Office management is critical for any business to be successful. Office managers have excellent organisational skills and flexibility to keep up with everyday tasks within the office and manage any surprises. They are reliable employees who help businesses achieve organisational efficiency by creating a positive and inclusive environment. 

This office manager job description guide will help you understand what an office manager does, their duties and responsibilities, the required skills, qualifications, and salary and expectations. 

What is an Office Manager?

An office manager is responsible for undertaking the administrative duties of a business. It’s a role that can vary tremendously depending on the size of a business. In general, they work with different departments and use their organisational and managerial skills to support business operations and ensure employees have everything they need to focus on what they do best.  

They may perform duties like scheduling meetings, sharing emails, ensuring the office equipment runs smoothly, allocating resources like office space and supplies, arranging staff meetings, scheduling internal events, offering overall support to the employees, and doing everything to ensure that different departments can function efficiently. 

Therefore, an office manager’s job description primarily involves organisational, administrative, and management duties. Since their roles and responsibilities are so wide-ranging, they may also be referred to as business office managers, executive service managers, operations managers, or administrative service managers.

They serve as the organisational brains behind every organisation. From universities and enterprises to hospitals, office managers are required in a variety of public and private sectors. They work with people on different levels and departments, but they particularly work with office assistants, executive assistants, personal assistants, operational personnel, receptionists, technicians, administrative staff, accountants, and the human resources department. 

Office Manager Job Description

An office manager’s job description is wide-ranging, but they primarily handle all day-to-day operations within the office. They organise and manage office administrative procedures while focusing on organisational effectiveness and time management. 

The office manager must develop internal communication protocols, streamline admin procedures, supervise and delegate tasks to the administrative support staff, and manage the company’s inventory levels. From maintaining the office processes and procedures, including scheduling and processing correspondence, to handling confidential projects, office managers have a multitude of duties and responsibilities.

Office managers are expected to be exceptional multitaskers who enjoy interacting with an office filled with people from diverse backgrounds. The office manager’s job description may vary depending on the sector they’re in. 

The role of an office manager is to ensure that the office has everything it needs for employees to get their job done effectively. They’re expected to have in-depth knowledge of how the company functions. Since they are frequently involved in business projects, they often collaborate with other employees, including those in the HR department and the admin staff.

What does an office manager do?

An office manager’s role might vary significantly depending on the industry; however, their primary duty is to guide the employees and ensure everything in the office runs smoothly. 

An office manager’s job description may also include paying bills and invoices, managing the company’s social media channels, scheduling internal events, and other tasks depending on the organisation. Their responsibilities range from the receptionist and everyday admin duties to sensitive, personal, and confidential duties for executives or departments. 

Office managers also develop and implement office processes and procedures with members in different departments to boost operational efficiency. They often oversee the administrative support staff and work towards improving internal communication between employees at different levels and departments. 

Office managers are expected to be highly organised and resourceful and have the ability to multitask efficiently. They should be calm under pressure and have excellent problem-solving skills to ensure the smooth running of the organisation. 

They should have an in-depth understanding of how the company operates and are typically one of the most invaluable resources to any business. An efficient office manager will help enterprises save a significant amount of time, money, and energy by ensuring that nothing is overlooked. 

Office managers typically report directly to the head of operations, but they could also report to the director, head of a department, or CEO. The reporting hierarchy depends entirely on the corporate structure. 

Office Manager vs Administrative Assistant

An office manager is in charge of managing the entire office. On the other hand, an administrative assistant is responsible for supporting executives, senior managers, directors, and other senior employees. The administrative assistant and office manager job descriptions involve some of the same duties and responsibilities. Therefore, both these job roles require similar skills to be successful.

Office managers primarily focus on handling people, whereas administrative assistants routinely perform clerical and technical office tasks to keep the company running efficiently.

An administrative assistant’s duties and responsibilities may include:

  • communicating via telephone and taking messages for their executive,
  • scheduling appointments and updating their executive’s calendar,
  • arranging and preparing for staff meetings,
  • arranging travel and accommodation,
  • preparing invoices, memos, and reports
  • data entry and reporting,
  • basic book-keeping,
  • handling packages, emails, and faxes,
  • managing a department’s or the entire company’s filing system, and
  • creating and improving the company’s operational procedures.

The salary of office managers and administrative assistants depends heavily on their qualifications, skills, and experiences. However, on average, an office manager earns more than an administrative assistant. 

