Operations management: what to expect, responsibilities, and more

How to Become an Operations Manager: What to Expect, Responsibilities More

Emily GregorLast updated on January 2, 2024
6 min

Ready to build better conversations?

Simple to set up. Easy to use. Powerful integrations.

Get started

Ready to build better conversations?

Simple to set up. Easy to use. Powerful integrations.

Get started

An Operations Manager plays a critical role within a company. Without them, teams would struggle to have the right tools, processes, and resources they need to carry out a project successfully. That’s because Operations Managers are responsible for efficiency across various levels of your business.

For example, an Operations Manager in a hospital is in charge of making sure medications are released on time, digital records are processed quickly, and different departments have systems in place for coordinating smoothly with one another. Needless to say, this significantly impacts a patient’s treatment experience and recovery.

It’s clear that Operations Managers are crucial to the success of a business. So, if you want to become one yourself, let us take a more in-depth look into this role.

We’ll go over:

  • Responsibilities

  • Necessary qualifications

  • Possible career paths

  • Current average salary in the U.S.

  • and more.

Quick links

What Is an Operations Manager?

The field of Operations Management covers many aspects of a business—from hiring and training employees to improving processes and overseeing quality assurance measures. Operations Managers are in charge of other supervisors and program leads, (think customer care specialists or office managers). They also work closely with C-level executives to implement high-level strategies in the business’s everyday operations.

An Operations Manager should therefore possess the knowledge and skillsets necessary to coordinate with other managerial staff, like Supply Chain Managers and Logistics Managers. This means that not only must they understand a company’s internal processes to ensure their seamless and consistent flow, but they should also have the capacity to coordinate and set up all these processes to streamline business operations.

What Does an Operations Manager Do?

Operations managers are responsible for increasing the efficiency of a company’s daily activities and operations. Here are just a few of their day-to-day tasks.

Maintain constant communication with management, staff, and vendors

An operations manager acts as a liaison between the company’s stakeholders, including management, employees, and vendors. Their duties may involve providing updates to a project’s team leader about their ordered materials.

Develop, implement, and maintain quality assurance protocols

An operations manager must minimize or even eliminate mistakes and defects in a company’s products. They should also work to prevent problems when delivering these products to customers—or when performing a service for them. To accomplish this, they develop and enforce quality assurance protocols and ensure everyone follows them.

Grow the efficiency of existing organizational processes and procedures

To ensure that the company’s operations are as efficient and as streamlined as possible, operations managers develop and enforce protocols that eliminate bottlenecks and redundancies.

For example, they can introduce digital tools and technologies to enhance internal communication channels. This can help reduce misunderstandings among different teams and ensure that everyone is on the same page at all times.

Actively pursue strategic and operational objectives

Each company has a specific set of operational objectives, and operations managers strive to meet them across a wide range of business activities. To do that, they might replace existing procedures with new ones and possibly even develop new tactics themselves. They also need to track and benchmark KPIs to help guide teams toward reaching their targets more effectively.

Ensure operational activities remain on time and within a defined budget

In addition to improving the company’s efficiency, operations managers keep track of all operational activities to ensure they are running smoothly, on time, and within the specified budget.

Track staffing requirements

Included in an operation manager’s responsibilities is paying close attention to the company’s employees. For example, they might assign shift schedules based on worker needs. They also have to ensure that the organization’s teams have the exact number and quality of staff members they need.

Hire new employees

An operations manager may also be responsible for setting hiring protocols or requirements. For instance, they may instruct the HR department to require candidates to pass specific tests before moving on to the next stage of the recruitment process. They may also establish the particular skills and qualifications that job-seekers need before applying for an open role.

Oversee accounts payable and accounts receivable departments

Part of an operations manager’s job is ensuring that the company pays its vendors the right amount and on time. They also have to keep track of all debts owed to the organization, whether by customers or vendors.

How Do You Become an Operations Manager?

The wide range of responsibilities that an Operations Manager has means that those in this role typically have to have a wide range of skills and qualifications.

Here is a quick overview of the skills you need to succeed in this position, as well as the education and training background that employers want.

Skills You Need to Succeed

  • Strong budget development and oversight skills

  • Excellent delegation skills

  • Maintain organizational control of operations and customer service

  • Highly trained in conflict management and business negotiation processes

  • Knowledge of general business software and aptitude to learn new applications

  • Working knowledge of management software programs

  • Strong IT skills, including database development

  • Multiple years of financial and account reporting

Education and Training

An operations manager usually needs at least a bachelor’s degree, preferably in business administration or a related field.

Those interested in an operations manager job should also know the basics of business communication, financial accounting, and management principles. While having a lot of experience in these fields isn’t strictly necessary, having a solid understanding of them will help set you apart from other candidates.

Some operations managers opt to earn a business-related master’s degree to access more opportunities in the field. For instance, they may pursue further studies in project management or supply chain management to better understand their role and improve their career advancement options.

Operations Manager Salary: What to Expect

Based on reports submitted to Indeed, an operations manager in the United States earns an average of $65,785 per year. They may also receive extra bonuses, like an annual $10,000 cash bonus, sometimes with a $7,000 profit-sharing agreement, as well.

Benefits commonly provided to operations managers in the U.S. include a 401(k) matching formula, parental leave, health insurance, and vision insurance.

Note that this average annual salary depends on the candidate’s background, experience, and the company’s location.

  • People with less than one year of experience in the field may earn around $63,698 per year. In contrast, those who have been in the industry for more than a decade may receive an annual salary of approximately $72,627 or more.

  • When it comes to location, operations managers in Chicago typically earn an average of $72,361 per year, while those in Los Angeles receive an average annual salary of $67,795.

The industry also determines an Operations Manager’s salary. For instance, Verizon pays managers an average of $95,977 per year, while Boeing reportedly pays around $136,019 annually.

Let Aircall Fuel Your Growth as an Operations Manager

Since improving efficiency falls to the operations manager, it’s a given they will work with digital technologies. One of the tools that they should consider is Aircall.

Aircall helps operations managers digitally transform their companies—taking them to greater heights of success. We provide you with cloud-based call center software that can help workers improve customer experiences, no matter what.

Our top-of-the-line cloud phone system lets you:

  • Set up international numbers to avoid high phone bills when dealing with customers in multiple regions

  • Encourage collaboration by enabling your staff to comment on assigned calls and share your customer base with sales and product development departments

  • Use call center features like skill-based routing to route calls to the agent with the right technical skills to handle customers’ specific concerns

  • Reduce customer frustration and shorten wait times with call queuing, queue callback, and parallel calls

Lastly, Aircall’s powerful analytics will give you insight into the quality of customer support that you are currently providing. This includes call monitoring to boost quality assurance and a live feed feature that helps optimize support reps’ productivity.

Are you ready to become the best Operations Manager there ever was? Schedule a consultation with our team, and let us find out how best to help your business skyrocket its efficiency.

Published on October 15, 2021.

Ready to build better conversations?

Aircall runs on the device you're using right now.