How to become an Office Manager: Australian careers in business management

Office managers are a key component of any business, ensuring the smooth operation of an organisation and its staff. Typically, office managers are experienced administrative staff, who are able to lead a team of other admin staff as well as oversee other typical daily tasks of a business such as human resource paperwork, ordering and payroll. Office managers need excellent interpersonal skills and are able to aptly juggle office politics, easily moving between senior and junior staff. You will need to be have well-developed organisation skills as a lot of your job will rely on your ability to coordinate and multi-task. 

  • Task Career in focus: What an office manager does

    Office managers ensure the smooth running of a business by organising and coordinating the administrative tasks. You will need to be a team player, with the ability to command attention and respect, delegating duties to the appropriate people. You will be heavily relied on by the management or executive team and may take on such responsibilities as training, recruitment, budgeting, bookkeeping and overseeing large orders.

    Tasks:

    • Assign work tasks to the appropriate staff
    • Identify if staff need additional training
    • Organise or deliver training
    • Conduct recruitment activities
    • Oversee financial transactions, budgets, etc
  • Skills Core qualities: Skills to succeed as an office manager

    An office manager is sometimes dubbed as a “jack of all trades” who can easily oversee or complete a range of different duties and is seen as an invaluable resource. You will need to be an excellent communicator, who can speak with junior to very senior staff members, taking your concerns up the chain and vice versa. Office managers usually have a lot of competing priorities so it is important you can multi-task and organise yourself appropriately. 

    Skills/attributes
    • Able to multi-task and juggle priorities
    • Be a listening ear and effective communicator
    • Highly organised
    • Retain a high amount of information
    • Good interpersonal skills
  • Specialisations The field: Specialisations within business management

    Usually, office managers come from strong experience in clerical or administration work, but you can also gain this knowledge from specialised courses. It is also recommended you have efficient management skills as you will most likely be leading a team as well as communicating to other managers.

    Human resources officer

    Human resource (HR) officers play a vital role in the staffing of a business. They are responsibly for the hiring, management and firing of employees. Not just involved in recruitment work, HR officers work alongside managers for performance issues, training and if necessary, termination of employment. They also advocate for staff, often becoming the listening ear for staff complaints or issues, helping them achieve resolution and contentment at work.

    Executive assistant

    If you have excellent organisational skills, working as an executive assistant puts you in charge of the administrative duties for a very senior executive in your organisation. You will be heavily relied upon by the executive to organise their business day which may include liaising with other senior staff, booking travel, appointments and monitoring budgets.

    Operations manager

    An operations manager is usually a little more hands-on and oversees the daily business operations of a business. This usually means anticipating any industry issues, keeping abreast of legislation and WHS protocols, implementing new strategies and collaborating with management as well as operational staff.

    Medical office manager

    If you would prefer to work in a medical environment, there are opportunities to work with patients and health professionals as a medical office manager. You would oversee the clerical duties of a medical office, dealing with doctors, patients and other healthcare professionals.
  • Pathways The right track: Find study options for becoming an office manager

    Get started today and bolster your skills to make you an ideal candidate as an office manager.

    Starting Out

    Get the basic skills and training you need to become an office manager by selecting a vocational course. 

    Building Skills

    Online training is a great way to continually build on your skills. 

    Developing Your Resume

    Find a course that will help you get accredited and learn skills relevant to your industry. 

    Industry Recognition

    Check out our resource section to see industry accreditations relevant to you.

    Entering the Workforce

    To land a job as an officer manager, you need to develop a resume to blow their socks off. Create an impressive application by starting with these example resumes and cover letters.

    Job Prospects in Business Management: Working life as an office manager

    Businesses in Australia are continuing to grow, which means employment opportunities for office managers are also forecasted to continue on the steady, uphill climb.

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