Operational plans are necessary for setting the daily tasks and activities needed for the operations of a company or organization. There are many types of operational plans used by different industries and different companies and one of them is an IT operational plan.
What is an IT operational plan? That and other topics related to operational planning will be discussed in this article. IT operational plan samples and templates are also provided to help us further understand what it is and serves as reference as we go through the topic. You may check them out below!
Tech IT Operational Plan Sample
Information Services and Technology Operational Plan
State Health Information Technology Strategic and Operational Plan
Printable Information Technology Operational Plan
Health Information Technology Operations Plan
What Is Operational Planning in It?
IT or information technology is popular industry known for the use of computers in storing, retrieving, transmitting and manipulating data. Information technology plays an important part in businesses, especially in industries that rely largely on technology for their entire business operations. These industries include telecommunications industries, engineering and design firms, and business process outsourcing industries to name a few.
For a lot of people, information technology consists of complex tasks and activities that only experts or professionals in that field can handle or perform. Most companies have their own IT department to take care of It related tasks and activities. This department makes use of an operation plan to guide them with the day-to-day tasks and activities that they need to attend to achieve specific short-term and long-term goals. An IT operation plan allows a company to work smoothly and be able to collaborate with different involved departments within the company. Through this, the company or business can best maximize their potential and their usage of their information technology systems.
What Are the Five Main Differences Between an Operational Plan and a Strategic Plan?
Are you familiar with a strategic plan and do you know why it is a compared to that of an operational plan? Both strategic plan and operation plan are types of planning, together with another type called tactical plan. Here, we will look into the five main differences between an operational plan and strategic plan so that we will know how to best differentiate one from the other.
A strategic plan provides an outline of the vision, mission and goals that a company or organization wants to achieve over a period of 3 to 5 years. Included in this plan are ways on how you will measure such goals and objectives.
An operational plan on the other hand is created to be used in a department or team within a company or organization. It only outlines of the focus of specific department for the near future. It is also known as an work plan.
Strategic plans focus on long-term company or organization goals. It is created with the entire organization in mind and how they can can work together to achieve their goals.
Operational plans are department-focused and the plan is created or is intended only for use by a specific department. However, even with that being said, it should still be created with reference to the strategic plan of the organization. Simply put, no matter what the goals and objectives of an operational plan is it must support that of the strategic plan.
The difference of both types of plans can also be determined by the people who are tasked or required to create them. Top management or high-level leadership teams in a company or organization are responsible for creating a strategic plan. High-level leadership teams, include the executive teams, city council, highest official in a county or city, etc. Once the plan has been crated, it is then communicated to the entire organization so that they can start with their operational plans.
As mentioned, operational plans are department-focused so this tells us that department heads or team leaders are responsible for creating them. Even if operational plans are created specifically for a certain department, the success of the implementation of the plan will have an impact on other departments and will lead to an organization-wide success.
The budget for your strategic plan comes from the your strategic budget, while the budget for your operational plan is drawn from the annual budget of your department.
Reporting of strategic plans usually takes place annually or quarterly. During reporting or meetings, the executive team will want to look at the performance of the company or organization based on the measures that they want or prefer.
Operational plan reporting is usually on a monthly basis and it covers hundreds of projects and tasks that are being worked on by the people in that department. Monthly reporting is done so that the progress and status of each project can be determined.
How can you best tell a strategic plan apart from an operational plan based on the five differences presented above? For me, the difference in goal focus sets them apart. It is easy to remember and understand that a strategic plan is created for the entire company or organization as a whole, while an operational plan is created to by the different departments within the company or organization. You can find out more about relates topics, like Security Operational Plan Samples & Templates, Planning Worksheet Templates, and Project Operational Plan Samples on our website. Check them out now.
What Are the Key Components in an Operational Plan?
The key components of an operational plan are clear objectives, activities to be delivered, quality standards, desired outcomes, staffing and resource requirements, implementation timetables, and a process for monitoring progress. Let us take a closer look at each of these components below.
- Clear objectives – Operational plans must have clear objectives so that tasks and activities can be carried out correctly. Clear objectives also prevents the occurrence of miscommunication to the people in that department which could create serious problems and chaos.
- Activities to be delivered – This refers to the tasks and activities that the department must carry out or implement in order to achieve or accomplish their goals and objectives.
- Quality standards – It is important to also include in planning the means or methods of evaluating the steps or the process used to carry out the plan. Evaluation is done by comparing what has been done to quality standards to determine if they meet certain criteria.
- Desired outcomes – Operational plans must state specifically what they want to achieve with the use of the plan or their desired outcomes.
- Staffing and resource requirements – This refers to the people who will be involved in the plan and who will be responsible for certain tasks and activities. It also includes where the materials will come from and other resource requirements for the plan.
- Implementation timetables – A good operational plan must provide a time frame for each of the goals and objectives that they have set, as well as a time frame for the required tasks and activities within the plan. This allows for the achievement of goals and objective in a timely fashion.
- A process for monitoring progress – Once the plan has been implemented and established to the entire department, continuous monitoring is necessary to ensure that the plan is working out the way it should be.
Keep in mind these components when you creating an operational plan for your department as they are essential both to the planning, implementation and monitoring of the operations of your department. You may also check out articles related to operational planning and planning in general, like School Operational Plan Samples & Templates, Event Planning Invoice Samples & Templates, and HR Operational Plan Samples & Templates.
Information Technology Strategic Plan Sample
Information Technology Strategic Plan for Operations
IT Strategic and Operational Plan
University Information Technology Systems Operational Plan
Simple Information Technology Operational Plan
Advantages of Operational Plan Templates
The advantages of operational plan templates are as follows:
- It is easy and convenient to use. Operational plan templates does not really require its user to be an expert at something. For a department head, manager or supervisor to be able to use an operational plan templates, all they need to do is have the necessary tools and knowledge, like a computer and the data needed to complete the template. It works like a fill in the blank test or worksheet and we have been taught hoe to do that since primary school.
- It is complete and reliable. One of the many good things about an operational plan is that you don’t have to worry about missing pieces or parts of the plan because the template is sure to have them all included. There are also guidelines and tips provided depending on the template. Each document is definitely reliable.
- It is available online. You can easily find operational plan templates, as well as samples online. They come in different varieties and file formats for your different needs. Different operational plans for different purposes are also now made available for you to download and use. Most of them are also offered for free.
- It is editable and printable. The good thing about the templates is that you can edit the contents based on your references, especially if it doesn’t exactly contain the details that you want. Once you are done you can go ahead and have it printed to be distributed. You may also have the completed template emailed to your team.
- It saves time. The template eliminates the need for you to repeat the sames steps to create the same document. That is why it is a guarantee that you will be able to save a lot of time with the use of an operational plan template.
We hope that you are able to learn from this article. You may check out related and interesting articles on our website, like Simple Operational Planning Samples & Templates, Strategic Plan Samples & Templates, and Annual Operational Plan Samples & Templates.
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