PROFESS is designed to replicate the issues facing management of a professional services company. Although originally designed for Barclays Life, PROFESS is suitable for a wide range of professional services companies (computer and business services, software developers and design companies etc.) Participants are involved in the regional management of several sales areas each employing several "advisers" and selling several products. The region is served by an administrative centre and decisions cover staffing, training, product changes and promotion.
KEY LEARNING: The simulation covers these issues:
DURATION: Approximately one day (although they can be run, in an accelerated manner, in half a day).
TARGET AUDIENCE: The simulation is designed to be used by trainees, junior management to middle management, functional specialists and supervisors. Or, abbreviated or with additional tasks, with senior management.
METHOD: After a short briefing the training group is divided into several teams of four or five participants. These teams consider the problem facing them and then make a series of decisions that are fed, by the tutor, into a microcomputer that simulates their effect. The results are returned for the team to analyse before making their next decisions. This decision-making cycle is repeated for at least six periods. At the end of the simulation phase the teams reunite to discuss and compare results.
NUMBER OF TEAMS: The simulation may be used with between two and eight teams that compete and interact directly with each other.
AVAILABILITY: This simulation is available off-the-shelf and a comprehensive Trainer's Pack is provided allowing trainers with little or no experience with simulations to run the simulations.
With decisions covering hiring "advisers" and clerical support, training, updating services and promotion, the simulation concentrates on the tactical management issues concerned with running a region consisting of several sales areas, selling several services (products) and a central administration centre.
Participants must manage a process that begins with deciding client needs, suggesting a suitable service, obtaining a formal proposal (prepared by the centralised administration centre) and closing the sale.
With success determined by meeting client needs, participants are concerned with ensuring advisers are available and with adequate skills, proposals are processed expeditiously, services are suitable and adequately promoted.
To maximise revenue and profits, participants must meet client needs in the most efficient manner. This will involve measuring the costs and contribution of the advisers, the sales areas, the administration centre and individual services. (Optionally, analysis can be on an Activity Based Costing basis.)
Besides using the standard business reports, participants must interpret "comments from staff" and decide what additional information and reports they require to make sensible decisions. (The qualitative feedback facility is especially useful to stimulate discussion for participants who are not very numerate. And, a comprehensive reporting package, means that most requests for information can be provided.)
Besides to optional ongoing decisions covering staffing levels, training, product updating and promotion, teams can be faced with additional decisions (that cover changing the administration centre, opening new sales areas, launching and deleting services). Like the real world, participants must make decisions with inadequate and incomplete information. Decisions that they have to live with and that will not be optimum. However, they will do so in a safe and coached environment.
With some random demand variation, changing product attractiveness and service levels, participants must develop and implement a resilient business policy. Further, they must separate out the effect of their decisions from these uncertainties and dynamics. (However, to help the tutor, the simulator produces a tutor's audit and team commentaries.)
Implicit to the process of tactical management, teams must set up adequate processes to control costs, meet client needs and forecast the results of their actions. (To help the tutor, the simulator provides a list of each team's strengths and weaknesses and measures efficiency losses (cost overruns and sales losses).)
With participants working in small teams, they have the opportunity to share experience and knowledge and present and promote different viewpoints.
With participants working in small teams, they have the opportunity to share experience and knowledge, present and promote different viewpoints, and develop their people skills.
Optionally, at the end of the simulation, teams can be asked for make a formal board presentation covering objectives, strategies, process, the future (of the simulated business) and learning.
Documentation is provided separately for the UK and US Versions MS Word format and comprises:
A Participants' Manual that provides, for the participants. a description of the simulation, a description of their task and how to use the software.
The Background Notes describe the simulation for the trainer .Please ask us for a copy.
The Decision Forms are the forms used to communicate a team's decisions to the trainer.
Using the Simulator provides, for the trainer (and computer support staff), information about installing the simulation and the use of the software.
Running the Simulation provides, for the trainer, information about running the simulation.
Briefing is a MS Power Point briefing explaining the simulation to the participants. (You may find it useful if you review this before reading the briefs.)
|UK Versions||US Versions|
|Using the Simulator|
|Running the Simulation|
This is provided to allow you to download an evaluation version of the simulation.
The table below shows the files to download, their description and size. You should copy them to a folder, a USB Flash Drive or even to floppy discs! Run setup.exe. The program will then install.
If, instead of installing from the Web, you are installing from the CD-ROM version of this resource you can install directly by clicking setup.exe and opening the file.
Note: When downloading the setup.lst file you must right click and then select Save As. (If you left click the file will open - this is a feature of Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7.)
|setup.exe||Installation Program||137 Kbytes||
|Setup.lst||Installation Data||5 Kbytes||
|Profes1.cab||Simulator Files (1)||1,282 Kbytes||
|Profes2.cab||Simulator Files (2)||855 Kbytes||
Most recent update: 06/09/08
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