A back office manager is a professional responsible for overseeing the work performed by individuals in departments such as human resources (HR), accounting, and information technology (IT). The term "back office" describes all of the functions that support an operation, but which do not relate directly to customer service, even if they have a great impact on customer relations. These managers are employed in a number of different fields, such as the medical industry, manufacturing, and finance, so their duties vary, depending on the field in which he or she works.
In most cases, a back office manager is expected to have a background in a field such as mathematics, accounting, or engineering. In some industries, however, he or she will train in more specialized fields. One in the financial industry, for instance, probably has educational and work experience overseeing financial services. Likewise, a medical back office professional might have experience in a field such as hospital administration.
When professionals refer to the back office, they might be referring to one of a number of different functions. A manager who specializes in human resources, for example, might be responsible for seeing that employee records are correctly filed and accurate. Those who oversee IT operations, on the other hand, might design networks and perform upgrades that allow software to run more smoothly. An accounting manager often performs duties such as overseeing auditing processes to ensure that they follow company guidelines and are compliant with regulations.
While front office professionals are responsible for dealing directly with clients, back office professionals perform much of the work that affects customer services. A back office manager in the medical field might record and retrieve patient records. In the manufacturing industry, the manager can be responsible for placing orders and making budgets for projects that result in the production of items that are sold to clients.
Back office managers often have great communication skills. They might consult managers from the front office and executives to discuss strategies, goals, and expectations. It also is common for one to act as a supervisor for certain departments. An IT manager, for instance, aside from overseeing computer and telecommunication processes, might train and delegate tasks to IT employees. In some instances, he or she will communicate with clients who are unhappy or who have problems that front office representatives cannot solve.