How to #6 Monitor Change
At the last blog, How to #5 Implement Change, I covered the execution of the Change Management Plan. Now we can look at monitoring, which includes: recording and assessing data to validate the successes and stumbling blocks or failures of the project. Identifying both positive and negative effects throughout the change process will provide leadership with the information needed to determine the best course of action; to correct or adjust (redirect) the project and/or celebrate successes (which can be reproduced to influence future projects).
The results of these assessments will show those elements of the original plan that struggled to reach conclusion, those elements that reached a successful end without achieving the intended goal, and those elements that are unexpectedly burdensome to the operation (usually causing delays and a negative effect on the bottom line). It will also expose those processes that work, those that build confidence and could be employed along the way to improve other areas that are not performing as well. Continued monitoring will tell the story of whether the elements or combination of elements will be sustainable and provide insight for future control (management) of the processes.
Obtaining results is a simple matter of determining what type of progress should be tracked, process steps, use of materials, (inventory or purchasing), equipment, people, time and capacity as compared to the original process. What format will be used to collect and record the data, and how the data will be analyzed and reported? Have you met the desired outcome of The-Plan?
Well orchestrated Change Management Assessments will provide real-time progress and effectiveness of the planned objectives:
Schedule – Are you meeting the planned timeline?
Communication Efforts – Are your people exhibiting the expected level of awareness and doing the right things at the right times?
Are resources being used as planned (equipment, materials, documentation, time etc…)?
Process Assessment – Compare current results with the results from the original process by recording:
- Inputs Resources such as people, raw materials, energy, information, or finance that are put into a system or process. and Output The amount of energy, work, goods, or services produced by a machine, factory, company, process or an individual in a measurable period. that were associated with the process or processes prior to implementation of the change
- New or changed inputs and the expected outputs (results)
- Actual results of inputs and outputs as the process changes become effective
Defining your analytical tools may be challenging, often times the first set of results do not produce the information you thought you needed. Back to the old drawing board!
Redefine what details you need to measure to assure that the project is heading in the right direction. It is usually takes a team (brainstorming) to come up with the final set of monitoring tools. Using the initial set of results as a lead-in talking point will be like flipping the switch. Through the process of elimination the end result will produce a more clear set of measurement points that will produce better analytics. Don’t be surprised if you have to repeat this exercise. Of course, having a seasoned “change manager” in the room may increase the success of various phases of The-Plan and reduce the need for reevaluations, saving a great deal of time and keeping the project on schedule.
The final blog in my Change Management Blog Series is coming next. It will be a summary of Change Management and include a success story. I hope that my writings have been helpful and that you check back soon.