Project management delivering change
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. Although 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 both fronts.
Integrating change management and project management creates value on a given project or initiative for a number of reasons:
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.
When change management is integrated into the project management steps, the efforts to manage the people side of change can identify and mitigate risks in a more proactive manner, address anticipated obstacles and resistance and build commitment and buy-in for the change.
Sequencing and alignment
When technical activities and people 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.
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.