Job Description, Job Roles and Responsibility of an Airport Manager by Rumana Maner

 Job Description, Job Roles and Responsibility of an Airport Manager

@Rumana Maner


What Do Airport Managers Do?

Airport managers are the decision-makers and policy-makers for airports. They create jobs and oversee the management of each airport department. The job is multi-faceted and vital to aviation safety. Large airports that serve commercial airlines need managers to oversee several departments, but smaller airports may need airport managers to be more hands-on with areas such as finance, security, maintenance, and more.

Airports often are one of the largest employers in a local area. Major airports like JFK in New York can have upwards of 30,000 people employed. Small airports may employ only an airport manager and a couple of linemen. Regardless, someone has to manage the daily operations and plan for the future, and that job lies with the airport manager. 

Airport Manager Duties & Responsibilities

This job generally requires the ability to do the following work:

  • Comply with FAA regulations and other guidelines.

  • Supervise managers and staff.

  • Plan budgets.

  • Adapt to outside factors, such as weather.

  • Work with community leaders.

  • Maintain accurate records.

  • Oversee the maintenance and repair of airport equipment.

Airport managers often are employed by the city where the airport is located, and they are responsible for all airport operations. The airport manager oversees all other employees and departments and manages the day-to-day operations as well as future airport planning. They may deal with many different issues, but they are primarily responsible for airport safety, regulations, and budget planning.

Airport managers may have to deal with noise complaints, emissions testing, and airport equipment management. They work closely with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and other industry groups to manage and develop air traffic procedures, install air navigation equipment, mitigate safety hazards, and manage the airport budget. They must work closely with numerous people, including the FAA, National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), airline management, air traffic controllers, firefighters, security personnel linemen, and maintenance personnel, administrative staff, food staff, and sometimes retail managers.

Airport managers generally work with city, state, and federal officials to make their airports safe and efficient while following rules and regulations. They sometimes lobby to make important changes and work with legislative officials to promote aviation.

Airport Manager Salary

The U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics does not track salaries specifically for airport managers, but the median annual salary for administrative service managers was $96,180, as reported in 2018. tracks salaries for aviation-related jobs posted on its site, including management jobs. Positions at the nation's largest or smallest airports potentially could pay more or less than the highest and lowest figures on this list:

  • Mean Annual Salary: $100,052 ($48.10/hour)

  • Highest Annual Salary: $109,778 ($52.78/hour)

  • Lowest Annual Salary: $90,327 ($43.43/hour)

Education, Training, & Certification

At a minimum, someone seeking work as an airport manager should have a bachelor's degree. Those with advanced degrees will be more competitive.

  • Education: It's not necessary to be a pilot to manage an airport, but the most competitive candidates have studied aviation or aviation management. A strong business background also is helpful, so general business or management degrees are beneficial.

  • Experience: Larger commercial airports expect managers to have several years of experience in airport management as department heads before being ready to manage an entire airport. Managing a smaller airport requires less experience, but significant time working in such an environment is needed.

Airport Manager Skills & Competencies

Good business skills and familiarity with aviation and aviation regulations are important in this field, but being a good airport manager also requires broader soft skills.

  • Multitasking: From maintenance to scheduling to customer service to security and more, airports have a lot going on. Effective airport managers constantly need to stay on top of issues within multiple departments.

  • Leadership skills: A well-run airport needs a strong team of department heads and other staff members. An airport manager needs to be an effective leader of this team to get the most out of them.

  • Effective under pressure: Whether airports are small, privately owned operations or serve large commercial airlines, they deal with issues related to safety and security every day, and unpredictable weather can wreak havoc with schedules. To deal with this, airport managers need to provide calm leadership during a crisis.

  • Communication skills: In addition to listening and giving direction to department heads and other staff members, airport managers need to communicate effectively with representatives from outside agencies, such as the FAA, and leaders in surrounding communities.

Job Outlook

Job opportunities for all air transportation workers are expected to grow by about 7% for the decade ending in 2026, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics. projects that growth among smaller commercial airlines and in shipping demands from online retailers will keep airports busy, resulting in a constant need for airport management.

Work Environment

Even small airports take up a lot of space, with department managers spread out over many acres. Airport managers usually have an office in the main terminal, but they also spend a lot of time in other parts of the airport, depending on how hands-on they are. It's also common for airport managers to be active in their communities, so they may spend some time in the surrounding municipalities their airports serve, working with community leaders.

Work Schedule

Airport managers typically work during normal business hours, but they may need to be available to respond to emergencies or when weather or other factors impact flight schedules.

Airport Manager Duties & Responsibilities

To write an effective airport manager job description, begin by listing detailed duties, responsibilities and expectations. We have included airport manager job description templates that you can modify and use.

