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When does change management end?

When does change management end?

It doesn’t. John F. Kennedy said “change is the law of life, and those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.”  I would echo that from a major transformation effort as well.  If you only think of past performance and present governance and program metrics, you will miss the future impact you can make.  It is easy to establish a program management and governance structure when immersed in a program…and to put in place key metrics for the program management side of the equation.  But how do you ensure you will reach the future state?  It starts with good planning (beyond the workplan) and a solid benefits realization framework that is measured and monitored after go live.

Look back. Look around. Look ahead.

A few recommendations to help effectively ensure success after “go-live” are outlined below.

  • Identify key stakeholders and change impact before starting. Before starting the program, work with the sponsors and other business leaders to identify the stakeholders both inside and outside the program.  Understand the impact of change for each one of the stakeholders so as to plan the evolution of change, not just during the program, but after as well.

  • Document how you will reach the benefits outlined in the business case, and in what timeframe. Just like you do for an implementation plan for a claims transformation, do the same to identify when your executive stakeholders can expect results.  For example, in a claims transformation, the results of process, organization and technology improvements will not be felt as soon as you go live. It takes time, especially based on the rollout schedule and seasonal volumes.  Outline the benefits expected at certain points (monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, etc.), in order to measure success.

  • Continue to measure and govern after “go-live.” Once you are live, you must continue to measure both the quantitative and qualitative impacts.  It may be reducing the  time it takes to process a glass claim after a claims transformation.  Or, for a customer experience program, it may be an improvement in net promoter score.  Neither of these changes will be instantaneous, but benefits will occur over time as the solution or new efforts are implemented.  Not thinking about how you will oversee and measure success after go-live will limit your ability to provide results back to executive stakeholders.  In addition, if you are measuring and monitoring progress, you will be able to make needed adjustments in order to achieve the benefits outlined in the benefits realization plan.

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