Office managers are responsible for organising all of the administrative activities that facilitate the smooth running of an office.
They must make sure that office equipment is maintained, relevant records are up to date and that all administration processes work effectively.
In some organisations the office manager may carry out most of the tasks themselves, while in others they will supervise the work of a team of staff.
Although the work of an office manager differs greatly across organisations, they all have the responsibility for ensuring that their office runs efficiently. Job titles vary and office managers typically enter at office administrator level and work their way up with experience.
Typical work activities
The role varies according to the type of employer, the size of the organisation and the management structure, but activities typically include:
using a range of office software, including email, spreadsheets and databases;
managing filing systems;
developing and implementing new administrative systems, such as record management;
recording office expenditure and managing the budget;
organising the office layout and maintaining supplies of stationery and equipment;
maintaining the condition of the office and arranging for necessary repairs;
organising and chairing meetings with staff - in lower paid roles this may include typing the agenda and taking minutes, but senior managers usually have an administrative assistant to do this;
overseeing the recruitment of new staff, sometimes including training and induction;
ensuring adequate staff levels to cover for absences and peaks in workload, often by using temping agencies;
carrying out staff appraisals, managing performance and disciplining staff;
delegating work to staff and managing their workload and output;
promoting staff development and training;
implementing and promoting equality and diversity policy;
writing reports for senior management and delivering presentations;
responding to customer enquiries and complaints;
reviewing and updating health and safety policies and ensuring they are observed;
arranging regular testing for electrical equipment and safety devices;
attending conferences and training;
depending on the organisation, duties of the role may extend to the management of social media.
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