What does a Head of Operations do?
The Head of Operations is responsible for creating policies to help achieve strategic goals and coordinate business operations to fulfil customer or client expectations. They ensure compliance with all relevant local and international laws regarding the operational side of the business, such as data management and safety standards. They manage resources to ensure appropriate levels of production, materials and staffing in all divisions. The Head of Operations manages relationships with suppliers, clients, customers and other stakeholders and provides a point of escalation for any customer service issues that arise.
Head of Operations skills and qualifications
Head of Operations is a senior role and candidates typically work their way up from more junior positions. A successful Head of Operations will have various prerequisite skills and qualifications that include:
- Excellent IT skills and knowledge of any industry-specific software or programmes
- Auditing and monitoring outputs and data analysis
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills
- Leadership and management skills and the ability to motivate and retain staff
- Commercial awareness and a thorough understanding of the competitive environment
- Excellent planning and organisational skills
- Project management skills and knowledge of methodologies such as Agile, Lean and Six Sigma
- Time management skills and the ability to prioritise effectively and delegate when appropriate
Head of Operations experience requirements
A Head of Operations will typically have significant experience in a similar role with at least five years in a senior or management position with leadership responsibilities. Industry experience can be valuable, and the expertise of interdepartmental working is also an advantage. Experience working with data, analysing figures and producing reports is helpful. Applicants with responsibility for implementing IT systems, upgrading software or researching new technologies will have many of the skills needed for a Head of Operations role.
Head of Operations education and training requirements
A Head of Operations typically has an undergraduate degree in a relevant subject such as a BA in business or a BSc in computer science. Some companies or industries prefer candidates to have a masters and some industries require subject-specific knowledge or training. Certification from the Institute of Leadership and Management or the Chartered Management Institute demonstrates skills in relevant disciplines. Training in project management or business administration is also an advantage, and Six Sigma or other process management training is also a bonus.
Head of Operations salary expectations
According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for a Head of Operations in the UK is £57,535 per year. This salary is dependent on the industry, size of the business and the level of responsibility involved.
Job description samples for similar positions
If a Head of Operations isn’t quite what you are looking for, then these job description samples for similar positions might be useful: