How to monitor multiple auxiliary operations effectively
For those in auxiliary service leadership, one of the biggest challenges can be juggling the management of multiple auxiliary operations effectively.
Successfully doing this comes down to implementing best practices and key tools that help keep auxiliary services running smoothly.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the tools and processes that can be particularly useful in this effort whether you’re managing multiple dining facilities, campus kiosks, bookstores, or any other auxilary operation.
When managing auxiliary services, particularly those in multiple locations, staying on top of – or better yet, ahead of – problems is a key task. Central to this effort is establishing a problem reporting mechanism that allows for quickly and easily reporting issues when they arise and responding to them.
Don’t wait for problems to escalate into major issues that impact numerous people or the customer experience. Restroom facilities and other “self-service” locations are prime examples of the types of operations that can use a simple, yet effective, management solution to address issues as quickly as possible.
Touchwork’s FixIT Problem Reporting solution allows students and staff to quickly and easily report problems using a cell phone, via a text message or accessing a short web form. Once an issue is reported, designated staff members are immediately alerted by email and text message so that corrective action can be taken.
Another popular tool used for managing auxiliary services is the mystery shopping or ShopandTell process, through which shoppers visit an auxiliary service location and complete surveys about their experience.
This useful monitoring approach allows for tracking performance of operations, while also ensuring compliance with standards and procedures and measuring the customer experience.
Using this system, shoppers complete surveys on the spot and results are available instantly in a web portal. As a business location looking to effectively manage your operation, knowing what your customers think in real-time is a chief strategy to ensure a positive experience and a well-run location.
If you have several locations across campus, know if one of them isn’t delivering the same experience or is performing dramatically better than the rest. Either way, you can further evaluate what operational aspects need corrective action and others that should be more widely implemented across other locations.
Regular audits of auxiliary operations, which largely includes inspections, are another best practice for managing multiple operations effectively.
Auditing core areas such as health and safety, quality assurance, maintenance, finances, and other areas integral to your auxiliary service helps ensure operational efficiency. Information obtained through audits can be used to identify needed service, rank priority tasks, and monitor overall performance.
Even better, when you audit multiple operations across all your locations, you can clearly see which areas require immediate attention and you can allocate the appropriate resources accordingly. Conducting an internal analysis and benchmarking your operations against other successful operations, helps you to remain innovative and proactive with the evolving needs of your students.
Auxiliary Operations Management Best Practices
Operations management can be streamlined with the implementation of just some of these best practices.
At the end of the day, it is about keeping a close eye on how your operations are running, being able to quickly know and address any issues, maintaining a pulse on what your customers think, and effectively communicating with your staff so that your entire team can successfully execute their roles and meet the goals of your department.
And when you are able to scale operational effectiveness, you reduce costs, increase efficiencies and staff productivity, eliminate redundancies, and improve the quality of your service, as well as the customer experience overall.
The tools outlined above can go a long way toward streamlining the management of multiple auxiliary operations and preparing you for long-term success.