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5 Key Features to Redefine your OpEx Strategy

Contributor: Jason McGee-Abe
Posted: 07/22/2015
Jason McGee-Abe
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The key to successfully implementing operational excellence within your organization centres on mindset, not purely methodology. Executives tend to think of operational excellence (OpEx) as just a lean process using six sigma practices to cut out inefficiencies and standardize the way they operate. However, it encompasses a more common-sense approach and a new strategic approach to implement operational excellence successfully.

Here, we highlight five components OpEx strategies should exhibit:

#1 Innovation

In order for an organization to grow, it needs to innovate and not rest on its laurels whilst the market around it changes and evolves. An organization must first define what innovation means to them. Is it an internal innovation to streamline processes and operations through big data and analytics, for example, or is it an externally focused type of innovation such as a new product on the market. An organization must understand what impacts innovation will have on the business and measure what matters.

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#2 People Power

People are the backbone of your organization and it’s critical to get the right people in the right positions. It’s also important to get them in the right roles within your operational excellence program. Sourcing the right people for these roles often comes from the hiring process, but identifying existing internal members that can be repositioned can help to maximize results as they are already aware of your company’s processes. However, this does come with challenges as it’s in our human nature not to like change; we familiarize ourselves with a way of working that when new metrics are put in place we think it’s alien. But by giving power back to the front-line employees to make their own actionable decisions in the best interest of the customer, they can embrace the company’s redirection.

#3 Collaboration

By engaging and collaborating with your peers and fellow departments, you can help to boost results further. Creating a collaborative culture in the organization will not only ensure that the OpEx program is transparent but in most instances, more ideas will come to the table from different perspectives, making it easier to come up with a more comprehensive and holistic strategy.

#4 Clear Vision and Communication

Operational excellence can reach all areas of your organization and this can only be accomplished by creating a transparent and clear vision of what you are trying to accomplish as an organization.

All those concerned or involved need to know what your strategy is and the tactics you need to employ to achieve that strategy. Many people use a process model to accomplish this. Front-line employees need to see themselves in the strategy and understand what their individual role with the program is assisting the organization to progress towards the end-goal.
Align your strategy and tactics. Having a clear strategy, communicating it effectively, and having everyone in the organization know their role in helping to achieve your strategy helps to create an OpEx mindset in the workplace.

#5 Continuous Improvement

Develop a culture of continuous improvement. New technologies and processes will mean that more improvements can always be made so from the start of the journey you need ensure that everyone knows it is one that will never end, but that it will always be fun on the way.

For those organizations that are seeking to hit new higher levels of operational excellence, organizations have to focus on concepts like innovation and customization, and to deploy this approach, executives must make the tough decision to make a true impact. These are just five of a number of components to operational excellence, but our key to get instilled from the start.

Thank you, for your interest in 5 Key Features to Redefine your OpEx Strategy.
Jason McGee-Abe
Contributor: Jason McGee-Abe