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Strategies for Successful Change Management -

Investigation in to Berkeley Berry Birch Plc

By

Paula Pieniniemi

May 2006
Strategies for Successful Change Management by Paula Pieniniemi

Declaration of Originality
This project is all my own work and has not been copied in part or in whole from any other
source except where duly acknowledged. As such, all use of previously published work (from
books, journals, magazines, internet etc.) has been acknowledged within the main report to an
item in the References or Bibliography lists.

I also agree that an electronic copy of this project may be stored and used for the purposes of
plagiarism prevention and detection.

Copyright Acknowledgement

I acknowledge that the copyright of this project report, and any product developed as part of the
project, belong to Coventry University.

Signed: Date:

Office Stamp

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Acknowledgements

I would like to express my gratitude to the people who helped me out during this research
project, and to those who made it all possible in the first place. First, I would like to thank my
supervisor, Professor Raouf Naguib, for his guidance and advice during the whole project.

I would not be here without my Mom, so an especially big thank you goes to her. I would also
like to thank Mike for his help with resources, knowledge and access to his company.

There are simply no words to express how much all the support you have given means to me.
I tried to find the right ones but could not think of any that would be even close enough…
All I can say is that I wouldn’t have done this without you.

Thank you for making this possible Holly.

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Abstract

Change is an integral aspect of every business and can emerge from a variety of sources. All
businesses experience technological, organisational and business change, and as a result need to
be prepared and respond to the challenges posed by the change process. People are at the core of
the process, acting as both drivers of change and a source of resistance.

This dissertation investigates change management, focusing on the human side of change
management. The research investigates change management in Berkeley Berry Birch Plc,
establishing factors for successful change management. The public financial services company
is compared with a privately owned IT supply company to benchmark and establish differences
between the public and private companies. The research uses questionnaires, semi-structured
interviews and participant observation to collect primary data. The situation in the two
companies is critical analysed determining success factors and providing recommendations for
the companies in terms of a change management strategy and areas for improvement, and
suggestions for managers to effectively manage change.

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CONTENTS
Declaration of Originality
Acknowledgements
Abstract

1. INTRODUCTION...................................................................................................................................................8
1.1. THE AIM OF THE DISSERTATION.................................................................................................................................8
1.2 THE OBJECTIVES OF THE DISSERTATION........................................................................................................................8
1.3 THE KEY QUESTIONS THIS PROJECT ATTEMPTS TO ANSWER..............................................................................................9
1.4 THE KEY OUTCOMES OF THE PROJECT..........................................................................................................................9
1.5 RESEARCH APPROACH.............................................................................................................................................10
1.6 TO WHOM THIS PROJECT WILL BE OF INTEREST............................................................................................................10
1.7 BACKGROUND ......................................................................................................................................................10
1.8 BERKELEY BERRY BIRCH PLC.................................................................................................................................12
1.9 IT SUPPLY ..........................................................................................................................................................13
2. METHODOLOGY................................................................................................................................................15
2.1 RESEARCH APPROACH.............................................................................................................................................15
2.2 PHASES OF THE RESEARCH.......................................................................................................................................15
2.2.1 Questionnaire...........................................................................................................................................16
2.2.2 Interviews..................................................................................................................................................17
2.2.3 Participant observation............................................................................................................................18
3. LITERATURE REVIEW / RESEARCH............................................................................................................19
3.1 INTRODUCTION......................................................................................................................................................19
3.2 STRATEGY............................................................................................................................................................19
3.2.1 Strategic management..............................................................................................................................21
3.3 CHANGE ..............................................................................................................................................................23
3.3.1 Reasons for change...................................................................................................................................24
3.3.2 Types of change........................................................................................................................................25
3.3.3 The benefits and risks of change...............................................................................................................26
3.4 CHANGE MANAGEMENT...........................................................................................................................................27
3.5 MODELS FOR SUCCESSFUL CHANGE MANAGEMENT.......................................................................................................29
3.6 PROBLEMS WITH CHANGE MANAGEMENT....................................................................................................................32
3.6.1 Organisational culture..............................................................................................................................34
3.6.2 Resistance to change.................................................................................................................................35
3.7 LEADERSHIP..........................................................................................................................................................39
3.8 SUCCESSFUL CHANGE MANAGEMENT.......................................................................................................................41
3.9 CONCLUSION.........................................................................................................................................................44
4. FINDINGS .............................................................................................................................................................45
4.1 INTRODUCTION......................................................................................................................................................45
4.2 QUESTIONNAIRES...................................................................................................................................................45
4.2.1 Change in the companies..........................................................................................................................47
4.2.2 Organisational culture, structure and interrelationships.........................................................................49
4.2.3 Motivation and rewards............................................................................................................................54
4.2.4 Leadership................................................................................................................................................57
4.2.5 Support......................................................................................................................................................58
4.2.6 Work processes.........................................................................................................................................59
4.2.7 Group Learning........................................................................................................................................60

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4.2.8 Technology................................................................................................................................................61
4.2.9 Communication.........................................................................................................................................63
4.3 INTERVIEWS AND PARTICIPANT OBSERVATION............................................................................................................65
4.3.1 Findings from the interview and participant observation at BBB............................................................65
4.3.2 Findings from the interview with IT Supply employee.............................................................................68
4.4 CONCLUSION.........................................................................................................................................................71
5. CRITICAL ANALYSIS........................................................................................................................................73
5.1 CHANGE MANAGEMENT STRATEGY............................................................................................................................78
5.2 RECOMMENDATIONS...............................................................................................................................................82
5.2.1 Differences between a private and a public company..............................................................................82
5.2.2 Recommendations for managers...............................................................................................................83
6. CONCLUSIONS....................................................................................................................................................84
7. RECOMMENDATIONS AND FUTURE RESEARCH....................................................................................86
8. CRITICAL EVALUATION OF THE PROJECT.............................................................................................87
8.1 RELIABILITY AND VALIDITY OF THE RESEARCH............................................................................................................87
8.2 LIMITATIONS OF THE RESEARCH...............................................................................................................................88
REFERENCES/BIBLIOGRAPHY..........................................................................................................................90
APPENDIX 1 SWOT ANALYSIS- BERKELEY BERRY BIRCH PLC.............................................................98
APPENDIX 2 INTERVIEW – BBB.........................................................................................................................99
APPENDIX 3 INTERVIEW – IT SUPPLY..........................................................................................................104
APPENDIX 4 PARTICIPANT OBSERVATION SUMMARY..........................................................................110
APPENDIX 5 CAPABILITY MATURITY MODEL .........................................................................................112
APPENDIX 6 QUESTIONNAIRE........................................................................................................................113

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FIGURE 3.1 IS STRATEGY....................................................................................................................................21


FIGURE 3.2 THE FOUR FORMS OF RESISTANCE.........................................................................................37
FIGURE 4.1 JOB CATEGORIES OF THE RESPONDENTS.............................................................................46
FIGURE 4.2 LENGTH OF SERVICE OF THE RESPONDENTS......................................................................46
FIGURE 5.1 FRAMEWORK FOR A SUCCESSFUL CHANGE MANAGEMENT STRATEGY..................82

TABLE 3.3 STRATEGIES FOR MINIMISING RESISTANCE.........................................................................39


TABLE 3.4 DESIRABLE CHARACTERISTICS OF CHANGE AGENTS.......................................................40
TABLE 3.5 EFFECTIVE CHANGE MANAGEMENT........................................................................................44
TABLE 4.1 RESPONSE SUMMARY – FREQUENCY OF CONCERN ...........................................................48
TABLE 4.2 RESPONSE SUMMARY – LEVEL OF CONCERN .......................................................................49
TABLE 4.3 RESPONSE SUMMARY – ORGANISATIONAL CULTURE, STRUCTURE AND
INTERRELATIONSHIPS........................................................................................................................................50
TABLE 4.4 RESPONSE SUMMARY – ORGANISATIONAL CULTURE, STRUCTURE AND
INTERRELATIONSHIPS, PART 2........................................................................................................................52
TABLE 4.5 RESPONSE SUMMARY – ORGANISATIONAL CULTURE, STRUCTURE AND
INTERRELATIONSHIPS, PART 3........................................................................................................................53
TABLE 4.6 RESPONSE SUMMARY – MOTIVATION AND REWARDS.......................................................55
TABLE 4.8 RESPONSE SUMMARY - LEADERSHIP........................................................................................58
TABLE 4.9 RESPONSE SUMMARY - SUPPORT...............................................................................................59
TABLE 4.10 RESPONSE SUMMARY – WORK PROCESSES..........................................................................60
TABLE 4.12 RESPONSE SUMMARY – TECHNOLOGY..................................................................................62
TABLE 4.13 RESPONSE SUMMARY – TECHNOLOGY PART 2...................................................................63
TABLE 4.14 RESPONSE SUMMARY – COMMUNICATION..........................................................................64
TABLE 4.15 RESPONSE SUMMARY – COMMUNICATION PART 2...........................................................65

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1. Introduction
This dissertation is a research project into change management focusing on the human side of
the process. The company investigated is Berkeley Berry Birch Plc (BBB) which is a public
company from the financial services industry. A second company IT Supply, which is a private
company from a contrasting sector of industry, is used as a benchmark.

1.1. The aim of the dissertation

The aim of the dissertation is to investigate change management at BBB identifying the reasons
for failures in change programmes. The issues investigated will include; what causes problems
in change programmes, how important is the role played by human side in successful change
management (e.g. resistance to change, organisational culture), and what can be done to prevent
failure in change programmes. The dissertation will investigate how to manage change
successfully and provide some recommendations for managers.

The research will investigate the importance of the human side of change management as
previous research has shown that people play an important role in driving of change, as well as
causing problems in change management programmes.

1.2 The objectives of the dissertation

The objectives of the project include the following:


 To research change and change management in general
 To investigate and critically analyse the current situation of change management Berkeley
Berry Birch Plc, benchmarking it with the private company
 To examine the importance of human side of change management
 To identify reasons for resistance to change
 To identify success factors, reasons for failures and areas for improvement

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 Examine differences in change management in the private and public companies


investigated
 Provide recommendations for managing change successfully in the two companies, and in
general in other organisations implementing change
 Provide recommendations to managers and change agents on how to manage change
effectively.

1.3 The key questions this project attempts to answer

This research project aims to answer questions relating to successful change management.
 What causes change programmes to fail?
 Which factors affect successful change management?
 What is the role of managers in the change process?
 What are the recommendations for managers on how to manage change successfully?
 How is change management differently in a Plc compared to a private company?
 What are the key recommendations for BBB regarding change management in the company?

