The photo above show me (centre) pictured with the CEO of KeyedIn (Lauri Klaus - left) and the co-founder of KeyedIn (Eugine Blaine - right).
A Project I recently implemented at a FTSE100 business was to change an organisations ways of working regarding Portfolio Management Planning and Processes. The main objective of the Project was to provide the Portfolio Office and Senior Management teams with greater visbility of resourcing effort, spent and forecast, across Projects and Programmes, in order to aid better decision making.
This Project was under a wider transformation Programme of which i was also working on, as the Senior Project Manager.
Through extensive change management activities which included training, online videos, email notifications and the configuration of the tool itself the Project was successfully launched. Only 6 weeks after launching the tool and its new processes we had 100% of Projects and Programmes being forecast through the system and 90% of people using the timesheet functionality. This in itself was a great achievement considering individuals were being asked to change how they operated on a day to day basis. However what really helped create these impressive statistics were the ongoing communication activities that were carried out leading up to the launch, and the hands-on support from the Project team in the weeks after launch.
With the FTSE100 company being such a high profile organisation i was asked by the vendor (KeyedIn Solutions) to be a guest speaker at their March 2015 user conference, and share my experiences and lessons learned from the implementation, of which and i was only too happy to accept.
It was a great opportunity to stand in front of the invited audience, which included existing customers of KeyedIn, potential customers and Directors and the CEO of the KeyedIn organisation. I've embedded a copy of my presentation below where you'll also find a link to the video of the presentation itself. However here are just some of the key lessons i shared:
- If you are making changes to people ways of working consider how you will support these individuals in their understanding of why changes are being made and where necessary bring in a Change Manager to oversee this activity.
- Again if you are making changes to peoples way of working consider having change ambassadors from each business function to help land and tailor messages to suit their teams.
- Don't rush the launch and ensure you allow enough time to roll out changes to each user group, and if necessary provide a small gap between each rollout in order to cleanse any data the next user group are to use.
- Always work with the supplier when setting up test and training data in order that the data to be used can accurately reflect what it expected to be seen in the production environment.
Finally three key points that are the most important:
- As an organisation consider where you are in your maturity of the relevant processes and consider where you would like to be. However don't run before you can walk. Taking small steps towards your end goal rather than a big leap makes it more likely you will be successful.
- After launching any change accept there will always be a level of 'noise' from end users no matter what change management activities you've carried out. Always provide an avenue for people to share their thoughts and concerns, however do not make rash decisions and back-out changes. You must filter out the 'noise' and identify the facts behind any concerns.
- A change in the backend of a tool may look small e.g. ticking a box, however always consider what this means for the end users. It may mean you are asking them to change how they carry out a particular activity and always consider change management, if you want acceptance and buy-in.