Key Metrics

  • Net monthly client savings: $9,000
  • Monthly Time Savings for District Managers: 400 hr/month
  • Set-up time: 1-month initial setup, 2 weeks controlled trial period

TLDR; MYOBZ is a company with 130 convenience stores across the West Coast. With 13 District Managers (DMs) that cover 130 stores, spread out across several states, time is limited. The DMs did not have enough time to maintain their day-to-day responsibilities, show a floor presence at each site, and take creative initiatives to drive up revenue. Something needed to change.

In order to reduce the workload of the DMs, MYOBZ brought us on to review the day-to-day and see what could be redesigned and delegated to a team overseas. Working with the client, we isolated the District Managers were spending 20% of their week on inventory management. This was a repetitive, critical, but non-technical task. A perfect candidate for outsourcing.

In one month, OpsTales built a new process, hired and trained a team, and launched. Immediate results showed a monthly net savings of $9k and weekly workload reduction of 20% for the DMs.

This case study will walk through the process we took with MYOBZ to give you an idea of how we work.

Thanks to OpsTales, we’re not only saving money, we’re also able to unlock greater potential from our team. With more time available, our DMs are already operating more effectively.

Howard, CEO of MYOBZ

Phase 1: Getting to know the client

Our process started with talking to the MYOBZ CEO, Howard. During the consultation, we reviewed the business needs and high-level goals of the company. The District Managers (DMs) were a big topic: How could their time spent on back-office tasks be reduced so that they can show more presence on the floor.  The Operations Manager, Cheryl, and General Manager, Rob, helped us to get a better understanding of DMs responsibilities from a higher level.

With a clear goal to reduce the workload of DMs and knowing their objectives, we started interviewing the District Managers. Throughout these interviews, we documented the current team processes, time spent on various tasks, critical metrics, roadblocks, common mistakes as well as potential consequences. The information was compiled into a report. Together with Howard, Rob, and Cheryl, we discussed potential strategies and their benefits.

DMs were spending 20% of their week reviewing and manually updating inventory. This process was an ideal candidate to redesign and transfer to a team overseas. Inventory management is crucial, but the work is time-consuming and repetitive.

Phase 2: Develop a new workflow

A rough plan of action was finalized and we got to work. Using the current process as a foundation, we started optimizing. By reevaluating each individual steps in the process, we isolated what needs to be done on-site, by a DM, and what can be outsourced. This way, the DMs will perform minimal work while still controlling the critical parts of the process. The remaining and time-consuming work would then be continued by a team in the Philippines.

To give you a rough idea, here is an outline of the new process:

  • A store manager will perform a manual inventory review based on a newly defined schedule
  • The results of the review are scanned and emailed to OpsTales
  • OpsTales updates the inventory in the back office system, collects and compiles important metrics like variances and performance
  • District managers are provided with a weekly report containing the KPIs collected in the prior step. This gives them a high-level overview of how each store is performing and allows them to take action.

With this process in place, DMs no longer have to manually review all inventory updates on a store level. The KPIs give them the insights they were previously missing and allow them to make decisions quicker and address problems earlier.

Phase 3: Hire, Train, Manage

With the new workflow defined, it was time for creating and training a team. Our Operations Manager in the Philippines was sourcing candidates for the interview process while we prepared the training material. A core principle of ours is to be very thorough with creating the training material. This allows us to reduce the onboarding time and minimizes the risk of errors. Our training materials are a collection of text and video documents outlining each step in the process.

We accepted two of the candidates for our team and got ready to launch. To make sure everything works as expected, we started the new process with one district for two weeks. This allowed us to work out any kinks and make sure our process and training material are complete. After the two-week trial, we were ready to move forward with launching the program across 130 stores.

Phase 4: Developing client metrics

At OpsTales, we take metrics seriously. A large part of this process was to understand what metrics already exist and to figure out how to improve on those. We reviewed the findings from leadership consultations in the beginning to create a list of KPIs. The goal in mind was to show performance rates across all stores. These performance rates are based on submissions of scans, total inventory updates required, and the actual variances in the inventory. By collecting and compiling the data accordingly in every step, we are able to uncover how stores are operating on a site-, district-, and organization level. We created a data pipeline to highlight concepts such as:

  • Which stores understand and follow the procedure consistently: An indication of engagement, understanding, and management skill of both site managers and district managers
  • Inventory variances on a site-level, compared to the average per category: An indicator of items being frequently out of stock. This might result in driving low-profit margins and can be an indicator of poor management.
  • Total inventory updates per store and per category: An indicator of how well the POS system is ordering. This metric is also used to identify high theft, poor management, etc.

We take these metrics, conduct monthly analysis, reflect on overall performance, and provide the client with business insights and recommendations.

What has happened since?

Since the rollout, we have consistently been fine-tuning the process. We reduced the time the tasks require and the monthly client cost by about 10%. By further tuning and enhancing the metrics, we were able to provide the client with ground-level optics they were missing. With the new metrics, the client can isolate and zoom in on underperforming stores and take action. They’re using the metrics to draw correlations between inventory management and site-level profit margins.

MYOBZ now has concrete data to analyze store and district manager leadership, performance, and adherence to company processes. With the saved monthly time, the district managers are able to focus on value-added work and be more engaged. MYOBZ is saving about $9k per month since the project launch. Together with the client, we are now looking at which operations we should transform next.

Conclusion

Ultimately, there are always things that can be optimized.  This is not limited to tasks eating up your team’s time. While those could simply be completed by someone else to free up your team’s time and your capital, there’s more. Redesigning the processes and collecting metrics allow you to create stronger operations and gain new valuable business insights.

Reflect on your team, on how they spend their time and the problems you’ve encountered. If you find areas you are not quite happy with, reach out. We’re here to make a difference and help companies grow and succeed.