Change Management & IT Implementations: The Readiness Manifesto
When an organization undergoes a large-scale IT implementation, the project’s technical readiness is usually well-planned and consistently executed. Project management activities always revolve around scope, deliverables, and concrete timelines. However, operational readiness, or the well-defined plan to prepare individuals to use new technology, is too frequently overlooked. These are the change management tactics that address optimal utilization and adoption of new tools, ultimately combatting barriers to sustainability. IT Departments are often credited for implementing key projects and impactful technologies that have supported strategic initiatives and organizational goals. Almost always, such projects follow standard project management rigor and technically stay on track. However, they can also experience significant bumps just prior to go-live, particularly surrounding users’ lack of perceived preparedness. Therefore it is imperative to create a Readiness Playbook that addresses the following core activities of operational readiness: Communicate (users must communicate and partner with peers about scope and progress of the project); Educate (know the high-risk workflows and key metrics for success); and Update (users must make required changes that are impacted by IT implementation before go-live). Change management, the bridge between “implementing a solution” and an organization ultimately realizing the benefits associated with the change, is key in the success of any IT project. This process is critical in helping transition impacted users from the current state to the future state (as defined by the change) in a way that minimizes productivity loss & negative impact, while at the same time maximizes the speed of adoption and ultimate utilization of the change throughout the organization. Results are only achieved when users are involved and participating in the change. Establishing a robust readiness framework is imperative.
This session in intended for people with interests in implementation science and/or change management principles.