Operations Management:

Essential Ideas for Business Success...

Operations Management:

Essential Ideas for Business Success...

"The elevator to success is out of order. You'll have to use the stairs... one step at a time." ~ Joe Girard

We are highly profitable and enjoy a growing cash flow from operations because we are constantly INCREASING operational efficiency while REDUCING operational costs. THINK: Yes or No?

Related Ideas:

Customer Experience... Employee Safety... Facility/Equipment... Managing Expenses... Operation Processes... Shipping/Delivery... Work Flow/Design...

Executive Summary...

According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, Operations Management is the area of management concerned with overseeing, designing and redesigning business operations in the production of goods and/or services.

Operations management focuses on carefully managing the processes to produce and distribute products and services... ensuring that business operations are efficient in terms of using as little resources as needed and effective in terms of meeting customer requirements. People skills, creativity, rational analysis, and knowledge of technology are all required for success in this area of business management.

In a very real sense, Operations Management is directly responsible for the Profits or Losses within a company. At some point in the evolution of your business, you must address and master Operational Management if you want to turn your business into a true goldmine.

Primarily, this function is concerned with managing and directing the physical and/or technical aspects of a firm or organization — particularly those relating to manufacturing and production systems — plant management, equipment maintenance, production control, industrial labor relations, skilled trades supervision, strategic manufacturing policy, systems analysis, productivity analysis, cost control and materials planning.

Related activities include managing purchases, supply chain management, inventory control systems, quality control systems, storage, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), logistics, transportation management and evaluations of core business processes.

Click Here For Lots More On This Function...

A great deal of focus is on EFFICIENCY and EFFECTIVENESS of processes and facilities, such as buildings, computer systems, signage, lighting, etc. Therefore, operations management often includes substantial measurement and analysis of internal processes. Ultimately, the nature of how operations management is carried out in an organization depends very much on the nature of the products or services in the organization, for example, on retail, manufacturing or wholesale.

"The measure of success is not whether you have a tough problem to deal with, but whether it's the same problem you had last year." ~ John Foster Dulles

Effective operations management provides the potential to improve both efficiency and customer service simultaneously.

Ultimately, Operations Management is all about followthrough. It is about making sure that all your policies and procedures are being followed to the T. It is about management by walking around and seeing what is working and what is not working. From merchandising and plying your wares in the most favorable light possible, to making sure your people are all doing their jobs — WOWING customers with each interaction while staying within guidelines (hours, costs, etc.).

Once your business hits $1-2 million each year in sales you must recognize that future success is completely predicated on this critical area of business management.

Clearly, delivering WOW customer products and services — while minimizing COSTS and optimizing PROFITS — is what the Operation Management function is really about.

Excellence At This Function Means You Can Say...

  • My company is a lean, efficient, productive machine that provides WOW products and services through stringent cost controls, effective policies and procedures and well-trained employees who take pride in their work at every step of the way.
  • My company has one person or department whose responsibility is to coordinate and support all of the day-by-day operations, equipment and facilities required to successfully deliver a high quality, low cost product or service to our customers
  • My company's operations are designed to scale quickly as needed and are managed to respond quickly to both an increase or decrease in customer demands with no increase in cost of production or decrease in quality.
  • Each person in my company is fully aware of the part they play in our entire business operation and how it contributes to the success or failure of every other part.
  • Each person in our business is focused on both EFFICIENCY and highly EFFECTIVE business operations.

Improve This Function Now...

This Golden Function is composed of the following sub-functions and actions — things which must be done to guarantee your success.

See a weak spot or area of interest? Click on the action link to dive in and learn more. There's wealth of information behind each click!

Customer Experience

1.  OPRSAR  Establish internal account representatives who are assigned to customer accounts, tracking sales and customer service.
2.  OPRSCC  Review, improve and add customer communication before, during and after the sale adding value to the customer experience.
3.  OPRSCF  Analyze the sale process from order to delivery, improving customer satisfaction, increasing repeat sales and reducing costs.
4.  OPRSCR  Measure current/past customer retention and repeat business and implement programs(s) to increase referrals and repeat business.
5.  OPRSCS  Initiate a continuous customer feedback system to constantly monitor their experience with products and services.
6.  OPRSRP  Standardize return policies. Create a process to record/analyze all returns to discover how to reduce the costs.
7.  OPRSSV  Review and observe all business operations to achieve highest level of customer service and decrease customer problems and irritations.
8.  OPRSSY  Initiate the daily question employees can ask all customers to survey customer wants, needs and satisfaction. Record and analyze for improvement.

