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How To Hire an Office Manager

How does your office keep organized, pay overhead bills, and control the flow of incoming inquiries?

An office manager wears several hats to ensure the day-to-day processes of an office run smoothly. The position may be clients’ first point of contact when arriving at an office or when reaching out through a general phone line. In addition, he or she is often the one responsible for clerical duties that keep senior management’s schedules organized and the office lights on.

An office manager is necessary to operate both internally and externally when coordinating with clients. With a role so crucial, here are some proactive steps for how to hire an office manager.

1. Write an updated, company-specific job description

Putting out a job description that accurately describes the specific office manager role you are hiring for will help narrow down candidates off the bat. This position can evolve over time and vary from department to department. Because of that, industry knowledge and technology will constantly change. Especially focus on adding skills or technologies that have a learning curve, such as current CRMs or clerical software.

An office manager role is a broad position title that carries drastically meaning with different responsibilities for each employer. Be sure to emphasis what makes this role crucial to your specific company. Is this an entry-level position open to all, or does it demand a minimum level of education and years of experience?

2. Focus on role-specific skills and qualifications

Are you looking for an office manager who will work more heavily with internal planning or customer coordination? Will he or she have a hand in human resources and supervisory responsibilities? Some office managers are purely responsible for clerical work and administering the daily functions and overhead of an office. Use these role responsibilities as a guideline for which skills to prioritize. Ability to multi-task, communication skills, a high attention to detail, and financial proficiency are commonly sought-after skills.

Administrative roles like an office manager are typically occupied by a single person or several on different shifts. Therefore, the candidate will need to possess self-motivation and a great sense of responsibility to manage themselves and their daily tasks.

3. Look at candidates with a similar industry background

A proven background working in the same or similar industry will assist the candidate in understanding how to best serve clients and team members. It will also lessen the transition into the role. Industry know-how will be especially helpful in a customer-facing position that requires answering a range of inquiries. Office managers in the medical field, for example, should be familiar with government regulations, insurance, and billing cycles.

Identifying candidates that have very specific backgrounds to fit all your desired qualifications can be time consuming. You may also not be able to find the ideal candidate and have to settle for the next best. Staffing agencies can help fill administrative positions for all levels and industries. Working with an external firm will save you time and money, while widening the talent pool with an established network.

Hiring an office manager will centralize administrative tasks with which other employees may be lending a hand. If you’ve had this integral role filled in the past, be sure to update the position responsibilities to keep current with company goals.