COO Chief Operating Officer Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A COO, or Chief Operating Officer oversees the day-to-day business operations of a company. The duties of a COO include developing and executing business operations strategies, overseeing the employees’ work and establishing and enforcing company policies.


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COO Chief Operating Officer duties and responsibilities

The Chief Operating Officer oversees the business side of a company’s operations. Their duties and responsibilities include:

  • Identifying and setting strategic and short-term performance and growth goals
  • Creating, implementing, assessing and improving business plans, strategies, processes and procedures
  • Leading and motivating teams to increase performance and improve results
  • Overseeing the operations of the marketing, sales, finance, IT, production and human resources departments
  • Creating an enabling work environment and positive company culture
  • Measuring performance of departments, products and services and recommend improvement strategies
  • Reporting performance of the business to the CEO, management and other stakeholders
  • Building and managing relationships with suppliers, vendors, partners and clients


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What does a COO Chief Operating Officer do?

The Chief Operating Officer is responsible for the day-to-day operational and administrative functions of a company. COOs oversee an organisation’s internal affairs, including building teams, supervising the creation of new businesses and monitoring investments. The COO also helps develop a culture that aligns with the company’s mission and vision, communicate policies to employees and implement the plans of management.


COO Chief Operating Officer skills and qualifications

A successful Chief Operating Officer candidate will have various prerequisite skills and qualifications needed to perform duties effectively, these include:

  • Proven experience in a senior management role
  • In-depth knowledge of managing multi-disciplinary teams, including experience of human resources, marketing, strategic planning and corporate finance
  • Ability to manage comprehensive budgets and business operations 
  • Exceptional leadership and organisational skills
  • Excellent written, verbal and presentation communication skills
  • Proficiency in business development
  • Ability to work with data analysis tools, accounting software and industry-specific technologies
  • Experience in raising capital for business


COO Chief Operating Officer experience requirements

The experience requirements of COOs depend on the scope of their responsibilities and the size of the employer. Most employers require COOs to have at least five years of experience in a managerial position, but large companies may require up to 15 years in a managerial role. It’s also essential for Chief Operating Officers to have experience in diverse aspects of their company’s operations, including finance, sales, human resources and product development. In specialised industries, such as engineering, pharmaceuticals and medicine, an ideal Chief Operating Officer will have several years of experience and advanced educational qualifications in the field.


COO Chief Operating Officer education and training requirements

COOs require at least a bachelor’s degree in business administration, business management, finance or other relevant disciplines. Some employers may require COOs to have a postgraduate degree or professional certifications in their field. A Master of Business Administration is also a common requirement in many industries. Chief Operating Officers may also require an accounting qualification and in-depth knowledge of marketing, financial analysis, information technology and other areas of their company’s operations. Some organisations choose their COO from a pool of experienced senior management executives.


COO Chief Operating Officer salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for a Chief Operating Officer in the UK is £83,245 per year. Actual pay may depend on the employer, industry, location, job duties, responsibilities, experience and qualifications.


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COO Chief Operating Officer job description FAQs


Which qualities make for a good Chief Operating Officer?

COOs must be exceptional visionaries who can project their vision onto others and provide effective leadership to help employees contribute meaningfully to the company’s objectives. They must be passionate about their company’s success and have unshakeable integrity. Chief Operating Officers have to be aware of the latest trends in their industry to give the company an edge over their competitors. They must understand the importance of data in decision making and leverage financial and market data to position their company for increased performance.


What makes a good Chief Operating Officer job description?

To create a good Chief Operating Officer job description, start with an attention-grabbing headline that includes the exact job title. Keep the description short, including only the most essential details applicants will need to apply. Mention the specific results the COO will help your organisation achieve when employed and the exact duties and responsibilities of the role. It’s important to mention any industry or professional certifications, skills or experience required for the role. If you have special employment benefits, such as pensions, holidays, career advancement training and health insurance, mention it in the job ad. Describe your organisation, its work culture and unique selling points that make the company an ideal employer.


Who does a Chief Operating Officer report to?

The COO reports directly to the Chief Executive Officer of the company.

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