Active Operations Management
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124 pages

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This is a practical guide for managers in Service Operations to help them to improve the performance of their operation by using the Active Operations Management (AOM) method, developed by the authors.

AOM is a unique blend of the human and technical sides of performance improvement. On the one hand it offers a practical guide to planning and managing workers time in order to optimize the delivery of targets for cost, quality and service. On the other hand it provides insight into human motivation and behaviour that are critical to delivering performance improvement changes that will last.

This is a practical ‘how to’ book rather than a theoretical tome, aimed at demystifying management theory, debunking unhelpful jargon and helping managers apply techniques directly to their own working environment.

In a complex and rapidly changing world, the last thing managers need is internal complexity in the way they manage the delivery of service to customers. Simplifying the management of operations is essential if organizations are to be agile enough to adapt, survive and thrive in the modern economy.

Table of Contents

Introduction  6

Section 1: The importance of having a method      6

Chapter One: Why this and why now?        6

Chapter 2: The Nuts and Bolts of Service Operations        10

Chapter 3: How AOM Helps to Achieve Balance    16

Chapter 4: Why Bother?      25

Section 2: What is AOM and how does it work?    32

Chapter 5: We are all out of Magic Bullets  32

Chapter 6: The Four Perspectives  37

Chapter 7: Behaviours and Skills    41

Chapter 8: The AOM Method and Tools      49

Chapter 9: So how do you rate yourself?    56

Chapter 10: Overview of the AOM Method 60

Chapter 11: Back to Basics  67

Chapter 12: Your first plan  72

Chapter 13: Planning Work  79

Chapter 14: Balancing a Plan          87

Chapter 15: Controlling to Plan      94

Chapter 16: Reviewing and Learning          99

Section 4: AOM and The Bigger Picture      109

Chapter 17: Where next?      109

Chapter 18: AOM in a world of change      112

Chapter 19: AOM and the future of operations      119

Chapter 20: Goodbye and Goodluck            126




Publié par
Date de parution 18 janvier 2021
Nombre de lectures 1
EAN13 9781788602303
Langue English
Poids de l'ouvrage 3 Mo

Informations légales : prix de location à la page 0,0500€. Cette information est donnée uniquement à titre indicatif conformément à la législation en vigueur.


