This video explains the business benefits register and how you can use it to monitor the progress achieved for a given business benefit.
- I have a dog named Baxter. And like most dogs, he's become a member of the family. In fact, he's almost like my fourth child. How I have cared for him has changed as he has progressed through his life stages. For example, I fed him small meals more frequently as a puppy. When he became an adult, I fed less frequently with larger servings. As he has moved into older age, I've adjusted his diet to meet his changing needs. Just like precious pets, business benefits quickly progress through a lifecycle as well, and they need to be cared for diligently during the various stages of the lifecycle.
Let's examine the stages of the business benefits lifecycle and how you should monitor business benefits in each of these stages. The first stage is business benefit definition and analysis. Just like determining if one particular dog is right for your family, during this stage, you define the benefit and confirm the benefit is built with proper consideration for all areas of your business. Note that some benefits may be great for your business as a whole, but may be slightly detrimental to a subset of your organization.
The definition and analysis stage identifies these impacts, both positive and negative, and ensures a pathway forward is defined for all affected areas of your business. In other words, this defines what each business benefit will be and who will be impacted. The second stage of the benefits lifecycle is solution and design. During this lifecycle stage, the approaches, processes and/or technology solutions are designed to meet the business benefit defined in the first lifecycle stage.
In contrast to the last lifecycle stage, this stage defines how each business benefit will be achieved. Monitoring of the viability of the proposed solution is then conducted. The third stage is an evaluation of the organizational change management implications for each of your business benefits. New business benefits potentially bring about changes to processes, power shifts between departments, new roles and changed roles in your organization.
Each of these need to be defined and monitored. This is an area where many change initiatives fail, so it's important to analyze and monitor the change management implications of each of your business benefits. The fourth stage is process and user acceptance testing. The solutions defined and drafted need to be reviewed, understood and confirmed by all affected areas of your business. Key staff members of management both need to be in the loop at this stage.
This acceptance testing is performed by walking through each step of a new process and/or testing all of the components of a new technology solution. Any errors or failures to achieve the intended business benefits could be examined carefully, changed and reevaluated until a desirable outcome is achieved. The fifth stage for business benefit monitoring is training and post-implementation reviews. This lifecycle stage occurs immediately before and after your change is implemented for your business to use.
Every person who needs to alter their approach to work needs to be trained so they can understand what is expected of them to achieve the new business benefits. After the changes are put in place, you and your management team should carefully examine what is happening with each of these changes and determine whether or not the intended business benefits are being realized. The final stage in the benefits lifecycle is operational quarterly reviews after your new benefit-producing processes have been embedded in your organization.
These ensure that old work habits have not been reintroduced into your organization and that your business benefits are withstanding the test of time. So that's it, the steps and activities conduct for your business benefits monitoring lifecycle. Follow these diligently and your management team may not wag their tails like my dog Baxter, but they are likely to be quite happy.
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- Creating a business benefits roadmap
- Establishing a realization plan
- Monitoring business benefits
- Reporting results