In the previous few posts (see last post) on Managing the transition of Managed Services, we looked at a few issues that you have to consider when you are thinking of transitioning managed services to a new organisation -what are the key things to consider to ensure that the services you are transitioning are the right ones, the factors to look for in the new organisation to ensure that they are the right organisation for you, how you can manage the knowledge management and knowledge transfer from the old organisation to the new and also the interfaces you need to establish between the new organisation to your organisation and to other organisations and stakeholders. We also looked at the structures you need to establish to manage the transitioned service and the risks associated with the the transition.
In this, and last post in this series, we will look at your organisation’s readiness for the transition, change management and the transition process / project.
Readiness of the organisation
The most important question is whether your users are aware of this transition and the reasons behind this. Many a time you find that the users resist thus change and then you will find that it is difficult for you to get things done. One reason that users resist could be that they are used to the interfaces with the previous organisation and are unwilling to change to the new one. It is important that you make all the critical users aware that you are transitioning from one vendor to another.
You may want to inform all users what issues to expect during the transition and when the transition is complete. This will ensure that there are no surprises and users will be ready for any small issues.
Budgets: It is to be understood by the organisation that the transition phase is where you can expect to spend double of normal. You are paying the old organisation and the new. There are also odd costs for the transition like the cost of the transition program manager and many others.
Technically you should have ensured that all documentation, all code and all test data are ready before the transition begins. You cannot be running around searching for documentation and other artifacts during the transition process. In short, your house should be in order.
Most of the areas of change management have been covered under various headings in this and previous posts. However, to recap, I will briefly talk about the change management aspects you should put in place to make sure that the organisation can cope with the change.
The first and foremost thing to do is to ensure that the change is communicated properly to all the people in the organisation. It may be best if the communication came from the CEO rather than from you. The communication should be open and prepare people on what can be expected. You need to keep in mind that people normally react negatively to change. This is mainly due to fear of the unknown.
The other thing to do is to make sure that you have any required training plans in place to deal with the change.
There may be a need to (I say this with a lot of trepidation) align performance plan and evaluation parameters and also compensation policies to successful alignment with the change / transition. This is something that needs to be discussed and agreed with HR.
The transition project / process
I suppose this is what we have been discussing in this and previous posts! The main thing to remember is that the transition is not a simple one-off event. It is a complex organisational process. The repercussions of the transition can last for some time. Make sure that you are able and willing to get feedback from the process and make continuous improvements.You should be able to use both quantitative and qualitative data to drive the management and monitoring and the continuous improvement process.
One key thing is to make sure that you establish good relationship with the new organisation and the also with the old organisation. Without this, the transition process may be very erratic and ineffective.
The most important thing to keep in mind is to maintain the energy of the transition throughout the process / project. You and your team should have the same level of energy and enthusiasm throughout the project, not just at the beginning