What Is a Job Description for a Director of Operations?

Directors of operations manage the daily operations of a private-sector or public-sector organization or company. Read on to find out about the duties and responsibilities, common industries of employment, educational requirements, and salary statistics of these directors. Schools offering Global Operations & Supply Chain Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Duties and Responsibilities

Directors of operations, also referred to as operations directors and managers, arrange and oversee the overall business activities and affairs of companies or business organizations. This may include allocating materials and human resources, establishing company policies, and supervising daily workings. Directors of operations also assess the efficiency of their companies' procedures and systems and initiate changes if they feel it is necessary.

As a director of operations, you may also be in charge of overseeing the staff and assigning certain duties to specific individuals or teams, as well as creating work schedules. You may evaluate potential employees, select appropriate candidates, and train them in the ways of the company. Many more specific duties may be expected of you depending on what type of company or industry you are employed in as a director of operations.

Important Facts About Operations Managers

Required Education High school diploma, or equivalent; though many industries require a bachelor's or master's degree
Job Outlook (2014-2024) 7% (for general and operations managers)
Key Skills Management, delegation, organization, time management, situational awareness, customer focused, reading comprehension, critical thinking, negotiation, excellent judgment and decision making
Similar Occupations Administrative service managers; purchasing managers; storage and distribution managers; logistics managers; lodging managers

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Common Industries of Employment

According to data gathered by Salary.com, 12% of all operations directors were employed in the healthcare industry as of December 2015, while another 12% were employed by educational, government, or nonprofit organizations. Additionally, 12% were employed by business services, and 9% were employed in retail and wholesale. Another 6% of operations directors were employed by software development firms and networking companies. Sometimes, these professionals' job titles reflect their industry of employment, as is the case for banking operations directors, clinic operations directors, drilling operations directors, and enterprise operations directors.

Educational Requirements

Educational requirements are also largely dependent on industry of employment, though most directors of operations have at least bachelor's degrees. You might major in business administration to obtain the business expertise needed to work as a director of operations; however, sometimes majoring in an area closely related to your employing organization is more appropriate. Often, professional experience is seen as more important than formal education, and directors of operations are frequently promoted to their positions from within their companies. According to O*Net Online (www.onetonline.org) in 2015, 29% of operations and general managers hold a bachelor's degree.

Salary Statistics

According to Salary.com, the median salary for operations directors as of December 2015 was $160,021. The bottom-earning ten percent made $119,685 or less per year, while the top-earning ten percent earned $209,301 or more per year; however, the addition of extensive bonus pay and benefits, such as time off, pension, and social security, brings the median total compensation of operations directors to $173,729 a year, per Salary.com in December 2015.

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