Operations managers organize, plan, and direct the high level workings of corporations and other private or public organizations. The responsibilities and duties include managing day-to-day operations, formulating policies, and implementing the use of physical assets and human resources. These resources are often too general and diverse in nature to be easily categorized into any other specific area of administrative duties. This may include overseeing production, purchasing of capital equipment, hiring personnel, and other administrative services. In smaller companies, the duties of an operations manager may coincide with those of CEOs and other high level corporate officers or managers.
Most operations management positions require or strongly prefer candidates with a degree in operations management or a related field. Jump start your career by requesting free information today from the schools below:
Generally, operations managers with many years of experience become candidates to advance to higher corporate positions. There is also a strong requirement for good interpersonal skills and keeping up to date with the latest computer or technology trends.
Operations Manager Job Responsibilities
Operations Managers are responsible for managing other organizational functions that directly contribute the the product or service provided by the company. They may need to work with a team of managers or supervisors who report directly to them in order to facilitate the coordinated efforts of different departments.
Operations Managers must also typically report to executive positions such as CEOs, CIOs, CFOs, and the Board of Directors. In larger organizations, operations managers may report to general managers of various facilities or sub-groups of the company who then report to higher level executives.
To facilitate smooth operations within the company, operations managers may be required to create and/or implement policies and procedures. These policies ensure a smooth flow of operations in order to keep the company maintaining a high quality and quantity of production of the organization’s product or service. Operations managers are chosen for this responsibility because of their direct knowledge of day-to-day activities combined with their understanding of the company’s managerial goals.
Operations Manager Training and Education Requirements
Because of the many diverse industries and organizations requiring the employment of operations managers, there is typically not a standard course of preparation for this job. Most operations managers have at least a college degree, however. Experience also plays a significant role in the qualifications for an operations manager.
Many operations managers have a college degree in business administration, management, industrial production, or other similar degrees which lend themselves to a combination of business and operational skills. Many operations managers go on to earn a post graduate degree in a business-related function such as human resources, accounting, manufacturing, or another degree related to the industry they work in. Those who enter the position from college or graduate school may need to undergo exposure in the company’s training program in order to become familiar with the operations and business functions of the company.
More and more, companies place a greater level of importance on interpersonal and communication skills. That’s because the position often requires the operations manager to persuade, negotiate, and compromise. The ability to work well with others must be a skill that’s well rounded. Another skill often needed is the ability to use most standard office computer programs such as word processors, spreadsheets, or databases.
Operations Manager Salary and Wages
Typical salaries for operations managers range between $44,000 and $81,000. Bonuses may be paid based on performance. Those bonuses generally range from $2,000 to $14,000 based on the level of responsibility and the financial status of the company. Profit sharing may be another component where operations managers earn additional income. The salary tends to increase with the number of years of experience, and operations managers tend to have a wide range of experience levels. However, slightly more operations managers have an experience level in the 10 to 19-year range. Most positions include a significant benefits package that may include medical, dental, retirement plan, and other top-level benefits.*
*According to the BLS, http://www.bls.gov/oco/
Operations Manager Certifications
There is no one single certification for operations managers. However, there are a few certifications that can significantly catch the eye of most employers. One of these is a certification of Project Management Professional (PMP) offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI). Another certification is called CPIM or Certified in Production and Inventory Management. Yet one more common designation is CSCP or Certified Supply Chain Professional. CPIM and CSCP are commonly found in companies providing industrial production or distribution. Other certifications may include post professional training in various people or computer skills. Those organizations in technology sectors may require operations managers to engage in ongoing training to keep abreast of the latest technological developments in their industry.
Operations Manager Professional Associations
The primary association is known as The Association for Operations Management. The term APICS is used by the organization and it stands for Advanced Productivity, Innovation, and Competitive Success. With more than a 25-year history, APICS has taken a front role in operations management with now more than 70,000 members worldwide. APICS offers training and networking opportunities for those in both operations and supply chain management. In addition to conferences, APICS provides online training in order to suit the needs of most busy operations managers. Additionally, APICS is the organization that provides training and certification for the CPIM and CSCP designations mentioned in the section above.