No matter how big or small your company is, growing your client and partner bases will come with challenges. One of these will likely be juggling the operation of in-house team processes while keeping customers happy.
This can actually be harder with online businesses, where customer queries and qualms can roll in at a greater speed than you can handle.
An excellent way to deal with issues such as these is to have an operations team.
What is an operations team?
Operations teams focus on the overall operations of a specific area of business. Examples include supervising and organizing production, planning, manufacturing, or even provision.
They measure, evaluate, manufacture, and provide services to ensure that area of business runs as smoothly and effectively as possible.
The key function of an operations team is to allow those at the top of a company to focus on tasks that only they can do, such as decision-making, communicating with stakeholders and investors, and creating long-term goals and plans.
Operations teams have three main goals:
- Coordinating and taking care of the details of operations
- Evaluating the big picture of operations
- Looking ahead to help achieve goals
In more specific terms, operations might:
- Define who is responsible for which tasks
- Ensure there is no duplication of or unnecessary effort
- Leverage staff’s skills at the right time
- Ensure that senior-level involvement is kept to a minimum
- Bring together relevant departments to connect expertise
- Ensure alignment of effort to reach overarching goals
- Ensure clarity of expectations
- Train and guide employees toward success
- And so much more.
The benefits of having an operations team
There are many benefits that come with having an operations team for companies of all sizes. It’s crucial to understand what they are so you can make an informed decision on whether to have one or not.
1. Waste reduction
Companies can deal with a lot of waste, whether physical or metaphysical. When a company’s employees are running around trying to accomplish a billion different things, they’re unable to focus on what they’re actually good or specialized at. This can create systems and processes that are wasteful of resources, time, and money.
An operations team focuses on making processes as streamlined as possible. They allow staff to focus on tasks they’re good at by taking charge of what could have been previously distracting. As such, companies cut down on a lot of waste.
2. Product quality assurance
Cutting down on waste and increasing efficacy and efficiency means that companies end up with a higher quality of product. Operations teams put in quality assurance processes that are highly effective, ensuring that specifications, feedback, and standards are all used to keep products and services as high-quality as possible.
They may invest in new equipment, update processes, and even expand production teams based on what they think is necessary.
3. Increase in customer satisfaction
The improvements that an operations team brings to a company means that there is a knock-on effect that customers feel as well.
As the operations team ensures quality in a company’s processes and resulting products and services, they also earn customers’ respect and trust. Organizations that emphasize quality and care in what they offer their customers will retain their existing customer base while also growing it.
4. Increase in employee productivity
Not only does an operations team allow staff to focus on their job scope, but their improvement of processes means that employees can work more efficiently.
Operations teams identify what’s not working and resolve productivity issues. This allows employees to work more efficiently and increase productivity, which can in turn increase employee drive and job satisfaction, reducing turnover rates.
5. Increase in ease of achievement of company objectives
Companies have long and short-term goals, and operations teams actually help to achieve both. By encouraging productivity, employee retention, efficacy, efficiency, and customer satisfaction, operations teams help on all fronts to reach goals.
6. Increase in revenue
It goes without saying that because of all the aforementioned benefits, companies with operational teams enjoy increases in revenue. The improvements that an operational team brings to a company helps it to do more with the resources that are available.
Are operations teams only for medium and large businesses?
You might think that operations teams sound like a great idea, but that they really only start to become necessary when a business is medium or large.
The truth is that while operations teams are crucial for medium and large businesses, they are just as impactful in smaller businesses too.
Small businesses tend to have a set of challenges that are unique from those that larger businesses have. They have to meet their goals with fewer resources and have a greater emphasis on efficiency, while planning for growth and evolution despite a heavy fiscal responsibility.
It takes a lot of time, effort, and skill to successfully coordinate an approach that takes into account all of these various factors.
The details that go into running a business matter more in an SME because there’s the pressure to do more with less; operations teams allow SMEs to do just that.
It isn’t imperative that small businesses have a massive operations team – that’s neither necessary nor feasible, but a small team of even one-to-three people can revolutionize the way that the business runs and how successful it is.
Across businesses of all sizes, change is constant. Businesses need to continuously grow and adapt to stay relevant, high-quality, and profitable. Operations teams allow businesses to accomplish their ever-changing goals and do so in the most efficient way possible.