When starting a business there are many important factors that need to be considered,• And then there is the problem of location;• where do you want your business to be situated?• What kind of space will you need to run your new company successfully?• Will you need any office support when you start out?• And importantly what kind of investment do you want to make? There are numerous options available from short term lease to purchasing an office of your own.Types of Office• Home Offices Depending on the size of your business, the number of employees, and the requirement to hold face to face meetings with clients it might initially be appropriate to work from a home office space. This would dramatically reduce costs in the initial stages of a business start up and allow you the flexibility to decide what office environment is best for you as your company grows.
• Managed Offices Managed offices, often referred to as serviced office space are office environments that are managed by another company, allowing you to rent a single office that suits your needs within their buildings. One of the many benefits of managed offices is the lack of investment required; the offices are rented on relatively short term contracts and come with office furniture provided.• Virtual Offices Virtual office spaces are often adopted by companies who work in a variety of locations. This allows a company to have one centralized office whilst also maintaining a presence within other locations, without the cost of traditional office spaces.• Purchasing Office Space This option if often adopted once a business has been running for some period of time due to the investment required.
Office Administration• Office administration is the process of overseeing the day- to-day operations of an office.• The task of administration is usually the responsibility of an office administrator or manager. Depending on the general operating structure of the organization, and the complexity of tasks associated with the operation in general, the responsibilities of the manager or administrator may focus on a few core tasks, or involve the management of a wide range of functions.• One of the core tasks associated with office administration is the management of the employees associated with the office.
• Typically, office administrators are responsible for supervising the office staff, making sure that each employee has resources necessary to competently carry out his or her assigned duties.• Administrators also function as troubleshooters, providing support and assistance to employees when unusual situations arise during the completion of an assigned task.• It is not unusual for administrators to be responsible for conducting periodic employee evaluations, recommending pay increases, or providing employees with remedial or cross training as a means of assisting those employees to improve their relationships with the employer.
• Along with managing and supporting employees, office administration also involves making sure that the office always has the resources needed to remain productive. This involves coordinating the repairs on any office equipment that is malfunctioning, or preparing and submitting requests for new equipment when necessary.• Office administrators are often charged with the task of managing the use of office supplies such as paper, writing instruments, printer ribbons, and other items that are in constant use around the office.• The office administrator strives to keep the office operating within its assigned budget at all times, and often has some input into the budget planning for upcoming accounting periods.
Scientific Management Theory• Evolution of Modern Management – Began in the industrial revolution in the late 19th century as: • Managers of organizations began seeking ways to better satisfy customer needs. • Large-scale mechanized manufacturing began to supplanting small-scale craft production in the ways in which goods were produced. • Social problems developed in the large groups of workers employed under the factory system. • Managers began to focus on increasing the efficiency ofthe worker-task mix. 2–6
F.W. Taylor and Scientific Management• Scientific Management – The systematic study of the relationships between people and tasks for the purpose of redesigning the work process for higher efficiency. • Defined by Frederick Taylor in the late 1800’s to replace informal rule of thumb knowledge. • Taylor sought to reduce the time a worker spent on each task by optimizing the way the task was done. • Taylor: increase specialization & division of labor to make production process more efficient 2–7
F.W. Taylor and Scientific Management• Scientific Management (Taylor) Principles – Gather data about ways workers perform their tasks; experiment with different ways to improve performance – Codify methods into written rules and standards – Select people who have skills/abilities needed in the task and train them on the particular task – Establish acceptable level of performance and reward for performance above that level Organizations chose to select some, rather than all, of these principles. 2–8
Scientific Office ManagementScientific management, as the name implies, means the application of the scientific method for the solution of the problems of management. In its application, the scientific approach is used in meeting problems of all types instead of depending on tradition. In view of the present day complexities and growing magnitude of management responsibilities, scientific office management is perhaps the best solution. It does not mean that office management is a pure science. It is the application of scientific principles to management decision- making. Scientific management is characterized by a scientific method of attack in the solution of business problems and the development of managerial techniques. It looks, considers and evaluates customs and traditions, personal intuition and experience, and inductive deductive thinking.
• Techniques of scientific management involve in these steps• Setting up of standard tasks through scientific investigation and research (time, motion and method of studies),• Analysis of operations to evolve the best method of doing the standard task, scientific selection of personnel and their training in the methods involved,• Standardization of materials, equipment and working environment for workers,• Introduction of specialization in the administrative and organizational set up and• Improvement of worker-management relations through good faith, perfect understanding and better incentive wage plans.
Office Systems and Procedures• Office work involves the use of three inter- related factors- - personnel, - form and - equipment. To ensure efficient and economical performance of office work, each office sets up an integrated pattern of systems, procedures (routines) and methods.
• System The term system “may be regarded as a planned approach to activities necessary to attain desired objectives.” It is the planned manner of doing a particular work. When used in connection with office work, it means the planned use of personnel, forms and equipments for the performance of a particular phase of office work. In every modern office there is a specific system for each major phase of phase office work, viz., filling system, mailing system, dictation and transcription system, etc
• Procedures The term procedure or routine, on the other hand, signifies “a planned sequence of operations for handling recurring business transactions uniformly and consistently.” It refers to the series of routine steps or operations needed for completing a particular phase of work according to the planned system.
