Duties and responsibilities
An operations director is an executive manager who is responsible for directing and coordinating the internal structure of an organization. They do this based on company objectives, goals and policies. Their main goal is to ensure that the working environment is efficient and the deadlines and goals are constantly met. Their typical duties and responsibilities include:
- Assisting upper management in setting goals that promote company growth and productivity
- Preparing budgets, schedules, and other organisational reports as needed
- Providing advice, support and guidance to other employees
- Developing thorough plans to increase efficiency and reduce costs
- Reviewing and improving existing systems and policies
- Ensuring all customer needs are met in a timely manner
- Promoting safety in the workplace by enforcing health and safety guidelines
- Overseeing manufacturing functions
- Working closely with other departments to promote efficient factory optimisation
- Managing internal and external service suppliers
An operations director will need a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as business administration, public administration, law or liberal arts. To have the best employment and progression opportunities, operations managers will achieve a masters degree in business administration (MBA).
What is most important, however, is work experience. Most operations managers will advance up from lower level positions (management or supervisory). Therefore, they need suitable experience in a related field.
Skills and relevant work experience
As well as relevant experience, operation directors will need skills such as:
- Verbal and written communication skills, as operation directors will need effectively communicate with executive teams, customers and employees both orally and in writing
- Numerical skills, as operational directors to manage budgets, stock and employee performance
- Entrepreneurial mindset, as operation directors will need to be able to think clearly, set goals and work hard
- Leadership skills, as operational directors are executive manages and have the responsibility of leading lots of people
- Customer service skills, as operational directors must ensure all customer needs are met
- Analytical skills, as operational directors need to evaluate how the business is performing and develop strategies for meeting goals
- Organization skills, as operational directors will have to overseeing the progress of many different employees and stores and therefore must be able to organize themselves and their time
Most operational directors will work full time. They may often find themselves working overtime, long hours and travelling.
According to salary.com the median annual salary for operation directors in the United States is $138,526 The bottom 10% can expect to earn less than $109,057 and the highest 10% earn over $174,181 per annum.
Operation directors tend to progress from lower level management or supervisor positions. This progression gives them valuable work experience. They can then progress, with more experience and training, to more senior roles. For example, they may become chief executive officers.