Today, we look at the healing officer. Depending on the size of your guild, their responsibilities will range from a small number such as setting up cooldowns on the fly or a broader array such as recruiting and critique.

Responsibilities

At the heart of it, a healing officer works with other officers in the raid on how the flow and structure of the pulls should work. Correctly anticipating incoming abilities and damage while countering it with the appropriate cooldowns at the right time is generally one of the major roles. Sometimes, the raid leader will take it upon themselves to handle that. In most raiding guild setups, that’s usually deferred.
You’re the one in charge of deciding what classes to bring and how many. Some fights will favor certain classes above others but you’ll have to find a way to make things work with the team that you have.
Providing feedback is a constant. Players dying generally means someone somewhere didn’t do their job. It could be the fault of the assigned healers or it could be the fault of the player who wasn’t quick enough to move. Healing leaders have to be swift enough to identify problems during a limited window. Sometimes there isn’t enough time to really examine logs during the middle of attempts to conclusively say what happened. After raiding is over, it’s expected for officers to comb over logs and see what can be improved upon or if there were any specific incidents that needed to be looked at closer.
Really knowledgeable leads will try to work with and coach healers individually to try to get them to improve.
Lastly, your performance matters. You have to set the example for everyone else.
  • Your healing numbers must be competitive
  • Your gamesense must be near flawless
  • Your mistakes must be practically non-existent

At the end of the day, you’re going to be under tons of scrutiny by peers and there’s going to be little wiggle room for errors.

Who’s right for the job?

Ideally, you want a player who has a solid foundation of all the classes and what’s being brought to the table. When I asked @CrsWenzel, he added that a healing officer needs to understand the raiding meta game of World of Warcraft. They absolutely must have a top tier personality and should be willing to lead. They need to be approachable and likeable since it’s easier to raid and follow someone that you’d like. Pick the player who doesn’t give up. Pick the healer who can think quickly and react to mistakes. They’ll need to be active when devising raid strategies. The raid leader might say that tanks are getting hit extremely hard at certain phase or that the raid is about to take some colossal incoming damage. Be prepared to be a little creative when it comes to positioning and which healers should stand where.

The right tools

 Make sure they have the right addons for the job! There’s a number of helpful addons that’ll provide them with the ability to absorb or dole out information.
  • Blood Legion Cooldown: Shows all cooldowns available and can be configured to hide or show as needed. Also has the ability to report when a cooldown is used in chat.
  • Angry Assignments: Creates a portable text area on the screen. You can write instructions or notes and it will display to everyone who has it installed in raid. Useful for cooldown cycling over the course of a fight.
  • oRA3: In addition to other officer type functions, it was updated with a handy Battle Res timer so it shows you the number of resurrects you have available and how long before the next one comes off cooldown.

Be the buffer

One of the roles of the healing lead is to act as a shield between players and the healers. In many newer guilds, healers are often singled out and targeted for underperforming. Sometimes this is true, sometimes the circumstances are beyond the control. Whatever the truth may be, it’s ultimately up to the lead to get to the bottom of the problem and really determine if it is a healing problem or if it’s a general skills problem with the rest of the raid. The job is to help provide solutions and directions. Sometimes it’s as simple as a strategy or position adjustment. Other times it means the unfun job of benching a healer.
 We’ll certainly have more on this topic in the future but consider this a quick overview on some of the responsibilities of the healing officer.