In today's highly competitive marketplace, where even a minor innovation can be the difference between obscurity and market dominance, businesses are in a relentless pursuit to outshine competitors.
Whether it's the spark of a fledgling startup or the robust machinery of established giants, every player is driven by one goal:
Crafting groundbreaking solutions that address customer needs and propel them into unparalleled growth.
Because isn't that the secret sauce for skyrocketing revenues and accomplishing those ambitious business milestones we all dream of?
The continuous search for innovation and improvement also has a positive effect on productivity, as it's allowed employees and teams to optimize workflows.
The question is, how can we continuously innovate our agencies? Can our current managers successfully implement innovative strategies? Or do we need someone specifically for the role?
A few major tech companies such as LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Yahoo, have already answered these questions. They've pioneered a critical function in their organizations, called BizOps or business operations
Business operation is a critical business function that uses business analytics to run and improve systems, processes, policies, procedures, and everyday operations. BizOps professionals work with each level of the company to efficiently and effectively improve these crucial functions.
Despite the tech industry's prolific implementation of BizOps, its principles and concepts are also applicable to other companies — such as digital marketing agencies.
However, many agency owners and managers are still unfamiliar with BizOps and tend to avoid its implementation.
So, we figured we can help in spreading awareness on the basics of business operations and its role to the agency.
Prepare for a deep dive into how BizOps use data and facts to connect business functions to ensure effective and efficient operations!
BizOps: Bridge Strategy & Execution for Peak Performance
Essentially, business operations is a new corporate development function that acts as a decision-support mechanism, connecting business functions for efficient business operations. It applies strategy and analytics to improve processes toward goals such as:
- Boosting revenue
- Increasing profitability
- Driving business growth
BizOps professionals and their teams harness data-driven strategies to prioritize projects and ideas that have the most significant impact, guiding the company towards success.
Additionally, BizOps is the main bridge between business strategy and operations. Its very nature requires the team to encourage cross-functional collaboration among all departments to ensure projects move forward free of obstacles.
People usually think that BizOps is focused on one facet of the business — operations.
But this really is not the case.
BizOps is a multi-faceted function in an agency, using data gathered across different departments to plan and identify any operational strategy gaps. The BizOps team ensures that C-suite managers such as the CEO and the CFO are aware of these gaps and presents them with opportunities to successfully overcome challenges and initiatives that can impact business growth.
What Are the Key Concepts and Principles in BizOps?
Implementing a BizOps approach requires us to be familiar with key concepts and principles of the business function. However, before we can identify these concepts and principles, we must identify which functional areas of our business it heavily affects:
- Service operations. This business function covers a wide range of daily operations including activities and tasks that create value for our customers.
- Sales operations. Sales operations cover all the necessary processes which sales reps undergo to achieve sales objectives — from data analysis, hiring, training, forecasting, and strategic implementation.
- Marketing operations. This function includes how we advertise our agency and increase our customer base.
- Procurement operations. Procurement operations involve our purchasing habits. To ensure the cost-effectiveness of our purchasing operations, we must ensure that we are getting value for our money for every purchase.
Now that we know which business functions BizOps impacts the most, we can now identify its key concepts and principles.
BizOps is data-driven
As we mentioned before, BizOps uses a data-driven approach to address business growth.
The BizOps team will use the data to conduct a quantitative and qualitative analysis. Then, they establish decision-support frameworks as the foundation for strategic plans that enhance daily operations. With data-driven analysis and analytical thinking, decisions are made beyond mere ego and intuition.
BizOps is agile
The Agile methodology is a key strategy that businesses adopt to enhance operations, allowing them to adapt and respond to change. Through Agile, we can navigate market uncertainties and turn them into opportunities for success.
BizOps professionals also use Agile to innovate and optimize our processes. When we use this methodology, we can quickly draw insights from data which allows us to quickly prioritize, develop, and deploy strategic initiatives to each business function.
BizOps promotes cross-collaboration among different teams
Collaboration plays a critical role in achieving business goals and objectives. After all, our agency is not just made up of one business function; rather, it is a combination of several functions working together to achieve goals.
BizOps promote collaboration among teams because it forces them to interact with and make recommendations to stakeholders across business levels. When we coordinate strategies and operations through BizOps, we allow teams to focus on execution and hitting targets.
Because of this concept, business operations managers should possess strong communication and influencing skills to help with tackling important strategic questions of cross-functional alignment. We can also influence collaboration through these skill sets.
Oftentimes, people mistake BizOps managers for a similar role — internal strategy consultants. But these roles are totally different.
BizOps focuses on the analysis and implementation of processes and operations for the efficient achievement of the agency's goals. Internal consultants focus on developing long-term vision and goals for the agency, including strategy development for efficient resource allocation, creating a competitive advantage, and placing the agency in the best position in the market.
