8 CRITICAL ELEMENTS TO HELP YOU DECIDE TO HIRE, BUY, RENT OR BUILD THE CHANGE MANAGEMENT RESOURCES YOU NEED
I am asked several times a week if I know anyone I can recommend to fill an open change management position, so I know there must be a huge demand for qualified change management professionals. Right now, it appears that major companies and industries are seeing the value of change management and feel the need to ‘have some of that’ in their respective organizations. Although there are multiple resourcing strategies available to organizations, the pendulum appears to be swinging in the direction of hiring full-time, permanent change management staff.
You might think that, as a provider of change management consulting, learning and training services I would be opposed to this shift in resourcing strategy. My view is quite the opposite -- I think it’s great! The fact that leaders and hiring managers are recognizing the value of change management, and the positive impact it can have in improving the way in which change happens and in improving the overall bottom line, reinforces the need for decision makers to have choices in their resourcing decisions.
Although leaders may believe their best option is to hire a change management resource, there are other viable choices. The organization might choose to buy change management support to focus on a specific change effort, which is where firms like LaMarsh Global offer great value. They can also rent or contract temporary resources as supplemental employees without adding official headcount. Or, they can build change management expertise from within their existing workforce. All of these are viable resourcing options. And all of these options have pros and cons depending on your specific situation.
So how do you make the best decision to hire, buy, rent or build the change management resources you need?
When I'm asked for advice or even to participate in selection and hiring decisions, senior leaders engaging me in the process are curious about how I specifically go about forming a recommendation. Of course, whenever you are dealing with people, there are no definitive rules, but we know gut reactions and intuitions typically aren’t good enough. For me, I try to make the process as analytical as possible. Among your considerations should be these eight critical elements:
- Timing – Can the change effort wait 8 – 12 weeks for a hire to occur, or is the change management expertise/support needed immediately?
- Organizational commitment – Does the organization value and endorse change management and recognize/reinforce its application?
- Risk Management – Is the decision to apply change management a proactive or a reactive approach to attaining acceptance and adoption by those impacted by the change?
- Available qualified resources – How likely is it that qualified new hires or supplemental resources are readily available?
- Budget and headcount – Is there immediate available headcount and/or are there dollars to invest in managing the current change?
- Management capability and capacity – Do you have leaders with the skill and experience to guide and manage change resources and assign and evaluate change related tasks?
- Organizational readiness – Does the organization understand change management and have a proven, successful change management methodology and tool set?
- Line of sight – does the need focus on immediate change projects or is there a longer term desire to build internal change capability?