Service Delivery Manager – Roles, Responsibilities and Salary

A Service Delivery Manager, as the name indicates, is a person who is concerned with the delivery of products or services to customers on an effective and timely basis. Apart from leading the service delivery team, his role is indispensable and pivotal to the company’s overall growth because he represents the company’s policies. He is responsible for forging long-term customer relationships by improving and ensuring maximum customer satisfaction.

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Work of a Service Delivery Manager

A Service Delivery Manager’s job profile is not just limited to technical tasks but can also include administrative work like managing team performance or quality control. They must manage projects, track progress, manage budgets, analyze and improve the key performance indicators and so on. Moreover, ensuring that the cost of non-conformance (cost of replacements, warranties, etc., by delivering defective products) is kept at the minimum by regular inspection and quality checks is one of the major responsibilities of the service delivery manager. This is because customers only trust a company that delivers high-quality products at a reasonable price. Delivering defective products dissuades customers from buying from the company.

Service Delivery Manager’s Area of Work

A service delivery manager has job prospects in a wide range of industries; for example, his role in an Information Technology (IT) company is to resolve technical problems, provide customer support, etc. Here is a list of areas where a service delivery manager can work:

  • People Management
  • Project Management
  • Service Management
  • Performance and Quality Control Management
  • Meeting Support
  • Information Technology/ Technical Perception
  • Customer Relationship Management
  • Operations Management.

It should be noted that the above list is not exhaustive.

Qualifications and Skills of a Service Delivery Manager

This position generally requires candidates to have at least an appropriate Bachelor’s degree in any business-related field. Apart from this, they are expected to have at least five years of experience in areas of customer service, logistics and leadership, though this is completely subjective to a company’s requirements.

Apart from these, a candidate applying for this job profile is expected to have a certain set of skills. Some of these skills are technical, whereas others are generic in nature.

Generic Skills:

  • Communication Skills: A service delivery manager is expected to represent the company by interacting with the customers and for this reason, he is expected to have fluent verbal and written communication skills and the charisma to induce the customers to look forward to the company’s products or services.
  • Time Management: Customers count on businesses to deliver products or services on a timely basis. Therefore, the candidate needs to have excellent time management skills to ensure maximum customer satisfaction.
  • Leadership: A service delivery manager may be in charge of a delivery team to provide for seamless delivery of goods or services. A candidate applying for this position must have leadership skills to influence and motivate others to perform better. Not only should he be able to handle physical teams, but he also should be able to manage virtual ones.
  • Mentorship: In order to impart quality services to the customers, a service delivery manager is supposed to mentor staff and his teammates on various issues. He should, therefore, always be eager to provide necessary support and guidance to his subordinates.
  • Self-Motivation: Being a team leader is not an easy task because it requires a person to be motivated from within and only then will he be able to induce others to follow in his footsteps. Not only this, he should have a dedicated attitude towards taking up responsibilities.
  • Confidentiality: Being in the core management team of a company and having access to sensitive information go hand in hand. A candidate should be ethically motivated to manage confidential information entrusted to him.
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Technical Skills:

  • Computer Skills: Today, no business can be run without the help of computers, so any candidate applying for the job must know how to operate a computer and work on business-specific software.
  • ITIL Disciplines: ITIL is an information technology framework that provides guidance for managing the five stages of the IT service lifecycle, that is, service strategy, design, transition, operation and continual improvement. The candidate should have a knowledge of these disciplines.
  • Company’s Finances: Budget preparation and forecasts can also be a requirement from a candidate applying for the job of a service delivery manager and it is vital for the candidate to know and be able to manage the finances in his purview.
  • Conflict Resolution: The ability to resolve conflicts comes with experience because it requires alertness and quick thinking. It constitutes one of the most fundamental skills that are expected from a candidate applying for this position.
  • Managing Third Parties: A service delivery manager is not only focused on customers but also involves coming in contact with third parties, as not all the goods or services provided by a company are developed in-house.
  • Other Skills: Lastly, a candidate is expected to possess strong customer handling, project management and quality control skills. He should also have a thorough knowledge of escalation procedures, incident management and other related areas.

Roles and Responsibilities of a Service Delivery Manager

The followings are the roles and responsibilities of a service delivery manager:

  • Customer Relations: One of the essential roles of a service delivery manager is to maintain good relations with existing customers and induce interest in potential ones. This is done by delivering superior-quality products at a reasonable price and on a timely basis. He must also ensure prompt resolution of their problems and queries.
  • Identifying Customer’s Needs: Customers look for certain products or services that they perceive to add value to them. He must also be a bridge between the top management and the customers and inform them about the needs of the customers so that the products or services can be more customer-centric.
  • Leading the Service Delivery Team: Ensuring efficient delivery of services is not a one-man’s job and often requires a collective effort from the team. A service delivery manager is, therefore, required to handle his team, manage and resolve their conflicts and ensure that the work carried on by them aligns with the company’s standards.
  • Developing Mechanisms to Reduce Costs: To increase profitability, a company focuses on cutting costs. This cost-cutting, however, has certain limitations that often manifest into substandard products. A service delivery manager, therefore, has to develop and find a proper balance between the quality of products and cost-cutting, which does not discourage the customers from opting for the company. This can be achieved by economies of scale and by identifying and eliminating non-value-added items and processes.
  • Assessing Customer Feedback: A customer-centric company not only solidifies its market share but also ensures its long-term survival. For this, a service manager needs to assess and analyze customer feedback to better understand their needs. He then needs to use his innovation and creativity to improve and refine based on their feedback.
  • Meeting Deadlines: Besides quality, customers value timeliness. A service delivery manager has the responsibility of ensuring that the products or services are delivered to the customers on a timely basis.
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FAQs on SDM Salary

The following are important Frequently Asked Questions related to the job of a service delivery manager. 

Is a service delivery manager the same as a project manager?

No. Delivery managers are concerned with client satisfaction and will work more closely with clients. A project manager is more of an internal role and they will interact with various team members working on developing the product.

Is a delivery manager a promising career?

People with superb technical, communication and problem-solving skills will enjoy a career in service delivery management. The pay is high and the job does not feel repetitive.

What does an SDM do?

Service delivery managers respond to client concerns and oversee project management for a business team. A service delivery manager’s job duties include handling recovery exercises, writing reports for clients, documenting recovery processes, recommending solutions and improving project efficiency.

Is delivery manager a technical role?

The role of the Delivery Manager is more technical, ensuring that technology is applied most efficiently.

What is the salary of an SDM?

SDM salary in India with less than one year of experience to 14 years ranges from ₹1.8 Lakhs to ₹19 Lakhs with an average annual salary of ₹ 2.2 Lakhs based on 751 latest salaries.

The job of a service delivery manager is well-reputed in society and essential for the company’s growth. They are the faces of the company because they interact with customers and impact the brand image of the company. A candidate with a bachelor’s degree and the requisite skill set comprising leadership, good communication, customer interaction, etc., is well suited for this job profile, which provides a high incentive for growth.

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