The Rise of BizOps
BizOps emerged as an answer to the rising intricacies and interconnections within business operations. Initially, businesses adopted BizOps to tackle challenges presented by the global market, technological advancements, and evolving customer expectations, which conventional siloed methods couldn't address.
Over time, enterprises of all scales recognized the value of BizOps for making swifter and more informed choices. This approach optimized operational efficiency by harnessing the power of data and analytics.
With BizOps, businesses gained deeper insights into their operations, facilitating decisions that favorably impacted the bottom line. As analytics intertwined with operations, concealed operational patterns were revealed, enabling the pinpointing and rectification of bottlenecks.
This evolution paved the way for a more forward-thinking and strategic method in operations management, emphasizing ongoing enhancement and innovation.
The continuously changing market molded BizOps into its cross-functional approach. This, together with automation solutions, enhanced operational efficiencies, allowing resources to focus on more value-added tasks.
Additionally, BizOps also broke down silos and encouraged collaboration across different functions to leverage diverse perspectives and expertise to maximize efficiency. This allowed businesses to have a more holistic understanding of the business and paved the way for the implementation of effective strategies.
What Is the Role of BizOps?
Essentially, BizOps serves as a solution to align strategy and operations. Implementing the function requires the BizOps manager to be innovative and possess problem-solving skills to perform the job well.
BizOps teams intend to develop solutions to problems within the agency, including the following:
- New product launches
- Sales channel growth
- Collaboration with other teams to unlock financial limits
- Development of brand-building strategies.
The BizOps team consistently aims to optimize operations, regardless of the challenges they face. Their goal is to deliver impactful strategies that enable the business to excel in a competitive landscape. Achieving this often involves collaborating with various functions within the organization.
What Are the Benefits of BizOps?
BizOps isn't just another buzzword — it's a transformative force designed to amplify business operations and drive growth. Yet, despite its proven potential, many business leaders remain either skeptical or unaware of its powerful methodologies.
Embracing BizOps could be the game-changer they've been missing!
So what's the solution?
If you're still doubtful of how BizOps can 10X your agency growth, let's dispel those myths with a list of BizOps benefits:
- Ability to make more informed decisions
- Better support to execute innovative initiatives
- Develop a clear view of future priorities
- Promote continuous improvement that can drive growth, customer success, and increased profits
- Cultivate transparency among all business functions
- Support cross-team collaboration for efficient operations
- Deliver better results faster through aligning strategic goals to technology practices and investments
- Foster better relationships between the business and IT professionals and teams
Excited? Great. Let's dive into how you can get started implementing BizOps and start reaping those rewards.
Implementing BizOps in Your Agency
In this section, we've listed five easy steps to implement BizOps so that you can quickly take advantage of its benefits.
Assess current processes
To enhance our operations, it's essential to first pinpoint our existing challenges. By thoroughly evaluating our current processes, we can identify any inefficiencies or areas ripe for enhancement. This assessment not only highlights potential bottlenecks and barriers but also guides us in selecting the most effective strategies tailored to our needs.
Create a unified vision
BizOps strives to optimize processes to achieve business goals and objectives. So, determine your goals first and then work reverse engineer it.
Once you know your goals, you can use BizOps to analyze data to derive and generate strategies that will help you reach them.
Leverage technology and data
Data and technology stand are the lifeblood of BizOps. Their integration is essential for unlocking BizOps' full potential. By investing in these elements, we can harness the true power of BizOps: utilizing data to craft strategies that drive positive outcomes for the agency.
Advanced technology tools, including AI and machine learning, further enhance our ability to analyze this data and extract valuable insights.
Establish key performance indicators (KPIs)
Measuring success in implementing any type of process requires the use of metrics. This is the same for BizOps. Since we are geared towards growth, our metrics should also be focused on measuring growth factors.
Below are a few examples of KPIs used in BizOps.
- Return on investment (ROI)
- Gross margin
- Dollar revenue retention (DRR)
- Customer churn rate (CCR)
- Customer lifetime value (LTV)
- Customer satisfaction
- Operating margin
- Average handle time (AHT)
Emphasize continuous improvement
To ensure maximum optimization of processes, BizOps requires all levels in the organization to implement continuous improvement. After all, no business operation is perfect, and bottlenecks will happen sometimes.
To address this, we should utilize the KPIs and metrics we have determined in the second step. We should also continuously assess our processes to determine whether any new obstacle has popped up.
These steps promote continuous improvement in operations and cultivate an educative work environment as employees discover ways to enhance their productivity and efficiency.
Real-World Examples of BizOps Implementation
Marcus by Goldman Sachs
BizOps helped this fintech industry leader by optimizing its customer contact teams. The function unearthed significant opportunities to drive real business results through the improvement of their customer support operations.
BizOps initiated the use of technology-driven improvements to business operations thereby streamlining it. Another BizOps-spearheaded initiative in fintech is making AI chatbots available to clients. These chatbots assisted clients with their initial queries, reducing the need for human intervention.