• Procedures are simply defined as the processes employed to complete specific tasks, such as how an invoice is entered in the system or how returns are processed.• When writing a procedure, it is important to imagine that no prior knowledge exists.• The procedure should be able to stand alone and be executed without further clarification. This means that a well-written procedure will list every action required to complete a task.• Administrative procedures, such as how to request time off, and how employees are disciplined, should be prepared before hiring the first employee. These procedures, together with the policies of the company, form the employee handbook, which should be as professional and well- organized as possible. Thus a system is a broad division or plan of work, whereas procedures or routines are the smaller division comprising it.
Advantages of Systems and ProceduresTo be able to operate with consistency, it is essential for any business to establish the systems and procedures it will use in its operations; doing so provides many benefits: – Consistency in procedures increases efficiency (things become routine) and – morale (no one has to ask how nor can they disagree). – Establishing set business and bookkeeping procedures will help ensure a uniform and accurate system, preventing employees from needing to ask how to do everyday tasks. – setting up office systems and business procedures from the beginning will save time and money.
How to create a procedure1 Define the scope of the procedure, exactly what the procedure is intended to accomplish. Be reasonably detailed. For example, you need a procedure for handling incoming mail that is different from a procedure for handling outgoing mail. You dont need a different procedure for junk mail, bills, magazines and personal mail. Those subcategories can be incorporated into the same general heading.2 Define who is responsible for making sure the procedure is done, including the deadlines or time lines associated with the process. The person responsible doesnt have to do it personally, but must check with the delegate assigned to ensure completion and inspect quality.
3. List the individual tasks inherent in this process. Put them in chronological order.4 Write a description of each task, including reasonable time limits, the tools required and the basic actions needed. Include a "completion state"--what the task looks like when its finished. The completion state is vitally important to inspecting work and rating employee performance.5 Write down the consequences of failing to complete a task within the given time frame. This includes disciplinary action for the employee and a contingency plan for problems that arise from the failure.
Areas of ProceduresHuman Resource Issues• Human resources is one area in which predetermined policies and procedures can most eliminate confusion and conflict.• There should be clear procedures on absences, phone use, sick pay, vacation requests, health insurance matters and workspace safety.• It is often a good idea to compile a manual, no matter how small, to provide answers for various issues in advance of problems.• Employee conflicts, theft, harassment, violence in the workplace and other important issues can be headed off with clear policies and procedures for managing these situations.• Employee reviews and warnings can be covered as well as benefit package dates and other questions.
Job Duties• Offices may have difficulties outlining the exact job duties of personnel.• Confusion can be eliminated by making sure that employees know what their jobs entail and what additional duties they may be called upon to cover.• This may require organizational charts that indicate who takes over when others are out of the office on sick days or vacation time.• Clear outlining of who has the final say in specific areas can go a long way toward preventing confusion and hard feelings within the office network.
Financial Procedures• A user-friendly office accounting program is crucial to good office procedures.• Accounts payable and receivable operations on a day- to-day basis can be easily accessed to make sure the business in running within budget constraints.• Access to financial data can be limited to those who need to know.• Procedures for managing cash and small purchases should be clear with easy record-keeping.• Forms should be standardized for purchasing, inventory, invoicing and maintenance issues.
Departments of an modern office• Purchase Department. The main function of this department is - to deal with clerical work in connection with purchase of materials and stores, plant and machinery, fuel, stationery, etc. -The usual work of this department includes preparation of suppliers orders; receipt, checking an recording of suppliers invoices and delivery notes, maintenance of Purchase Journal and Ledge, checking and certification for payment of suppliers bills; etc.
Sales Department.• The main function of this department is to deal with forms and records relating to sale of finished goods marketing and advertisement etc.• The work of the Sales Departments include: receipt, checking and recording of customers orders; preparation of outward invoices, delivery notes etc. maintenance of Sale journal and Ledger; preparation; submission and follow-up of bills an statements of customers; collection of outstanding bills; preparation of sales statistics etc.
Production of Works Department. - The main function of this department is to deal with clerical work concerning production control an other activities relating to production and the information provided must be immediately available to the factory manger and executives, the office work of this department is usually carried out in the factory itself. - The office work usually includes preparation of materials schedule and operations schedule; preparation, checking and recording of materials schedule and operation schedule; preparation, checking an recording of materials requisition; maintenance of stock records and job records and job records preparation of wage bills; preparation and maintenances of costing records, etc.
Accounts department. - The main function of this department is the maintenance of books of accounts, preparation of final accounts, financial statements and budget papers, bills, statements of wages and salaries, etc.; maintenance of investment records; and supplying management with all other information and statistics relating to the financial position of the business for control purposes. -Where there is no separate Cash Department, the maintenance of the Cash and Petty Cash books, records in connection with banking transactions, etc, are also included in the functions of the Accounts Department. Sometimes, the Accounts Department also undertakes the function of maintaining the Cost Records and preparing the Cost Accounts.
Cash Department.• Sometimes, when the volume of cash transactions is large, there is a separate department to deal with all records relating to the records relating to the receipts and payments of cash.• The usual functions of this department are maintenance of the Cash Book and Petty Cash Book; preparation and maintenance of cash vouchers and other cash records, etc.
• General Office.• The general office deals with those office activities which are common to all the operating department, viz., correspondence, typing and duplicating, filing, mailing, etc.• There are separate sections of the general office dealing with each one of these activities.