Chief Operating Officer (COO) Salary
Job Description for Chief Operating Officer (COO)
A chief operating officer (COO) is usually the second-highest ranking executive in a corporation. The chief operating officer is in charge of executing daily operations for the company, and is second in responsibility only to the chief executive officer (CEO). The COO's job is to help set standards for the company and work with directors and middle managers to ensure that processes, training, and quality of output of goods and services reflect these standards. They may receive constant data-based reports and overviews which include snapshots of revenues, efficiency, and even waste that can be acted upon to improve the company's performance.Read More...
As the second-in-command, the COO is also responsible for executing the company's overall vision, typically by upholding the CEO's mission statement and working with directors and operations managers to make that visualization a reality. The COO may focus on data related to productivity and revenue generation and make performance assessments based on this data, and these assessments may then be compared to prior weeks, months, or years.
Chief operating officers work with operations managers to ensure that optimal staffing levels are set throughout the company and all departments have sufficient resources and procedures for proper employee training. The COO may also work with analysts within the company to assess physical assets and how they can be maintained, repaired, or upgraded.
Most chief operating officers have strong educational backgrounds in business and management, typically with graduate degrees in the field. A COO will also need extensive practical experience, and many have previously served as a director or manager within a company. Those in this position work primarily in an office with a dedicated administrative staff. With so many potential direct reports throughout the corporation, they must be organized, dedicated, and willing to work long hours to achieve success.
Chief Operating Officer (COO) Tasks
- Direct the day to day operations of the organization.
- Improve operating procedures to increase profits and/or make the organization more efficient.
- Implement the strategies set by the Board of Directors and the CEO.
Common Career Paths for Chief Operating Officer (COO)
Chief Operating Officers who advance into the role of a President and COO are fairly uncommon. Presidents and COOs on average earn $178K per year. When Chief Operating Officers are ready for the next step in their careers, they often become Chief Executive Officers or Presidents. Those roles pay an additional $22K and $5K, respectively.
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Popular Skills for Chief Operating Officer (COO)
Survey takers working as Chief Operating Officers report using a large range of professional skills. Most notably, skills in Business Strategy, Leadership, Team Leadership, and Financial Analysis are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 11 percent and 19 percent. Those listing Accounting as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. Human Resources and Budget Management also typically command lower compensation. Those proficient in Operations Management are, more often than not, also skilled in Strategic Planning, Leadership, and Budget Management.
Pay by Experience Level for Chief Operating Officer (COO)
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For many Chief Operating Officers, more experience generally translates to higher pay. The average inexperienced employee pulls down a cushy six-figure sum; the median salary for people claiming fewer than five years of experience is $100K. Chief Operating Officers bring in $156K after working for 10 to 20 years. Chief Operating Officers who have stuck around for more than two decades see earnings that are only slightly higher than those of folks who have worked for 10 to 20 years; the more senior group makes around $187K on average.
Pay Difference by Location
For those looking to make money, Chief Operating Officers in Atlanta enjoy an exceptional pay rate, 32 percent above the national average. Chief Operating Officers will also find cushy salaries in New York (+30 percent), Seattle (+29 percent), Houston (+21 percent), and San Francisco (+21 percent). Trailing the national average by 10 percent, Miami is the market with the smallest paychecks.
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