The importance of proper change management (I)

24 de June de 2019

One of our Proactivanet coworkers, José Luis Fernández, illustrates with 2 examples the importance of managing changes correctly. This is the first part of the post: in the coming weeks we will share the second example with you. Thank you!

Many organizations manage the changes arising in the organization or IT systems either poorly or not at all , which winds up having a direct impact on the business, and, let’s remember, having an impact on the business means costs, unused opportunities and poor image, which, in short, means losing money. As the saying goes, nadie escarmienta en cabeza ajena, nobody can teach anyone else a lesson, but, just in case, we can help the reader understand the importance of proper change management. We will give two examples that have an impact on real companies (although for obvious reasons we will not state their names).

Stakeholders and correct change management

El primer ejemplo evidencia la importancia de identificar los The first example illustrates the importance of identifying the stakeholders, involving them in planning and maintaining smooth communication.. To provide a context, the reader might imagine a multi-national company that is going to change the authentication system of one of the corporate management systems. The proposal for change is to integrate this system into the corporate authentication system and thus facilitate the use of the application for employees, since the same username and password that they use for other applications will also work in this one. This system is important because in addition to the employees using it on a daily basis, it compiles information from which metrics can be extracted that are consulted by the management, and it also consolidates data that must be submitted to third parties. The update is planned for a working day during office hours, and the employees will be notified just two days in advance by email. What happens on the day of the update? A swarm of employees contact the support department to ask how to access the application; a meeting with senior management cannot be held as planned because they cannot access the application to extract the required reports, and, as if this wasn’t enough already, one of the branch offices of the organization that was being audited cannot access the application to present to the auditor the evidence that he needs.

It is important that the reader understand that there was no technical fault: the integration with the authentication system worked properly from the first try (a trial run had been conducted previously in a testing environment, and so a minimal change management had been carried out). Nevertheless, since nobody explained appropriately to the users how to access the application or gave special instructions to the support department, in reality, the employees could not access the application for almost two whole days. It is also important that the reader understand that sending notification by email is not the same thing as effective communication. As I was recently reminded in a course that I attended, communication is what the addressee receives and understands, not what is sent to him.

If you wish, you can continue reading in The importance of proper change management (II)

Subscribe to our Blog