Operations Management: LensCrafters Case Study
Operational management has become essential for the success of any business operating in the current market conditions. As indicated by Stevenson (2005), operations management is a vital part of management that deals with the planning and controlling of the production or manufacturing process as well as redesigning an organization’s actions for the final creation of goods and services. That is, operations management is concerned with the acquisition, development, as well as the utilization of raw materials used by an entity to produce the goods and services that satisfy a client’s needs. Subsequently, it involves various levels of strategies both tactical and operational. According to Heizer and Render (2008), operational management determines the size and location of a company’s manufacturing plant or even the designing of the technology supply chain. As explained by Voss (2010), concerns such as a plants layout or structure, the equipment selection or replacements, and project management are classified as tactical operation management. On the other hand, issues such as production, staff scheduling and control, inspections (equipment or material), as well as quality control are part of the operational levels of operational management. The report presented discusses the role of operations management in establishing LensCrafters competitive position in a volatile market.
In the 21st century, the significance of operations management as a process of controlling business processes to generate the highest possible efficiency in form of profitability and sustainability in a business cannot be understated. As indicated by Kim, Sting, & Loch (2014), operations management centers its focus on the transformation of resources into products while maximizing the profits meticulously, a factor that is important in a highly competitive market. Subsequently, five key competitive aspects need to be taken to consideration namely, delivery of performance, quality, flexibility, cost, as well as innovativeness. Therefore, it can be argued that operations management currently provides the best possible means for an organization to have a competitive management.
LensCrafters is a multinational eyewear and sunglasses organization headquartered in Mason, Ohio, in the United States. As a market leader, the company currently runs about 850 stores in Canada, the United States, Puerto Rico, and Hong Kong. The main feature of the company is that it is managed by following a JIT as well as other operational strategies that allow each of its stores to have independent optometrists while maintaining high revenues and significant consumer satisfaction ratings.
Evaluate LensCrafters’ Operations Strategy and explain how the Organization seeks to gain a Competitive Advantage in Terms of Sustainability
In its quest to provide customer support and convenience, LensCrafters has proposed a well-organized operational strategy. Lens Crafters’ operations strategy is the combination of the provision of high-quality eyewear as well as impeccable service delivery (accurate and swift (one-hour) examinations) that are highly sought-after by clients. Additionally, the organization provides its clients with extensive benefits package in the form of fitting locations, specialized as well as friendly personnel, state-of-the-art equipment in its stores, as well as the delivery of other one-hour services other than eye examination such as eyewear accessory provision (Collier & Evans, 2012). As indicated by Liu and Ko (2014), unlike its competitors, Lens Crafters has the capacity to swiftly produce eyewear in each of the company store’s ‘backroom factory’ without compromising the superiority of the products provided. Additionally, the service delivery is also expediently positioned in high-traffic regions that offer easy access particularly in busy cities such as New York. As indicated by Dringoli (2011), through 11 distinct in-store roles, Lens Crafters receives, tests, and allows the clients to be part of the production of eyewear in each store’s optical laboratory by providing them with varieties of product options. Lens Crafters’ strategy expressively assists in developing a competitive and sustainable package by delivering such a convenient, swift, high-quality service, and products that are suited to each consumer at reduced costs. From the above-mentioned information, it is clear that the currently employed operational management strategy at LensCrafters focuses on time as well as the quality of services as its primary priority thus providing the company with a significant competitive advantage. Additionally, this strategy paves the way for a long-term or sustainable avenue of impeccable competitiveness in not only retaining customers but also appealing to new ones, attracting professional staff members, as well as retaining highly valued employees.
Analyze how operation management activities affect the customer experience. Select two (2) operation management challenges and provide the solutions for confronting them.
