Small Business HR Resources

Learning Outcomes

  • Identify reference resources for various forms and publications

Decorative image.You, human resources professional, are not alone out there! Doing HR for small business is often a solo project. You can’t necessarily look to the person in the next cube to know the right answer or offer some sound advice. However, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t some great resources out there to see you through some of those complex human resources issues you might face.

Whether it’s a tax form or best practices in corrective action, the following associations, websites and publications are apt to have the information you’re looking for.


Joining an association not only allows an HR professional access to written resources but allows for networking and access to other HR professionals who have experience and advice they’re willing to share.

  • Society for Human Resource Management. This association has more than 250,000 members in 140 countries. If your small business operates internationally, or even if it doesn’t, being a member of the largest HR management association in the world is advantageous, as it offers access to their communities, their website and all its resources, and its regular publications, HR News, HR Magazine and All Things Work. SHRM also provides the opportunity to earn additional industry certifications, offers career planning information and hosts several events each year.
  • Professionals in Human Resources Association. The PIHRA is another group that you can join if you’re a Human Resources professional in the state of California. This association serves the needs of over 170,000 HR employees in the state and has a great set of resources for anyone who’s faced with navigating California’s complex laws.

Learn More: In-Person Associations

Other associations have great resources online but joining isn’t as simple as signing up—often you’re required to be a part of a local chapter in order to fully participate:


HR publications are often the best way to stay up to date on changes in the human resources profession. These are some of the best ones out there:

  • HR Magazine. This is a quarterly publication of the Society of Human Resource management and is a quality source of information for HR professionals at all levels. Readers can access articles online and browse past issues, no membership is required.
  • Workforce Magazine. Workforce Magazine is a monthly publication dedicated to sharing innovative and successful HR trends and tools. The most current issue is available online and can be formatted for all devices.
  • HR Executive Magazine. Strategic thinkers will be interested in this magazine, which talks at a bit higher level about strategic issues in HR. The magazine is only available online.
  • Journal of Human Resources. Need something a bit more scholarly? The Journal of Human Resources, published by the Wisconsin University Press, features scholarly articles based on empirical study. There may be a cost associated with accessing this journal.

There are many HR publications out there, some specific to HR in a certain industry or state, others more general. A quick online search will offer even more of a selection to choose from if these don’t suit your needs.


Decorative image.We’d be remiss not to include a couple of blogs that are notably good. Conversational, anecdotal information is sometimes just the thing you need to solve an issue or even just commiserate. Check these out:

  • Evil HR Lady. Who wouldn’t want to read a blog with this title? The Evil HR Lady is the real deal – she’s a former HR professional who offers up her thoughts on current HR issues. She also answers questions and provides advice to both HR professionals and people who are looking to have effective dealings with their HR department.
  • Systematic HR. If you’re a technologically challenged HR professional, then Systematic HR is the blog you need to be reading. Its tagline, “The intersection between HR strategy and HR technology,” says it all. Systematic HR keeps its readers up to date on the technology that’s available and best practices for its use.
  • HR Bartender. Sharlyn Lauby is an HR consultant and the “HR Bartender,” offering advice on how to create the culture needed to make your organization a success. She posts frequently and shares favorite recipes along the way, too. That’s a bonus.

Other blogs worth checking out include the HR Ringleader, who talks about HR innovation, and No Excuses HR, which boasts “holding ourselves accountable” and helps HR professionals deal with those sensitive, not-so-fun issues. A quick online search will probably yield many more results. Take a look and see if there’s anything out there that will be helpful to you!

Forms and Legal Information

When it comes to needing forms, legal information, and confirming processes, there is no better place to go than right to the source.

  • Internal Revenue Service. The Internal Revenue Service provides Form I-9s, which confirm an employee’s eligibility to work in the U.S., social security numbers, W2 and W4 forms for tax withholding and reporting. Their Small Business and Self-Employed section features a page called Hiring Employees, and that provides instruction and rules around these required documents.
  • Department of Labor. The Department of Labor website provides information to small business owners on topics like hiring, leave benefits, retirement plans, unemployment insurance, wages, whistleblower protection and more. It’s a great site and worth taking the time to familiarize yourself with it if you’re an HR professional. This is also the place to order your employment law posters, which are a requirement if your small business exceeds a certain number of employees.

Other government websites, like OSHA and EEOC, can also provide helpful information to the HR professional looking to make sure there are no loose ends in the hiring process.

PRactice Question

The HR professional has a wide variety of resources that will help inform decisions and provide guidance to keep small businesses on the right side of the law, and the upside of productivity and profitability!