According to a new survey from Bloomberg Law for HR Professionalshuman resources departments have a median of 1.5 employees for every 100 in the workforce—an all-time high in the survey's 40-year history.

Survey findings appear in the HR Department Benchmarks and Analysis 2018, a resource for “HR executives who want to compare how their departments stack up to similarly sized organizations when it comes to staffing, expenditure, responsibilities, priorities, and influence,” says Molly Huie, manager of survey reports for Bloomberg Law.

"In this year's report, there are year-over-year comparisons of the new metrics added last year—including details of how HR departments are using their allotted budgets—allowing readers to identify trends in the industry and make more informed planning decisions."

Key findings from the survey include:

  • Human resources spending per employee increased slightly this year, though levels are still near a 10-year low.
  • The HR salary ratio comparing HR salaries to total payroll also hit an all-time high at 2.8, indicating human resources staff­ continue to make more than the workers they serve.
  • Employee and workforce satisfaction, compensation competitiveness, training, and diversity, and EEO have seen jumps in priority over the past five years and are currently as important as they have ever been.