4.2 Making the most of the Vue video case study
Now watch the Vue video clip, linked below.
The following self-assessment questions will help you make the most of your viewing of the video case study, and relate to the learning outcomes for Sections 2 and 3 on the process view of business operations.
Click below to watch the video clip (11 minutes 52 seconds)
Identify the principal ‘flows’ in the operations of a Vue cinema.
Choose one of the flows from SAQ 9, and identify how that flow is managed – how does the design of the process facilitate the flow, and how is it planned and controlled?
If we take as an example the flow of customers in a Vue cinema, then the following approaches help to ensure that the flow enables a good standard of customer service as well as efficient service delivery.
The basic design of the process consists of:
- a method of forecasting demand for each film and of allocating the films to the appropriately sized auditorium.
- a method of scheduling start times to stagger audience arrival times to avoid excessive demand on ancillary services.
- a method for constructing staff rostas to match service capacity to anticipated demand.
- flexibility in staff contracts (most are part-time), multi-skilling of the workforce, and a culture of responsiveness and flexibility that allows changes to plans to meeet circumstances that arise at short notice.
Planning and control activities include:
- film scheduling and staffing plans on a monthly, weekly and daily basis to take account of changing circumstances such as planned and unplanned staff absence, anticipated popularity of films, local circumstances such as weather conditions that may affect demand, and so on.
- identification of trends to enable long-range planning of capacity.
It is important to note that the planning and control methods would not work if the process design was not conducive in the first place, e.g. staff cannot operate flexible working patterns that respond to fluctuations in demand if their employment contracts were not originally designed to accommodate this.
What would the consequences be to the organisation as a whole if the flows identified in SAQ 9 were not managed effectively?
If the flows of information and customers are not managed effectively then a variety of problems may ensue, e.g.
- over-crowding of foyer and related service delivery facilities, leading to a poorer customer experience and customer dissatisfaction.
- lost revenue if, for example, ticket sales/bookings are not executed effectively.
- if scheduling is not effective then extra staff may need to be employed to cope with peaks in demand for ancillary services that could have been levelled out by different film scheduling.
- assigning films to screens inappropriately may lead to lost revenue and dissatisfied customers if customers cannot see the film they came to see.
- if problems are recurrent then customers may turn to competitors as their preferred service providers, and revenue will be lost on a longer term basis, and will be harder to win back.
- schedules that don't allow for cleaning of the facilities may lead to lower perceived service quality and customer dissatisfaction.
Thus, as a direct result of poorly managed ‘flows’, the company loses revenue and incurs additional costs – an obvious ‘lose–lose’ situation!