Your operations plan is where you should detail your business’ objectives, goals and procedures and how the operation will be ran on a daily basis. You should produce a timeline of the steps you plan to take to complete your business mission.
This could include the day to day goals your business needs to hit to be successful, for example sales, income, etc. This should also detail the key milestones your business needs to hit over the next 1, 3 and 5 years.
Remember the key questions- who, what, where, when, and how much.
What teams/persons will you have in place to do what specific jobs, and how will those teams be managed.
A description of what each team/persons is responsible for and what targets they have to hit.
Where will your operation be ran from? Do you have office space or are your staff working remotely? If you grow, will your circumstances change, such as having to move to a bigger office space?
This is where the timeline comes in, when do goals need to be achieved by?
Assess risks and remember to detail any problems you may come across, and how you plan on overcoming them.
Also talk about:
- Equipment/Tools- Does your business require any specialist equipment or tools? For example, if you’re starting a manufacturing company, heavy machinery could be expensive when starting out, therefore you could consider plant hire as a cheaper option.
- Technology- What structure/hardware do you need? How do you plan on implementing IT processes? What customer relationship management (CRM) systems are you planning on using?
You can also touch briefly on financials and headline figures, stating how much you plan to make in the next year and your long term goals that the operations plan needs to directly support.
An operations plan is handy for investors, but it is also helpful for you and your employees as it pushes you to think tactics and deadlines required to meet the objections in your business plan.
Intellectual Property (IP) & Trademarks
Intellectual Property is a representation of your ideas, creations or intellect and you can legally protect them from being copied by competitors. If you develop a completely original product, service, process or idea that belongs to you, you can apply to patent it.
Protection could vary country to country, and you would need to check your idea or process hasn’t already been registered. Check government websites for more information on this.