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Integrating change management and project management

 

When an organization introduces a change with a project or initiative, that change needs to be effectively managed on both the technical side and the people side. A technical side focus ensures that the change is developed, designed and delivered effectively. The discipline of project management provides the structure, processes and tools to make this happen. A people side focus ensures that the change is embraced, adopted and utilized by the employees who have to do their jobs differently as a result of the project. The discipline of change management provides the structure, processes and tools to make this happen.

Project management and change management both aim to increase the likelihood that projects or initiatives deliver the intended results and outcomes. While each discipline can function independently, the most effective approach is to integrate change management and project management to create a unified approach to implementing change on the technical front and people side front. This tutorial presents an overview of integrating change management and project management, including recent data on the effectiveness of integration.

 

Why integrate change management and project management

Integrating change management and project management creates value on a given project or initiative for a number of reasons:

Enables a shared objective

When project management and change management are integrated, the efforts of both can be focused toward a singular objective - improving the performance of the organization by successfully implementing a change that delivers the intended results and outcomes.

Enables proactive steps

When change management is integrated into the project management steps, efforts to manage the people side of change can more proactively identify and mitigate risks, address anticipated obstacles and resistance, and build commitment and buy-in for the change.

Enables sequencing and alignment

When technical activities and people side activities are integrated, the right steps can be taken at the right time in the project lifecycle to help employees embrace the change and produce the right outcomes for the project.

Enables an exchange of information

Integrating change management and project management activities improves the flow of information. On the front end, the integrated approach helps ensure that impacted employees are receiving the appropriate messages. On the back end, it helps ensure that the project team receives effective feedback on adoption, usage and reaction to the change.

 

Dimensions of integration

Integrating change management and project management can take place across numerous dimensions. Four common dimensions of integration are:

People dimension Integrating on the people dimension requires architecting the relationship between the project team and the resource or resources dedicated to change management - integrating at the "who is doing the work" level. In the simplest terms, the change management resources either sit on the project team or sit outside of, but in support of, the team.
Process dimension Integrating on the process dimension involves sequencing and aligning the technical side activities with people side activities - integrating at the "what work is being done" level. The process dimension has a key role in determining when change management begins during the project lifecycle.
Tool dimension Integrating on the tool dimension involves identifying particular tools that can be extended to include both a technical side and people side component - integrating at the "what tools are being used to do the work" level. Risk assessments and communications plans are two common tools that can be effectively integrated.
Methodology dimension Integrating on the methodology dimension moves beyond "in project" integration and toward the creation of a common set of steps applied by any project that addresses both the technical side and the people side of the change. There is value to an integrated project delivery approach that addresses both the technical and people elements, but hard wiring a "one-size-fits-all" methodology also has potential risks.

 

Data on effectiveness of integration

With the value of integrating change management and project management and the dimensions of integration established, the question remains: how well are practitioners integrating these two disciplines? The graph below presents data on the effectiveness of integrating change management and project management from a recent Prosci webinar. 156 webinar attendees provided input. Only 16% of webinar attendees indicated that change management and project management were integrated well or extremely well on their projects. 50% of webinar attendees indicated the disciplines were integrated poorly or extremely poorly.

 

Prerequisites to effective integration

Even when change management and project management are both applied on a change, they may not necessarily be integrated. Several important prerequisites must be in place for change management and project management integration to occur. These prerequisites include:

  1. Focus on results and outcomes - The project team must be focused on, responsible for and held accountable for delivering results and outcomes for meaningful integration to occur. If the project team is only held accountable for "flipping the switch" or hitting a go-live date, then integration is difficult. Likewise, change management resources must define their own success in terms of the achievement of project results and outcomes, not simply executing change management activities (such as number of communications delivered or number of employees trained). This shared focus on results and outcomes is the cornerstone of successfully integrating the technical side and the people side of change.

  2. Recognition of the role and value of change management - Before integration can occur, there needs to be an acknowledgement of the role and value of change management. Change management must be viewed as valuable and as a crucial component of project delivery. As a change management practitioner, this means making a case for change management that directly connects to the success of the project or initiative. While there are a number of approaches for making this connection, applying change management must be shown to have a direct impact on realizing benefits and achieving the desired results and outcomes (read more about making the case for change management).

  3. Structured and rigorous approach to change management - Project management brings a structured process and set of deliverables to the technical side of change. Change management should also bring a structured process and set of deliverables to the people side of change. Without structure and rigor, it is difficult to integrate change management activities into a project delivery approach. Additionally, a structured and rigorous approach to managing the people side of change increases the credibility and accessibility with sponsors, project managers and project teams.

 

Conclusion

Success for a project or initiative results from an effectively designed, developed and delivered solution that is embraced, adopted and utilized by impacted employees. Project management and change management are complementary disciplines with a common objective. When integrated in the delivery of a project or initiative, project management and change management together provide a unified approach for achieving the desired results and outcomes of organizational change.

