Article Side

Online Article Directory!

Hello Guest! Login or Register to submit articles!

Back Office Operations Success: 10 Steps You Have to Take As a Customer!

By Vantage Agora Subscribe to RSS | June 6th 2012 | Views:
loading
 
  



I have been a part of service teams or have managed service teams both as a supplier and as a customer since 1996. After all these years, in over 100+ engagements (Having partners ranging from fortune 50 companies to one person startups), I have come to the conclusion that as a “Customer” we hold more keys to making any service project successful than the service providers themselves! Most customer companies work really hard on the contract, beat up the supplier J, and once the contract is signed, just let the supplier and their internal teams ‘WING IT’, while just checking in on the project once in a way in hallway conversations. This is a sure recipe for disaster. Instead follow the 10 commandments listed below and we guarantee that you are going to get your partner to help bring value to you and organization by having them execute your strategies to success.

Customer 10 commandments for managing service

1. One point contact: Make sure that you assign one person whose success at work (Key Result Area or KRA) depends on the success of the service provided by the supplier. You need to have one person that is interested in your team to make the partner successful. If the partner is important enough to be your supplier, you have to make this commitment.

2. Training and Ramp up: Most operations and support projects require extensive and ongoing training. This is one of the main benefits of having a strategic operations partners. While the partners are required to re-train on a continual basis, it is critical that you have your team provide them initial training. This is a must!

3. Knowledgebase: If you have an internal knowledgebase, share it with the partner. This will help them ramp up and better structure their organization to service your needs. It is critical that you have your partner update the knowledgebase once every quarter. It is critical for you to review the knowledgebase if you want to ensure quality of work and improvements the performance of your partner and your project over time.

4. Backup: No, we are not talking about system back up. Make sure that you request your partner to have backup team members on the project. Make sure that you have additional access to systems. These backup team members are needed not just for vacation/attrition, they are needed to handle your demand spikes as well.

5. Any Surprise is Bad! Standard Operating Procedure (SOP): Have an established operating procedure. Have it all in black and white. Meaning, have it documented. This is a big change for companies that have an informal work culture. You as a customer has to make this adjustment. The supplier will not be able maintain an informal relationship with your team even if they want to.

6. Timely feedback and QA: We have seen companies have a tendency of cutting out all staff when they get a partner to help them with operations. This is a bad idea. Have people move into other customer facing roles, but spare at least 20% of their bandwidth to have them check the quality of the work done by your partner. Additionally provide your feedback within a week of completion of the work. This is good both for your operations and for the partnership.

7. Facing Challenges: Like any relationship, there will be times when you will be frustrated with your partner and your partner will be of you. The critical thing when things go wrong is to maintain your calm. Have the team get into a habit of doing a ‘Root Cause Analysis (RCA)’ on every error. You can come out ahead every time if you ensure that you never make these mistakes again.

8. Structured Communication: People say over communication is good. But unstructured communication is bad and has been the cause of most project failures. Make sure that you have weekly calls with your partner team. Have people in-house at least once a month. Don’t wait for a crisis to talk to your partner. Have a monthly relationship call with your partner. Remember if this was an internal project you would have met this team at least 5 times more than your partner. The importance of the work does not reduce just because it is now done by a partner.

9. Access and IT support: Have additional access provided to your partners. This will help them train new people, buffer staff, catch up on work when required. You should even push them to have all their internal training happen on your systems. Think about it, it is the best way to make sure that your project is the one that they are most familiar with J! Provide access to your partner so they are able to access your support staff and log in tickets to your IT support teams to take care of their problems in an efficient manner. This will help meet their goals.

10. Service Level Agreements (SLA): Setup the same standards that you have established internally with your partners. Most customers try to set up higher standards with their suppliers than what they had internally. This is a BIG mistake. In the first six months after cut over from your internal operations to partner you should willing to have a slight dip in both quality and timeliness. But after that keep encouraging your partner to improve the standards by 5% every year. You might ask, how do you measure this. Well, that is simple too. Just have a dashboard that is customized to your KRA and measure it every meeting and every interaction.

If have questions about managing any of your partners or your operations please feel free to contact anyone of us at Vantage Agora.