1.4 The key outcomes of the project

The key outcomes of this project are to establish what is entailed in successful change
management, what causes change programmes to fail and provide important insights into
change management and how to carry it out successfully. The project will establish the current
situation in two companies, compare and critically analyses them. The key outcomes from this
project will also include determining areas for improvement and providing recommendations on
how to address these issues. The project will also identify any differences between public and
private companies and provide suggest how to address key problem areas. Final key outcome is
to determine how to manage change successfully and provide recommendations to the
organisations investigated how to implement change more effectively.

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1.5 Research approach

This research combines both qualitative and quantitative data collection methods as well as
primary and secondary data. Primary data was obtained by interviewing the key people in the IT
departments of the two companies. The company under investigation is a public limited
company in the financial services industry, Berkeley Berry Birch Plc (BBB), and the other one
used for comparison and benchmarking is a privately owned company, an IT supply company
for a large pharmaceuticals wholesaler who have requested not to be identified in the project.
The people interviewed in both companies also wished to remain anonymous; therefore they
will be referred to as interviewees/employees in this dissertation.

Questionnaires were also designed and used to obtain primary data. Data collected was analysed
using SPSS software the reliability and validity of the findings. A third data collection method
was also used to obtain primary data; participant observation. The researcher had access to the
company as she has been employed in the company since January 2005. All of the research
methods will be discussed in further detail in the second chapter.

1.6 To whom this project will be of interest

This research will be of value for any organisations going through change, whether it is
technological, organisational or business changes. The research will be of interest to the
managers implementing change and driving their employees through change processes as it
gives insights into the problems managers face and how to manage change successfully.

1.7 Background

To keep up with the competitors or merely to survive in the dynamic business environment of
today, every organisation has to go through some degree of change. Change can arise, for

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example, from technological developments and system changes, which might involve improving
the organisation’s systems to increase production and to make processes more efficient, or
updating IS/IT systems to keep up with the technological developments (Mullins, 2005; Smith,
2003). Change can also arise from important business decisions on larger scales which affect the
whole company; for example outsourcing of functions or mergers of companies. BBB has gone
through a number of mergers and acquisitions which have involved many IS/IT changes.

It is anticipated that business organisations will invest more in IT, e-business and e-commerce in
the future (Bai and Lee, 2003). This means more organisations going through change due to new
technology being adopted into an organisation, which changes the way people work and go
about their daily duties. Changes in technology can have a major effect on the way of doing
business, and organizations have to be prepared to cope with rapid changes in business
dynamics. Changes in organizations take place in response to the changing environment, due to
factors such as customer demand, competition or internal issues. In implementing change there
are technological, organizational and personal perspectives that need to be considered (Bai and
Lee, 2003). The issue of successful change management is very important for BBB, as it is to
other organisations due to the costs arising from the investments into new technologies, training
of workforce, etc. If changes are invested in, a successful implementation should be ensured.

Previous research has shown that people are the most important factor in making change, but
they are also the most difficult element that needs to be dealt with (Rashid et al, 2004). As
Rashid et al (2004) state further, for any change to be effective, people’s beliefs, assumptions
and attitudes need to be challenged and clarified, because the most powerful force for significant
and sustainable change resides within the human system at the core of every business system.
According to Bai and Lee (2003) today’s organisations frequently redesign their processes to
provide new competitive advantage as information technology develops, this creates not only
technological change but also dramatic change in the various social and political perspectives of
organizations. Corporate culture can have a significant effect on an organizations long-term
economic performance, and will be an even more important factor in determining the success or
failure of firms in the next decade (Bai and Lee, 2003; Raschid et al, 2004).

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Change in BBB has not always been successful or implemented without trouble. For example,
organisational culture has been a major factor hindering change programmes, as was the case in
the most recent merger of Berry Birch and Noble Financial Planning division and Weston
Financial Group where the managers had to bring together two separate companies both with
own established systems, procedures and ways of doing things. The process of bringing the two
businesses into one was in most parts a struggle between people. This is not the only change
process the company has undergone in the last couple of years, and many more are due to be
implemented in the near future, it is essential to investigate the reasons for failure in change
processes and what can be done to achieve successful change management.

1.8 Berkeley Berry Birch Plc

Berkeley Berry Birch Plc (BBB) is one of the UK's largest companies specialising in financial
services distribution. The primary business of BBB is the support and provision of holistic
financial services advice to individuals to manage their assets, risk and debt (Source:
http://www.bbb.co.uk/main). BBB operates through three trading divisions, these being
Network, Financial Advisory and Insurance. The Network provides support services to
Independent Financial Advisers (IFA’s). Financial Advisory Division provides financial advice
to clients through its IFA’s and the Insurance Division provides insurance broking services
through large affinity groups and corporate bodies (Source: http://www.bbb.co.uk/main/about/).

Corporate History
BBB was formed in January 2002 through the reverse takeover of Berry Birch & Noble plc
(BBN) by the privately owned Berkeley Financial Services Group (Berkeley). The merger of
BBN and Berkeley represents the first major link up with a national IFA. The group is now one
of the five largest IFA groups in the UK. The main subsidiary Berkeley Independent Advisers
(BIA) is the fourth largest IFA network group in the UK (Source:
http://www.bbb.co.uk/main/about/history/).

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The Financial Advisory division has three different parts, Berry Birch and Noble Financial
Planning (BBNFP), MacRobins which has now been integrated into BBNFP and Weston
Financial Group (Weston) which was due to be fully integrated into BBB in 2005. Weston was
acquired in December 2002 and MacRobins, an insurance broker and employee benefits
company, in July 2003 (Source: Berkeley Berry Birch Plc Annual report 2004-2005).

Corporate strategy
BBB's strategic vision is to be the UK's premier financial services distribution group for high
value customers. The strategic objective is to create shareholder value through the development
of a multi-channel group focused on high productivity. BBB aims to achieve economies of scale
by linking each of the distribution companies to one shared support structure (Source:
http://www.bbb.co.uk/main/about/vision_and_strategy/).

1.9 IT Supply

The private company who wishes to remain unidentified in the research project is an IT supply
company for a large pharmaceuticals wholesaler. The company will be referred to as IT Supply
in this dissertation. IT Supply is a division within the pharmaceuticals wholesaler with
independent directors and business policies.

The mother company of IT Supply, the pharmaceuticals wholesaler is the largest wholesaler in
the UK and one of the leading pharmacy system suppliers. They have different specialist teams
for developing relationships with hospitals and other customers. The wholesaler provides
distribution and marketing services to hospital pharmacies, private and public, and also prison
hospitals. IT Supply has over 30 years experience in developing IT solutions and have
responded to changes within the market place by developing a range of products in their
portfolio to enhance pharmacy business. One of the systems IT Supply has developed provides
information on for example all UK drugs and appliances. The system enables pharmacists to
carry out automatic endorsement, monitor prescribing trends and sales.

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Differences between a private and a public company


BBB is listed on the London Stock Exchange, with shareholders including some of the major
insurance companies, whereas IT Supply is a private company. The main differences between a
public and a private company are that the public company has its stock traded by the public,
whereas a private company usually has one shareholder or a small group of shareholders who
hold all the stock (Source: http://www.allbusiness.com/articles/Incorporation/2304-31-
1799.html) .

Being a public company means that the shareholders have claim to part of the company’s assets
and profits. This also means that financial reports including earnings reports, major issues and
information, for example a resignation of a director, have to be made available to the stock
exchange, shareholders and the public. Public companies can use the financial markets selling
stock to raise capital when needed, for example for expansion, and the cost of capital is usually
less for a public company. Private companies do not need to publicise their financial
information or answer to stockholders, which is a significant advantage, however they cannot
use the public capital markets and must use private funding which can be costly and limit
expansion (Source: http://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/162.asp ).

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2. Methodology

The research methods used in the research will be discussed below. This chapter first briefly
introduces the general approach and specific methods used in this research project, moving on to
the different phases in the research discussing the methods used and their pros and cons.

2.1 Research approach

Both primary and secondary data sources were used in the research of this project. Secondary
data refers to data already collected by someone else and primary data is collected for a specific
purpose by the researcher (Saunders, 2000). Both qualitative and quantitative methods are used
in the research to obtain primary data. Qualitative data was obtained by interviewing the key
people in the IT departments of the two companies, who wished to remain anonymous.
Questionnaires were used as a second method of obtaining primary data. Questionnaires were
sent to the departments utilising technology most in BBB, in IT Supply the contact person
distributed the questionnaire to the employees in his department. A third method was also used
to collect primary data from BBB, participant observation, which was enabled by the
researcher’s employment in the company.

2.2 Phases of the research

The first phase in the research was to conduct an extensive literature review on to obtain
secondary data. Secondary data collected includes books, journals and websites relevant to
change management, organisational behaviour, strategy and strategic management. The relevant
literature and researches in these areas were reviewed and analysed. Access to the books and
journals was through Coventry University Library and electronic library databases. Following
the literature review primary data was obtained.

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2.2.1 Questionnaire

The next phase in the research was to collect primary data using a questionnaire. + (2000) states
the advantages of questionnaires include that it enables a large amount of data to be collected
relatively cheap, even from a considerable population. This is important for this research project
as the budget is very low and a number of questionnaires need to be sent out to ensure a
sufficient response rate. Though time-consuming due to the lengthy process of analysing the
results, using a questionnaire gives the researcher more control over the whole process
(Saunders, 2000). Questionnaires are cost-effective, quick to administer, free from interviewer
bias, if designed properly, and are convenient for respondents to fill out at a time best suited for
them (Bryman and Bell, 2003). These are the main reasons questionnaires are used in this study.
Saunders (2000) explains that there are also some drawbacks associated with the questionnaire,
the main ones being that the data may not be as wide ranging as data collected using qualitative
methods. Questionnaires have a limit to the number of questions they can contain and can be
conducted very badly, however this can be eliminated to some extent through piloting the
questionnaire, i.e. getting it checked, with an appropriate target group. Piloting is important to
ensure the respondents understand the questions, and to identify any possible misinterpretations
(Saunders, 2000; Anderson, 2004). This questionnaire was piloted with a target group from
varying backgrounds such as change management and educational research. This was to gain
constructive feedback. Changes were made to the questionnaire following the piloting and the
questionnaire was checked again prior to distribution.

Usually the population of a research is sampled, sample size depending on the budget, the level
of detail required etc. The sample in this research project consists of people who continuously
deal with technological issues in their jobs on a daily basis, for example at BBB the Client
Services Department who process proposals and liaise with customers and product providers
using various different software daily. The sample population of 61 employees was sent an
invitation by email to participate in the project by filling out a questionnaire, with a thorough
introduction to the project. The questionnaire was attached to the email on an Excel spreadsheet
formatted so that questions were answered by selecting the most appropriate choice out of a

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range of alternatives. The spreadsheet was emailed to the prospective respondents with the
option of either emailing the completed questionnaire back or the respondent could also obtain a
hardcopy of the questionnaire with a stamped and addressed envelope to send it back to the
researcher. Because the whole population is relatively small, in BBB the 61 head office
employees and in IT Supply half of the 100 head office employees, with a sufficient response
rate samples are representative of the population (Ticehurst and Veal, 2000). The questionnaire
can be found in the appendices (See Appendix 5). The questionnaire was analysed using SPSS
software. The critical analysis draws predominantly data from the questionnaires, because it is a
larger sample size than the interviews and thus better reflects the individual companies.

