Community Service Manager

Woman community service manager from a nonprofit organization holds a folder and shakes the hand of a colleag
Career Clusters: Human Services

What you need to know


Social and community service managers coordinate and supervise social service programs and community organizations. They manage workers who provide social services to the public.

What is this career like?

Social and community service managers work for nonprofit organizations, private for-profit social service companies, and government agencies.

Some of these organizations focus on working with a particular demographic, such as children, people who are homeless, older adults, or veterans. Others focus on helping people with particular challenges, such as substance abuse, mental health needs, chronic hunger, and long-term unemployment.

They also work in a variety of settings, including offices, clinics, hospitals, and shelters.

Some of the things social and community service managers might do:

  • Work with community members and other stakeholders to identify necessary programs and services
  • Oversee administrative aspects of programs to meet the objectives of the stakeholders
  • Analyze data to determine the effectiveness of programs
  • Suggest and implement improvements to programs and services
  • Plan and manage outreach activities to advocate for increased awareness of programs
  • Write proposals for social services funding
What skills are needed?
  • Analytical skills. Social and community service managers need to understand and evaluate data in order to provide strategic guidance to their organization. They must be able to monitor and evaluate current programs as well as determine new initiatives.
  • Communication skills. Social and community service managers must be able to speak and write clearly so that others can understand them. Public speaking experience is also helpful because social and community service managers often participate in community outreach.
  • Managerial skills. Social and community service managers spend much of their time administering budgets and responding to a wide variety of issues.
  • Problem-solving skills. Social and community service managers must be able to address client, staff, and agency-related issues as they occur.
  • Time-management skills. Social and community service managers must prioritize and handle numerous tasks for multiple customers, often in a short timeframe.
What is the pay?

The average pay for social and community service managers in the United States ranges from $42,230 to $115,800 as of May 2020.

The specific pay depends on factors such as level of experience, education and training, geographic location, and specific industry.

What is the career outlook?

Employment of social and community service managers is projected to grow 17 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations.

Much of the job growth in this occupation is the result of an aging population.

In addition, employment growth is projected as people continue to seek treatment for their addictions, and as illegal drug offenders are increasingly sent to treatment programs rather than to jail.

What education is required?

Most social and community service manager jobs require a bachelor’s degree in social work, public or business administration, public health, or a related field. However, some positions also require a master’s degree.

Discover some of the courses you will take pursuing a degree in Social Work, Management and Leadership, or Public Health.