Often, due to lack of time and budgetary pressure, certain steps in the implementation of transformation plans are rushed or even forgotten. At the end of the day, strategic plans are at best delayed and cost the company more money , at worst abandoned or identified as failures. The following principles can be used to ensure the success of your transformation project.
A transformation plan is above all a project!
Let’s go back to the definition of a project by the NF EN ISO 9000 standard to get an idea: a single process, which consists of a set of coordinated and controlled activities with start and end dates, undertaken with the aim of achieving an objective in accordance with specific requirements such as time, cost and resource constraints.
Five themes emerge from this:
Why does the requirement have to be clear?
The company’s transformation plan must always meet a relevant need from a strategic, economic and social point of view.
The work of the expression of need is essential because it is the basis of your approach. It gives the objectives, the scope. It is understandable by all and leaves no room for interpretation.
Do you want to change the type of management of the company? Define your target well, e.g. “Increase employee empowerment and engagement by letting them set their own goals”
A transformation project starts with a good organization
Choosing a team that is expert and highly motivated by the subject is essential, as they will be the ones to carry out the change! A transformation program must be embodied, employees must be involved, listening, being proactive, and sometimes standing back. Finally, communication will also be a key to success.
The team will consist of:
Know how to estimate your transformation plan and plan it in stages
From the expression of need, the program must be divided into several clear steps, which we will call projects here. Each of the projects, or even sub-projects, responds to a predefined objective, with concrete results. Of course, we’ll have to remain agile, to adapt as we go along.
The estimation is then a decisive step. It will be of quality if it is based on a set of elementary and coherent tasks or sub-projects. The more detailed the tasks, the better you can estimate them!
Several methods exist but we can retain the PERT which is based on sceneries (the best (M), the average (m), and the worst (P)) and an effort = (M+4m+P)/6
Steering and managing the risks of its strategic transformation plan
Two levels of management are necessary to cover all the subjects and to monitor the transformation programme.
A Steering Committee (COPIL) :
A Project Committee (COPRO):
How can you anticipate the risks and avoid your transformation project going off track?
A simple risk approach is to assign a probability and severity criterion to each identified risk. This makes it easy to evaluate the criticality level of each risk on a 2-dimensional graph.
Then, arbitrations take place, either spatial (program perimeter) or temporary (deadline) and the project manager will have to constantly rethink the triptych Cost/ Quality/ Deadline.
Do I need to bring in more people to avoid being late, or to maintain the original scope?
Collaborate, communicate and lead change throughout the company's transition
Transformation projects are often complex and require the intervention of several departments of the company, which makes the answers to the problems more creative and relevant.
This suggests reinforcing the company’s ability to work cross-functionally and not vertically, and to encourage communication at all levels, including from project managers.
Finally, change management must be carried out from the beginning of the program by involving key users, in order to remove all blocking points as they arise.
In conclusion, there is no miracle recipe for a successful transformation plan, but there are project management fundamentals to be respected.
Defining the objective, choosing the key players, involving all stakeholders, managing the program and remaining agile are the main keys to the success of strategic transformation projects.