Business operations analysis (BOA) is a strategy designed to determine if the general operational structure of a business is in harmony with the business plan adopted and supported by the company. The idea behind this type of analysis is to determine if the operation is actually organized in a manner that complies with terms of the business plan and is helping the company achieve its goals. In order to manage this process, the analysis will look at each layer or level in the company structure, compare the function and organization of those layers with the content of the business plan, and confirm or deny that those functions are actually relevant to the plan. It is not unusual for the analysis to also include suggestions on how to change the operation to more closely comply with the business plan.
Conducting a business operations analysis requires an in-depth look at the way the company is organized and how goods and services are produced. In the broadest possible application, the analysis will address every aspect of the operation, beginning with the ordering of production materials, all the way through the management and supervision functions, and on to the layout and efficiency of the production floor. Even aspects such as order processing, shipment and delivery, and the accounting process on the back end may be open to scrutiny. It is also possible to conduct a limited business operations analysis that focuses on specific areas of the operation, with an eye toward determining how well those particular functions comply with the business plan.
There are several benefits to conducting a business operations analysis from time to time. Looking closely as various aspects of the operation can often yield ideas on how to improve the overall structure of the business by eliminating positions that are not necessary, creating new positions when there is a need, and even identifying minor changes in the organization of the production floor in order to increase efficiency and productivity. Since many businesses must adapt to changing market conditions over the years, conducting this type of analysis at least on a yearly basis can often provide food for thought on how to make changes now in anticipation of what is projected to happen in the marketplace in the near future.
Companies can choose to conduct a business operations analysis in-house, hiring a business analyst who monitors and evaluates operations on an ongoing basis and provides a comprehensive analysis on a regular basis. An alternative is to engage the services of an independent analyst, who can approach the task outside the culture of the company. With either option, taking the time to engage in this type of analysis can help keep the company on course and ultimately strengthen the operation, increasing the chances of the company remaining in business over the long term.