Organizations looking to improve their business operations and stay ahead of the competition should strongly consider implementing various Business Transformation Initiatives (BTIs) such as robust Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) tools, Digital Transformation (DT) updates, talent changes, facilities upgrades, or Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A), among others.
Transforming your business brings great value, but undergoing various BTIs can be challenging, particularly for firms lacking in-depth knowledge or sufficient resources. This is where consulting services come into play. By engaging a consultant, organizations can leverage targeted expertise to better understand the nuances of BTIs and develop effective strategies that will help them reach their goals.
Organizations should strive to accomplish as much of the BTI process internally as they possibly can to reduce costs, increase employee buy-in, and retain corporate knowledge. But, at some point, the organization will likely need outside help because most companies don’t possess all the required skills to successfully implement BTIs on their own. These skills can include comprehensive knowledge of the BTI, writing of proper requirements, project management, and change management. Large organizations might possess some of these skills, but not all.
Furthermore, leadership team members are likely overworked if they are performing regular duties in conjunction with the BTI. HireBetter can provide backfill and interim support so experienced leaders can give more focus to the BTI or regular duties as needed.
With that said, the purpose of this guide is to outline five key areas where seasoned consultants can help your organization implement different BTIs to reach your desired outcomes.
First – Understanding
A basic understanding of each BTI is crucial for the successful operation of any organization. While most companies opt for an updated version of their existing system, implementing a new system could be a better option because it provides an opportunity to review processes, look forward, and consider doing things in new ways.
It’s also important to set realistic expectations since change doesn’t happen overnight. Setting and communicating these expectations is one area where the perspective and expertise of consultants can make a difference.
Consultants also provide valuable insights into best practices for BTI implementation, work with the organization’s stakeholders, and guide organizations toward achieving their BTI goals. The main takeaway is that embracing BTIs can benefit the organization in ways that weren’t previously considered.
Second – Writing the System Specifications
Once you have a deeper understanding of what BTI’s are, then it’s time to start writing down what you want the new initiative or system to do. Specifying your requirements is a vital part of business transformation for several reasons. Without guidelines for the new system, it would be impossible to compare the options available to you. Additionally, the specifications keep the initiative within certain parameters so that your project doesn’t veer off course, and you end up with something you didn’t need. Finally, if an outside consultant or integrator is being used to implement the system, it informs them of exactly what needs to be delivered. As a side note, a consultant can also help you write the specifications.
Some larger companies may find it challenging to adopt a new system due to the need for extensive retraining and potential operational disruption caused by even minor changes to processes and procedures. However, it is necessary to embrace change as it brings new opportunities rather than sticking to the status quo.
Since the last time you implemented a new system, technology has probably advanced significantly. What was once impossible 5-10 years ago is now common practice. Procedures that were once necessary may now be unnecessary and inefficient.
Additionally, sometimes our experiences can limit our perspective and make it difficult to imagine new possibilities, which is another reason it’s important to seek out the guidance of an experienced BTI consultant.
Third – Managing the Project
Even companies with established project management teams can benefit from the expertise of external consultants. For example, a key responsibility of project managers is estimating how long tasks will take and preparing for unexpected situations by adding in extra time. Since unexpected events can happen, project managers need to have prior BTI experience to identify potential issues and correct them as they arise.
Further, when seeking assistance from system providers and integrators, be aware that they may be overly optimistic to win and keep the contract. While system integrators may suggest managing the project themselves, this isn’t recommended. Instead, consider hiring experienced project managers from consulting firms to ensure success.
Fourth – Managing Change
For a long time, companies didn’t give much importance to change management consultancy and considered it a luxury expense. It was often added to the budget only to be removed later when the costs had to be reduced. This was because companies believed that the changes only affected the user interface and would not impact the core business activities such as buying, order entry, and accounting.
These companies wrongly assumed that providing some training and making the new system look like the old one would be enough. But the belief that the new system will somehow be a replica of the old one is incorrect. The reason for implementing change is to have different options, routines, and methods. So, if you claim that the new system is just like the last system, this can lead to frustration as employees use the new system and quickly find out there is more to it than originally thought.
Employees who were experts in the old system may feel disoriented and inexperienced in the new system. This can lead to frustration and may cause them to stop working altogether, regardless of their level of experience.
Similarly, if employees perceive the change as being too big, they may choose to leave for a less intimidating work environment. This can result in the organization losing valuable employees when they are needed the most.
Clear communication is important in all areas of business transformation. However, seeking advice on what needs to be communicated, and how, from an experienced project manager will help the change to be less difficult.
Fifth – Implementing the System
The implementation of a new system requires more than just technical expertise, it also requires a thorough understanding of the processes and procedures that will be impacted by the change. Consultants who specialize in BTIs can provide valuable assistance throughout the entire project from start to finish.
Moreover, consultants have access to tools and resources that most organizations do not have on hand. For example, they can define best practices for implementation as well as help create specific performance metrics that allow businesses to track progress and make course corrections when necessary. They also have experience working with different vendors and tailoring solutions for each organization’s needs.
Having an experienced consultant oversee the implementation process can also help reduce costs associated with the project. This includes helping to identify potential sources of waste or mismanagement and making sure that the implementation is completed on time and within budget.
Hiring a professional consultant to assist with large-scale BTIs is essential for any organization that wants to maintain a competitive advantage. Consultants are experts in planning, management, change management, and implementation of BTIs. They can help ensure that initiatives stay on schedule, within budget, and deliver desired outcomes. Furthermore, having an experienced consultant oversee the process can help identify potential sources of waste or mismanagement before they become serious issues.
When you consider hiring a consultant for such projects, be sure to find one with prior experience in the field as well as advanced knowledge of business processes. This way you’ll know you have someone who can handle the complexities of BTIs from start to finish while helping your business reach its goals. Ultimately, investing in the right consultant can lead to more efficient operations and greater success in today’s dynamic marketplace.
HireBetter is a leading global hiring firm with years of experience helping organizations navigate their most complex projects. Our team of experienced consultants is here to help you find the best solutions for your BTIs while providing the guidance needed to ensure successful implementation and maximum ROI. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you drive your organization’s transformation. We look forward to hearing from you!