Vantage Agora - About Author:
Harsha Chaturvedi (COO and Founder, Vantage Agora)

As a founder of Vantage Agora, Harsha has been instrumental in the growth of the company since its inception.Harsha has over 20+ years of experience in consulting, running and helping companies and their supply chains worldwide. His work with many companies, has made him a "turnaround expert". Harsha has four worldwide patents in the area of supply chain management.

He holds an MBA from Southern Methodist University (SMD), Dallas, a masters in Computer Science from Louisiana State University (LSU) Baton Rogue, and a bachelors in Engineering from Bangalore University.
http://www.vantageagora.com/contactus

Share on Facebook Tweet It Stumbleupon this post This post is delicious !

Article Source:
http://www.articleside.com/business-articles/back-office-operations-success-10-steps-you-have-to-take-as-a-customer.htm

Related Business Articles Subscribe to RSS

How to select office desk for home
Published by Ramawood on January 10th 2012 | Business
Ramawood crafts is a manufacturing and exporting wooden products, wooden furniture, wooden interiors...
 
Three types of office spaces available
Published by Glyn Jones on June 19th 2012 | Business
When in need of an office space in London, there are largely three main ways that you are able to fi...
 
London Fit out is the foremost name in office fit out services
Published by on June 16th 2012 | Business
London Fit Out is committed to providing all the solutions that you need for the commercial refurbis...
 
Quotes about smiling: Brings your smile back
Published by Simsleyye on February 17th 2012 | Business
So our mission is to make you smile and happy offering moving forward quotes to facilitate you to mo...
 
Modern office furniture and its impact on modern offices
Published by Ramawood on July 14th 2012 | Business
Modern offices are considered as smart offices which mainly use items that are designed to make the ...
 
How to find the perfect London office space
Published by Ashish Pandey on January 25th 2012 | Business
Searching for the most idealistic London office space can be daunting task, but if you consider cert...
 
Beneficial Ways to Stop Smoking and Get back your Life
Published by Edwin Johnson on April 3rd 2012 | Business
Quitting smoking could be one of the toughest choices to create and also the hardest thing you'll ev...
 
Planning your office fit out
Published by Glyn Jones on December 22nd 2011 | Business
Office fit outs, of course, begin with planning. Carefully measuring the room and making charts of a...
 
Most important of all office tools: folders
Published by John Davis on December 30th 2011 | Business
Nowadays companies pressure upon “quality” in everything. Be it office building, production task...
 
Lemon Law Attorney helps to get back your Car in a Perfect Condition
Published by Safinajones on January 6th 2012 | Business
The above article is based on the problem faced by the consumers, who have purchased a fake quality ...
 
Essential office items: Clipboards
Published by on June 16th 2012 | Business
Clipboards may not be the most glamorous of items but are nonetheless very useful additions to offic...
 
Storage boxes for office and residential relocation
Published by Selfstoragesydney on December 19th 2011 | Business
At times, moving is quite a troublesome experience and shifting of base from one place to another, w...
 
Give a professional touch to your office with serviced office space
Published by Glyn Jones on December 9th 2011 | Business
Virtual offices are the best suited for the people who want to start their business with less expend...
 
Coming back to cosmetic surgery
Published by Faceliftnaples on December 28th 2011 | Business
Surgery is common nowadays and people were afraid to have one or other kind of surgery during the ea...
 
The many medical device distribution programming back European union
Published by Caedmon Scott on May 25th 2012 | Business
Absolutely new Euro directives is discussed completely for any selling and additionally passing them...
 
Why File Cabinets are a Necessary for every office
Published by Joyce Smith on August 20th 2012 | Business
No matter what kind of a business you may have, it becomes necessary to buy and use certain accessor...
 
The virtues of office partitions
Published by Julia Roger on December 21st 2011 | Business
Office partitions are perhaps not the most glamorous of purchases that you will ever have to make bu...
 
Invest in proper office furniture Brisbane or office furniture Gold Coast and impress people
Published by Julia Bennet on February 16th 2012 | Business
Proper office furniture is the need of any business or a variety of reasons. When you are looking fo...
 
Why File Cabinets are a Necessary for every office
Published by Joyce Smith on August 20th 2012 | Business
No matter what kind of a business you may have, it becomes necessary to buy and use certain accessor...
 
Printer cartridge recycling (office needs) ….
Published by Jullia on November 30th 2011 | Business
Our customers are better informed and comparing information about the various issues related to prod...