue.

Fee Structure: The fee for the MHRM programme is around Rs. 1,10,000 whereas; the fee for the PGDHRM course is around Rs. 1,25,000.

Alumni: Late Prof. Sumantra Ghoshal of London Business School, Shri L N Mittal of the ISPAT group, Shri Sudhir Jalan, Former President of FICCI and Dr. C V Chandrashekaran, Managing Director of Balmer Lawrie group.

Placements: Price Waterhouse Coopers, TCS, Pepsico, Novartis etc

Salaries: Salaries in the range of 4-6 lakhs are common.

Institute of Management and Technology, Ghaziabad

Course: Two-year-full-time Post Graduate Diploma Programme in Human Resource Management (PGDHRM)

Eligibility: Graduate in any field

Selection procedure: For admissions, IMT has been conducting its own test. A candidate then appears for a group discussion and personal interview.

Fee structure: Rs. 1.25 lakh per annum.

Placements: PGDHRM is a new course and the first batch is yet to graduate. Corporates like Polaris, HCL, Wipro, P&G, ABN Amro, ICICI, McKinsey etc.







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