Dan Puett

Manager - Sales Support

Practice and Value of Change Management

Change Management is a structured approach to shifting and/or transitioning individuals, teams, and organizations from a current state to a desired future state. It is an organizational process aimed at empowering employees to accept and embrace changes in their current business environment. Within project management, change management becomes a set of processes and activities that formally introduce and approve changes to the organization and individual employees.

Technology implementation in past years dealt with equipment replacing manual tasks, usually simple and repetitive. More recently, addition of new technology is more threatening because it can replace logic and reasoning previously completed by personnel that are more skilled. Introducing change threatens the structure and vested training of the individual within the organization, which can lead to resistance to change.

A successful technology implementation project must provide for strong change management.
The contra positive of not properly managing change results in embedding out-dated processes in technology. Most would agree that this is a failed implementation of new technology. The redesign of processes and activities and the subsequent management of the changes resulting determine the value and return on investment of a technology project.

Change Management techniques may include creative marketing to enable communication and social understanding about leadership’s goals, styles, and objectives. Organizational Change Management aligns groups’ expectations, communicates, integrates teams and manages training. It makes use of performance metrics, such as financial results, operational efficiency, employee satisfaction, and the perceived need for change, in order to avoid change failures or solve change-troubled projects.
Successful change management is more likely to occur if the following are included:

  • Benefits management to define measurable stakeholder aims and create a business case for their achievement
  • Monitoring of assumptions, risks, dependencies, costs, return on investment, and cultural issues affecting the progress of the project
  • Effective Communications that informs various stakeholders
    • of the reasons for the change (why?)
    • the benefits of successful implementation (what is in it for us, and you)
    • and the details of the change (when? where? who is involved? how much will it cost?)
  • An effective education, training and/or skills enhancement plan for the organization.
  • Personal counseling (if required) to alleviate any change related fears.
  • Status reporting of the implementation and fine-tuning as required.

The CIBER Lawson Practice and the Change Learning and Performance Practice can provide additional information about the valuable discipline of quality change management at http://www.ciber.com/erp/lawson/

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