When Is it Time to Hire a VPO (Vice President of Operations)?
Part of Series:
Building Your Executive Management Team – Who and When
Hire a VPO because Operations is one of the 8 Essential Internal Practices every company must have in order to achieve success. Your Operations Executive (COO or VPO) is one of the most important and responsible positions in your company and needs to possess vast knowledge of different processes within the company.
While your type of business will determine their specific responsibilities, in general, the VPO oversees the day-to-day operations of your business and ensures the steady growth of the company as well as the profits, all according to your vision. The VPO is also a key position because it holds general managers accountable to the plan set out by you and your executives.
How do you know when it’s time to hire a VPO?
- You’re spending more than 20% of your time overseeing the day-to-day management of the company. You’re responsible for the overall direction of building and scaling your company – not for the day-to-day execution. Hire a VPO
- Your recurring revenue is growing. If your recurring revenue is growing, your entire operation will need to grow with it. It’s time to hire a VPO who will focus solely on the controlled execution of your strategy and ensure your operation continues to steadily grow across the board. Hire a VPO
- Your client base has grown but your team size has stayed the same. The result is an overwhelmed customer service team that’s stopped focusing on great customer service and is now just trying to keep up. A good VPO will formalize the successful customer service process you’ve developed and grow it at a steady pace without losing the attributes that gained you, customers, in the first place. Hire a VPO
4. You’ve landed key accounts whose sales now represent a major portion of your revenue. Large accounts expect flawless execution and customer experience on par with the revenue they’re providing. Your growing company needs a VPO to ensure your key account’s expectations are met and surpassed. Hire a VPO
5. You’ve defined who you are and what works. You’ve reached a milestone and now you recognize the foundation you’ve built needs to evolve in order to support the organizational growth you want. It’s time to bring in a VPO who will continue to build on your strong foundation while stabilizing your processes, policies, and procedures as well as bringing in their own best practices, disciplines, and systematic approach to growing the company. Hire a VPO
6. Your investors. Simply put, your investors, board of directors, or advisors are asking you to hire a VPO. It’s nothing personal. Seasoned investors (as well as advisors) know the signs of a thriving company and recognize when the time is right for a VPO. Hire a VPO
When do I hire a VPO?
Your ideal VPO will be perfectly aligned with your vision while at the same time bring their own successful best practices and approach to growing your company. Finding a good fit takes time. If you need a VPO within the next 6-12 months, the hiring process should begin now. This allows time for the senior-level interview process and negotiations as well as the transition time your new hire will need to properly leave their current position.
As I’m sure you know, there are quite a few more signs that your company is ready for a VPO and I’ve only included a few one’s today. Check back next Wednesday when we examine 4 Signs Your Company is Ready to Hire a Vice President of Marketing.