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Department Strategy & Positioning

If you don't know where you're going, you might end up somewhere else. Here are some of the areas in which Cella can help you begin with the end in mind.

Strategic planning is a discipline, and in order for an in-house agency to remain relevant and valuable to the organization, your department must embrace this process on a regular basis.

The primary purposes of a department-level strategic plan are to

  • Align the value proposition of the department with the needs of the organization
  • Guide the ongoing evolution of the department’s evolving capabilities
  • Drive cultural and operational improvement
  • Prepare for a merger or acquisition that will impact the creative team

It is difficult for a strategic plan to accommodate the many unpredictable organizational changes that will occur outside of the creative department. This planning process is very time consuming, and the political nature of the in-house environment can often make it difficult to build consensus around the future of the department. Cella helps our clients to develop and activate their department-level strategic plans, with industry best practices and the unique challenges of their organizations in mind.

It is imperative for an in-house agency to have a solid operational foundation to continuously build upon. In so doing, the department transparently demonstrates its purpose and added value.

This, however, is one of the most overlooked areas for departments in our industry. It is not uncommon for departments to be distracted by the business at hand and servicing those needs.

Cella’s Creative Operations Assessment is a highly engaging process that helps our clients gain an acute understanding of their unique operational improvement opportunities and how to effectively address those opportunities.

In the early phases of a CreativeOps (COPS™) Assessment, we will meet with your team to review all managerial and operational aspects of your department, producing a discovery and findings overview. This leads to a gap analysis that identifies the differences between your department's current performance and ideal future-state performance. The final output of a CreativeOps Assessment is a set of prioritized recommendations, developed specifically to close the operational gaps identified in your department.

Recommendations cover areas such as department strategy, process, organizational design, financial management, systems and technology and personnel development. Many of our clients will then use the results of their COPS™ Assessment to drive their 1-, 3-, & 5-year strategic plans.

An in-house creative group's funding model is a critical component to a department's operation. Financially accounting for creative resources can broadly affect the health of the operation in both positive and negative ways.

Whether your department's budget is fueled by a full cost-recovery chargeback system or you are working with a predetermined budget allocation (or a hybrid of the two), understanding the costs associated with providing creative services is a critical component to demonstrating and maximizing the value you are bringing to your organization.

Cella's subject matter experts in this category support our clients who are seeking to evaluate their department funding model options, optimize their current financial model, and establish chargeback rates.