Funeral Director Job Description, Skills, and Salary
Are you searching for a funeral director job description? Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of a funeral director. Feel free to use our job description template to produce your own. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as a funeral director.
Who is a Funeral Director?
A funeral director arranges and directs funeral services, seeking to give the best service and assistance to bereaved families. They often visit with families to assess their requirements and help them organize services, arrange transportation for the dead, prepare and process the corpse for the funeral, and support families every step of the way. They are also responsible for processing papers, communicating with vendors and suppliers, writing obituaries, and managing disagreements or concerns should any develop. Moreover, a funeral director must lead and allocate work among personnel, checking the progress of all procedures routinely.
As a funeral director, you coordinate funeral services. Your job tasks include delivering remains to the funeral home and burial locations, embalming and preparing bodies for funerals, processing paperwork, writing obituaries, and aiding the family of the dead through each stage of the funeral process. You must be comfortable dealing with and around corpses. You need compassion and calm while listening to the family of the departed as you work with them through their sorrow to prepare funeral services for their lost loved ones.
Funeral directors are engaged in preparing funeral preparations. They work with the family of the dead to make choices regarding who will serve as pallbearers, and whether the deceased will be buried or cremated. Other responsibilities they accomplish include arranging for clergy or other speakers at the funeral and getting an obituary published. They provide transportation for the mourners and dead, and, in the case a person is being buried in another state or country, they arrange for the transfer of the corpse.
They may perform certain paperwork on behalf of the survivors, such as transferring insurance policies. Many funeral directors are also responsible for embalming the corpses of the dead. Compassion and great communication skills are key attributes for funeral directors, as they interact directly with persons who are suffering the death of a loved one or friend.
Funeral Director Job Description
What is a funeral director job description? A funeral director job description is simply a list of duties and responsibilities of a funeral director in an organization. Below are the funeral director job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write a funeral director job description for your employee. Employers can also use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.
The duties and responsibilities of a funeral director include the following;
- Meet with relatives of the diseased to discuss funeral arrangements and desires.
- Explain price and product details for caskets and flowers to family and/or friends.
- Order casket, flowers, and other needs for funeral and memorial ceremonies.
- Make preparations for pallbearers, readings, and other participants in the funeral.
- Assist family in picking a burial stone if required or put them in contact with cemetery officials.
- Oversee preparation and embalming of the dead before the burial.
- Accept and handle payments for funeral services.
- Ensure that set-up for the memorial service, wake, and funeral follows families’ desires.
- Maintain cleanliness and order at the funeral home.
- Oversee transportation of coffins to church and cemetery.
- Address and resolve all client concerns or complaints.
- Maintain strong connections with suppliers, church authorities, and cemetery directors.
- Create and control the funeral home budget.
- Oversee payroll processing and distribution for funeral home personnel.
- Order supplies for the funeral home as required.
- Oversee funeral home scheduling.
- Hire receptionists and administrative assistants to work at the funeral home.
- Assign tasks to funeral home workers as appropriate.
- Coordinate with church members and other funeral professionals such as musicians and flower designers to prepare and execute the ceremony
- Offer grief therapy to grieving family members to help them deal with their loss.
- Interview families to learn about their loved one’s life, hobbies, and accomplishments to compose a eulogy or other tribute.
- Coordinate the practicalities of the service including securing venues and hiring musicians, organists, or singers if appropriate.
- Arrange for the transfer of the body to the funeral home from the site of death.
- Maintain records of the preparations made for each funeral service performed by the firm.
- Facilitate the transaction of accounts with insurance companies, social security administrations, and other bodies that pay out benefits to relatives of the dead.
- Coordinate with florists and other specialists to plan flower arrangements, music selections, food requirements, etc. for the service.
- Coordinate with the cemetery or cremation where the funeral will be placed to ensure that all things are settled.
- Demonstrates good organizing abilities.
- Exhibits patience, empathy, and compassion.
- Ability to talk calmly and gently with grieving relatives and friends.
- Pays meticulous attention to detail.
- Exhibits capacity to appropriately handle and control a budget.
