Field Manager Job Description
Many types of managers oversee the day-to-day activities of in-house employees, but it’s up to field managers to manage staff that travel to customer sites. Also referred to as field services managers or field operations managers, these professionals are responsible for hiring, training, and overseeing field reps. Field managers work for a wide range of industries, most notably those that have outside sales representatives or field technicians, such as pharmaceutical companies, computer repair companies, HVAC companies, and medical equipment manufacturers. These managers use strong observational, leadership, and analytical skills on a daily basis. They are typically employed full time and might work beyond the usual 40-hour week when factoring in travel time.
Field Manager Duties and Responsibilities
Field managers work in a variety of industries. Specific duties and responsibilities may vary, but there are several core tasks associated with the job, including:
Coordinate Field Employees
Field managers typically oversee an entire regional area and are responsible for coordinating field employees to cover all clients in a particular area. They schedule routes, assign clients to specific field employees, and arrange employee-client meetings.
Hire and Train Employees in the Field
It’s up to field managers to hire new employees and ensure that they’re properly trained before allowing them to work in the field. Field managers interview job candidates, arrange for new hire participation in in-house and vendor training programs, and travel with new field employees to make sure they have a full understanding of their responsibilities.
Evaluate Employee Performance
Field managers perform regular performance evaluations of all field employees. They generate reports addressing any issues and highlighting the strengths and weakness of each member of the field team. They create plans to help field employees improve, track employee progress to meet the goals of these plans, and submit performance reports to HR personnel and senior managers.
Manage Fleet Vehicles
In most cases, a field team uses company vehicles when visiting client sites. It falls to field managers to make sure that all vehicles are properly maintained. They create vehicle maintenance and repair reports, schedule service on fleet vehicles, and develop a budget for fleet vehicle care.
Field Manager Skills and Qualifications
Successful field managers display strong leadership skills, are able to work with a diverse workforce, and are willing to travel. We have examined several online job postings and found the following to be among the skills and abilities employers most prefer for this position:
- Project management – from budgeting to scheduling, field managers should have an acute understanding of all aspects of project management
- Computer skills – field managers should be adept at using Microsoft Office applications such as Word, Outlook, and PowerPoint to generate reports and communicate with field employees
- Customer service – retaining customers through excellent customer service and satisfaction is key for field managers, and they must be able to demonstrate customer service skills at all times
- Self-motivation – field managers spend much time on the road and should be able to meet with clients and oversee field employees with little to no supervision
- Problem-solving skills – it’s important for field managers to handle any issues that arise with clients or team members and provide satisfactory resolutions
- Communication skills – field managers must demonstrate strong verbal and written communication skills when interacting with senior managers, team members, vendors, and clients
- Organization skills – setting up field employee routes and maintaining employee evaluations and reports calls for exemplary organization skills
- Time management – for scheduling and customer response purposes, field managers must display strong time management skills
Field Manager Education and Training
Many employers require that field manager candidates have a four-year degree in business, typically in management or administration. Many of these programs include coursework in leadership, project management, and personnel management, which are helpful for those seeking a career as a field manager. Advancement in the field could require a master’s degree in business administration.
Field Manager Salary and Outlook
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the median annual salary for all types of general and operations managers, including field managers, is just over $100,000. Managers earning in the 10th percentile make close to $45,000 annually, while top earners in this field realize more than $156,000.
Field managers usually enjoy full medical benefits, vacation time, holidays, and even bonuses, though these benefits can vary depending on the hiring company.
The need for managers to create budgets, develop training programs for remote employees, and generate training materials plays a part in the expected 10 percent growth rate for these managers through 2026, as reported by the BLS.
Feel like you’re on the road to becoming a field manager? Explore more information about this career before making your final decision by accessing the resources we’ve provided below:
National Association of Service Managers – NASM offers its members, who are made up of service, field service, and operations managers, various educational and networking opportunities through conferences, seminars, and workshops
The Encyclopedia of Operations Management: A Field Manual and Glossary of Operations Management Terms and Concepts – from field managers to service managers and more, most management professionals will learn a lot from this book. Learn about forecasting, accounting, customer service, and other concepts that field managers should know when it comes to successfully overseeing a field team
Field Technologies Online – field managers, particularly field service managers, will want to check out this digital magazine to learn about management strategies, the latest technologies, customer interaction and satisfaction approaches, and much more
Core Systems Field Service Blog – field management solutions, field technician roles, and field service trends – these are just some of the subjects covered in this blog, which is hosted by Core Systems, a leading field service company
Field Service News Podcasts – what are the best tools to use in field service? How do you build a field service management system? These are some of the things you’ll learn when you review the podcasts available from Field Service News
The Service Council Podcasts – check out these podcasts to hear professionals discuss customer service, field automation, trends in field management, training, and other advancements and news affecting field managers
Overcoming the Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Field Guide for Leaders, Managers, and Facilitators – learn how to build a successful field team! Review real-life tools and examples that clarify methods and practices you can implement to build a strong team and help them perform the way they need to perform
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