The operations department of The Dental Directory opens its doors at 7am and starts processing orders at 8.45am, but for David LeGood, who has been with the business for more than two years, the planning for the day ahead starts the day before.
“Before I leave the office I plan my own schedule of priorities for the next day which I review again against my twilight manager’s report that is emailed to me later in the evening. I like to be able to plan all the elements we can control for the next day because in operations there are often things you can’t.”
Maintaining such high standards is now more important than ever since The Dental Directory became the first dental wholesaler in the UK which can take orders for next day delivery up to 6pm.
Now just four months on its next day delivery fulfilment rate is 99.4 per cent and it is working hard to achieve the remaining 0.6 per cent.
David prides himself as being the eyes of The Dental Directory’s operations team, which is why his first job of the day is to walk the site with one of his supervisors. During this time he can see how the warehouse is positioned to cope with the day ahead.
“By the time I get to work in a morning I’ve already analysed all the data from the day before, but in this line of work it’s about what you see on the shop floor just as much as it is number crunching – especially when you’ve got an operation as big as ours.
“Every day there are tweaks to be made to ensure we have good workflow and all the efficiencies we can put in place are there so the customer gets the very best result.”
At 10.15am David holds, what he calls a ‘scrum’, with his operations managers.
“The scrum is a stand up meeting on the warehouse floor which takes ten minutes. It’s a chance to review the successes and challenges of the past day, raise any issues the team has that will impact the day ahead and provide the team with any updates. It not only helps to motivate the team, but it also helps me focus on what’s important and understand how I can truly support my team.”
After David’s morning routine is complete he’s on to get his teeth stuck into the operations team next big project – reviewing and improving how every one of The Dental Directory’s 27,000 products are delivered to its customers.
“I’ve been working in operations for 28 years so I know a thing or two about the challenges of packaging, especially if you’ve got a product line as extensive as we have at The Dental Directory.
“At the moment we’re working in partnership with our packaging suppliers to see how we can improve by cutting down waste, adding to packing efficiencies and ultimately create a better customer experience. It’s a big project, but one which we’re committed to doing well and in partnership with our suppliers.”
Later that day, David goes back to his office to review all the day’s data to plan again. It’s a busy day but it’s a job David loves.
“I couldn’t be in a job that didn’t challenge and push me. For me, this role suits not only my skills but also my personality. I may go home at the end of the day a little tired but I really wouldn’t want it any other way.”
This article was published on 26 November 2015 in Dentistry