Management services specialist
Business & Corporate

Management services specialists study an organisation's methods of working to find ways of using resources more efficiently. They look at existing ways of working to try to solve problems and measure the time taken to carry out tasks, so that pay or staffing needs can be calculated.

Work Activities

Management services specialists gather information and break down existing work practices into individual steps. They watch people working, perhaps timing them. They use a computer to analyse data and write up reports. They make use of modern business techniques such as work study, product analysis, business improvement and a wide range of management information and control techniques.

Typical job responsibilities include:

  • Studying an organisation's methods of working to identify ways of becoming more efficient and productive
  • Using a number of business improvement techniques to identify problems, study work activities and suggest solutions to improve outputs
  • Analysing the flow of materials, resources, products and information through the organisation
  • Selecting key or critical activities in the organisation and setting targets for improvement
  • Using specialist computer software to record their findings and producing reports and recommendations
  • Interviewing employees in the workplace to establish how they carry out their tasks
  • Using statistical models to analyse data and to suggest improvements
  • Making recommendations to senior managers to set up new systems or modify existing work procedures
  • Providing information on the costs and benefits to the organisation of suggested improvements
  • Implementing new systems and procedures and monitoring their effects on tasks and processes in the short and long term

Management services specialists work in a range of settings including industry, commerce, the National Health Service, local and national government. They normally work a standard 37 hour week but may be required to work shift, nights and weekends on occasions.

Future career progression will depend on the setting in which they are employed. It may be possible to progress to Team Leader or Project Manager within an organisation. After several years' experience some management services specialists may become self-employed as management consultants.

This is a relatively small, specialist career and there may not be many vacancies advertised.

Personal Qualities and Skills

Key skills for management services specialists

  • Excellent analytical and problem solving skills
  • Ability to pay close attention to details
  • Able to show diplomacy and tact towards other people whom you work with and study
  • An ability to get on well with people and establish sound relationships
  • A good working knowledge of management services and productivity improvement techniques
  • A logical and methodical approach to your work
  • Able to withstand criticism
  • Sound numerical and IT skills, including the ability to interpret and analyse statistics
  • Excellent communication and persuasive skills to gain people's cooperation and to explain the benefits of your work
  • Excellent report writing skills
  • Ability to express yourself clearly and present the arguments for your suggested improvements

Pay And Opportunities

Typical employers

Examples of typical employers of management services specialists include:

  • Manufacturing Companies
  • The Retail Sector
  • National Health Service
  • Transport
  • Local Authorities
  • The Civil Service


Qualifications and training required

Most employers prefer applicants to have a degree. Some employers may also accept applicants who have HNDs or Foundation Degrees. Preferred degree subjects are Business Studies, Economics, Engineering or Computer Studies.

Entry into a degree course requires a minimum of 5 GCSEs grades 9 – 4 (A*- C) and 2 A levels preferably including maths. For entry at HND level one A level is required. There are no formal entry requirements for a Foundation Degree but students will need to be able to show that they can cope with the academic content of the course.

A BTEC National Level 3 qualification in a relevant subject e.g. Business Studies would also be acceptable for entry to a Degree, HND or Foundation Degree.

The Institute of Management Services (IMS) is the professional body which offers training for Management Services Specialists. The IMS accredits the Management Services Certificate and Diploma which covers a range of modules. The IMS website lists training providers who run approved courses.

There is also a NVQ Diploma in Business-Improvement Techniques at levels 3 and 4.

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