2.2.2 Interviews

Semi-structured interviews were used due to the flexibility needed in the two interviews as to
reflect the differences between the two companies (public/private, industries). A list of themes
and questions relevant to both interviews were prepared. The interviews were conducted in an
informal manner to relax the interviewees to enable a flow of conversation to elicit as much
useful and honest information as possible. The face-to-face interviews were recorded by taking
notes during the interview, accuracy in this process was ensured by an additional person also
taking notes. The decision not to use a tape recorder was taken due to the possibility of
adversely affecting the interview situation, i.e. concentrating on the recorder and allowing the
interviewee to feel free to answer any questions and not being conscious about having their
every word recorded.

With semi-structured interviews also the issues related to bias need to be taken into
consideration (Saunders et al, 2000). To overcome interviewer and interviewee bias, the
questions were open ended to enable further discussion and the questions attempted to find out
situations and settings within the company rather than beliefs and attitudes of the interviewee.
However, the presence of personal opinions cannot be eliminated from the interviews; therefore
the interviews serve as one form of primary data used in this dissertation.

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2.2.3 Participant observation

Primary data was also collected through participant observation. Though participant observation
is usually used to obtain data about the meanings people attach to their actions, observation has
a use in business research (Saunders et al, 2000). To this research observation was especially
useful method of research supplementing other used methods due to researcher’s company
involvement. Participant observation has very little ethical implications due to company
involvement and employees being aware of the research project and the role of the researcher.
The researcher was allowed access to information such as strategy documents which are not
normally accessible, and was given the opportunity to clarify and expand her knowledge about
situations occurring in the organisation.

Participant observation was chosen as a research method as it is a good way of explaining ‘what
is going on’ in specific situations, and is an especially useful method of collecting a wealth of
useful data when the researcher is employed by the organisation under study. One significant
disadvantage though is the possibility of observer bias (Saunders et al, 2000). In this research
project the observation was done over a relatively long period of time, 7 months, which is likely
to overcome a lot of the observer bias. Due to the fact that this research was more interested in
the actual processes and situations taking place in the organisation than meanings people attach
to their actions, observer bias is further reduced as not as much interpretation of people’s
emotions and feelings is required.

The reliability and validity of the research and the methods used is discussed further in chapter
8.

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3. Literature review / Research

This chapter will review the relevant literature to this project. The following terms and
processes will be defined and discussed in the chapter; strategy, IS/IT change management,
where change arises from, organisational culture, resistance to change and finally effective
change management.

3.1 Introduction

The literature review is split into two sections. The first section provides an introduction and a
definition for some of the key issues regarding strategy. The second section defines and
introduces change and change management and gives a detailed review of literature in the field
of change management, identifying key theories and strategies of managing change.

3.2 Strategy

The definition of strategy is not an easy concept as there are probably as many definitions as
there are text books. Faulkner and Johnson (1992 cited in Armstrong, 2000 p.30) give the
following definition:
“Strategy is concerned with the long-term direction and scope of an organization.
It is also crucially concerned with how the organization positions itself with
regard to the environment and in particular to its competitors… It is concerned
with establishing competitive advantage, ideally sustainable over time, not by
technical manoeuvring, but by taking an overall long-term perspective.”
This is a fairly long definition, whereas Macmillan and Tampoe (2000:14) define strategy
shortly as “ideas and actions to conceive and secure the future”. Common to all the definitions is
that ‘strategy’ is seen as a declaration of what the company wants to become, where it wants to
go and how it means to get there; strategy determines the direction in which the company is
going in relation to its environment in order to achieve sustainable competitive advantage
(Armstrong, 2000 ; Storey, 1995).

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There are three levels of strategy which are interrelated and interdependent. Corporate strategy
is the whole organisation-wide strategy, competitive strategy is the strategy of each constituent
business, and functional strategy is about the activities that strengthen the competitive strategies.
(Thomson and Martin, 2005; Minzberg et al. 2003)

Corporate strategy is about a portfolio of businesses, and what should be done with them,
whereas business unit strategy is about how to secure and sustain competitive advantage.
Functional and operational plans is the third level of strategy, they set out the actions that a
function is to take in order to be able to contribute to the whole strategy of the business unit, in
the same way as business unit strategy contributes to the corporate strategy (Burnes, 2004;
Johnson et al. 2005).

An important part of business strategy is the Information Systems strategy, which has different
interacting elements to it. These elements are highlighted in figure 3.1 below. One of the
elements, change management, is an important part of the overall corporate strategy as a part of
the IS strategy because it itemises the necessary moves of how to get the organisation from
where it is to where is wants to go to; hence it becomes a very important part of strategic
management (Robson, 1997).

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Business Strategy

IS Strategy What?
Information Strategy

Information Information
Management Technology
Strategy Strategy
How?
Change Management Strategy

Who?
IS Related Human Resource Strategy

Business Strategy

Figure 3.1 IS Strategy


Adapted from Robson, 1997:180

3.2.1 Strategic management

Strategic management is about managers looking ahead at what needs to be achieved in the
future, it is visionary management i.e. focusing on creating and conceptualising ideas of where
the organisation should be going. Strategic management is also empirical management as it
decides how in practice it is going to get there (Armstrong and Stephenson, 2005). Macmillan
and Tampoe (2000) formulate their definition slightly differently; according to them the essence
of strategic management includes three things; it is concerned with a particular organisation at a
particular time, there needs to be a concept of what the future will be like, and finally there is a
need for action. Change, if it is to be effectively managed, requires a vision of the future –
where the organisation wants to go, as well as ways for creating and reaching the wanted future
(Macmillan and Tampoe, 2000; Thomson and Martin, 2005).

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The strategy formulation process in large multi-divisional companies like BBB operates a
formal process in which the individual divisions or companies present their strategies to the
board for review. This kind of formality has advantages, such as making managers who are
often very busy think about the future. There are also disadvantages, the thinking is only
undertaken to fulfil the bureaucratic process and may be rigid and unimaginative (Macmillan
and Tampoe, 2000). In smaller firms on the other hand the processes can be very informal.
Macmillan and Tampoe (2000) argue that the strategy formulation process should lead to
strategic thinking, which is about the longer term with a good understanding of the present, as
well as imaginativeness and originality. Macmillan and Tampoe (2000) go further stating that
the overall aim of the strategy formulation process is to make sure that strategies are envisioned
which will secure the future of the organisation.

It has been frequently stated in business literature that successful organisations should know
their own strengths and weaknesses, customer’s needs and the environment where the
organisation operates in. Two of the most popular tools for assessing the organisations internal
constraints and the environment are SWOT analysis and PESTEL (Burnes, 2004; Johnson et al.
2005; Lynch, 2003).

SWOT analysis lists organisations internal strengths and weaknesses and identifies the
opportunities and threats of the environment organisation operates in. The strategies of the
organisation should take into consideration these issues, i.e. match strengths with opportunities
and try to overcome weaknesses whilst warding off threats. PESTEL analysis categorises
environmental influences as political, economical, social, technological, environmental and
legal forces (Burnes, 2004; Thomson and Martin, 2005). A brief SWOT analysis conducted for
BBB can be found in the appendices (see Appendix 1), from which it can be seen that the major
strengths for BBB are its size and variety in the financial services industry. Major weaknesses
can be found from the financials of the business as the company is currently experiencing some
solvency issues, which are also a significant threat for the company’s overall survival.
Opportunities identified include for example online financial planning, which could potentially

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change the way BBB operates. The analysis of the important strategic issues utilising a SWOT
framework raises issues for the company to consider;
• How can the critical weaknesses be neutralised or turned into strengths?
• Can the threats be neutralised like weaknesses, or turned into new opportunities?
• How can the strengths be exploited best in relation to the opportunities?
• Which new markets and market segments could be appropriate to utilise the existing
strengths and capabilities?
• What changes need to be done to products, processes and services, considering the
markets are constantly changing?
(Thomson and Martin, 2005)
These issues need to be addressed in the short- and long-term strategic planning of the business,
thoroughly assessing the current state of the strategic issues, creating a solution how to address
the issue or maximise the benefit, and finally determine methods how to achieve the desired
state.

3.3 Change

To be able to understand change management, one needs to understand the nature of change; it
is often said to be the only thing in organisations that remains constant (Armstrong and
Stephenson, 2005:91) and as Mullins (2005:909) states; “Change is a pervasive influence. We
are all subject to continual change of one form or another. Change is an inescapable part of both
social and organisational life”.

There can be many kinds of changes and the degree of change can vary. Some changes do not
require formal change management techniques, for example upgrading a Windows system or
changing a voicemail. However some major changes such as new applications or completely
new systems, introduction of an extranet for dealing with suppliers or customers, or creation of
an e-commerce site will change the ways people work and their routines from top management
to the employees in the organisation. IT professionals may be at ease when introduced to new
technology; however others who are not so involved in technology may find the need for

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mastering a new technology a terrifying ordeal. They can get frustrated, freeze up, get rigid and
rebel against the changes. Resistance to change will be discussed in more detail below, in the
‘Problems with change management’ section. Things are not always as black and white in
change management as IT professionals often think, there are a lot of grey areas as change
management has a lot to do with emotions. (Goff, 2000; Stacey; 2000; Martin, 2005)

3.3.1 Reasons for change

Change for organisations can be instigated by specific events and forces arising from outside or
inside the organisation. Those forces can be brought about by the organisation itself or they can
be such that the organisation must respond by making changes. However it is not actually
organisations that can do something about changes, it is the managers running the organisation
who decide where to go and what actions to take. (Burnes, 2004; Martin, 2005)

Change can arise due to various different causes, such as technological developments,
environmental factors, or even political or social factors can bring about change in an
organisation. One of the factors that create an increasingly unstable environment for an
organisation to perform in is the ‘rapid developments in new technology and the information
age’ (Mullins, 2005; Smith, 2003).

New technologies can drastically change the way people and organisations work. For example
mobile data access has developed significantly in the past few years, previously seen as a
privilege of only the regional managers at BBB with their BlackBerry handsets. However this
could be a benefit to be enjoyed by all financial advisors and other employees in the very near
future as new devices and services deliver remote access to core applications. According to
Robinson (2005) mobile applications can automate everyday business processes, and
organisations are already utilising mobile access to business systems such as inventory, logistics
and service management, but the developments in technology can provide new applications in
the future.

