What is a Practice Manager?

While every workplace needs to operate smoothly, effective management is especially important for medical service providers. As administrators in private medical offices or public health facilities, practice managers help ensure the efficiency of daily operations. Combining business management, healthcare and administration, this job is a unique and exciting way for medical professionals to become leaders in their fields.

What Is a Practice Manager?

Also called “practice administrators,” practice managers organize, direct and plan medical services. They ensure that an office’s daily business processes run smoothly. Common responsibilities include:

  • Staff supervision and scheduling
  • Human resources duties, such as recruiting and training employees
  • Maintaining medical and facility service records
  • Ordering medical equipment and supplies
  • Improving operations efficiency
  • Creating organizational goals and objectives
  • Budgeting
  • Daily financial activities, such as handling cash, deposits and billing
  • Ensuring business compliance with legal requirements
  • Supervising daily operations
  • Communicating with various parties, such as staff, department heads and governing boards

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), practice managers work in a number of environments. They include:

  • Hospitals
  • Physician offices
  • Nursing and residential care facilities
  • Government
  • Home healthcare services

Practice managers require an assortment of skills to prove successful.

Skills Needed to Become a Practice Manager

Successful practice managers possess the following characteristics:

Strong communicators

Practice managers are regularly required to relay information to staff, administrators and other parties. They ensure that all staff and patients understand policies, procedures and compliance requirements. In addition, they may sometimes also represent their offices to larger bodies, such as shareholders.

Solid customer service skills

Patients are customers. Practice managers must have the capacity to effectively solve problems and keep their clients as satisfied as possible.

Problem-solving abilities

Practice managers must regularly find solutions to complaints and conflicts.

Technical proficiency

Mastery of healthcare technology, computers and data analytics is usually required.

Detail-oriented

Because they are often responsible for large operations, practice managers must be good at noticing details.

Leadership capabilities

Practice managers often oversee other employees such as receptionists, medical billers and coders.

Analytical skills

Practice managers must understand the requirements of their industry on a larger scale and help their offices meet them. Examples include adhering to regulations and keeping up with changing laws.

In practice management, as in most jobs, salaries are based on individuals’ mastery of these skills, along with other factors.

Practice Manager Salary

According to PayScale, the annual salary for practice managers can range from about $40,000 to $83,000. Pay is based on factors such as experience, skill mastery, location of work and level of education. According to the BLS, practice manager jobs are in high demand. The number of medical and health services manager positions is expected to grow 20 percent by 2026, a rate much faster than average.

Although practice managers can enter their profession with a bachelor’s degree, master’s degrees are common and provide candidates with a competitive edge. Programs like those at Husson University can help ready medical professionals to enter the next phase of their careers.

Managing the Future of Healthcare

Those already working in healthcare can advance to leadership positions with the right education. At Husson University, the online MBA in Healthcare Management provides a convenient and dynamic program designed to help students do more. The program features an interdisciplinary curriculum, covering in-demand topics like healthcare economics, financial management, strategy and more. Because the degree is fully online, students can attend class around their busy schedules. The program can be completed in as little as one year.