Detailed Guide forGeneral and Operations Managers in California
May also be called: Operations Managers; General Managers; Directors of Operations; Store Managers; Chief Operating Officers (COO); and Chief Operations Officers.
What Would I Do?
General and Operations Managers plan, direct, or coordinate the day-to-day operations of companies or organizations that make products or provide services. They work in many different settings, such as corporate headquarters for large businesses, government agencies, manufacturing plants, and schools. A large number work for consulting or management firms and provide expertise in areas such as strategic planning, policy making, and material uses and needs.
The work is so diverse and general in nature it cannot be classified in any one area of management or administration. For instance, in large organizations, General and Operations Managers directly oversee major department heads in areas such as procurement or purchasing, sales, and facilities. However, in small firms they may be required to take on many, and sometimes all, of these management functions.
General and Operations Managers usually gain their experience within one industry. They constantly keep in mind the mission or goals of the company, whether it be to provide quality health care, produce a flawless item for consumption, or meet a sales goal.
Important Tasks and Related Skills
Each task below is matched to a sample skill required to carry out the task.
|View the skill definitions|
|Task||Skill Used in this Task|
|Establish and implement departmental policies, goals, objectives, and procedures, conferring with board members, organization officials, and staff members as necessary.||Active Listening|
|Review financial statements, sales and activity reports, and other performance data to measure productivity and goal achievement and to determine areas needing cost reduction and program improvement.||Administration and Management|
|Determine staffing requirements, and interview, hire and train new employees, or oversee those personnel processes.||Management of Personnel Resources|
|Monitor businesses and agencies to ensure that they efficiently and effectively provide needed services while staying within budgetary limits.||Monitoring|
|Direct and coordinate activities of businesses or departments concerned with the production, pricing, sales, or distribution of products.||Management of Financial Resources|
|Determine goods and services to be sold, and set prices and credit terms, based on forecasts of customer demand.||Judgment and Decision Making|
|Develop and implement product marketing strategies including advertising campaigns and sales promotions.||Sales and Marketing|
|Oversee the remodeling of current facilities.||Oral Expression|
Below is a definition for each skill.
|View the tasks to skills list|
|Active Listening||Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.|
|Administration and Management||Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.|
|Management of Personnel Resources||Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.|
|Monitoring||Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.|
|Management of Financial Resources||Determining how money will be spent to get the work done, and accounting for these expenditures.|
|Judgment and Decision Making||Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.|
|Sales and Marketing||Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.|
|Oral Expression||The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.|
General and Operations Managers normally work in well-lit, comfortable offices. Those who work for large organizations may work long hours and need to be available after hours if problems arise. Generally, these long hours are not paid for in the form of overtime.
The fast-paced decision making needed to run a facility’s daily operation can prove stressful in this occupation. Depending on the organization, Managers who do not meet their company’s goals may find their jobs in jeopardy.
In large firms, mandatory staff meetings often takes up a considerable portion of the work day, requiring Managers to take work home. This can put a strain on personal life as well.
Typically, General and Operations Managers are not represented by unions.
Will This Job Fit Me?
The job of General and Operations Managers will appeal to people who are good communicators, organized, detail-oriented, and who like to solve problems. This occupation is good for those who are enterprising in nature because the work involves starting up and carrying out projects, leading people, and making many decisions. People who are realistic in nature might also like this type of work because it entails hands-on problems and solutions.
What Wages and Benefits Can I Expect?
The median wage in 2015 for General and Operations Managers in California was $105,564 annually, or $50.75 hourly. The median is the point at which half of the workers earn more and half earn less.
In addition to medical, dental, and vacation benefits, compensation for General and Operations Managers in large corporations often includes stock options, dividends, and other performance bonuses.
What is the Job Outlook?
Most job openings for General and Operations Managers will come from the need to replace workers who retire or leave the occupation for other types of work.
Because these Managers are essential to the success of any organization, their jobs are unlikely to be automated or eliminated through corporate restructuring – trends that may adversely affect employment of lower-level managers.