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There are plenty of different forces that create a need for change, whether it being directly or
indirectly. These forces can be classified in different ways, Johnson and Scholes (2005) use in
their classification the PESTLE model, whereas Martin (2005) identifies sources of change as
represented in table 3.1 below.

Source of Examples
Change
Market demand Decline in demand for particular products/services, for example, new pension
products or investment options, organisations and markets becoming
increasingly global
Market supply Mergers in companies in the industry or related industries, increases in the
size, complexity and specialisation of organisations
Economic Overall fall in companies in the industry (e.g. financial services,
pharmaceuticals, IT software development etc.)
Social Changes in taste, for example, increase in health consciousness in 1980s
Technological Increased availability of new production technologies and information
systems, new software and hardware, technical obsolescence and technical
improvements
Political Change in leadership of local authority or government
Chance Earthquake, fire, flood, storm
Table 3.1 External pressure for change
Source: Adapted from Martin, 2005 and Thomson and Martin, 2005

Change can affect an individual within an organisation, a group or department, or the whole
organisation. Random chance can effect the whole organisation: technology can be significantly
affected by a power cut, or a natural disaster; people’s working can be disturbed or even
completely obstructed by a power cut which disables computers. This brings change into the
organisation, which can have either very short term effects or in some cases it can have crucial
and long-term effects (Martin, 2005).

3.3.2 Types of change

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Various different types of change have been identified, for example Thomas (2001) makes a
distinction between linear and nonlinear change. According to him linear change is a process
with a beginning and an end, a process where events take place in an order that is predictable.
Nonlinear change then is an evolutionary process with a beginning but no clear end; therefore in
the process the steps will become apparent as the process evolves.

Armstrong and Stephenson (2005) identify incremental (i.e. gradual or step by step) change and
transformational change which is about making sure the organisation can respond strategically
to new demands and the dynamic environment. The same distinction is made by Stacey (2000),
but call transformational change revolutionary. They also specify a five other types of change:
Strategic change, which is concerned with long-term organisation-wide issues. Organisational
change, which is concerned with how organisations function and their structure. Systems and
processes change affects the working practices in the whole or part of an organisation. Cultural
change is aimed at changing the existing culture of an organisation and finally, behavioural
change aims at changing the ways people carry out their work to be more effective (Armstrong
and Stephenson, 2005; Mullins, 2005). Thompson and Martin (2005) differentiate between four
types of changes; technology, product or service, administrative changes and people attitudes,
and state that when ever there is a change in one of these factors, one or more of the others is
likely to change.

3.3.3 The benefits and risks of change

The main benefit of effective change is clearly the improved organisational performance, and
the main risk is as clear; the change can go wrong, and it can upset well-established and
effective practices. Change can be stimulating and present opportunities, and people can be
stimulated to the benefit of the organisation and the employees own career. On the other hand,
failed change can create an atmosphere where people are suspicious of change and are unwilling
to adopt new ideas. Organisations can also adopt ‘change for change’s sake’, without
sufficiently assessing the value and relevance of the change (Armstrong and Stephenson,
2005:127).

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3.4 Change management

The following section provides a detailed review of literature surrounding change management;
comparing and contrasting theories about the processes and stages, successful and unsuccessful,
and the human side of change management.

Change management is the process of making sure that an organisation is ready for change and
the process of managing the implementation of changes for example in IT and business
processes to reduce the costs and risks involved. In addition change management focuses on
managing resistance to change (Armstrong and Stephenson, 2005; Thompson and Martin, 2005;
http://www.managingenterprisecontent.com).

Change management is about having a planned approach to change in the organisation, with the
focus on maximising the benefits for the organisation whilst minimising the risks of failure in
implementing the change. A lot of change management deals with the human aspects of change,
however disciplines such as Information Technology have developed same kind of approaches
to be able to formally control the process of making changes to environments. Change
management can be approached from various different angles and it can be applied to various
organisational processes, however the most common uses are in information technology
management and strategic management. For change management to be effective, it needs to be
multi-disciplinary and having an impact on every aspect of the organisation. Implementing new
procedures, technologies and overcoming resistance are at the core of change management.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Change_Management)

A specific area of change management is Information System/Information Technology – change


management, or IS/IT change management, which relates to change programmes in the area of
information technology and information systems. Information technology is more the softer
issues, such as software and programmes, it is a broad subject concerned with technology and
other issues of management and processing of information (Ward and Peppard, 2002; Turban et

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al, 2002). IS and IT are terms used interchangeably in this and other researches, however a
differentiation can be made between them. Information systems existed in organisations way
before information technology, and today, some information systems are totally automated by
IT. Hence, IS can be defined as “the means by which people and organisations, utilising
technology, gather, process, store, use and disseminate information” (Ward and Peppard,
2002:3).

In the context of IT, change management aims at making sure all IT changes are handled
efficiently using standardised methods and procedures in a way that any incidents on the service
are minimised. IT infrastructure changes can arise in reaction to any problems encountered or
for example external requirements such as changes in laws or change can arise proactively due
to service or efficiency improvement initiatives. IT change management in relation to software
configuration has the purpose of founding and maintaining the integrity of the products
throughout the software lifecycle. There is a specific change management model created for
software development by the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) called Capability Maturity
Model (CMM) which is introduced in the Appendices (see Appendix 5).

Even with IT change management, the process comprises actions such as assessing the impact
and risk of proposed changes, developing business justification and obtaining approval,
managing and co-ordinating change implementation, and finally monitoring and reporting on
implementation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Change_Management_%28ITIL%29). Same
aspects comprise organisational and strategic change management processes, which are
identified by a number of authors (Hardgrave and Armstrong, 2005; Smillie, 2005; Armstrong
and Stephenson, 2005). Whilst in some cases a distinction between IT and business or
organisational change is preferred, for the purpose of this research the change process will be
dealt with the same regardless of the type of change because process and actions taken are the
same in dealing with IT and business change. Furthermore, it has been identified by previous
research that people are at the centre of any change processes being the drivers of change, as
well as causes for problems and failures of change programmes (Thomas, 2001; Rogers et al,
2003; Lee and Yu, 2004). The fact that people the most important part in change management

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further supports the approach taken (Raschid et al, 2004). However, it is recognised that there is
a difference in software development and therefore CMM is briefly discussed in the appendices.

3.5 Models for successful change management

Change is about moving from a present state to a future state through a transitional state. To
start with, the current state needs to be analysed by assessing the strengths and weaknesses
based on what is happening. This is followed by an analysis of the causes of any problems and a
specification of the desirable future state (the outcome of the change). After this the objectives
of the change programme can be defined as well as considering alternative courses of action and
choosing the action which is likely to provide the best chance of achieving the objectives of the
change programme (Armstrong and Stephenson, 2005; Johnson et al. 2005). Next stage is to
consider how to get from here to there, i.e. the transitional state. Managing the transition is the
hardest part in introducing change, and transition is when the problems, including such as
resistance to change, low stability, high levels of stress, and conflict, occur and need to be
managed. Transitional state leads on to implementation. (Pettinger, 2004; Armstrong and
Stephenson, 2005; Lynch, 2003)

Previous research has identified different models that have been developed to describe change
and change management and there is extensive literature surrounding the models. This literature
review aims to present a brief overview of the key models and theorists of change management
relevant to this research.

According to Thomas (2001:129) there are eight elements of managing change: leadership,
work process, structure, group learning, technology, communication, interrelationships, and
rewards. Another view is presented by Rogers et al (2005) who argue there are nine
characteristics of successful change programmes, which can be broken up under three main
headings. The main headings are leadership, management and communication.

Leadership:

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1. Establish a compelling catalyst for change.


2. Set out a vision and clear priorities.
3. Create a leadership coalition and build alignment.

Management:
4. Create an integrated change plan for achieving quick wins and embedding sustained changes.
5. Give change teams the resources they need to win.
6. Instil project management disciplines and hold people accountable.

Communication:
7. Communicate, communicate, communicate.
8. Identify constraints and address then head on.
9. Deliver concrete results and celebrate them appropriately.
(Source: Rogers et al. 2003:107-111)

Furthermore, perhaps the three best known models are introduced below. They all have different
approaches to change management: Lewin describes the basic mechanisms for managing
change, Beckhard explains the processes a change programme should incorporate, and Thurley
describes approaches to managing change (Armstrong and Stephenson, 2005:120).

Lewin’s mechanisms for change management:


 Unfreezing – altering the present stable equilibrium which supports existing behaviours and
attitudes. This process must take account of the inherent threats change presents to people
and the need to motivate those affected to attain the natural state of equilibrium by accepting
change.
 Changing – developing new responses based on new information. This step involves shifting
the behaviour of the organisation, department or the individual to a new level.
 Re-freezing – stabilizing the change by introducing the new responses into the personalities
of those concerned.

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This model provides a general framework for understanding what a successful change project
comprises, it is closely identified with organisational development, however it is used to identify
how other types of change can be implemented. For example, Lewin’s model has been used to
explain how information technologies can be implemented more effectively (Armstrong and
Stephenson, 2005:120-121; Cummings and Worley, 2005:23; Burnes, 2004:274).

Beckhard’s change programme involves:


 setting goals and defining the future state or organisational conditions desired after change;
 diagnosing the present condition in relation to these goals;
 defining the transition state activities and commitments required to meet the future state;
 developing strategies and action plans for managing this transition in the light of an analysis
of the factors likely to affect the introduction of change (Armstrong and Stephenson,
2005:120-121).

Thurley’s approaches to managing change


 Directive – the imposition of change in crisis situations or when other methods have failed.
This is done by the exercise of managerial power without consultation.
 Bargained – this approach recognises that power is shared between the employer and the
employed and change requires negotiation, compromise and agreement before being
implemented.
 ‘Hearts and minds’ – an all-embracing thrust o change the attitudes, values and beliefs of the
workforce. This ‘normative’ approach (i.e. one which starts from a definition of what
management thinks is right or ‘normal’) seeks ‘commitment’ and ‘shared vision’ but does
not necessarily include involvement or participation.
 Analytical – a theoretical approach to the change process using models of change such as
those described above. It proceeds sequentially from the analysis and diagnosis of the
situation, through the setting of objectives, the design of the change process, the evaluation
of the results and, finally the determination of the objectives for the next stage in the change
process. This is the rational and logical approach much favoured by consultants – external

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and internal. But change seldom proceeds as smoothly as this model would suggest.
Emotions, power politics and external pressures mean that the rational approach, although it
might be the right way to start is difficult to sustain.
 Action-based – this recognise that the way manager behave in practice bears little
resemblance to the analytical, theoretical model. The distinction between managerial thought
and managerial action blurs in practice to the point of invisibility. What managers think is
what they do. Real life therefore often results in a ‘ready, aim, fire’ approach to change
management. This typical approach to change starts with a broad belief that some sort of
problem exists, although it may not be well defined. The identification of possible solutions,
often on a trial and error basis, leads to a clarification of the nature of the problem and a
shared understanding of a possible optimal solution, or at least a framework within which
solutions can be discovered (Armstrong and Stephenson, 2005:120-121).

