Technology is only half the equation

IT modernization initiative at a global manufacturer of advanced motion control components included 11 major upgrades

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There are two parts to successful technology changes:
  1. Selecting and implementing the best technology
  2. Ensuring it is accepted and adopted by the people using the technology

In major IT modernization projects, people may be learning or adapting to a suite of new technology all at the same time. IT teams are tasked with overseeing implementation while meeting the demands of their day-to-day work and supporting the needs of their customers.

A global designer and manufacturer of advanced technology was preparing for an extensive modernization of their IT infrastructure. The modernization program included 11 major IT projects that were necessary to:

  • De-risk their environment
  • Sustain day-to-day operations in a more cost-effective manner
  • Support the growth and expansion of business units

These projects touched all aspects of IT, including migrating their mainframe to a vendor support model, upgrading network infrastructure, switching to a vendor supported device delivery model and upgrading their call center software.

The company selected the technology that was best suited to their business goals, but the massive change would only be successful if the business units and IT employees accepted, adopted and supported the changes.   

The IT modernization initiative was expected to take 18 months. When the business units came together with IT to identify all of the activities happening throughout the company, over 250 projects were identified that would require IT support to meet internal and client requests. It became clear that prioritization would need to happen if IT was expected to support the business units while completing substantial infrastructure upgrades.

This modernization project involved IT teams around the world and affected every business unit throughout the company. IT teams were dedicated and supportive of company and business unit goals, but – at times – IT leaders and business leaders were misaligned on priorities and there was a disconnect between the business units and IT teams.  

Selecting the best technology for the business was only half of the equation. To drive the acceptance and adoption of the technology, LaMarsh Global developed a decision-making structure and aligned business leaders and IT leaders on the goals based on the potential impacts of the changes.

There was not a dedicated structure for communications related to IT changes, and IT teams were spread out in various locations around the world. In addition, IT teams experienced challenges in previous project implementations and had concerns for the success a major modernization project. A robust communication and feedback cadence was initiated to introduce changes and gather input from the business and the IT employees to ensure cohesion among the teams. 

 

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Project summary

The organization

Global designer and manufacturer of advanced motion and fluid controls for aerospace, defense, industrial and medical devices. 

The goal

Successfully implement 11 major changes to IT infrastructure, all while supporting the needs of the business units and maintaining day to day operations. 

The projects

The company wanted to complete an IT modernization program that included 11 different projects:

  • ServiceNow Phase I
  • ServiceNow Phase 2
  • PC as a Service
  • Help Desk & Dispatch
  • Desktop Service and Support
  • Exchange
  • Azure Workload Migration
  • WAN Upgrade
  • Mainframe Hosting
  • Mainframe Application Support
  • Backup and Disaster Recovery

Our approach

LaMarsh Global supported business leaders, IT leaders, change integration project managers and communications teams.

  • Educated IT and business leaders regarding their role and responsibilities in leading the change, identifying all projects occurring throughout the company and planning project priority together.   
  • Worked with key leaders to ensure messaging to impacted groups was accurate and timely and included mechanisms for feedback.
  • Partnered with four key project managers to ensure change management activities were incorporated into the overall project plans.
  • Designed and implemented a communication and feedback mechanism to ensure seamless communication at sites around the world.

Project outcomes

The IT modernization projects were completed based on agreed timelines between IT and the business units.  In addition, business specific projects outside of the IT Modernizaton program were prioritized according to business needs and available resources.

The success of the project came from a robust strategy to align leaders, manage the impacts of multiple changes, support project teams and implement an effective communication and feedback mechanism. These strategies contributed to successful project implementation and will assist in future change initiatives.

  • Developed a decision-making structure and issue escalation process that would be useful beyond the modernization project.
  • Brought business and IT leadership together to collaborate on upcoming changes, understand the impact to each business and coordinate resources.
  • Educated leaders on their role in managing change and supported them throughout the project implementation.
  • Completed a robust multiple-change exercise with all leaders to identify all changes, reduce change fatigue and develop a strategy to limit projects to those having funding and the greatest impact on strategic initiatives.
  • Partnered with four separate solution integration partners to ensure change management plans were incorporated into project plans.
  • Incorporated feedback from impacted groups and IT teams into decision making and future communication strategies.
  • Designed and implemented a communication and feedback mechanism with an ongoing cadence to ensure seamless communication across the globe. The communication strategy focused on what has been completed, what would be coming next, seeking ideas, issues and concerns and sharing actions taken based on feedback received.

 

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