The primary goal for many business to customer (B2C) organizations in the current market is to improve productivity as well as revenue. Customer satisfaction is crucial in attaining these objectives. In the case of LensCrafters, operations management activities have a significant effect on customer experience, in that, it offers benefits that play a major role in cultivating consumer loyalty. LensCrafter’s system serves the customers with the high-quality products in a short time (one hour), a factor that is highly sought after and a clear parameter of competitive advantage (Thorne McAlister & Ferrell, 2012). Nonetheless, in conducting its operational accomplishments, the company faces various challenges, primarily the conflict of internal processes and inconsistent methods of production. At LensCrafters, the risks of differing methods of client examination, such as the various methods of eye examination, cause a conflict in the organization’s prerogative of providing the best possible care at the lowest cost. Additionally, the production of different eyewear also stretches the limits of competitiveness. These challenges are confronted by a management strategy that encourages open communication that ensures that all members within the organization comprehend how the business works and follows all allocated procedures. In this way, all sites use the same methods hence reducing conflicts.
Examine LensCrafters’ value chain and evaluate its effectiveness to operations in terms of quality, value creation, and customer satisfaction.
An establishment’s value chain refers to the steps that are taken in delivering products or services to the desired clientele. Therefore, as explained by Kaplinsky and Morris (2000), a company’s value chain is a management design that shows how an organization receives raw resources, adds value to said materials through their production processes, and delivers a final product to the customers. LensCrafters’ value chain involves the provision of information to the clients after examination, to the manufacturer of eyewear products that are later supplied to different parties in the industry (Poppendieck, 2011). The company’s value chain is expressively effective to its operation, in that, it swiftly obtains the information needed from the clients and relays it from the examiner in the labs, to the manufacturer in the backroom facility, and later the supplier, all in the same location. Additionally, each store receives the materials, adds significant value by producing high-quality eyewear, and thus attain high customer satisfaction by attending to all client needs within an hour after examination.
Determine the different types of performance measurements that can be used to measure LensCrafters’ service-delivery system design. Select at least two (2) types that can be applied and provide justifications for the selection.
A variety of performance measurements can be employed to analyze LensCrafters service delivery system design; for instance, business performance (revenue analysis), organizational productivity, , cost and price analysis, customer growth, service quality, and altruism. Two of the most prominent measurement parameters that are already in use by the organization are service and consumer growth. As a B2C organization, LensCrafters’ most significant performance indicator is the quality of services that are delivered. As indicated by Dringoli (2011), in an economic state that is determined by the provision of almost homogeneous products (eyewear), LensCrafters can measure the efficiency of service-delivery through the quality of its services and its competitors. If another company offers better service, then a negative indicator is highlighted considering that customers are always guided by the concept of value for money. Another measure of its delivery service is customer growth, which is significant because it is an indicator of client satisfaction in a highly competitive market.
Examine the different types of technologies applied to LensCrafters’ service operations and evaluate how the technologies strengthen the value chain.
LensCrafters’ service operation includes three types of technologies. First, in order to provide timely and accurate eye examinations as well as high-quality eyewear, the company has acquired state-of-the-art equipment. Second, in order to offer its clients with quality prescriptions, the company uses ‘Clarifye’ digital examination as standard in order to pinpoint a client’s needs in specific details. Additionally, the organization uses Snellen eye charts technology to analyze a clients’s vision proximity to around 20/20. Subject on the results provided, the highly qualified staff members have a variety of solutions for them to choose from such as a photopter, which is used to test nearsightedness or farsightedness. If astigmatism is indicated, the staff members may use a keratometer to measure the curvature as well as the reflectiveness of a client’s corneas. To ensure that the finished product is properly fitted to the client’s details both in prescription and other physical aesthetics, LensCrafters uses the AccuFit technology. This lets the personnel to analyze each eye digitally displaying how the eye wearables such as spectacles fit on a client’s face, for instance, where the eyes line up within the frame, in addition to the distance between the wearables and the client’s eyes. The aforementioned technologies allow the organization to provide clients with personalized services and products.
Over the last three decades, operational management has become a vital aspect of organization’s success because it allows the management team to develop competitive strategies. In the case of LensCrafters, the operational management has focused on the provision of high quality products at a client’s convenience. This increases consumer satisfaction, which in turn, is reflected in the organization’s performance. Managing operations is a significant function for all organizations. LensCrafters shows how operational management leads to economic growth and development, sustainability, as well as profitability.
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