Projections of Employment
In California, the number of General and Operations Managers is expected to grow faster than average growth rate for all occupations. Jobs for General and Operations Managers are expected to increase by 16.5 percent, or 41,900 jobs between 2012 and 2022.
|Estimated Employment and Projected Growth|
General and Operations Managers
(Estimated Year-Projected Year)
Due to Net
|View Projected Growth for All Areas|
Annual Job Openings
In California, an average of 4,200 new job openings per year is expected for General and Operations Managers, plus an additional 4,750 job openings due to net replacement needs, resulting in a total of 8,940 job openings.
|Estimated Average Annual Job Openings|
General and Operations Managers
|Jobs From Growth||Jobs Due to|
|View Data for All Areas|
How Do I Qualify?
Education, Training, and Other Requirements
The education and experience of General and Operations Managers vary as widely as the nature of their responsibilities.
- In large firms, employers almost always require applicants to have a bachelor’s degree, either in business or a field related to the industry where they are applying, along with several years managerial experience.
- In industries such as retail trade or transportation, it is possible for individuals without a college degree to promote to this position from lower-level management positions after several years of experience.
Nationally, about half of all General and Operations Managers have a bachelor’s degree or higher.
Larger firms prefer applicants have at least 5-10 years work experience in supervisory or managerial jobs. They also often desire applicants to have knowledge of the industry where they wish to work.
Early Career Planning
The high school courses recomended for this field include general business classes, English, speech communication classes, business club membership such as Junior Achievement, math, and history.
There are no continuing education requirements; however, Managers often participate in conferences and seminars to expand their knowledge of issues that influence the organization. This also serves to develop a network of useful contacts.
Licensing and Certification
Typically, General and Operations Managers do not require a license in California. The few exceptions are nursing home and cemetery industries in California. Contact the agency that issues the license for additional information. Click on the license title below for details.
Several certificates in areas of specialty are available to Operations Managers who want to acquire new skills and advance in their profession. The following represent just a few of the more commonly known:
- Certified in Integrated Resource Management (CIRM)
- Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM)
- Certified Fellow in Production and Inventory Management (CFPIM)
- APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (ACSCP)
The above certificate programs are administered by the Association for Operations Management.
For more information, go to the U.S. Department of Labor's Career InfoNet Web site and scroll down to "Career Tools." Click on "Certification Finder" and follow the instructions to locate certification programs.
Where Can I Find Training?
There are two ways to search for training information:
Contact the schools you are interested in to learn about the classes available, tuition and fees, and any prerequisite course work.
Where Would I Work?
General and Operations Managers work in nearly all industries. Today’s offices, schools, hospitals, and other business establishments all rely on these Managers to meet their work needs. The largest industries employing General and Operations Managers are as follows:
|Industry Title||Percent of Total Employment for Occupation in California|
|Management of Companies and Enterprises ||3.3%|
|Management & Technical Consulting Svc ||2.9%|
|Local Government ||2.8%|
|Computer Systems Design and Rel Services ||2.4%|
|Services to Buildings and Dwellings ||2.4%|
Finding a Job
Direct application to employers remains the most effective form of job search methods for General and Operations Managers. Applicants look for jobs in the industry where they have knowledge or interest, such as health care, manufacturing, or the education community. Some find work through industry organizations or with professional organizations, such as the Association for Operations Management. Online job opening systems include JobCentral at www.jobcentral.com and CalJOBSSM at www.caljobs.ca.gov.
To find your nearest One-Stop Career Center, go to Service Locator. View the helpful job search tips for more resources. (requires Adobe Reader).
Yellow Page Headings
You can focus your local job search by checking employers listed online or in your local telephone directory. Below are some suggested headings where you might find employers of General and Operations Managers.
- Government (State, County, City)
- Management Consultants
Find Possible Employers
To locate a list of employers in your area, go to "Find Employers" on the Labor Market Information Web site:
- Select one of the top industries that employ the occupation. This will give you a list of employers in that industry in your area.
- Click on "View Filter Selections" to limit your list to specific cities or employer size.
- Click on an employer for the street address, telephone number, size of business, Web site, etc.
- Contact the employer for possible employment.
Where Could This Job Lead?
General and Operations Managers generally promote to larger and more successful firms after gaining extensive work experience and updating their skills and knowledge. This often translates to higher salaries and other benefits such as higher bonuses.
Below is a list of occupations related to General and Operations Managers with links to more information.
|Human Resources Managers||Profile|
|Industrial Production Managers||Guide|
|Transportation, Storage, and Distribution Managers||Profile|
These links are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement by EDD.
For the Career Professional
The following codes are provided to assist counselors, job placement workers, or other career professionals.