What’s the H1 report card for global operations?

UK & Ireland show signs of recovery after six months of decline; North America on the up for the fourth consecutive quarter; Australia & New Zealand continue to flatline.

The first half of the year threw challenges at operations leaders, navigating disruptions from persistent inflation and rapid interest rate rises. However, the latest quarter paints a brighter picture: UK & Ireland's performance is on the upswing, Australia and New Zealand are confidently holding onto their top scorecard spots, and North America is in the race for the coveted first place. Amidst the tough economic landscape and upcoming cost-cutting endeavors, the next quarter holds the suspense of how the scorecards might shuffle.

Be prepared: the 60-second lowdown

Five key trends that are impacting operations teams around the world.

OpsIndex performance across regions

In the recent quarter, the UK and Ireland experienced a modest revival driven by enhanced efficiency and effectiveness, breaking a two-quarter decline trend. This upturn prompts speculation about whether this signifies a short-lived recovery or the onset of a sustained operational shift, despite trailing other regions in recent periods. Meanwhile, North America’s operational teams have maintained consistent progress for the fourth consecutive quarter, narrowing the gap with Australia and New Zealand.

A decline in job cuts indicates a potentially improving operating environment, demanding heightened adaptability for potential workload surges post-redundancies. In contrast, Australia and New Zealand remain frontrunners, achieving a slight increase attributed to heightened control levels from improved planning. However, they face economic uncertainty and rising job cuts, which add complexity to sustaining their advancement.
Read the full analysis →

Operational performance globally remains below pandemic-era highs, though the direction of travel is sharply divergent across regions. In the UK and Ireland, performance continues to decline against a backdrop of economic malaise and an ongoing cost of living crisis. By contrast, organizations in North America have shrugged off disruption in the banking sector and shown steady improvements over the past quarter (albeit with signs that improved effectiveness may be coming at the expense of customer service). Meantime, the top performing region, Australia and New Zealand, has seen its winning streak of post-pandemic gains finally stall, with performance flatlining in the opening three months of the year. The region’s performance over the coming quarter should give a clearer indication if this was just a temporary blip or if attempts to squeeze out more productivity gains have run out of steam. Read the full analysis →

What’s new in this edition

In each OpsTracker report, we spotlight new topics that operations teams are grappling with and invite industry experts to share their experiences and opinions on these challenges.

Organizations that aren’t embracing data-led insights into their decision making will miss opportunities to drive improved performance and operational resilience.

The challenges of unlocking actionable data in bank operations

Marc RomainSenior Ops Leader

Experienced Ops leader Marc Romain shares his experience working at some of the world’s largest banks and his frustrations with the lack of data insights in banking operations and why it is even more critical to get right as digitization and cost pressures intensify.

With AI and an evolving technology landscape, the nature of operations is changing and no business can afford to be left behind.

Why Irish banks are poised for greater productivity

Ray BoweChief Executive Officer at Xcentuate

Operations expert and CEO of Xcentuate Ray Bowe discusses the contrast between the UK and Irish market, how Ireland’s banks are benefiting from the exit of two foreign players and the impact that is having on operations teams.

By breaking down staffing and data silos and using operational intelligence to make informed decisions organizations can improve customer service, employee engagement, and cost-effectiveness.

Integrating front and back-office resources to improve customer experience and operational efficiency

Spencer O'LearyRegional Managing Director North America at ActiveOps

Spencer O’Leary discusses the growing trend of merging resources across front and back-office functions and how it delivers reduced cost, better customer service and increased employee engagement.

If ops leaders don’t have a cross-skilling strategy, banks will struggle as ops teams are forced to do more with even less.

The Great Sacking – why Australian banks face doing more with even less

Jane LambertRegional Managing Director APAC at ActiveOps

Jane Lambert, APAC Regional Managing Director at ActiveOps, unpacks the latest challenges for Ops in Australia, including ‘The Great Sacking’, and what it means for operations. teams in the region.

Previous OpsTracker editions & more operational insights

Missed the last quarter’s OpsTracker report? Don’t worry. See how operations teams performed in Q1 2023.

Missed the first OpsTracker report? Don’t worry. See how operations teams performed around the world before, during and after the pandemic.

Digital transformation expert Dr. Mona Ashok discusses the growth and adoption of ChatGPT in financial services and how advanced AI technology will transform operations in the future.

As senior leaders wrestle with the paranoia of staff working hybrid or remotely, Richard Jeffery explores how using the right data can improve decision-making and work policies.

‘Quiet hiring’ is one of Gartner’s top workforce predictions for 2023. What is it? And how can you boost staff retention and productivity?

There are 5 metrics every COO should know. Ian Carter explains why they are so important to help you to build operational resilience.

About the authors

Stuart Pugh is Chief Product Officer at ActiveOps; Marc Romain is a Senior Operations Leader; Ray Bowe is Chief Executive Officer at Xcentuate; Spencer O’Leary is Regional Managing Director North America at ActiveOps; Jane Lambert is Regional Managing Director APAC at ActiveOps; Ian Carter is Head of Insight & Innovation at ActiveOps.

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