- Demonstrates experience with Microsoft Office Suite, budget software, and payroll software.
- Exhibits great leadership capabilities.
- Knowledgeable with suitable etiquette and procedure for a variety of religious or cultural funeral rites.
- Possesses great listening abilities.
- Death Certificates: Funeral directors typically create and submit death certificates, which are legal papers that establish a person’s identification and the reason for their death. This is a crucial element of the funeral director’s employment since it permits families to obtain life insurance payouts and other benefits from the government. It also assures that the dead has a suitable burial.
- Problem Solving: Problem-solving is the capacity to detect and address challenges. Funeral directors commonly employ problem-solving abilities while dealing with customers who have questions or concerns regarding funeral arrangements, payment options, or other issues. For example, if a client has an outstanding debt on their credit card, the director may assist them to discover methods to pay it off so they may continue with making funeral preparations.
- Bereavement Services: Bereavement services are the acts and obligations of a funeral director while dealing with grieving persons. This involves offering information about the procedure, listening to their worries and questions, leading them through the service, and any other responsibilities that assist them to deal with their loss. Funeral directors that have great grieving skills can bring comfort to individuals in need and ensure they understand all elements of the process.
- Funeral Home Management: Funeral directors typically collaborate alongside funeral home managers, who handle the day-to-day operations of a funeral home. Funeral directors need to know how to manage their employees and resources efficiently so that they can give outstanding service to families during times of sadness. They also need to be able to communicate effectively with their colleagues to guarantee that all elements of the company are working properly.
- Pre-Need Planning: Funeral directors typically collaborate with families to organize a funeral ceremony before the death of a loved one. This needs knowledge of local rules and regulations, as well as a grasp of what each family may need for their circumstances. For example, some families may choose to have a traditional religious service while others may prefer a more contemporary approach.
- Mortuary Science: Mortuary science is the knowledge and abilities required to accomplish duties at a mortuary, such as preparing remains for burial. Funeral directors typically have their mortuaries where they prepare corpses before transferring them to cemeteries or crematoriums. Mortuary science entails learning how to embalm corpses, clothe them and make them presentable for viewing by family members.
- Business Administration: Funeral directors must have great business administration abilities to operate their firms. This involves accounting, budgeting, and record-keeping activities that assist them to monitor the financial health of their organization. It also needs attention to detail when they complete paperwork for state licensure and other regulatory obligations.
- Interpersonal Skills: Funeral directors regularly deal with persons who are mourning. They must be able to listen and sympathize with their customers while yet retaining a professional tone. It’s also necessary for funeral directors to have great interpersonal skills so they can connect successfully with employees, managers, and other professionals in the business.
- Leadership: Leadership is the capacity to encourage and lead people. Funeral directors generally collaborate with a team of specialists, including funeral service workers, cemetery administrators, and church members. Effective leadership abilities enable you to assign responsibilities, give direction and maintain order in a corporate atmosphere. You may also utilize your leadership qualities to assist families through their loss by giving them emotional support and advice throughout the memorialization process.
- Communication: Communication is the capacity to deliver information effectively and simply. Funeral directors routinely deal with relatives of departed persons, therefore they must be able to clarify specifics regarding funeral processes in a comprehensible manner. They also need to be able to listen to family members’ inquiries or concerns and react properly.
- Grief Counseling: Grief counseling is the capacity to guide individuals through their emotional journey following a loss. Funeral directors typically deal with families who have suffered the loss of a loved one, and they may need to give support and counseling as they manage their sorrow. Grief counseling skills might include active listening, sensitivity, and compassion for others’ feelings and needs.
- Casket Sales: Caskets are the containers that retain a corpse before burial. Funeral directors typically sell caskets to relatives of the dead, so they must have sales skills and knowledge about the numerous kinds of caskets available. They also need to know how to price these things effectively and describe their characteristics to assist families to make educated judgments.
- Embalming: Embalming is the process of preserving a corpse after death. Funeral directors utilize this ability to ensure that corpses are presentable during funerals and other memorial events. They also utilize it to preserve corpses for medical or scientific study, when families desire it.