Lewin’s change model has been one of the most well known models and has influenced models
created since (Burnes, 2004; Minzberg, 2003). Lewin’s model is simple enough for managers to
understand and can be further developed by adopting features from the other approaches.

To be able to ensure the survival and future success organisations must be readily adaptable to
the external demands that are placed on them, the organisation must be open to change.
Furthermore organisations must be properly prepared to face the demands of a changing
environment. All organisations must pay attention to the future development and success. As
said earlier in this chapter, change can affect all aspects of the operation and functioning of the
organisation, which makes it a crucial point for managers to include in their strategies from the
beginning and it needs to be managed effectively. When implementing strategy within a change,
many detailed actions and tasks are required, and change needs to be planned carefully.
Different types of change programmes are likely to require different approaches and ways of
managing change. (Johnson et al. 2005; Mullins, 2005; Smith, 2003)

3.6 Problems with change management

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Majority of change initiatives are not able to meet the set goals; it is estimated that as many as
50% to 80% of the cases fail due to a variety of reasons (Wren and Dulewicz, 2005). Smith’s
(2003) research discovered the following of different types of change processes; success rate for
technological change was only 28%, mergers and acquisitions a minuscule 14%, and re-
engineering and process design 23%. Successful change projects in his research results were
characterized by addressing the needs of the employees, especially rewarding employees for
change and innovation; visible and sustained sponsorship; and effective project management.
Some negative factors identified with failure had to do with breakdowns in leadership and
communication with employees, and project management failures. Also the strength of
organizational culture was seen as a considerable barrier to change. Organisational culture will
be discussed further below.

Rogers et al. (2003) suggest that when large companies implement major change programmes
approximately a third of them tend to make things worse, about half deliver results which aren’t
satisfactory and only less than one in five produce results that are in line with expectations.
They go further suggesting that where the companies go wrong is in translating theory of change
into practise as managers believe that major change is a very complicated enterprise, which
requires very complicated processes (Rogers et al, 2003). Also loosing key people causes major
disruption to any change programmes as the leaders are considered key in successful change
management (Pettinger, 2004; Johnson et al. 2005). This is a very important aspect for BBB as
there have been major changes at the top management level, and employee retention is
becoming increasingly difficult.

As there are differences in the change processes there are differences in how people experience
change. Some people enjoy change more than others and experience different kind of change in
a different way, for example if you are an IT enthusiast you enjoy new technologies being
introduced. Some people may seem better in dealing with change and do not fear it, but
McGrimmon (1997) suggests it is only because they do not have a personal stake in the change.
Some people genuinely enjoy new and different things, however most people are not so

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comfortable trying them. Often people who claim to enjoy change have never really experienced
change. (McCrimmon, 1997)

3.6.1 Organisational culture

Johnson et al. (2005) define organisational culture as pretty much everything we do and think in
the organisation. This includes everything from traditions, rules, values and policies to beliefs,
behaviours and attitudes of the people in the organisation. Culture is seen as a system of
management authority; cultural values will increase the management authority and power if they
are accepted by the employees and the organisational culture will influence people’s attitude to
change (Johnson et al, 2005; Armstrong and Stephenson, 2005).

Employees identify themselves with their organisation accepting the rules when it is seen as the
right thing to do. Employees are motivated to achieve the organisations objectives and
internalise the organisation’s values when they believe them to be right. This is an important
concept when an organisation is going through a change. The findings in the research by Rashid
et al (2004) showed that organizational culture is associated with attitudes toward change, and
has an effect in the change process.

There is considerable amount of research on organisational culture affecting the management of


change. Already Revenaugh’s (1994) study over a decade ago found that organizational culture
is a key variable in implementing any major business change or IS/IT change. Organizational
culture can influence change positively, however usually it is seen as a hindrance to any change.
(Revenaugh, 1994) Culture impacts a variety of organisational processes, and culture can be a
source of sustained competitive advantage; sometimes when an organisation becomes
particularly good at carrying out its operations, routines, in a certain way, real competitive
advantages are achieved. However, routines can be a severe obstruction to change (Lee and Yu,
2004; Johnson et al, 2005)

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According to Mullins (2005) culture is reinforced through the system of rituals and rites,
communication patterns, the informal organisation, and expected patterns of behaviour. There is
a complex set of factors that affect the culture and structure of an organisation so they develop
over time. Key influences having an effect in the development of any corporate culture include
history, primary function and technology, goals and objectives, size, location, management and
staffing, and finally the environment (Johnson et al, 2005).

Organisational culture is identified as a key problem in IS/IT change projects. In of the ongoing
high profile programmes, the NHS national IT programme some problems were identified and
the obstacles were not technological or resource but cultural. Changing human behaviour and
culture in the NHS exceed technological matters as the biggest challenge facing the project.
Success of the project will depend on much more than IT, as the most significant obstacle in
similar projects has been the lack of attention to the human element (Collins, 2004; Clark,
2005a, 2005b).

Mergers are another issue clearly linked with organisational culture and change, and a
significant matter for BBB’s change management issues. Mergers and acquisitions are a way for
companies to grow and enhance their position in the market, however mergers have significant
implications for the companies involved as well as for their competitors who might have to
consider similar actions to remain competitive. Merger is likely to instigate other changes, such
as technological integration and business process changes (Mohamed, 2004; Rotibi, 2005).

3.6.2 Resistance to change

Thomas (2001:117) identifies bad planning and bad execution as causing failures, but even
when time and effort has been invested in carefully planning and executing the change, the
process can fall apart. Often the critical element in failure is resistance to change. People resist
change even when it is clearly to their benefit, because they do not view the proposed change as
an improvement, but rather see it as a step in the wrong direction. People resist change because
they perceive there to be a mismatch between the new environment and their own comfort zone.

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Comfort zone, often referred to as the status quo, is the area where people operate on a daily
basis, where they do not feel threatened either by the work or by the environment. When people
are taken out of their comfort zones they do anything to try to protect their environment, which
causes stress and the person tries even harder to restore the status quo. The further people are
taken from their comfort zones, the more increased the stress levels will become. Stress is
lowered and comfort restored either by simply restoring the status quo or by expanding or
shifting the area of comfort zone to include the new set of conditions, the change. (Thomas,
2001)

Change is often resisted at both the individual and the organisational level. People are naturally
wary of change and resistance to change can take many forms. Reasons for individual resistance
to change within an organisation include selective perception, habits – established manners,
inconvenience or loss of freedom, economic implications, security in the past and the fear of
unknown. Organisational resistance can arise from reasons such as organisational culture,
maintaining stability, investment in resources, past contracts and agreements, and threats to
power or influence. It is said that when organisations go through change, for example a merger,
installation of new information technology, employees can experience a sense of loss. This is
obvious if it means losing a job which is frequently the case with change programmes. However
often the reasons for the sense of loss are not clear but the effects may be just as considerable
for both, the individual and the organisation (Mullins, 2005; Johnson et al, 2005; Lynch, 2003).
These areas will be of particular interest to this research as they are the factors most likely
causing the highest barriers to the successful implementation of change within the company.

Resistance to change can take on many different forms, some obvious and easy to recognise,
others subtle. Resistance can be either open or hidden, and active or passive, but it is important
to be able to recognise the different forms of resistance which are illustrated in figure 3.2.

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Hidden
Visibility of Resistance

Open

3 4
Sabotage Submerge

1 2
Struggle Submit

Active Passive

Degree of Resistance

Figure 3.2 The Four Forms of Resistance


Source: Thomson, 2001:121

The visibility of resistance can be either open; resistance is obvious for everyone to see, or
hidden; when resistance is below the surface, not easily seen, and more difficult to identify. The
degree of resistance can be either active or passive. Active resistance can be destructive to the
organisation, as it intends to stop or hinder the change process. Passive resistance is less obvious
and more difficult to confront, as people are not actively trying to hinder the change but are just
not going along with the efforts, i.e. working slowly or keep ‘forgetting’ the change. (Thomas,
2001)

The four quadrants are the following:

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Struggle – active, open resistance: when implementing the change, employees openly tell the
change is wrong or they will not go along with it. This is good in the sense that employees trust
the management and are open about their resistance which enables management to respond to it.

Submit – passive, open resistance: people submit to the change, but this should not be mistaken
as acceptance. People do what is needed, but will soon loose their energy, enthusiasm and
loyalty.

Sabotage – active, hidden resistance: people feel threatened and not trusted, they resist change
actively but trying to hide the resistance, sabotaging the efforts of the management who are
trying to implement the change. Resistance being hidden, it cannot be responded to like in the
struggle-quadrant where resistance is open.

Submerge – passive, hidden resistance: resistance being passive, it is not as harsh as sabotage
but still dangerous. People are implying they will do what is needed, but then will challenge the
change when ever they can. This causes everything to look fine on the surface, but management
will face problems and the change process may fail without management knowing the reason or
having anyone to blame for the failure.
(Source: Thomas, 2001)

There are people who see change as an opportunity and are stimulated by it, however they are a
minority and most people resist change because they are used to their routines and patterns of
behaviour. People see change as a threat to their familiar life at work, believing it will affect
their status, security or earnings. They may believe that management has ulterior motives, and
do not believe the statements management makes about change being for their benefit. Because
resistance to change is natural and even inevitable, it is difficult to overcome (Armstrong and
Stephenson, 2005). Thomas (2001) agrees that sometimes resistance just cannot be overcome,
but even when it cannot be made to disappear, it can be minimised. There are some strategies
for managers to help grow the comfort zone of employees to help them feel comfortable with
the changes, thus minimise resistance. These are introduced in table 3.3.

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Strategies for Minimising Resistance


1. Empathy and support - managers need to recognise that change does not happen
overnight, there is a need for patience
2. Education and communication – it is important to take the time to talk to the
employees, let them know the reason for the change and the steps needed, education
should help them understand the logic and the need for change
3. Participation and involvement – employees need to be allowed and encouraged to
participate in designing and implementing the change. As a result resistance will be
minimal
4. Plan – The most important factor for success is a plan
5. Address resistance – there will always be some degree of resistance and the easiest
way to overcome it is to tackle it head on

Table 3.3 Strategies for Minimising Resistance


Adapted from Thomas, 2001; Cummings and Worley, 2005; Thompson and Martin, 2005

3.7 Leadership

The amount of change that organisations must face to be able to succeed has grown significantly
in the last years, and will continue to grow, demanding more resources and change leaders
(Wren and Dulewicz, 2005). Leadership of change requires both leadership and management
skills, and there is a clear differentiation between the two. Management is mostly about
efficiency in using resources and routines; planning and budgeting aiming at producing orderly
results. Leadership is about creating the future, concentrating on the most important resource,
people; focusing on producing change and involving strategies for bringing about changes
needed to achieve the vision for the future (Armstrong and Stephens, 2005; MacMillan and
Tampoe, 2000; Thomson and Martin, 2005).

