Importance of Office Management

Importance of Office Management

We have seen how business houses in the previous era tends to overlook the importance of office work as non-productive. The wealth of material available on office management today indicates the contrary view. The importance of office management as a subject for intensive study and application is well recognized one all over America.

Williain H. Leffingwell, the late president of Taylor Society and National Office Management Association has been a great contributor in making office management a science. His principles of “Scientific Office Management” is the Bible of office management, not only for students who opt for the subject but also for office managers, enabling them to employ scientific principles of Office Management.

Importance of Office Management
Importance of Office Management

Factors that make Office Management important

1. The Volume of office work is rapidly increasing

The modern age is knowledge age, i.e., Information. Knowledge should be readily available in the form of records, for reference, study, updating and even deletion if obsolete. Office records have to be created and preserved efficiently. They may be on papers, ledgers, micro-films, tapes, computers and data systems.

The collection of information is by itself calls for complex office activities. Information in the past was only through persons and correspondence. Today, information is sought and availed of from print and electronic media of various kinds.

2. Increase in business

Office work assumes greater importance in the context of shrinking boundaries in business and trade. Globalization has led to the virtual demolition of trade barriers. Global competition in quality and costs has led to the. importance of allied work.

A business concern should be familiar with market trends, competitor’s role, governmental policies and consumer preferences at a global level. A car manufacturer from Korea should be in the know of road conditions in India and the fuel costs therein to streamline his product and production schedule.

A French glass manufacturer should know the way glass is used in Indian construction segment and the quality of glass required to decide whether glass could be exported from France to India or to establish a manufacturing unit in India to cater to the market. Such decisions call for precise information pertinent to the subject.

3. The variety of information and sources that are scattered

All information relevant to business will not be uniform or from limited sources only. Today, information has to be sought from a widely varied sources scattered all over the country or the world. Information will also be varied.

The tax laws of the Middle East are different from the laws of USA or South Asia or Far East. Great advances are taking place in the areas of production, research and development, marketing and consumer behavior. All the information that is collected has to be analyzed, sorted out and stored if need be, to be available for reference. These jobs need highly skilled and competent office staff. The variety of jobs require a variety of skilled office hands.

4. Expansion of business – the new drive

Business is expanding quantitatively as well as qualitatively. In olden days, business houses tended to concentrate on one item for manufacture. In the 1960s in India there were hardly three companies manufacturing refrigerators. Today, you have so many that they have to compete intensively to capture the market.

Today, there is an intensive drive by every business to expand and branch off. The same company may enter a wide variety of business and launch new ventures. A company may trade in jewellery, run a star hotel, operate a theme park, have a ready-made garment factory and run even an engineering unit. A cigarette manufacturing company may run a five star hotel, manufacture and market edible oils and run a large scale modern printing unit.

The Corporate offices of such companies need to coordinate all these activities and be accountable to the shareholders.

5. Business becoming more public

Offices assume greater importance because many private limited companies have chosen to go public to mobilize capital and resources. Merchant banking has assumed great importance and the entire activity depends on well managed office work.

6. Need for Planning

No business in the modern competitive world can survive without thinking futuristically. “Where do you expect to be after ten years” is normally a question for a candidate in a job interview. But even business organization should consider where they want to be in ten years. A comprehensive plan is essential for current operations as well as the future profile of the concern.

A well-organized office makes it possible for the management to plan its operations intelligently, to put its plans into effect, to follow their progress currently, to determine their effect promptly, to appraise the results critically, and to coordinate and control all activities.

7. Need for effective control

Offices assume greater importance because there is a great need for tighter control of all organizational activities like finance, production, marketing, etc.

8. The techniques of management

In every sphere, business has become more sophisticated. Decisions and programmes need constant review. The concept of Overseas Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), back-offices, etc., are assuming global significance. Highly skilled, technically qualified people have taken over office functions and management.

The enormous increase in electronic machines, computers has given greater significance and importance to office management. Even small organizations dealing with big organizations have to make their working compatible with the working of large organizations. Automation is the in thing in modern office management.

9. Lucrative office jobs

Though there is a widespread criticism of the growth in the number of office workers, the phenomenon is bound to continue for two reasons. The lure for the white-collared job and the sophistication reached in office functions will attract more people to office jobs of a wide variety. This human factor plays an important role.

The office is an entity that is indispensable for any organization. Its importance becomes significant due to the following factors, elaborated above

Factors that make office management important (in brief)

1. Rapid increase in the volume of work related to information and records.

2. Increasing volume of business cutting across trade boundaries and national boundaries.

3. Increase in the variety of information required.

4. The source of information scattered over a large area all over the world.

5. Expansion of business in volume, quality and competitiveness.

6. More public participation in business which was exclusive to businessmen only.

7. The ever increasing need for planning to meet new challenges.

8. The need for tighter control of all business activities.

9. New and sophisticated techniques of management.

10. The human factor of ever increasing number of office workers with special skills.