Duties and responsibilities of an office manager

While the role of an office manager varies significantly on the sector they’re in, here is a list of responsibilities that the office manager job description may include:

  • Greeting and offering general support to clients and other executives who visit the office
  • Maintaining the office processes and procedures, including scheduling and processing correspondence and paperwork and managing payroll
  • Organising and managing record-keeping and accounts systems like employee documents and other filings 
  • Hiring, training, and managing the administrative staff
  • Planning and organising staff meetings and other internal events
  • Creating and maintaining office expense and budget sheets and other book-keeping tasks
  • Coordinating, scheduling, and rescheduling appointments for individuals or teams
  • Delegating duties to administrative support staff and supervising their work
  • Planning and organising on-site and off-site events and activities
  • Developing and implementing operational and administrative systems
  • Overseeing general business operations and preparing proper documentation for management
  • Managing office equipment and supplies and ensuring new stock is ordered as and when required
  • Allocating office resources and approving department purchases 
  • Working with the HR team to update office policies as necessary 
  • Interviewing and hiring staff for different departments
  • Keeping headcount of departments and ensuring proper onboarding and training processes are in place
  • Maintaining the IT infrastructure and keeping the inventory of orders
  • Providing support to staff and responding to their queries related to office management challenges
  • Managing contact and negotiations with office vendors and service providers
  • Arranging travel accommodations, including flights, hotels, and car rentals
  • Keeping an eye on the office facilities and employing contractors for repair and maintenance when needed
  • Ensuring the company complies with the government’s rules and regulations.

Office manager qualifications

While office managers do generally require some kind of educational background, there is no hard and fast rule about the degree you need to qualify as an office manager. Generally, office managers are expected to be proficient in English and should be effective written and verbal communicators. 

What’s important is for the candidate to have knowledge of office organisation, accounting, and business administration. You can either gain this knowledge via previous jobs or take online courses focused on these areas. 

Office managers are expected to have a strong understanding of how a business operates. Businesses also prefer candidates familiar with office systems and processes, office equipment, and data processing strategies. Therefore, if you have experience working with administrative software applications like management tools, spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, and databases, be sure to include them in your CV. 

How much do Office Managers make?

On average, the salary for office managers working in private equity or alternative investments is around $130k – $170k per year in New York and £40k-100k per year in the UK. These are broad ranges as the role varies considerably from business to business.

Key skills required to become an Office Manager

  1. Decision making and problem-solving skills

Office managers are often expected to make quick decisions with the fast pace of an office. Since they’re the point of contact for employees in most departments, they will be expected to solve issues as they arise. Therefore, office managers need to have excellent decision-making and problem-solving skills. However, they also need to employ creative solutions and leadership skills during their day-to-day activities. 

Furthermore, office managers are expected to handle unexpected challenges calmly and professionally. 

To build good problem-solving and decision-making skills, office managers also need to develop excellent analytical skills. They should be able to exercise patience and be observant enough to notice significant changes within the company that can have a domino effect in the long run. 

Office managers need to be good at spotting the root cause of issues by asking the right questions. They should also have a positive and confident attitude while dealing with issues. 

  1. Communication skills

Office managers are expected to have excellent communication skills because most employees turn to them for any queries they may have. They need to know how to cut through the noise and communicate what is needed in any situation. 

Strong communication skills are an office manager’s key to success. Office managers should be adept in four primary types of communication.

  • Verbal communication. Depending on the person they are corresponding with, office managers should be able to adjust their tone of voice and understand whether they should be formal and professional (like a business meeting) or informal and friendly (chatting with coworkers). 
  • Non-verbal communication. Office managers should understand non-verbal cues like body language, facial expressions, and posture. 
  • Listening. Office managers need to be good listeners to be good communicators. 
  • Written communication. Office managers may be expected to answer phone calls, reply to emails, draft reports, letters, memos, and more. Therefore, written communication skills are vital for them to convey their thoughts clearly and concisely.

With good communication skills, office managers can build strong relationships within the workplace. They help facilitate communication between the staff and resolve any conflicts that may arise efficiently. This helps businesses ensure their employees are happy and boost their retention rate.

By providing clear directions and efficiently communicating the expectations of a project, office managers boost productivity and performance within the team. Furthermore, since they are expected to delegate tasks to people, they need to be clear about their duties and responsibilities to avoid confusion.

Communication between the employees and the office manager also helps people feel included and helps promote a culture of effective communication and understanding. 

  1. Organisational skills

Office managers need to be highly organised to deal with everyday administrative tasks. However, being organised is not just about maintaining a calendar or a to-do list; office managers need to have a range of other skills like planning, creative thinking, delegating, attention to detail, and prioritisation. 

Office managers don’t just need to organise their own schedules but also organise the workflow of their entire office. They must have a working knowledge of computer systems, G-suite or Office, and managing documents (physical and online resources) to make it easy for employees and teams to access vital information.

Summary

Office managers are critical for businesses to run efficiently. They help build office systems and procedures while actively working towards reducing miscommunications between the staff and teams. Office managers look for ways to help organisations by eliminating errors and prioritising administrative duties.  

If you’re looking for an office manager job role, Joss Search can help you find office manager jobs in top private equity and alternative investment firms. You can take a look at our live vacancies or chat with our friendly consultants about your upcoming career steps. We’re waiting to help on 020 3096 7050 and hello@josssearch.com.

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