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Leaders in change are also change agents, people responsible for initiating and maintaining a
change effort. They needs to understand reasoning behind the change, communicate with others
whilst deepening commitment and strengthening the alignment with the visions. There are
certain aspects of leadership that have an impact on success of change, with the highest
significance being on managing resources, engaging communication and creating
empowerment. These are followed by developing, motivation and critical analysis (Wren and
Dulewicz, 2005). A successful change agent does not avoid conflict. Some further desirable
qualities of change agents are highlighted in table 3.4 (Kendra and Taplin, 2004; Rogers et al,
2003; http://www.managingenterprisecontent.com/myweb/Glossary.htm)

Desirable Characteristics of Change Agents

 Confidence builder – have the ability to turn followers into leaders. An effective change
leader enables people to release the leader within them thus diminishing their anxiety
 Multi-faceted – have the ability to play different roles and the ability to demonstrate
different leader behaviours to match the needs of the followers and the circumstances
 Motivational – able to enthuse the followers with vision and daring, encourage people to
renewed energy and determination to win
 Trustworthy – leader’s actions must be sincere and people need to believe that the leader’s
motives are honourable
 Outer-focused – whilst having their own beliefs, leaders need to understand others and their
motives and aspirations
 Performance not conformance orientated – the actions of the leaders need to be focused on
outcomes and not inputs
 Politically astute – the change leader must react to the political climate and adjust to
situation according to what is going on in the organisation as the changes work through.
 Persistent and determined – not to let constraints of the project distract, which means for
example fighting for scarce resources
 Quick-witted – able to comprehend issues arising from various sources even if these are not
the leader’s area of expertise, this can be done by asking clever questions and assessing the
answers received
 Convincing – able to gain commitment to the project even if some involved do not share the
objectives
 Creative – able to produce solutions to new challenges and problems occurring
 Self-motivating – there is unlikely to be anyone else motivating the leaders, especially if
things are going wrong
Source: Macmillan and Tampoe, 2000:203

Table 3.4 Desirable Characteristics of Change Agents

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3.8 Successful Change Management

Success in managing change depends on a variety of factors. Change programmes often have
fragmented plans and people are given bits of information without the knowledge of how these
bits fit in together. This causes frustration and gives people the impression that there is no
reason for all the change activity, and people cannot see the important trade-offs. When people
are shown how everything fits together into a one complete picture makes the change
programme appear less complicated and can be very liberating to the people involved. Sufficient
resources need to be allocated to change programmes, not only financial but human resources as
well. Also choosing the right people to act as change agents is crucial for successful
implementation, as is the support from top management. Change programmes are likely to
achieve the set objectives if they are subject to precise project management disciplines, and have
focus and rigour; however remaining sufficiently flexible to respond to unexpected threats and
opportunities. Anticipating problems is important, as is dealing with them, especially resistance
to change (Rogers et al., 2003; Armstrong and Stephenson, 2005).

The change process can be made easier for the employees by organisation can encouraging a
learning environment and treating change as a positive thing, this will help with the attitudes and
beliefs of the employees when implementing change. Al major change programmes need human
input, and cannot succeed without a sense of urgency. (Rogers et al, 2003)

Research has that the one of the greatest obstacles to successful change is the organisation’s
culture. Change is an emotional experience, and people need help getting through it. The top
management must be ultimately accountable and keep the people going. Employees need
control over what is going on around them, and the more control people have over their own
change related areas, the more committed they will become to the change programme.
Empowering and motivating the key people in the change programme is one of the most
efficient ways to achieve the objectives of the change programme (Rogers et al. 2003).

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Smillie (2005) builds on these theories and claims that change management success depends on
six organisational capabilities which are leadership and management, communication,
measurement and accountability, motivation and incentives, skills and capability development,
organisation and people. These capabilities are influenced by a methodology that includes the
same planning steps that are used in strategies for successful change management. The steps
include evaluating the resistance that is likely to arise, envisioning the solution, planning for
change which means engaging the employees and stakeholders, implementing the plan, and
improving upon success (Smillie, 2005:1). Smillie (2005) suggests that successful change
management needs to link change to business strategy, create quantifiable benefits, engage key
stakeholders early, integrate required behaviour changes, lead clearly, unequivocally and
consistently, invest to implement and sustain change, communicate continuously and personally,
and finally sell commitment to the change, not communication about the change (Smillie
2005:2).

The findings of Hardgrave and Armstrong (2005) support the other studies in regards to factors
affecting the change processes. They state that knowing the success and failure factors in
advance to any change initiatives are being implemented, allows the organisation the
opportunity to plan for the change and the appropriate action. Their study found that a lack of
guidance and plans for the change can result in unrealistic expectations regarding the timeframe
for the change, and that lack of commitment from the management is an apparent recipe for
failure – any change needs buy in from the management; clear and visible top-down
commitment is a critical success factor. In regards to resistance they found that when the
employees, in the middle of change processes, are engaged and have an influence in the project,
there is a better chance of success. Hardgrave and Armstrong (2005) highlighted again the
importance of a change leader in the process, as well as having pre- and post change measures in
place to evaluate the success of the change initiative.

Armstrong and Stephenson (2005) introduce their six steps for effective change:
1. Mobilise commitment to change through the joint analysis of problems

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2. Develop a shared vision of how to organise and manage to achieve goals such as
competitiveness
3. Foster consensus for the new vision, competence to enact it, and cohesion to move it
along
4. Spread revitalisation to all departments without pushing it from the top – don’t force the
issue, let each department find its own way to the new organisation
5. Institutionalise revitalisation through formal policies, systems and structures.
6. Monitor and adjust strategies in response to problems in the revitalisation process
(Armstrong and Stephenson, 2005:122)

A change programme requires a business case, which describes the broad aims and reasons for
the change as well as the resulting benefits and how the planned change is to be achieved.
Furthermore the programme needs to have objectives, an assessment of barriers to change and
the development of solutions, definition of responsibilities for managing change, project
planning, and finally, monitoring and evaluation of progress. Objectives, the goals, which the
change needs to achieve, should be discussed and agreed, and if possible quantifiable targets
should be used. Success criteria help because everyone involved in the process knows what they
are trying to achieve and the results can be monitored and evaluated (Stacey, 2000; Pettinger,
2004; Armstrong and Stephenson, 2005).

Barriers to change need to be assessed so that they can be predicted, to enable methods of
dealing with them determined beforehand. The responsibility for managing change could be left
in the hands of one manager. The project team can consist of many people, but ultimately there
should be one change agent who is accountable for the change. Project planning includes all the
important steps in preparing for the project, such as identifying activities, estimating time, cost,
available resources, schedules etc. and determines the flexibility available for the activities and
which activities are critical. Finally, monitoring and evaluating progress needs to be done
against the plan and objectives. After the change has been implemented it has to be measured to
ensure it is delivering the expected benefits (Lynch, 2003; Martin, 2005; Armstrong and
Stephenson, 2005).

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Successful management of change, which is crucial for continued economic performance and
competitiveness, the managers will influence the behaviour of individuals and groups and
ultimately the level of organisational performance and effectiveness. There are ways in which
managers can develop new capabilities to cope with change. Some actions managers can take to
ensure successful change management are outlined in table 3.5.

Actions to secure successful and sustainable change:


Create an implementation plan which can be understood and followed by everyone
Create a sense of urgency
Use managers as change agents: key people driving change; build a guiding team
with the credibility, skills and authority to provide change leadership
Create sensible, clear visions and a sense of common direction; communicate
vision and strategy to gain understanding and commitment
Keep all the stakeholders informed about everything at all times – the key to
successful change management is commitment
Empower action and remove obstacles
Produce short-term wins that help providing credibility and resources to the
overall effort, and will stimulate commitment to strategy
Don’t let up but maintain the momentum, consolidate early changes and create
wave after wave of change
Make change stick by nurturing a new culture, and developing group norms of
behaviour and shared values; reinforce and institutionalise change as a shared
attitude
Monitor change closely, be flexible to change emphases and tactics within the
change programme as it develops
Get feedback, evaluate
(Source: Johnson et al. 2005; Mullins, 2005; Pettinger, 2004)

Table 3.5 Effective Change Management

3.9 Conclusion
This literature review has provided an overview of current research and theories on change
management, evaluating reasons for failure and factors for successful change. The review has
focused on the areas relevant to this research project and provides a basis for analysing and
evaluating the findings from the empirical primary data collection.

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4. Findings

This chapter presents the findings from the primary data collected. The findings from the
questionnaires are introduced first, followed by findings from the participant observation and
interviews.

4.1 Introduction

Questionnaire responses were analysed using SPSS software. The questionnaire and the SPSS
output tables detailing the responses can be seen in the appendices (See Appendix 6 for the
questionnaire and Appendix xxx for the response table).

4.2 Questionnaires

Berkeley Berry Birch Plc


A questionnaire was designed by the researcher and sent to 61 BBB employees in different
departments in the Coventry Head Office of BBB, where the employees are available to
complete the questionnaire, and have the most exposure to technology and therefore the
technological changes taking place in the organisation. 26 responses were received back
resulting in a response rate of 43%. The response rate was expected to be higher due to company
involvement; however it is satisfactory considering the employees being extremely busy.

The variety of respondents was very good; responses were received from all different levels
from administrations and operations employees to the very senior management of the company,
reflecting the structure in the company. This gives a good reflection of the overall opinion in the
company as all groups within the company are represented in the sample and results can be
generalised to the whole company. There was also a variety of backgrounds in terms of how
long the respondents had been with the company. Figure 4.1 shows the spread of occupations
into the given categories. Figure 4.2 shows the length of service of the respondents. A

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significant majority of the respondents, 65.4%, had changed roles within the company, those
respondents tended to have been with the company longer; however this goes to show that the
employees have gone through significant changes within the company if they have changed
roles during their service.

Job Categories BBB


IT Supply
50.0%
45.0%
40.0%
35.0%
30.0%
25.0%
20.0%
15.0%
10.0%
5.0%
0.0%
Senior Middle Operations Technical Adm inistrative
Management Management Employee Support Support

Figure 4.1 Job categories of the respondents

Length of Service

50.0%
45.0%
40.0%
35.0%
30.0%
BBB
25.0%
20.0% IT Supply
15.0%
10.0%
5.0%
0.0%
Less than 1 1+ to 2 years 2+ to 4 years 4+ to 6 years 6+ years
year

Figure 4.2 Length of service of the respondents

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IT Supply
The questionnaire was sent to 50 IT Supply employees, out of which 13 were returned resulting
in a response rate of 26%. The response rate is not very high; however it is a very good
response rate according to the contact person in the company, who revealed that normally the
surveys conducted in the company result in response rates of close to 10%. Reasons for the low
response rate can be found from the nature of the business being very dynamic, and the people
in IT Supply being constantly very busy. Also compared to the response rate of BBB it can be
noted that there the response rate is higher because the researcher was employed in the company
and the company involvement automatically increases response rates, and people feel more
obliged to fill the questionnaires. Therefore even after sending a reminder email twice and the
contact person verbally reminding people about the questionnaires, the response rate remains
low.

