Alright… so now that all these people have popped up talking about Operations, Systems, Processes and the like, in an effort to stand out, they’re using them interchangeably, and they are not correct.
Let’s fix that, starting with the most misused term: Systems.
So, WTF are Systems, Auntee?
Systems are a collection of Processes. Plain and simple.
You have sales systems, content systems, marketing systems, financial systems, production systems.
If there are 2 or more Processes, issa Systems!
Before we move on, I need to also mention what Systems are not:
Tech. Platforms. Software. Programs.
These are tools that support Systems.
If you can’t perform a function without these tools, your Systems are broken.
Yes. Broken. Don’t look at me like that.
Next up: Processes.
Processes are a collection of ordered tasks.
First I’m gone stack my flo’ (and then what?)
Then I’m gone stack some mo’ (and then what?)
It’s probably at this point that you realize, “Oh sh1t! This is a workflow!”
Yes, Sugar. Your processes make up workflows… within your Systems
Now presenting: Operations (OPS)
Operations is your all-encompassing collection of Systems.
Factors that determine if Operations is stand-alone vs all-encompassing are things like budgets, revenue, sub-brands, number of employees, number of locations, if assets like equipment or real estate are involved.
For us single person businesses, you can chuck just about everything in there lol.
So let’s tie it all together:
- Tasks: things you do
- Processes: a collection of tasks
- Systems: a collection of Processes
- Operations: a collection of Systems
- Tools: software/hardware/platforms that help you carry out tasks/power your Systems.