Strategic operational plans represent a set of guidelines or lists of expectations for certain departments or managers. These plans tend to look at the past, present, and future of a company. Many different types of strategic operational plans may be in use by a company, with some of the most common ones being budget related, company-wide, or objective based. Not all strategic plans are the same among various companies as the plans are most likely tailored to a company’s needs and available resources. These plans may also be for short, medium, or long time periods, depending on a company’s needs.
A budget is more than just a financial road map in most strategic operational plans. Under strategic management, a company can use a budget to create a plan that sets up various centers in a business. These centers tend to fall under the categories of cost, revenue, and profit centers, with each being slightly different. The aggregate results for the budget make a plan that lays open the very heart of a company’s finances. Everything is under review when setting up these centers and reworking the company’s financial structure, with the plan looking to streamline the company’s internal processes to strengthen finances.
Company-wide strategic operational plans are those policies or guidelines that affect all parts of a company. In some companies, a plan may limit significant changes to only the production department. A move to lean manufacturing, for example, seeks to reduce inefficiencies or redundancies here to drive down costs and improve the manufacturing process for goods or services. Company-wide policies, however, may seek an implementation of lean accounting, which covers all segments of the company for cost reduction and the improvement of internal operations. These strategic operational plans know no bounds as all parts of a company are under scrutiny for changes in how the organization does business.
Another set of strategic operational plans includes those that focus on specific objectives for certain business practices. For example, a company may desire a plan for entering a market with a new product. How the business accomplishes this without sacrificing other principles or departments in the company is the objective of the plan. For example, this new market entry strategy may include price skimming that leads to exclusive market share for a given time. The production and refinement of the product may then be another part of strategic operational plans as the company looks to extend its grip on a market.