Brian Sze revolutionized BizOps in the online payments startup Stripe in 2013. He implemented strategies across multiple functions in the business, from sales to account management. This helped the startup grow from 40 people to multiple teams, with each employee branching into specialties both in terms of function and verticals.
Stripe used BizOps to take projects from design to execution and beyond. Multiple teams worked alongside one another to develop new products, comply with any relative and applicable regulations, find potential customers, manage product launches, and even think of ways to innovate current products and services.
LinkedIn used BizOps to support monetizing its business units. The tech company added analytics, corporate strategy, and support for almost every level of the company to optimize its processes.
Despite having a centralized BizOps team, LinkedIn could fully maximize its operations by assigning members to work with specific groups, making them the objective voice looking out for the best interests of the company. Its BizOps team also helped ensure that the strategies of each individual unit aligned with that of the overall company.
What Are the Challenges and Pitfalls of BizOps Implementation?
As impactful as it may be to the business, BizOps still has some challenges and pitfalls which we need to address.
Two of the significant hurdles of implementing BizOps in a business are overcoming traditional silos and resistance to change. After all, introducing a fairly new type of business function can scare upper management, particularly for established companies.
Many members of upper management think if traditional methods worked for thousands of businesses, why can't they work for ours as well?
Also, it's human nature to be afraid of change. We find comfort in routines, believing that if they're currently working, they'll keep working. However, given the competitive nature of the market, we must remember that our routines may not work well five or ten years from now.
Overcoming this hurdle requires cultural transformation and strong leadership support. We need to be able to influence and convince employees and upper management that we can only optimize our processes and get rid of our bottlenecks through BizOps.
We can start by demonstrating how collaboration among functions and departments can help solve our problems faster and more efficiently. Through this, we can break down silos which will pave the way for BizOps implementation.
The Future of BizOps
With current technological advancements, BizOps has shifted to a more technology-aided approach to optimizing operations. Agencies implementing BizOps can use AI and machine learning for the following:
- Automate repetitive tasks
- Improve data analysis capabilities
- Enable predictive insights
These advantages can help BizOps teams easily enhance their operational efficiency and make more informed decisions.
The constantly-changing environment also requires BizOps managers and teams to learn and upskill. By acquiring new skills and being in the loop for emerging trends and technologies, the BizOps team can drive innovation, enabling them to contribute to the success of the organization.
In short, the future of BizOps is promising as more businesses become data-driven rather than relying on their intuition or egos. We can also expect that with the help of integrating technology, analytics, and cross-team collaboration, we can stay competitive in the market and adapt to the changes it brings.
Implement BizOps to Your Agency Today
Many agencies strive to optimize their operations to keep up with the fast-paced market. Along with the demand for innovation, agencies have implemented and introduced strategies that can help them gain a competitive advantage in the market.
And BizOps implementation is one of those leading strategies.
To sum up, here's what you need to know about BizOps and how to start implementing it into your business:
- Also known as business operations, BizOps is a decision-support mechanism that connects business functions together for efficient business operations. It acts as a way for businesses to boost revenue and drive growth.
- BizOps uses a data-driven approach through analytics and cross-functional collaboration to identify and eliminate process bottlenecks. With these approaches, BizOps can present opportunities for innovation and growth and take on new challenges that can positively impact the business.
- BizOps runs on data analytics and cross-team collaboration. Analytics enables teams and management to make informed decisions, and not rely on purely intuition or ego. On the other hand, cross-team collaboration allows business units to function together, rather than on their own, which promotes cultural transformation within the organization.
- In essence, BizOps bridges the gap between strategy and operations. It allows strategies to be fully realized so that resources and operations can be utilized efficiently.
- There are certain steps to take when implementing BizOps in your business, starting with the assessment of your current processes to identify how they are currently working and whether there is room for improvement. We can develop a unified vision to determine what we want our process to look like after the BizOps implementation. This can also determine the metrics we would need to use to measure performance. Lastly, we must continuously improve our processes through repeated assessment and performance measurement to ensure we maximize resources and operations.
- There are advantages and challenges that BizOps faces. Through BizOps, we can experience a boost in our revenues and profitability as well as grow our agency. Clients can also experience increased satisfaction with the optimized process. However, challenges to BizOps lie in the implementation of the function, as many businesses are still tied to traditional silos and are afraid of change. Overcoming these obstacles would require our BizOps team to break down the barrier that blocks us from implementing BizOps.
- BizOps, as it is connected to data, can adapt to advances in technology. We can use automation tools to perform repetitive tasks and even improve data analysis. This will allow us to gain more actionable and innovative insight which can have a profoundly positive impact on the business.
Ready to harness the power of BizOps and elevate your business processes? Don't just adapt — lead the charge.