Case Study: Ensuring Delivery Success through Focused Change Management
A leading Automotive OEM recently embarked on a transformation program to improve the planning and management of their precious test resources, leading to faster validation and reduced overall test costs. The implementation of the new Test Scheduling and Resource Management solution was designed to improve engineering quality of life. It would also increase transparency and communication during test phases, and improve the overall efficiency of the vehicle test cycle.
Given the number of individuals impacted and previous implementation history, MI-GSO | PCUBED partnered with the client to drive increased user acceptance and rapid adoption of the proposed solution. Increased adoption would allow for better capture of their intended return on investment.
Our team began by conducting a Change Readiness Assessment with the organization to assess the level of risk associated with this scale of change. The Change Readiness Assessment is a key intervention deployed as part of our Change Management practice. With the assessment results in hand the team then worked with the client to establish the right model for delivery.
Aligning Program Roadmap to ADKAR
The MI-GSO | PCUBED team implemented a blended multi-modal program consisting of two Agile projects and two traditional projects. The Agile projects focused on the development of the IT systems for test scheduling and vehicle tracking. The traditional projects meanwhile focused on the Organizational Change Management, and Program Management (business roll out) aspects respectfully.
Focused on maximizing user acceptance and rapid adoption, our team aligned the roadmap for organizational change actions following ADKAR. The ADKAR Model is defined as Awareness, Desire, Knowledge, Ability and Reinforcement. Based on the Stakeholder Assessment results, the team knew they needed to be proactive about managing the severity of resistance. Defining change actions as small nuggets that built incrementally over time helped to address change fatigue.
Each cycle, as depicted in the above chart, involved the ADKAR elements. This allowed for the approach and execution to be continuously refined. During Awareness, the team held meetings with the executive stakeholders to obtain sponsor buy-in. They then held kick off meetings with each of the departments including early mock ups of the system. The team highlighted questions raised into JIRA logs and added feature requests to the product backlog. Those that attended kick off meetings earned stickers which acted as Awareness beacons throughout the engineering community.
Based on results from the Stakeholder Assessment, the team needed to be proactive about managing the severity of resistance. The team defined the change as actions that built incrementally over time.
Manage the Change: Show, Don’t Tell
The team then conducted a Show and Tell event. They setup stages around the room to build Desire, providing demonstrations each highlighting different aspects of the solution. The survey results highlighted that 100% of attendees felt that the event was beneficial to their job.
An engineer could now log on to the system and Find their Vehicle immediately, reducing the time it would normally take each week from hours to seconds.
With the system operational, the team began the process of introducing functional groups to the system through hands-on classroom training. Based on the volume of users to be trained, the MI-GSO | PCUBED team instituted a Kanban board to show how teams were progressing through the stages of adoption. Immediately following the classroom training the teams were equipped with the knowledge to operate in their normal daily activities.
To ensure that the user community had the Ability to utilize the tool, the team created a web page on the company Intranet. A series of 18 “how-to” videos were created and uploaded to the site. In addition, an interactive, yet printable user reference guide was sent to all users.
Additional specialized training was developed and delivered to a team of 6 help desk change agents. These change agents would then provide the organization with on demand coaching and assistance with using the tool. At date of writing, the new system was the #1 search term on the company Intranet.
Reinforcement for Success
Post go-live the focus changed from driving user acceptance to driving utilization of the tool. During Reinforcement, the team monitored reports, supported ongoing mentoring sessions and focused on resolution of user pains. The product backlog was prioritized based on “most voted” feature enhancements which allowed for additional wins. Should there be a delay, an engineer could now utilize the system to Find the Next Available Time.
“MI-GSO | PCUBED introduced guidance and solutions that we just never would have thought of.”
By focusing on the change management required to decrease resistance and encourage adoption, the system implementation has been a resounding success. The client has improved the efficiency of the test vehicle scheduling process. Giving time back to the engineering community has further increased the desire amongst additional functional areas to adopt the tool-set.
The program will look at additional ways of using captured data to drive on time delivery and reduce idle time of test resources. The team maintains focus on an outcome of ever faster validation, reduced time to market and reduced operational costs.