Employee Safety

1.  OPESAI  Standardize policy to report and respond to accidents/injuries to employees and customers to maximize medical attention and minimize risk.
2.  OPESCP  Seek expert help in regard to preventing crime against the company, or crimes committed within the company.
3.  OPESDP  Write manual to provide instructions on what to do in a natural disaster to protect customers, employees, data, equipment, inventory and facilities.
4.  OPESHS  Review all processes and procedures to prevent employee harm, illness or accidents while performing their company duties.
5.  OPESIS  Review all processes and procedures to prevent harm, illness or accidents from supplies, equipment and facilities.
6.  OPESRM  Employ an outside expert to review company processes, equipment and facilities to identify areas of potential risk and make plans to reduce them.


1.  OPFECM  Write a Crisis Management Manual to provide instruction for how to handle crises involving customers, employees, equipment or facilities.
2.  OPFEEM  Confirm that all facilities/equipment/processes meet federal, state and local regulations.
3.  OPFEEQ  Create equipment maintenance guidelines, manuals and time schedules for all major equipment.
4.  OPFELP  Perform a lease/purchase analysis of next major capital asset needed by our company.
5.  OPFETP  Create a policy to make each employee responsible for the care and maintenance of his/her work area/equipment/supplies.

Managing Expenses

1.  OPMECC  Complete a company-wide survey of how to reduce costs without sacrificing quality of product or services.
2.  OPMECE  Perform a cost effectiveness comparison between current and potential alternatives of company operations.
3.  OPMECM  Identify, collect, analyze data that reflects costs to provide and motivate management to have greater ability to make operational decisions.
4.  OPMELP  Implement program and policy to eliminate loss of inventory and assets for all reasons other than intentional theft.
5.  OPMETP  Implement program and policy to eliminate theft and loss of assets from customers and/or employees.

Operation Processes

1.  OPMPAU  Automate, standardize, systematize, and transform all company processes into established procedures that includes full computerized integrations of data.
2.  OPMPCS  Implement/monitor/improve inventory control systems within every company function.
3.  OPMPLM  Review all work-flow production of products/services and work-flow of data and paperwork to ensure highest level of productivity.
4.  OPMPMP  Review current handling of all materials for effectiveness and efficiency to reduce time and costs.
5.  OPMPOE  Hire coach, mentor, expert, consultant or company to help perform this function.
6.  OPMPSL  Perform detailed analysis of time scheduling of all labor to reduce costs/overheard and increase efficiency.
7.  OPMPSM  Apply most appropriate and valuable principles of supply chain management to improve flow of materials and information to produce company products.
8.  OPMPTI  Implement Just-in-time inventory management to reduce costs of holding inventory.
9.  OPMPTS  Implement a formal program to train employees in operational processes/procedures/equipment/software to increase efficiency and reduce mistakes.


1.  OPSDLG  Map a formula for improving the flow of deliveries and shipping to customers and vendors.
2.  OPSDRE  Review current procedures for personnels responsible for receiving and improve systems to increase efficiency and reduce mistakes.
3.  OPSDSH  Review current methods of shipping/delivery and perform cost effective comparison with all other possible alternatives.
4.  OPSDST  Inspect and examine material storage procedures and facilities to increase efficiency of handling materials and reduce costs.
5.  OPSDVM  Create vehicle maintenance guidelines, manuals and time schedules for all major maintenance requirements.

Work Flow/Design

1.  OPFDAM  Apply most appropriate and valuable principles of activity-based management to improve work design and work flow required in producing company products.
2.  OPFDCM  Apply most appropriate and valuable principles of constraint management to improve efficiency of existing processes or to plan for a new one.
3.  OPFDLD  Take fresh new look at facility layout and design to increase employee comfort and efficiency and/or customer experience.
4.  OPFDLO  Customize a work flow to improve managers processes to become more productive.
5.  OPFDMM  Develop and update Operations Management Manual for all Operations responsibilities, activities and processes.
6.  OPFDPE  Gain proficiency/ formally implement PERT and/or CPM and/or Gantt charts for improved management of current and projected projects.
7.  OPFDRM  Perform a thorough resource management review to improve the use and productivity of all resources and assets.
8.  OPFDSA  Gain proficiency/ formally implement a thorough system analysis of all processes to increase efficiency and reduce costs.