Transformation programs underpinned by technology require a thorough understanding of how the company makes money and the levers that can be pulled to create value.
Typically, the anticipated program value drives the importance of the solution acceptance and the business readiness acceptance activities, such as overall program governance, change management efforts, learning requirements and communication. It is important to note that this drive to link workforce transformation programs with corporate strategies is the key characteristic of an effective human resources team that is aligned with and takes responsibility for overall company success.
Business readiness acceptance
Although we are not discussing the technology solution acceptance steps in this article, we do acknowledge the importance. Our focus is on the business readiness acceptance activities that are critical for successful implementation of solutions.
From our experience, we know that technology programs continue to empower the business to take on more responsibilities for workforce management activities. Both practice and data are soon getting integrated with general business to drive strategic business decisions about talent and productivity.
As these changes unfold, the organisational culture seeks for predictability to know what the future holds in store. Company culture does not like the loss of the known, so change management principles of awareness, understanding and enablement are important.
When new ways of work and working models are embedded and well adopted by an organization, business benefits thus identified are more likely to be achieved. Embedding change requires comprehensive planned and tailored approach with the appropriate mix of leadership, interventions and support mechanisms in place that are suitable for all types and scale of change.
The Change Management Framework
1. Governance: Effective governance is required to ensure that the transformation program objectives are met and a sustainable business outcome is achieved. Also, the change management delivery model with strong monitoring and reporting capabilities, as well as business involvement and executive sponsorship is to be mapped, agreed, and followed.
2. Leadership and stakeholder analysis: Leadership, as the driver of organization culture, will play key role in driving the success of a program and therefore concentrated efforts to focus on understanding the leadership needs and driving active sponsorship is important for the overall change management strategy.
Individual stakeholders and groups impacted by the change are identified, understood, and addressed including what might impact their capacity to support the change.
3. Value realization: A comprehensive approach to tracking business benefits for the realization of value as identified in the business case is established up front and implemented as a part of the program. This includes the confirmation of business benefits, benefit owners, target measures, dependencies and performance management.
4. Process redesign and organizational alignment: Prior to solution implementation, the organizational structure and business processes must be reviewed for design decisions. This includes the business operating model, policies, job architecture, skills and capabilities, delegations, workflow approvals and role based permissions.
5. Engagement and Communication plan: This plan defines, tracks and manages the engagement and communications activities for the program by audience and channel. Also the key messages required to effectively engage and communicate during and following the program are managed.
It should cover detailed activities for the next 30 days, scheduled activities for the upcoming 60 days and planned activities for the future 90 days.
6. Learning and collaboration: All individual employees impacted by the program must receive relevant training at the appropriate pace to be prepared for the transition to new operating models, processes, systems, and tools. To achieve training effectiveness, the impacted groups should be moved to a point of acceptance of the change, prior to commencing training and support activities.
7. Business readiness: A clear plan is required that defines all operational readiness activities on specific key business areas, and high impact teams in preparation, transition, and post implementation support.
The business further assesses this plan on the level and completion rate of each activity. It should hold significant weighing upon the overall go/no-go decisions of a program.
Change management programs introduced by a business, not just help successful implementation, but also ultimately drive value to link back to business strategies.
Change management therefore ensures that the organizational culture, leaders, and individuals embrace, adopt, and proficiently use new technology and processes to sustain the ongoing impact and realization of business value.
Author credit: Michelle Clyde, Business Transformation Leader at Presence of IT, a leading consultancy and provider of the world’s foremost Human Capital Management solutions.
Michelle is a dynamic and visionary leader with extensive experience in leading business transformations, cloud technology solutions delivery and value realisation within the Human Resources space across large-scale projects and business programs at work.