Beyond the Technology

Process Change, Education, & Change Management

Overview

Industries and organizations are going through a period of rapid technology changes that cause disruption along with innovation. Implementing new technologies to improve asset reliability, for example, is just the tip of the iceberg. Whether it is the adoption of condition-based maintenance for critical machinery or a similar shift in a manufacturing facility’s way of thinking and operating, what lies beneath ─ at the very foundation ─ is change management. This is critical to ensure the implementation is fully supported by the organization’s culture. It includes proper education/training in the new processes that employees will need to follow. It also requires governance for ongoing adherence to a different set of best practices. Depending on the size and significance of the change, it can call for the entire organization to adapt, from top to bottom.

Types of Change

Generally speaking, there are two main things that drive enterprise-wide changes: how complex is the change and how ready is the organization. Types of changes can be categorized as either programmatic or transformational:

  • Programmatic change – affects one function or sub-system, can be delegated, requires limited change management, and the power structure essentially remains intact
  • Transformational change – affects multiple functions or sub-systems, requires a change in culture, impacts the job scope and power structure, requires an executive sponsor, and involves extensive change management

Success Factors

Not all organizations have success when it comes to implementing new technologies. The successful ones are those who look beyond the technology, itself. Planning ahead of change is wise, and answering these questions is a good place to start:

  • In what way will the culture (systems, structure, and style of leadership) be impacted?
  • How will it change the existing operational processes?
  • What resources will be needed to conduct education/training?
  • What level of change management is required?
  • Who will provide governance/oversight following implementation?

The P-F curve below has been modified to illustrate the importance of project governance and other organizational structures to avoid project failure.

P-F Curve

Having the active involvement of your change management team, workstream champions, and leadership all contribute to structuring the change – leading to its ultimate success.

Removing the Barriers

It is human nature to resist change. Most companies will need to confront the following seven organizational barriers:

  1. Alignment -- Each function of an organization working to optimize its own performance, which may not be consistent with other functions
  2. Governance -- Competing priorities, limited resources, organizational patience, and leadership “drift”
  3. Leadership -- A lack of authority in decision-making and accountability
  4. Structure -- Holding to old processes, requirements, and behaviors
  5. Correct Metrics -- Relying on lagging or results-based metrics, instead of leading or behavior-based metrics
  6. Behavior, Communications & Change -- Focusing on the technical challenge and not on everything else.
  7. Discipline -- Lack of organizational discipline

Refer to our “Beyond the Technology” eBook for strategic solutions to these barriers. Download here.

Summary

We have found that strategic change management entails thinking through all of these elements, so that change sticks. The technology solution is not just something to be plugged right in; it requires time, attention, and finesse to roll out. In many cases, the technical change itself represents around 30%, while the organization and culture change can be as much as 70% of the overall effort. Allied Reliability can help at any stage of your technology implementation/change management journey to improve asset reliability, and increase the bottom line.

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Beyond the Technology: Process Change, Education, and Change Management

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ABOUT ALLIED RELIABILITY

Allied Reliability’s production and asset management experts are committed to optimizing equipment and processes. Our experts work with you for best outcomes. Understanding how critical asset failures impact the environment, production, financials, and safety enables us to deliver the right monitoring, analytics, decision making, and maintenance plans. We bring unique asset management content along with best practices, advanced tools, and proven methodologies to help customers move forward in their Digital Transformation journey to deliver enhanced performance.