Strategic decision making is when decisions are made to determine the long term direction of an organisation at the highest level within the organisation. According to Gregory Hamel (Hamel, G. 2008) (Small business, 2012) Strategic decision making is an on-going process that involves creating strategies to achieve goals and altering strategies based on observed outcomes.
Operational decision making is a short term decision made within an organisation which involves the day to day running of the organisation. These short term decisions are usually made by the office manager. According to Npower (Business Case Studies) Often these decisions are administrative in nature and can be implemented quickly and tend to carry a little risk and are smaller scale, but are never the less important choices that people have to make to fulfil their role.
Implementing that laptops are to be used by partners while out of the office would be a strategic decision. There are lots of problems with the partners being out of the office and with the use of laptops as communication tools this will provide a direct link between the office staff and the partners. I believe that this is a strategic decision as with the right planning and overseeing the development this could really be a step forward for Classic Interiors because work can be exchanged between partners and the office and messages can be passed on effectively meaning that there won’t be a build-up of work or office staff with no work and communication between everyone will be made a lot easier.
Stipulating a lunch time for each staff member would be an organisational decision. The current system for lunch time is not convenient as the employees get to decide when they go as long as one of them is in the office. I believe this is an operational decision because if affects the day to day running of the organisation. If the administrators were set a lunch hour each they would have to stick to it and get used to working alongside the time set.
Role of Office Manager
Operational Planning Process
As the office manager my role in establishing a new routine for lunch hour would be to organise a meeting to communicate the proposed changes with administrators and gain their views. Then I would create a plan to put forward to the administrators and partners. When a decision has been reached and the new plan is put into action I would have to oversee the progress of the plan gathering feedback at every opportunity. Issues
There is increased frustration between partners and administrators due to the partners carrying out task they believe the administrators could be doing which would free up more time for the partners. The solution to this would be to for all administrators to be trained how to use the specialist interior design software, this would enable them to alleviate the work load from the partners and feel more involved in the design side of their work. This would likely be time consuming to train the administrators but the overall outcome would be beneficial to the company.
The relationship between partners and the administrators is suffering due to the partners being out of the office as communication is often via short telephone messages and emails which has led to information being mis-communicated. The solution would be to introduce the use of PDA’s (Personal digital Assistants) for partners to be able to communicate with administrators. This would enable the administrators to contact the partners if a problem arises while carrying out work so that no mistakes are made and also they would be able to check their diaries to make appointments without the chance of double booking. Instant messaging could also help with communication as they are received instantly and can be replied to in seconds. Financial Planning and Budgetary Control