What is an Integrated Operation Centre?
An Integrated Operations Centre (IOC) is a dedicated environment designed to tackle the business problems that manifest when working with highly collaborative processes.
The most typical of these is within an operational environment where many dependencies exist between;
- creating a product
- managing the quality of the product
- getting the product out the door efficiently, to the best market conditions available
In what industries do you find Integrated Operation Centers?
Many industries utilise the concept of IOC’s to help with their operations; manufacturing, oil & gas production, energy generation & distribution and so on. The broad roles, time pressures and underlying business issues remain similar but each industry will have a different emphasis.
What does an IOC look like?
The following simplified diagram shows typical roles and seating within an IOC to maximise collaborative efficiency for operations:
Each seat holds a role representative, not the entire team. The individual responsible for the minute to minute operations of the role within.
How does the Center help?
IOC’s operate in very time sensitive environment and if there is friction between these areas or a single failure, then the entire operational process can be compromised leading to massive inefficiencies. There is a need for everyone to see an up to date “big picture”, share a set of common priorities and have the experts at hand to support any breakdown in the process.
IOC’s are built to support the smooth running of critical areas of a real-time business.
Large and smaller centers
Not every IOC is “whole operations” focussed. Some companies may have a need for a smaller centre (or series of centres) to manage a single complex aspect of the business. These can often provide a massive value despite their size:
A single planning function needs constant input from a huge range of distributed stakeholders and the ability to push their plans out to the same group. These planning centres have most other roles at the end of a VC rather than in a room together. (Virtual IOC)
A series of tiered centres able to support the complexities of machines and technology. Each tier offers a different level of specialisation to provide the most efficient use of resources.