The respondents of IT Supply were mainly middle management and technical support workers
as these are the two main groups represented in IT Supply, where majority of people are
software developers or managers. Most of the respondents had been with the company longer
than those at BBB, from four to six years and had also changed roles in the company.

4.2.1 Change in the companies

Respondents were firstly asked to respond to statements about changes taking place in their
company; they were asked to identify how often they feel concerned about certain kinds of
changes, and they were also requested to indicate the level of concern experienced. The
summary of the responses can be seen in the table 4.1 below, where the first percentage for each
option is from BBB, and the second from IT Supply.

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Frequency of Concern
Very Often Sometimes Not At All
Often Concerned
I have expressed concern Concerned Concerned Concerned
in the company that:
IT IT IT
BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / IT Supply
Supply Supply Supply
* requires me to make an economic
0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 30.8% / 30.8% 57.7% / 61.5%
investment
* requires me to make a non-economic
0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 23.1% 42.3% / 61.5% 46.2% / 15.4%
investment, i.e. effort, personal time
* introduces a new technology 7.7% / 0.0% 0.0% / 30.8% 46.2% / 46.2% 46.2% / 15.4%
* introduces new ways of working 0.0% / 15.4% 11.5% / 30.8% 65.4% / 46.2% 23.1% / 0.0%
* increases my work load 11.5% / 0.0% 23.1% / 23.1% 65.4% / 38.5% 0.0% / 30.8%
* involves a threat of job loss for myself 61.5% / 0.0% 19.2% / 0.0% 19.2% / 69.2% 0.0% / 23.1%
* involves a threat of job loss for my
57.7% / 0.0% 30.8% / 15.4% 11.5% / 61.5% 0.0% / 23.1%
immediate colleagues
* results in a reduction in staff numbers in my
23.1% / 0.0% 46.2% / 0.0% 23.1% / 53.8% 7.7% / 38.5%
organisation
* involves financial cutbacks 11.5% / 15.4% 50.0% / 30.8% 26.9% / 7.7% 11.5% / 38.5%
* reduces salary levels in the organisation 11.5% / 0.0% 11.5% / 30.8% 53.8% / 7.7% 23.1% / 53.8%
* creates a pressure to complete work 0.0% / 15.4% 7.7% / 69.2% 84.6% / 15.4% 7.7% / 0.0%
* results in lack of time to cope with work
11.5% / 0.0% 19.2% / 23.1% 57.7% / 69.2% 11.5% / 0.0%
pressure
* results in companies merging 11.5% / 0.0% 65.4% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 11.5% / 100.0%

Table 4.1 Response Summary – Frequency of Concern

From the responses to the questionnaire shown in table 4.1 it can be seen that the changes most
often causing concern at BBB are the ones that involve a threat of job loss to either the
respondents themselves or their immediate colleagues, followed by changes that result in a
reduction of staff numbers or companies merging or involves financial cutbacks. There are quite
a few other things that cause concern, and overall it seems that the respondents at BBB are
experiencing change related concerns very often. These same changes have been identified to be
causing the highest level of concern; however respondents also find the introduction of new
technologies alarmingly concerning.

At IT Supply most often causing concern are changes that introduce new ways of working,
involve financial cutbacks and create pressure to complete work. However, other types of
changes, such as introduction of new technologies, threat of job loss and changes that result in
lack of time to cope with work pressure are also causing concern quite frequently. The highest

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level of concern is caused by changes that require the respondents to make a non-economic
invest into the change, e.g. their time or effort. Other very concerning changes are the kind that
increase the workload, introduce new ways of working, creates pressure to complete work and
changes that result in lack of time to cope with work pressure.

Level of Concern
Alarmingly Somewhat Not At All
I have expressed concern Very Concerned Concerned
Concerned Concerned Concerned
in the company that:
IT IT IT
BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / IT Supply BBB / IT Supply
Supply Supply Supply
* requires me to make an economic
23.1% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 15.4% 7.7% / 23.1% 46.2% / 38.5%
investment
* requires me to make a non-economic
0.0% / 15.4% 0.0% / 23.1% 23.1% / 7.7% 42.3% / 30.8% 34.6% / 15.4%
investment, i.e. effort, personal time
* introduces a new technology 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 23.1% / 76.9% 53.8% / 15.4%
* introduces new ways of working 0.0% / 15.4% 11.5% / 0.0% 11.5% / 53.8% 53.8% / 30.8% 23.1% / 0.0%
* increases my work load 11.5% / 7.7% 34.6% / 15.4% 19.2% / 38.5% 34.6% / 15.4% 0.0% / 15.4%
* involves a threat of job loss for myself 46.2% / 0.0% 42.3% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 53.8% 0.0% / 38.5%
* involves a threat of job loss for my
46.2% / 0.0% 42.3% / 0.0% 11.5% / 15.4% 0.0% / 61.5% 0.0% / 23.1%
immediate colleagues
* results in a reduction in staff numbers in my
23.1% / 0.0% 34.6% / 0.0% 23.1% / 0.0% 19.2% / 30.8% 0.0% / 61.5%
organisation
* involves financial cutbacks 23.1% / 0.0% 23.1% / 30.8% 19.2% / 0.0% 23.1% / 23.1% 11.5% / 38.5%
* reduces salary levels in the organisation 42.3% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 23.1% / 30.8% 11.5% / 7.7% 11.5% / 53.8%
* creates a pressure to complete work 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 38.5% 19.2% / 53.8% 57.7% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0%
* results in lack of time to cope with work
3.8% / 7.7% 46.2% / 15.4% 19.2% / 0.0% 19.2% / 69.2% 11.5% / 0.0%
pressure
* results in companies merging 7.7% / 0.0% 53.8% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 15.4% / 0.0% 11.5% / 100.0%

Table 4.2 Response Summary – Level of concern

4.2.2 Organisational culture, structure and interrelationships

The next section in the questionnaire investigated the organisational culture, structure and
interrelationships in the companies. The respondents were asked to select the most suitable
option to the statement from the following list: Strongly Agree, Agree, Neutral, Disagree and
Strongly Disagree. At BBB 46.2% of the respondents considered the hierarchy to be very strict,
with a further 23.1% strongly agreeing with strict hierarchy; however the respondents mainly
think that the communication patterns in the company do not follow the hierarchical structure
with 46.2% disagreeing with this statement. Most of the respondents didn’t think that the
organisation has flexible and open policies with 46.2% disagreeing with statement 3. All the

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statements can be seen in the table 4.3 below with the individual response percentages first for
BBB followed by the percentage for IT Supply. Most respondents in IT Supply do not consider
the company to have a very strict hierarchical structure. In contrast it is considered that the
communication patterns in the company follow the hierarchical structure, and the statement
about flexible communication channels and open policies divides the respondents with slightly
more respondents disagreeing with the statement.

When asked about whether continuous learning is supported and encouraged, a third of BBB
respondents strongly disagreed with the statement, and a further 38.5% disagreed, this clearly
shows the views of the employees. There was no one clear answer to question number 5 about
the atmosphere in the organisation, however majority of the respondents did not agree with
relaxed and open atmosphere existing within and between departments. On the contrast, people
at IT Supply find it that continuous learning is supported in the organisation and the atmosphere
is open and relaxed.

Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Organisational Culture, Structure and Disagree
Interrelationships
IT IT IT IT IT IT
BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply
There is a very strict hierarchical structure
Q1 23.1% / 7.7% 46.2% / 23.1% 0.0% / 61.5% 23.1% / 0.0% 7.7% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
in my organisation
All communication patterns follow the
Q2 26.9% / 30.8% 11.5% / 23.1% 7.7% / 7.7% 46.2% / 0.0% 7.7% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
hierarchical structure of the organisation
There are flexible communication channels
Q3 0.0% / 15.4% 34.6% / 15.4% 7.7% / 23.1% 46.2% / 7.7% 11.5% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
and open policies in the organisation
Continuous learning is supported and
Q4 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 69.2% 30.8% / 15.4% 38.5% / 7.7% 30.8% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
encouraged in the organisation
The atmosphere is very open and relaxed
Q5 0.0% / 15.4% 23.1% / 38.5% 30.8% / 0.0% 23.1% / 38.5% 23.1% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
within and across departments
It is clear to all that employees are valued in
the organisation, and everyone is treated as
Q6 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 23.1% 76.9% / 69.2% 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
fairly as possible with consideration to
individual circumstances
Employee loyalty is appreciated and
Q7 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 7.7% / 0.0% 57.7% / 23.1% 34.6% / 69.2% 0.0% / 0.0%
rewarded
High morals and ethical working patterns
Q8 are emphasised throughout the 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 30.8% / 30.8% 46.2% / 46.2% 11.5% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
organisation
Rules and regulations are emphasised
Q9 throughout the organisation and they are a 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 0.0% 46.2% / 0.0% 30.8% / 61.5% 0.0% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
big part of my daily duties
I have sufficient access to resources and I
Q10 am provided with the necessary tools 11.5% / 0.0% 61.5% / 0.0% 3.8% / 30.8% 23.1% / 61.5% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
needed for my daily duties

Table 4.3 Response summary – Organisational Culture, Structure and Interrelationships

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The data from table 4.3 shows that employees of neither of the companies feel very valued in
the organisation as 76.9% of BBB respondents stated disagreement and further 11.5% strongly
disagreed with statement 6, and nearly everyone stated that employee loyalty is not appreciated
and rewarded. The same trend is seen in the results for IT Supply, as nearly 70% of the
respondents think that employees are not valued, nor do they think that employee loyalty is
appreciated and rewarded, which is surprising considering the fact that so many employees and
managers have stayed with the company for a significant number of years. These findings are
very concerning for both of the companies, and show low working morale and lack of trust in
the companies.

A cause for concern is that over half of the respondents in both companies do not think high
morals and ethical working patterns are emphasised in their organisation. Most respondents
from BBB do not have clear opinions about rules and regulation in statement 9. The data from
the IT Supply respondents show that rules and regulations are not emphasised in their
organisation either. The majority of BBB respondents (63%) feel that they have sufficient access
to resources, whereas most respondents in IT Supply (61.5%) feel that they do not have
sufficient access to resources.

