It’s important to thoroughly vet a process before going to all the effort of changing your business.
Checking in with important stakeholders and customers is a critical step to undertake before the change effort. Sometimes we live in our own little world even though we’re surrounded by plenty of team members with whom we interact on a day-to-day basis. And a process change that seems critical to getting our work done may not seem that way to others. Plus, changing your business could actually be detrimental to others being able to get their work done.
That’s why it’s important to clearly identify what change you are making and what is really needed from a big picture perspective before you leap with both feet.
A Change Impact Assessment (IA) can come in handy here. It will help you determine the change effect on others and where there may be issues that are risky. There are five basic steps to the IA:
Step 1: Clearly Define The Scope Of The Proposed Change
It takes a lot of time and effort to make a process change, so you want to make sure you’ve clearly defined what change is proposed and how it will impact your business results.
Step 2: Identify The Differences Between The Current State and The Proposed New State
Your goal is to ensure you’ve checked in with everyone who will be impacted by the new change. Start with the current process to determine who’s involved today. Then, based on your scope for the changed process, identify who needs to be added. Get all of these people together in a meeting to discuss the proposed change and brainstorm as many differences as you possibly can.
Step 3: Determine Potential Effects Of the Differences
Using the same meeting participants as Step 2, use the differences the group identified and define potential effects from each one. Don’t just focus on negative effects, make sure you capture the positive ones too.
Step 4: Determine Risks / Mitigation Steps
Now you’ll take a look at each of those effects you identified in Step 3 and determine if there are risks associated with it. If so, you want to make sure and map out potential mitigation steps that can be taken if the decision is made to move forward with the process change.
Step 5: Decide Whether To Proceed With Changing Your Business
Now that you’ve taken a good look at the impact of a potential process change and analyzed the pros and cons along with defining what actions can be taken to mitigate any issues, it’s time to make a decision.
Looking to make a big change to how your business functions? A trusted and well-experienced CPA can help guide you along the way. Call Williams & Kunkel in Flower Mound at 972-446-1040 today.
Need more business advisory help? Read more at Williams & Kunkel, CPAs, LLP New Business Advisor Services.
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