Introduction To Change Management
Your organization regularly experiences change. Whether caused by new technology implementations, process updates, reorganization, or customer service improvements, change is constant and essential for growth and profitability. A consistent change management process will aid in minimizing the impact it has on your organization and employees.
Since the mid-2000s, organizational change management and transformation have become permanent features of the business landscape.
What is change management?
Change management is the application of processes, methods, the body of knowledge, skills, and experience to properly involve employees in the change and to optimize the benefits of an project.
Who is change management for?
Change Management is for any organization (I.e: SMEs and Large Enterprises) engaged in a change project where the benefits depend on people changing their behaviour.
Let’s take the implementation of a CRM or FSM (Field Service Management) system. Such a system requires the technicians and dispatchers as “users” to learn and use this new system. As opposed to the old system and paper-based reports and Excel, which were probably previously used for planning and scheduling, the correct handling of a new digital solution and the implementation of some processes often have to be practiced first. From our experience, we know that such a project can be implemented faster and more successfully with the help of change management.
5 steps of change management
1. Strategy For Change
Identify change characteristics
How major is the change?
What is wrong with the way used right now?
What is the focus of the change?
What are the benefits?
Who will be affect by the change?
Who should be involved?
Who's in charge?
What is the timeline and does it compete with other Projects?
As you prepare a strategy for managing change it's necessary to answer these questions clearly and factually.
So then, you can determine what will be specifically improved.
Define what will be improved
Due to your answers to the previous questions, you can define the focus and concretize the main goal of the change project. As well as this is essential for improving your process. This also involves defining the resources and individuals that will facilitate the process and fill key positions.
As a rule: knowing what to improve creates a strong base for clear, ease, and successful implementation.
2. Change Management Plan
What is a Change Management Plan? and What is the purpose?
With a change management plan, you can manage and control the change during the execution. It also ensures control in the project’s scope, budget, schedule, resources and plans to manage quality and risk issues.
It is important to anticipate and control the impact of change on employees and customers.
Develop a change management plan
• Mention the project constraints (i.e: scope, budget, schedule, and quality) according to their priorities.
• Track and approve every change to the project.
• Estimate the probability and volume of change to project deliverables and express this in terms of the project constraints: (i.e: scope, budget, schedule, and quality).
• Estimate total project effort (e.g., staff, time, etc.) required to manage, evaluate, and approve change requests.
• Define the evaluation workflow and the documentation to be produced by the evaluators, establish the principles to be followed in the evaluation: Evaluation priorities and Classification of change impacts.
• Establish guidelines for integrating changes into project documents.
• Establish guidelines for communicating changes to the project team.
3. Involve Your Employees
Often managers try to explain that the new methodology, the system or the general change, is a good idea for the organization just to convince the employees. However, transparency would be the right thing to do. They should share information as plainly and completely as possible. In the absence of clear and factual communication, employees tend to create their own information about the change, and rumours become facts. Also, keep in consideration that you should open the door for the employees to express their concerns, and you should listen carefully. They may have a veritable point that you should take into regard.
As a rule: Be open, be honest, and keep the communication channels open. Change is a team effort.
At this stage, leaders should be prepared to appreciate employees’ personal concerns, and to address questions such as: Who else should be involved? How can we work with others to get them involved in what we are doing? Will I have to learn new skills? Can I do it? How will I find time to implement this change?
4. Implement Change Plans
Through all of the above, a company can build a strong knowledge base of what needs to be improved and how implementation can take place. If you know what you want to implement, if you have developed a plan for it and your employees are ready to change, then you can start the implementation. But there will be pressures and unexpected challenges. Now is the time when your employees need lots of support to help them get the change right.
5. Evaluate Progress & Celebrate Success
Evaluation provides an opportunity to reflect and learn from what your employees have done and how they reacted with the new implementation, appreciate the outcomes and think about new ways to support and help them. It gives you also the chance to intervene in time in case of problems.
Be prepared to share early wins and proof that the change is making a positive difference. It’s also important for the organization and employees to celebrate the progress, not just when they achieve a goal.
Furthermore, people have a tendency to resist change for a variety of logical, emotional and instinctual reasons. Certainly, resistance to change is a primary reason that large organizational changes fail.
Finally, change Management seeks to reduce resistance to change with persuasion, negotiation and motivation techniques.
Therefore we prepared this article to be as a guideline for your organization to encourage you to implement mfr as a trusted field service software with a clear platform, instead of Excel, spreadsheets, and the old systems.