The role of an Operations Manager

Modified: 1st Jan 2015
Wordcount: 1628 words

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Operation management is the business function that plans, organizes, coordinates, and controls the resources needed to produce a company’s goods and services. Operations management is a management function. It involves managing people, equipment, technology, information, and many other resources. Operation management is the central core function of every company. This is true whether the company is large or small, provides a physical good or service, is for profit or not for profit. Every company has an operations management function. Actually all the other organizational functions are there primarily to support the operations function. Without operations, there would be no goods or services to sell. The marketing function provides the needed capital. It is the operations function, however, that plans and coordinates all the resources needed to design, produce, and deliver the merchandise to the various retail locations. Without operations, there would be no good or services to sell to customers.

The role of operations management is to transform a company’s inputs into the finished goods or services. Inputs include human resources, facilities and processes, as well as materials, technology, information. Outputs are the goods and services a company produces.

L’Oreal is one of the leading cosmetics companies in the world. It has already been operating a Citrix terminal server farm for several years. However, by early 2004, the tried and tested manual installation practiced by the administrators had reached its limits, leading to instability in the system. L’Oreal was able to fully automate the installation of its terminal servers and thus considerably increase the stability and its IT infrastructure. L’Oreal beauty products with the range of cosmetics stylings products for men and women.

L’Oreal has developed activities in the field of cosmetics, concentrating on hair colour, skin care, sun protection, makeup, perfumes and hair care. L’Oreal is active in the dermatological and pharmaceutical fields.

Role of the Operations Managers

Some people (especially those professionally involved in operations management!) argue that operations management involves everything an organisation does. In this sense, every manager is an operations manager, since all managers are responsible for contributing to the activities required to create and deliver an organisation’s goods or services. However, others argue that this definition is too wide, and that the operations function is about producing the right amount of a good or service, at the right time, of the right quality and at the right cost to meet customer requirements.

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Operations managers are responsible for managing activities that are part of the production of goods and services. Their direct responsibilities include managing both the operations process, embracing design, planning, control, performance improvement, and operations strategy. Their indirect responsibilities include interacting with those managers in other functional areas within the organisation whose roles have an impact on operations. Such areas include marketing, finance, accounting, personnel and engineering.

Operations managers’ responsibilities include:

Human resource management – the people employed by an organisation either work directly to create a good or service or provide support to those who do. People and the way they are managed are a key resource of all organisations.

Asset management – an organisation’s buildings, facilities, equipment and stock are directly involved in or support the operations function.

Cost management – most of the costs of producing goods or services are directly related to the costs of acquiring resources, transforming them or delivering them to customers. For many organisations in the private sector, driving down costs through efficient operations management gives them a critical competitive edge. For organisations in the not-for-profit sector, the ability to manage costs is no less important.

Decision making is a central role of all operations managers. Decisions need to be made in:

designing the operations system

managing the operations system

improving the operations system.

The five main kinds of decision in each of these relate to:

the processes by which goods and services are produced

the quality of goods or services

the quantity of goods or services (the capacity of operations)

the stock of materials (inventory) needed to produce goods or services

the management of human resources.

Operational strategy

The operational side of marketing refers to the day by day tactics of how to manage things like advertising, pricing, and so on. It is just the same with operations. Operations strategy looks at the long-term issues of how to manage the resources which produce products and services. The more operational subject of operations management looks at the more detailed and ‘shop floor’ issues of designing, planning and controlling, and improving the resources which produce products and services. Operations strategy is concerned with the specific decisions which shape and develop the long-term direction of the operation. Think of content as the building blocks of an operations strategy. The process of operations strategy refers to the procedures which are used to formulate operations strategies. It is the way we go about the activity of devising strategy. Think of operations strategy content as what the L’Oreal is deciding to do and process as how the L’Oreal has made that decision.

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The market requirements perspective starts from the commonsense notion that any operations strategy should reflect what the L’Oreal is trying to do in its markets. Companies compete in different ways, some may compete primarily on cost, others on the excellence of their products or services, others on high levels of customer service, others on customising their products and services to individual customer needs, and so on. The operations function therefore must respond to this by providing the capabilities which allow it perform in an appropriate manner to satisfy the requirements of its market. In some ways this is a ‘translation’ task because the techniques and language used by marketing managers to understand the requirements of markets are different to the language and techniques used by operations managers to manage their productive resources.

L’Oreal’s goals and objectives

L’Oreal USA is the leading beauty company in America, which develops and manufactures haircare, haircolor, skincare, color cosmetics and fragrances. Our distribution network of salons, mass market, specialty and department stores makes us the most comprehensive beauty company in the U.S. We offer exciting positions, flexible development paths and outstanding rewards that will give your career a whole new look.

The L’Oreal Sales & Education Coordinator (LSEC) is an employee of Salon Centric, a wholly owned subsidiary distributor of L’Oreal USA. Salon Centric is a leading and rapidly growing national wholesale distributor of professional products to the salon and beauty industry.

This position will be responsible for the development, management and execution of all education strategy and efforts within the assigned territory for the L’Oreal brands.


Coordinate and participate in monthly sales meetings.

Coordinate and facilitate regional quarterly trainings and certifications.

Development, presentation and management of Elite salons education plans.

Facilitate trainings for new sales consultants and participate in training boot camp.

Must work in alliance with the respective Prestige Account Manager in the achievement of the regions goals and objectives.

Teach a minimum of 12 classes per month, facilitate hands on workshops and coordinate cluster classes.

Presentation of L’Oreal world tour, academy programs and strictly business programs.

Shadow and mentoring of new L’Oreal Sales & Education Coordinators and L’Oreal Artistic Educators.

Open new color conversions and retail doors for Serie Expert, Texture Expert, Homme product lines

Responsible for the delivery of strategic education classes, events and programs.

Coordinate communication flow between key partners including L’Oreal Professionnel, SalonCentric and the customer.

Provide support for salon specific events & promotions.


In a nutshell, L’Oreal is one of the leading cosmetics companies in the world. They are very innovative and invest a lot of money in research and development. Products are positioned in high-priced segment because of their quality. They offer well coordinated products for different target groups. To keep their strength alive they have to observe their competitors. It is a very flexible development paths and outstanding rewards that will give your career a whole new look.

L’Oreal will benefit from the end of destocking, easier comparison base and increased innovation.For next year, a return to 4% growth would require to keep a high single digit growth momentum in the Rest of the World and to return to low single digit growth in developed market, which we feel is a realistic assumption. However, most of it will be offset by a negative forex impact based on current rates.


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