Sample responsibilities for this position include:

Schedule staff so as to properly serve customers, drive sales and execute tasks

Ensure all store team members are trained on Foundational and Seasonal Brand and product knowledge

Manage the recruitment and training of store team members

Maximise the Airport media execution and performance by assuming the commercial ‘’day to day’’ liaison with Pearson

Collaborate with Pearson Airport /Lang Media and initiate with Astral new sponsorship opportunities

Coordinate the media inventory available for sales in relation with Pearson operation/Astral construction services and collaborate with Airport Director and Marketing on preparing and updating sales collateral

Act as the prime resource for Pearson ‘’drives’’ with clients and agencies

Be a dedicated resource for the sales team to keep each individual inform and train on the media inventory within Pearson

Oversee all special projects execution

Ensure that Pearson product offering is at all times answering Astral’s highest quality standards

Airport Manager Qualifications

Typically, a job would require a certain level of education.

Employers hiring for the airport manager job most commonly would prefer for their future employee to have a relevant degree such as Bachelor's and Master's Degree in Business, Business/Administration, Management, Education, Engineering, Associates, Aviation Management, Aviation, Technical, Public Administration

Skills for Airport Manager

Desired skills for airport manager include:


MS Office


Equipment maintenance and aircraft refuelling

Aircraft operations

Airfield management

Applicable laws

Business cycles

Directives pertaining to airfield planning and design criteria

Flight data and NOTAM systems

Desired experience for airport manager includes:

Support GM Airports in monthly, quarterly sales reports to GTAA and annual reviews for new products deployments

Liaison with Pearson Pass Permit control center to access passes for Astral employees and clients

Have excellent ability to work under pressure and handle multiple initiatives and have demonstrated the ability to adapt to change

Responsible for effectively and profitably managing all aspects of this operation, which could include food & beverage operations

A minimum of 10+ years’ experience in the hospitality industry or equivalent experience with a responsibility for overseeing multi-unit operations (food, beverage and/or retail) of varying complexity

Knowledge of food preparation and inventory control procedures

1.    Airport Manager Job Description

Our innovative and growing company is searching for experienced candidates for the position of airport manager. Thank you in advance for taking a look at the list of responsibilities and qualifications. We look forward to reviewing your resume.

Responsibilities for airport manager

·   Recommend the scope of present and future product lines by reviewing product specifications and requirements

·   Assess market competition by comparing the company's product to competitors' products

·   Determine product pricing by utilising market research data

·   Complete operational requirements by scheduling and coordinating with various teams

·   Works in unison with the Site Manager ensuring all daily/weekly/monthly reconciliation items are handled per policy and procedure guide

·   Developing forecasts and proposals to improve efficiency and reduce costs

·   Act as a key contact person for airport and ground handling partners throughout the duration of the contract with respect to commercial matters

·   Lead negotiations with airport administrators

·   Participate in meetings to create airport agreements and incentives

·   Participate in meetings to review airport construction projects and PFC applications

Qualifications for airport manager

·   Bachelor of Architecture or Engineering is required

·   20+ yrs. experience leading and directing design and build teams in the preparation and delivery of construction documents for large multi-billion-dollar programs

·   A minimum of 5-7 years of food and beverage experience managing multi-units in a contract environment

·   You know the importance of a great customer experience and drive to find the best solutions

·   At least 10 years of design engineering and project management experience is required

·   You have leadership and coaching experience


2.   Airport Manager Job Description

Our innovative and growing company is looking to fill the role of airport manager. We appreciate you taking the time to review the list of qualifications and to apply for the position. If you don’t fill all of the qualifications, you may still be considered depending on your level of experience.

Responsibilities for airport manager

·   Follow-through on the execution and maintenance of corporate contracts

·   Provide detailed analysis of current costs and operations

·   Develop cost models to be used in decision-making

·   Region Staff

·   Fleet & Distribution Teams

·   Responsible for the negotiation and closing of new business opportunities

·   Responsible for an annual new business sales target as agreed with the Business Unit Director

·   Involved in the full range of new business sales activities, such as cold calling, account planning, seminars

·   Develop relationships within a selection of customers and prospects agreed with the Business Unit Director

·   Work closely with the marketing department, gaining leverage from activities and events

Qualifications for airport manager

·   Have excellent communication and interpersonal skills and an excellent team player

·   Strong sales technique and the ability to train and mentor staff on sales

·   You are flexible to work across the airport extended trading hours across a 7-day rotating roster

·   4+ years’ experience with operations

·   Expert in Excel and other technological tools for reporting

·   Meets on a regular basis with airport tenants


@Rumana Maner [MBA]

HR Manager

AirCrews Aviation Pvt Ltd

Rumana Maner [MBA] HR Manager 


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