Operations Program Managers are in charge of large projects that are composed of several smaller projects. They are directly responsible for the project’s success in terms of completion, meeting deadlines and budget. They are also in charge of the project’s infrastructure and support. Often, many different project managers will report to the Operations Program Manager and it is his/her job to direct all of these different projects at once. Operations Program Managers tend to be white collar jobs that oversee blue-collar work, such as managing large construction projects.
Operations Program Management is a unique position in that it relies extensively on multitasking and organizational skills over actual knowledge of the project’s components. For example, an Operations Program Manager of a construction site does not necessarily need to know how to pour concrete in order to ensure that the project is completed. The Operations Program Manager will be dealing with many different aspects of one job and must be able to organize them so they work together.
Day in the Life
The job of an Operations Program Manager is divided into various steps as the project moves forward. First, he/she will be involved in the project’s proposal and providing information about cost and technical aspects. Then, the Operations Program Manager will create a program plan with set schedules and budgets for each sub-project. Once the project is underway, he/she will follow each individual project carefully and provide support along the way. Part of the day may be spent in an office, in meetings, or on the actual project site. Once the project is underway, an Operations Program Manager may work longer days that normal working hours.
Operations Program Managers are Type A personalities with an eye for detail. They are able to look at various projects and combine them to make a working plan. This means organizational and multitasking skills are a must! In addition, Operations Program Managers are team leaders with great communication skills.
Generally, a four-year bachelor’s degree in an area of management is required for this position. However, there are some small, entry-level jobs that may only require an associate’s or trade degree. After proving oneself capable of program management by overseeing several smaller projects, one can get a job as Operations Program Manager for large, complex projects.
Rate of Pay
The average pay for Operations Program Managers is $91k. However, there is a huge range in salary based on the program size. Small projects that require minimal experience start out at $39k whereas large, complex projects that require years of experience and higher education pay upwards of $145k. The salary average is $81k.
There are jobs as Operations Program Managers available in many fields including construction, information technology and manufacturing. The companies in these fields range in size which will greatly affect the salary and job requirements. Operations Program Management is growing at the job market average. However, future growth is expected to slow down because many of these positions are being outsourced.