- Organization: The organization is the capacity to keep track of many activities and obligations. Funeral directors frequently have several obligations, including organizing appointments, preparing paperwork, managing merchandise, and keeping records. Having great organizational abilities may assist guarantee that all important chores are performed on schedule. It also helps funeral directors to be more efficient in their job, which may allow them to spend more time with bereaved families or attend workshops to increase their professional growth.
- Empathy: Empathy is the capacity to comprehend and share another person’s emotions. Funeral directors typically utilize empathy while talking with customers, since they may be suffering sadness over a loss. Empathy may help funeral directors listen to their client’s needs and assist them during this difficult time.
- Funeral Arrangements: Funeral directors utilize their understanding of funeral preparations to assist families to plan and executing a loved one’s ceremony. This involves recognizing the many sorts of funerals, such as conventional or religious services, and what each requires. It also entails knowing the many alternatives for caskets, burial sites, and other components of the ceremony.
How to Become a Funeral Director
- Obtain an associate’s degree: Before you may become a funeral director, you must finish the minimal school requirements and get an associate degree. The school you pick should be approved by the American Board of Funeral Service Education (ABFSE) as many jurisdictions demand accreditation before you can become licensed. There are 60 mortuary science programs certified by the ABFSE that you may pick from.
During your studies in mortuary science, you will be required to take subjects such as professional ethics, microbiology, chemistry, pathology, embalming, mortuary law, anatomy, federal laws, grief counseling, and funeral service psychology.
- Complete an apprenticeship: Once you finish your academic education in mortuary science, you are then obliged by the ABFSE to undergo an apprenticeship that lasts anything from one to three years. Depending on your schedule and the state regulations where you reside, you may be allowed to finish the apprenticeship before, during, or after your official schooling.
When you are an apprentice in a mortuary you may only undertake activities under the direct supervision of an experienced mortician. This will provide you with hands-on experience in the sector that you will need to earn a position as a funeral director.
- Obtain state licensure: Hugo become a funeral director you must pass a state licensing test after you finish your apprenticeship and at least a two-year degree. Prospective funeral directors should be at least 21 years of age by their planned examination date. The courses that are covered in the test include psychology, funeral service merchandising, business law, funeral service history, microbiology, pathology, restorative arts, embalming, and anatomy. The funeral director and embalming license may be given independently depending on the state you live in.
- Update your resume: After you receive your funeral director’s license, it is vital to update your CV. You may include your relevant job experience including the hands-on experience you obtained during your apprenticeship or internship. You may also provide your highest academic level along with any professional references. If you had a strong connection with the mortician you did your apprenticeship with, you may opt to ask them for a letter of reference to boost your chances of getting recruited.
- Maintain licensure: Your state may require you to engage in continuing education programs to retain your funeral director’s license. You have the choice to continue your education via remote or on-site study. You may do online courses, and engage in webinars or teleconferences for remote learning. On-site learning is often delivered in person via seminars, workshops, and professional development sessions.
You may also choose to get an optional certification to differentiate yourself in the funeral care sector by becoming a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) given by the Academy of Professional Funeral Service Practice.
This continuing education will guarantee that you are current about funeral service legislation as well as developments and innovations in the funeral service business.
Where to Work as a Funeral Director
Funeral directors operate mostly in a funeral home or cremation. There is a multitude of parts to their duties that involve traveling to and from funeral ceremonies that are often done in a place of worship. Funeral directors spend a great amount of time on their feet and a computer.
Funeral Director Salary Scale
The average funeral direct payday in the USA is $53,321 per year or $27.34 per hour. Entry-level occupations start at $40,950 per year while most experienced professionals earn up to $70,000 per year.
The average funeral director pays in the United Kingdom is £26,500 per year or £13.59 per hour. Entry-level occupations start at £22,473 per year while most experienced professionals earn up to £30,380 per year.
The average funeral director’s pay in Canada is $41,925 per year or $21.50 per hour. Entry-level occupations start at $36,563 per year, while most experienced professionals earn up to $49,766 per year.