 

Attend a Prosci 3-day Certification Program to learn a process-driven, tool-rich approach to change management that can be effectively integrated into project management.

  • Dec 20 - 22, 2011: San Francisco, CA area
  • Jan 24 - 26, 2012: San Francisco, CA area
  • Jan 24 - 26, 2012: Denver, CO area
  • Feb 14 - 16, 2012: Washington, DC area
  • Feb 14 - 16, 2012: San Francisco, CA area
  • Feb 28 - Mar 1, 2012: Chicago, IL area
  • Feb 28 - Mar 1, 2012: Orlando, FL area
  • March 6 - 8, 2012: Orlando, FL area
  • March 13 - 15, 2012: San Francisco, CA area
  • March 13 - 15, 2012: Houston, TX area
  • March 20 - 22, 2012: Denver, CO area
  • March 27 - 29, 2012: Washington, DC area

See the full calendar and learn more about the program, or call +1-970-203-9332 to find an open session.  Brochure  |  Register

 

 

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Prosci Change Management Certification

Program highlights:
  • Apply the methodology as you learn it on a real project
  • Learn from experienced executive instructors
  • Become part of a change management community
  • Earn 2.4 CEUs, 24 PDUs and 23.5 HRCI recertification credits
  • Walk away with products and course materials worth over $1000

Download the certification program brochure

Upcoming sessions with availability:

  • Dec 20 - 22, 2011: San Francisco, CA area
  • Jan 24 - 26, 2012: San Francisco, CA area
  • Jan 24 - 26, 2012: Denver, CO area
  • Feb 14 - 16, 2012: Washington, DC area
  • Feb 14 - 16, 2012: San Francisco, CA area
  • Feb 28 - Mar 1, 2012: Chicago, IL area
  • Feb 28 - Mar 1, 2012: Orlando, FL area
  • March 6 - 8, 2012: Orlando, FL area
  • March 13 - 15, 2012: San Francisco, CA area
  • March 13 - 15, 2012: Houston, TX area
  • March 20 - 22, 2012: Denver, CO area
  • March 27 - 29, 2012: Washington, DC area

Visit the certification training page

Email a certification inquiry or call
970-203-9332 to register today.

“The best training class I have had in years. Goes way beyond the strategy and framework and focuses on real world problems and the tools to solve them.”
- Jennifer J., April 2009 participant

“This was the most effective and engaging course I've ever taken. I feel that I can truly use this knowledge in my personal and professional life immediately.”
- Lisa S., February 2009 participant

“Awesome - truly one of the most beneficial programs I have ever attended - immediate application on the job!”
- Robin S., March 2009 participant

“This program absolutely over-delivered my expectations. I now feel more prepared and better equipped to do my job.”
- Paul S., January 2009 participant

 

 

Offerings for applying Prosci's change management methodologies:

Training:

  • Change management certification ($2800)- 3-day program where you bring a project you are working on and apply all of the assessments and tools as you learn them - taught by former fortune 500 executives at locations across the US - includes over $1000 in products, including the Best Practices in Change Management benchmarking report, the Change Management Toolkit and the Change Management Pilot Pro 2010
  • Train-the-trainer ($3500) - learn how to teach Prosci change management training programs in your organization
  • Onsite training - bring Prosci to your location for 3-day certification programs, 4-6 hour executive briefings, 1-day manager programs or 1-day employee programs - call +1-970-203-9332 for more information

Methodology tools:

  • Change Management Toolkit ($389) - hardcopy 3-ring binder presenting Prosci's change management methodology, includes templates, checklists and assessments for managing the people side of change (includes USB drive)
  • Change Management Pilot Pro 2010 ($449) - online tool including Prosci's change management methodology, eLearning modules and downloadable templates, assessments, presentations and checklists
  • Change Management Guide for Managers and Supervisors ($189) - tools to help supervisors engage and coach their direct reports through change (includes 4 copies of the Employee's Survival Guide)
  • PCT Analyzer ($149/$349) - web-based tool for collecting PCT Assessment data, analyzing results, identifying risks and developing action steps

References and books:

  • Best Practices in Change Management benchmarking report ($289 / quantity discounts available) - journal-style report with lessons learned and best practices from 650 participants, presented in an easy-to-use format - reads as a checklist of what to do and what not to do
  • Change Management: the people side of change ($18.95 / quantity discounts available) - a primer for anyone involved in organizational change that addresses why manage change, individual change management and organizational change management
  • ADKAR: a model for change ($18.95 / quantity discounts available) - the definitive work on Prosci's ADKAR® Model
  • Employee's Survival Guide to Change ($14.95 / quantity discounts available) - a handbook to help employees survive and thrive during change, answers frequently asked questions and empowers employees to take charge of change

 

 

*** Prosci also offers leadership packages - groupings of products at discounts that offer you some of the most helpful and common combinations of Prosci change management resources

 

 

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