First published in Great Britain by Practical Inspiration Publishing, 2021
Neil Bentley and Richard Jeffery, 2021
The moral rights of the authors have been asserted
ISBN 978-1-78860-231-0 (print)
978-1-78860-230-3 (epub)
978-1-78860-229-7 (mobi)
All rights reserved. This book, or any portion thereof, may not be reproduced without the express written permission of the authors.
Every effort has been made to trace copyright holders and to obtain their permission for the use of copyright material. The publisher apologizes for any errors or omissions and would be grateful if notified of any corrections that should be incorporated in future reprints or editions of this book.
How to use this book
Part 1: The importance of having a method
Chapter 1: Why this and why now?
Chapter 2: The nuts and bolts of service operations
Chapter 3: How AOM helps to achieve balance
Chapter 4: Why bother?
Part 2: What is AOM and how does it work?
Chapter 5: We are all out of magic bullets
Chapter 6: The four perspectives
Chapter 7: Behaviours and skills
Chapter 8: The AOM method and tools
Chapter 9: So how do you rate yourself?
Part 3: The AOM method in action
Chapter 10: Overview of the AOM method
Chapter 11: Back to basics
Chapter 12: Your first plan
Chapter 13: Planning work
Chapter 14: Balancing a plan
Chapter 15: Controlling to plan
Chapter 16: Reviewing and learning
Part 4: AOM and the bigger picture
Chapter 17: Where next?
Chapter 18: AOM in a world of change
Chapter 19: AOM and the future of operations
Chapter 20: Goodbye and good luck
About the author
About ActiveOps
I ntroduction
I t can be tough being a manager in service operations right now. If you are working as a manager at a bank, insurance company, or any other service where you have a number of teams working for you, you might feel beset on all sides.
On the one hand: keep all the lights on the dashboard green - respond to 90% of requests within 24 hours, achieve 100% compliance, improve your Net Promoter Score. You live with centrally established staffing levels while being asked to loan staff to the latest change programme. You have to improve quality, reduce costs, manage risk and compliance, and take on additional work.
On the other hand: improve your Great Place to Work score, explain to a worried workforce how great it is going to be introducing 50 robots or offshoring half the work. You have to cope with more or less work arriving than was forecast, keeping people busy but not overloaded. You have to cope with technology problems (without making excuses) and deal with the consequences of people going sick or leaving to work elsewhere.
And if there were another other hand, you are probably also dealing with a greater-then-ever pace of change: implementing new services, using new technologies, maybe employing some robots , and maybe even fundamentally changing ways of doing business.
If this sounds familiar to you, if you sometimes feel that running the operation really ought to be easier, then you are not alone. We have met and worked with thousands of people like you and we are here to tell you that there is a better, easier, way. There is a way of feeling more in control, being able to quantify and manage that endless sense of business , and a way to release the full potential of everyone who works for you.
We have been researching, implementing and improving our approach to running operations for nearly 20 years now. The method we have developed, and will introduce to you, is called Active Operations Management (or just AOM). If you adopt this method, you will be in good company. The idea of AOM, as a method for running back-office operations, has grown in influence over that time. What started with a few early adopters in the UK has now spread to be a global practice. You will find AOM being practised in more than 30 countries. It may already be in use in parts of your own company, somewhere in the world.
In this book we will share our experiences and show how you, too, can simplify the task of running your operation. We will cover:
Why it has never been more important to pay attention to the way you balance work and capacity and how much better things can be if you do.
What to pay attention to in order to make changes work and last.
How to plan and manage your resources in a radically simple and engaging way.
And, in the post Covid-19 era, with digitization and automation at the heart of delivery strategies, what the future holds for operations.
Operations tend to be led by pragmatists rather than theorists so this is a book about a practical method that has been demonstrated to work many times over. It is designed to help you make a difference on the ground. We have tried to keep it lighthearted and easy reading while introducing you to some of the background thinking behind why it works. We will share worked examples, case studies and stories from our many years of working with some fantastic clients.
As well as being action oriented, we take a very people-based perspective to improving the management of operations. Many technologies help with the planning and scheduling of resources in operations environments (you are almost certainly using one or more of these already) but most of these come at the problem from a purely technical, even mathematical, perspective. The people who work for you are treated as part of the problem: a cost to be monitored, optimized or automated away.
We start with the people. Customers are people who need a service, the people who work for you deliver that service and they, in turn, are managed by people. And all these different people have their own strengths and weaknesses, hopes and fears. Even with the increasing digitization of work in service operations, running an operation is still a people-based challenge. We have put people - the customer, you and the people who work for you - at the heart of our method.
Will it work for you?
The approach has been successful across thousands of diverse operations and processes, independent of geography and cultural context, in the public or private sector, with 20 years of use cases, refinements and developments.
You almost certainly already have many of the features and elements for success in your operation today, as have so many of our clients over the years. What is universally true is the power of coherence and consistency in operations management. Our method has provided the guiding structure for many organizations to truly embed a culture of excellence in professional operations management, rapidly and sustainably.
If you are tired of fighting fires or managing from one crisis to the next; if you want to feel in control of events rather than at the mercy of them; if you want to lead a happier and more engaged bunch of people, then pick a starting point, dive in and read on.
How to use this book
Not everyone reads a book the same way or wants to get the same things out of reading it. We have tried to reflect this in how we have structured this playbook. The four parts of the book cover the following questions: Why? What? How? What next? Although there is a logical sequence and you can easily read the book from cover to cover, you could also dive straight in to the practical how to stuff in Part 3 and maybe come back to the why and what questions later. Here is a very brief guide to the different parts of the book to help you decide where you want to go first.
Part 1 talks about why it is important to have a method for operations management. The pace of change is greater than ever and a sound way of managing takes away a whole lot of unnecessary variety. It also creates a solid platform from which it is much easier to manage change.
Part 2 explains what we mean by AOM and sets out the ideas and principles behind the practicalities of the method. If you are the kind of person who wants to know why something works, rather than just trust that it does, you may want to read this before Part 3 .
Part 3 will be the likely starting point for any arch pragmatists who just want to get on with things. This is the how to do it part with flow charts, case examples and suggested methods. This is the heart of the playbook.
Part 4 looks up and out and offers you a chance to reflect on where improving operations management fits into the other changes that will be going on around you. It also discusses the likely implications of some current industry trends. If you are grappling with robots or getting used to a more home-based workforce, you will find some useful ideas in this part.
However you choose to read this book, we hope you find it thought-provoking and helpful.
We have also placed a number of resources online for you to access. You can find this toolkit at . Feel free to dip into these if you want further practical guidance on making AOM work for you.
Part 1
The importance of having a method

T his first part deals with the question of why : why you need to read this book and why having a method for simplifying the running of your operation will benefit you, the people who work for you and the organization that you work for.
In Chapter 1 we show why we think your role, and that of people like you, is so important. We talk about the scale of service operations and the pace of change that is likely to be going on around you. We suggest that it is more critical than ever to have a simple and effective method for staying on top of the day-to-day cha

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