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When we joined this consolidation and offshoring project, it was clear that focused attention to support and involve the people affected by the change would make a huge difference to the end result, as well as the journey to get there.

The background

This global real estate organisation initiated a project to consolidate parts of the UK Finance function into a single UK site and to offshore other parts to a new team being recruited in India, as part of their global shared services. As well as these relocations, a new workflow management tool was being implemented to support one of the finance processes.

Our aim was to ensure that everyone within the division had the information and support they needed to make a smooth transition to the new ways of working. 

The challenge

This was the biggest change programme the division had undertaken and the project was already underway when we were bought in to assist with change management. A large proportion of the 1,300 individuals affected by the change were based on client sites, making it harder to reach them directly through more traditional communication channels. Relative inexperience within the organisation of managing change and working with other cultures brought additional challenges. 

What we delivered

Support for leadership teams and line managers to successfully deliver change

  • Established a well-structured stakeholder management process then quickly focussed efforts to make the leadership team more visible.

  • Gave key individuals the tools and support needed to provide consistent messages across the organisation and spend time engaging with their teams face-to-face.

Accessible and reliable engagement

  • Created a new brand and identity for the programme to ensure that messages stood out and were easy to engage with.

  • Established dedicated information channels including a regular newsletter to reach all staff and ‘Q&A’ documents.

Allowing individuals to have a voice

  • Introduced staff surveys at key points that helped to identify areas of concern and resistance that we could then go on to address.

  • Formed a network of ‘change ambassadors’ who could share messages, represent their area of the business and support the project team.

Building competence within the teams

  • Coached the senior management team on communication and presentation skills

  • Delivered change management training for the new change ambassadors

  • Used video conferencing technology to build relationships and create understanding between the new and existing teams

  • Provided cultural awareness training for key managers and members of the Finance leadership team.

The results

In a short time, audiences felt better informed about the project and more engaged in the changes. This had a significant effect on the success of the implementation. The feedback from the project team was that our input to change and communications made the difference and ensured that the go-live date was met.

We didn’t shy away from difficult messages where needed and the feedback we received showed that our open and professional approach was valued by senior management and those who were going through change.

The tools and channels utilised over the course of the project have created a platform that is now being leveraged for business as usual as well as future changes within the organisation.

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