Community, Publications, and Events

The Centre for Service Management at Loughborough University will maintain a database of accredited companies and registered individuals. This will allow a community of operating model innovators to build. The link to the research centre then allows relevant research to be commissioned and current research to be integrated into the SOMS framework and practitioners thinking. Featured below are some links to our community of practice, to useful operating model publications, and to current members of our community.

The SOMS LinkedIn Community

The SOMS Community is a community of practice for individuals and organisations studying for and certified in SOMS. The Community provides a forum for individuals and organisations to discuss and debate current issues about SOMS and operating models. To join the Community, please follow the link.




Exploring Operating Models: SOMS Symposium - 30 January 2018

The Exploring Operating Models: SOMS Symposium on 30 January 2018, is being hosted by the Centre for Service Management, in the School of Business and Economics at Loughborough University. The SOMS Symposium will provide a thought provoking and inspiring forum for delegates and expert speakers to share ideas about the current state and relevance of operating models, operating model best practice, and the future directions of operating model research. For information about the symposium and to book a place, please use the following link.



Exploring the concept of an operating model

The concept of an operating model has come to the fore in operations management research in the last five years. Much of the available material about operating model is published by consultancies and there has been little academic focus on the definition of an operating model. In the recently published paper, Operating Model: An Exploration of the ConceptDr Nicola Bateman examines the concepts of an operating model, to provide a meaningful definition and framework of an operating model in a management context. The paper explores the current literature about operating models; discusses the different elements of existing operating models; and provides a new method for auditing operating models. The paper also discusses how operating models are linked to other operations management and management ideas, and the challenges of implementing and maintaining operating models. 


Symptoms  of a Poor Operating Model

An Operating Model workshop took place at OEE Consulting’s Future of Service Conference November 2015. The attendees were asked “How can you tell that your Operating Model design needs fixing?” The delegates combined responses were collated into a table for the use of other operating model practitioners. 




OEE Consulting is the leading specialist in operations transformation and improvement. Headquartered in Oxford, they have a global reach, with consultants and trainers working worldwide across multiple disciplines and languages.

“Our partnership with Loughborough University has enabled us to develop a class-leading programme in operations design. By combining our proprietary operating model design methodology, our learning and development expertise, and Loughborough’s robust SOMS framework, we have been able to deliver something truly unique. RBS have already seen some great results from their training, using their new expertise to effectively link business strategy and service proposition across a number of projects. This has delivered benefits in cost reduction and customer experience which traditional improvement techniques simply could not have achieved.” Mark Bilney - Director, Learning & Development, OEE Consulting

The Design of Service Operations training programme was developed in conjunction with Loughborough University. Click below to find out more.


“The holistic nature of SOMS has allowed a flexible approach that fits with our needs. The SOMS framework enabled us to create a learning journey that has been supportive in guiding our thinking in designing and maintaining our operating models, we have now have over forty people certified to foundation level and six people trained at Practitioner level. Whilst this is still a relatively new addition to our existing skillset we are already starting to see some tangible benefits through it’s application and seeing the new knowledge being turned into capability. I have no doubt this will benefit our business and our customers in the long term.” - Martin Bartram - Service Optimisation Manager, RBS

Ashridge Executive Education

Ashridge Executive Education has delivered specialist courses on strategy execution and organisation design for 15 years.

"The course Designing Operating Models was launched in 2013 to focus on the link between strategy and operations. We have been in conversation with Loughborough University to compare our approach with the SOMS framework and with the way the SOMS framework has been taught at Royal Bank of Scotland. We see the two approaches as highly complementary with the longer course allowing for more case work, tools and discussion of process."  Andrew Campbell - Director,  Ashridge Executive Education