The F&B, retail, and many other multi-unit companies are now experiencing a significant shift in market dynamics. Starting with the emergence of many new technologies, customers' preferences and ways of shopping are now changing.
There are so many external factors beyond the company's control that affect the company's customer approach strategy. However, there is still one internal factor that the company can control to stay ahead of the competition: operational management.
In order to remain competitive in the market, companies need to achieve 'operational excellence.' This operational excellence can be achieved if the company maintains the quality of the performance of each outlet and team in the field, and the company must ensure that customers can obtain this quality in any branch and whenever they make transactions.
However, there are several challenges that operational managers in their journey often face to achieve operational excellence. What are these challenges?
The breadth of the scope of responsibility
Generally, the Operations Manager is responsible for overseeing all departments in the company, from Finance, HR, Marketing, Logistics, even to IT. Therefore, if any department is having difficulties, especially project management, the Operations Manager will be the first to be contacted.
The sheer number of departments to handle makes the Operations Manager's responsibilities excessive and overwhelms the Operations Manager. Especially if there is a conflict of interest between departments, this can impact the efficiency and productivity of the company.
To answer this challenge, the Operations Manager must have extensive knowledge and insight into what is happening in the field. So, when an employee from any department comes with a complaint, the Operations Manager can provide the correct answer and solution.
Must improve the quality of operational processes
When you have to handle dozens, hundreds, even thousands of locations simultaneously, it can be difficult or even impossible to know what is going on in each store, unit, or location whether the brand is appropriately presented, following proper safety and hygiene protocols, or resolving pressing issues. In any company, human error is bound to happen. This will undoubtedly harm the company, whether on a small or large scale.
One way to overcome the challenges of the Operations Manager is to use technology. Technology allows employees to improve the quality of operational processes through a coherent and neat system and enable you to gain visibility over every operation and issue in each branch of the company.
Moreover, currently, there is software technology such as Nimbly, which can transform manual operation processes into real-time information that is easy to apply (actionable). For example, each checklist that you enter will be processed into digital data. You can use this data as a reference for making accurate and appropriate business decisions.
Too many reports to do
One of the main tasks and challenges for the Operations Manager is to compile many company reports, from performance data reports to financial data compilations.
Usually, challenges will arise if the company does not keep up-to-date data. As a result, the Operations Manager must cross-check and confirm with many parties to ensure that the data to be used is indeed accurate and following conditions in the field.
Imagine if many reports require the Operations Manager to do this; of course, this is quite a hassle. But, moreover, you and other teams also need these reports as insights for the company.
As a way of dealing with this challenge, from the outset, the management or directors should require each department to develop key performance indicators that include the provision of up-to-date data and reports.
Difficulty finding the right talents
The Operations Manager certainly does not work alone. You need a qualified team member who can help you face every challenge in the company. The problem is, finding team members who perform well is not easy.
Not only a matter of skill but also personal compatibility. In addition, the minimum wage and turnover rate in the industry is increasing. This put pressure on the company's margins and forced the Operations Department to rely on inexperienced staff.
To overcome this, Operations Managers need technology to train and check the implementation of SOPs, safety and hygiene protocols and other operational procedures.
The fact is, improving the company's operational execution depends on the performance of your field employees and the performance of your business unit. To that end, Ops leaders must find solutions that automate specific tasks and allocate time to analyze data obtained from the field. That way, the Operations Manager can have broad insight into what is happening in the field and make the right decisions to improve the quality of the company's operations.
Consult the operational management of your business for free with the Nimbly team.