What is an Operating Model?

What is an Operating Model?

An Operating Model is the blueprint of how an organisation runs its business operations to achieve its strategic objectives and priorities. It is a complex system, which carefully considers structural and enabling elements, spanning structure, business processes, technology systems, people and capabilities.

How can you optimise your Operating Model?

By developing and implementing an effective Operating Model, an organisation can optimise its performance, reduce costs, improve customer satisfaction, and achieve sustainable growth.

What is Operating Model better practice?

Better practice Operating Models consider structural and enabling elements which are directly informed by the organisation’s purpose, products and services, customers and ambitions.

What is the best Operating Model for your organisation or portfolio?

Each organisation is different and so, each organisation demands a different Operating Model. Five standard ‘model types’, each with their own characteristics and benefits, serve as a useful construct to categorise similarities and draw inference on those which are distinctly different.

What is ‘best’ or ‘right’ for an organisation will be influenced by its history and culture, what it is trying to create, for whom and for where, what outcomes is seeks to achieve and how fast it wants these to be realised. The Operating Model must be ever-evolving, driven by feedback from employees and customers, evolving technologies, capabilities and resources, and changes in the external operating environment, such as competition and legislation.

Firstly, an organisation must agree and solidify the core elements before considering any other aspect of its Operating Model i.e.,  the operating structure and funding, and the enabling environment.


Do you have your core elements sorted? So what is the best Operating Model for your organisation? You can read more in our ebook ‘What is an Operating Model and how do you optimise yours?’ Get your copy by completing the form on the right hand side and/or you can reach out to our Operating Model expert Hannah Cotching.