At BBB the employees mainly do not feel that the vertical or horizontal working relationships
have been developed to support change initiatives, and half of the respondents believe that
project team relationships are not well developed or mutually supportive. Furthermore, a clear
majority do not feel the working relationship between the employees and management supports
change initiatives. These responses indicate that teams are not working effectively to support
and conduct changes, nor are the relationships at and between different levels of the company
supportive of change initiatives. Furthermore the respondents do not think that the relationship
between the head office and branches is fostering best working practices that are shared.

The culture within the departments is not considered to be competitive according to most
responses. A clear majority (69.3%) of the respondents do not think that there are strict goals

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and objectives to pursue, nor do they think that these are considered important and rewarded in
the organisation. Team working is mainly encouraged according to 61.5% of the respondents as
opposed to independent working patterns, and three quarters of the respondents do not feel that
innovation and personal development are encouraged in the company. These responses highlight
the lack of individual objectives in BBB, and shows that BBB does not encourage individual
working patterns as opposed to team working; however teams do not function effectively. The
responses also highlight that the environment and working patterns are not supportive of change
initiatives.
Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Organisational Culture, Structure and
Interrelationships IT IT IT IT IT IT
BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply

The vertical working relationship across the


Q11 organisation is developed to a level that 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 23.1% 30.8% / 30.8% 38.5% / 38.5% 7.7% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
supports change initiatives
The horizontal working relationship across
Q12 departments is developed to a level that 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 53.8% 42.3% / 0.0% 34.6% / 38.5% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
supports change initiatives
When teams are formed to work on projects
(including implementation of change), the
Q13 0.0% / 0.0% 19.2% / 46.2% 30.8% / 30.8% 50.0% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
relationships are well developed and
mutually supportive
The working relationship between the
Q14 workforce and management is supportive of 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 30.8% 38.5% / 7.7% 50.0% / 23.1% 0.0% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
change initiatives
The working relationship between the
various locations (e.g. company head office
Q15 and branches/sites) is mature to the point 0.0% / 0.0% 15.4% / 15.4% 11.5% / 0.0% 50.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 38.5% 0.0% / 38.5%
that best work practices are shared and
used
The organisation encourages independent
Q16 working patterns as opposed to team 0.0% / 0.0% 19.2% / 15.4% 19.2% / 38.5% 61.5% / 38.5% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
working
Innovation and personal development are
Q17 encouraged and supported in the 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 15.4% 26.9% / 15.4% 57.7% / 30.8% 15.4% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
organisation

Table 4.4 Response Summary – Organisational Culture, Structure and Interrelationships,


part 2

The situation is different in IT Supply where the respondents feel that both the vertical and
horizontal working relationships in the organisation are developed to support change initiatives.
According to a majority (38.5%) of respondents, individual working patterns are not encouraged
and supported over team working in the organisation; which is reflected in that teams formed to
work on projects have well developed and mutually supportive relationships according to 46.2%

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of the respondents. The working relationship between the workforce and management is
considered supportive to change initiatives, but the relationships between the different sites are
not that good. Like at BBB the IT Supply respondents feel that innovation and personal
development are not encouraged and supported. The culture between departments is not thought
of as competitive, and most of the respondents (69.3%) at IT Supply do not think that there are
strict goals and objectives in place for employees to pursue. The respondents do not think that
achieving goals is considered important or rewarded by the company; this could cause problems
in the company with motivation and achieving set targets, which could lead to decreased
profitability.

Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Organisational Culture, Structure and
Interrelationships IT IT IT IT IT IT
BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply
The culture within and across departments
Q18 0.0% / 0.0% 34.6% / 0.0% 11.5% / 23.1% 46.2% / 38.5% 0.0% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
is competitive.
There are strict goals and objectives for
Q19 0.0% / 7.7% 11.5% / 0.0% 11.5% / 15.4% 53.8% / 38.5% 23.1% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
employees to pursue.
Achieving goals and objectives is
Q20 considered important in the organisation, 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 65.4% / 23.1% 23.1% / 69.2% 0.0% / 0.0%
and achievement is rewarded accordingly.
The organisation's structure was designed
Q21 and implemented to support the business 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 46.2% 42.3% / 46.2% 11.5% / 0.0% 23.1% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
strategy.
The structure of the organisation and the
departments support the work processes
Q22 within a department and between 0.0% / 0.0% 34.6% / 0.0% 46.2% / 38.5% 15.4% / 30.8% 3.8% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
departments (across the departmental
interfaces).
The structure supports people working
together in teams to accomplish the
Q23 0.0% / 0.0% 34.6% / 15.4% 42.3% / 38.5% 15.4% / 38.5% 7.7% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
business objectives and conduct work
efficiently.
The structure is designed to support
delegation of authority and communication
Q24 7.7% / 0.0% 38.5% / 38.5% 30.8% / 30.8% 15.4% / 30.8% 7.7% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
both within department and between
departments.
The levels in the structure from the bottom
of the organisation to the top appear to be
Q25 correct in that they support effective 0.0% / 0.0% 57.7% / 15.4% 11.5% / 38.5% 30.8% / 38.5% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
execution of the work (bottom=the work
force, top=the management).

Table 4.5 Response Summary – Organisational Culture, Structure and Interrelationships,


part 3

In BBB, majority of the respondents do not have a clear opinion of whether the organisation’s
structure supports the business strategy, or the work processes in and between departments to

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accomplish business objectives, which is highlighted by the percentages of ‘Neutral’ answers in


questions 21 to 24 (see table 4.5). This might be due to lack of communication about strategy
and structure in the company. 57.7% of the respondents agree that the structure of the
organisation supports the effective execution of work processes. In comparison IT Supply
employees believe that the structure of the company was designed to support the business
strategy; however they do not feel that the structure supports work processes in and between
departments, or people working towards business objectives. This exposes an area of conflict,
which could be due to the structure supporting the overall business strategy, but not being as
compatible with the lower level and departmental functions.

4.2.3 Motivation and rewards

According to the first few questions in this section, the respondents in BBB see that there is no
profit sharing plan in place in the company and most also think that there is no individual merit
plan at all. The existing reward structure is seen to be aimed at groups or teams rather than
individuals, and even that is rated poor to very poor. Change efforts are not recognised either by
rewards. In IT Supply the situation is similar with more a unanimous opinion; there is no profit
sharing plan or reward structure in place, and most respondents also state that the company does
not have an individual reward plan.

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Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Motivation and Rewards
IT IT IT IT IT IT
BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply

A gain or a profit sharing plan is in place to


share the success of the business between 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 30.8% / 0.0% 46.2% / 100.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
Q26 those who contributed
A reward structure or plan is in place that
links financial reward to the success of
0.0% / 0.0% 38.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 61.5% / 100.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
teams and work groups (as opposed to
Q27 individual)
There is an individual merit/bonus/reward
0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 11.5% / 30.8% 76.9% / 61.5% 0.0% / 0.0%
Q28 plan in place
An individual merit plan is in place but
Q29 evaluation is based on how the individual 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 30.8% / 30.8% 69.2% / 46.2% 0.0% / 15.4%
performed as a member of the team
There is a feasible process or plan in place
Q30 to provide short-term rewards to reinforce 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 57.7% / 0.0% 42.3% / 100.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
change efforts by the organisation
Excellent Good Average Poor Very Poor N/A
Rate the rewards system or plan in your
company based on your perception of its
Q31 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 57.7% / 0.0% 42.3% / 100.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
ability to create rewards based on individual
and team performance

Table 4.6 Response Summary – Motivation and Rewards

The next set of questions (Q32 to 46) gauged the attitudes of the respondents and the perceived
approach of the company towards changes. The responses on individual attitudes were spread
across the board reflecting the individual opinions of the respondents. Some people are more
open to change, this range of responses is to be expected when dealing with individuals and
personal circumstances. Overall though the IT Supply respondents seem more welcoming to
change. There were no major differences between the two companies in most cases, however
some statements were found to have interesting variances. Statement Q37 – I support change
because ‘I play the game, but inside I am cynical about the whole thing’ – got a wide spread of
responses from BBB, but the respondents of IT Supply had a clearer opinion with 15.4%
strongly agreeing, 61.5% agreeing, and no-one disagreeing with the statement. This reflects the
fact that change is considered a part of daily life in this company, people do go along with the
changes, however they still have some reservations about it that do not get voiced.

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Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Motivation and Rewards
IT IT IT IT IT IT
BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply Supply
I feel positive and support change because
Q32 11.5% / 7.7% 34.6% / 38.5% 19.2% / 46.2% 30.8% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
I welcome any sort of changes
I support change because if I didn't I would
Q33 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 23.1% 30.8% / 61.5% 34.6% / 15.4% 23.1% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
be penalised
I feel positive and support change because
Q34 I get paid more than I would if there was no 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 26.9% / 46.2% 38.5% / 23.1% 23.1% / 23.1% 0.0% / 0.0%
change
I feel positive and support change because
Q35 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 23.1% 15.4% / 15.4% 26.9% / 53.8% 34.6% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
my team members do so
I feel positive and support change because
Q36 there is little chance of advancement in the 19.2% / 15.4% 38.5% / 23.1% 0.0% / 53.8% 23.1% / 0.0% 19.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
organisation otherwise
I support change because 'I play the game,
Q37 but inside I am cynical about the whole 0.0% / 15.4% 23.1% / 61.5% 30.8% / 23.1% 34.6% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
thing'
I feel positive and support change because
Q38 change is continually promoted from the 0.0% / 7.7% 0.0% / 53.8% 19.2% / 0.0% 57.7% / 30.8% 23.1% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
top
I support change when my immediate
Q39 11.5% / 15.4% 42.3% / 23.1% 7.7% / 46.2% 26.9% / 7.7% 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
manager promotes change
I resist change when my immediate manager
Q40 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 7.7% 23.1% / 0.0% 53.8% / 69.2% 11.5% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
resists change
I feel positive and support change when I
Q41 see the person driving the change being 30.8% / 0.0% 46.2% / 61.5% 11.5% / 15.4% 11.5% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
committed to the change
I feel positive and support change because
people are given full opportunity to
Q42 11.5% / 0.0% 34.6% / 46.2% 7.7% / 46.2% 23.1% / 0.0% 23.1% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
participate in any changes that are
introduced
I feel positive and support change because
Q43 I can affect the change by giving feedback 19.2% / 0.0% 30.8% / 61.5% 11.5% / 30.8% 23.1% / 0.0% 15.4% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
and suggestions for improvement

I feel positive and support change because


Q44 I feel a sense of personal 'ownership' of the 11.5% / 0.0% 23.1% / 53.8% 19.2% / 38.5% 42.3% / 0.0% 3.8% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
change being implemented

I feel positive and support change because


Q45 people who promote change are recognised 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 0.0% 7.7% / 46.2% 50.0% / 46.2% 19.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
in visible ways
I feel positive and support change because
Q46 people who do not promote change are 15.4% / 0.0% 15.4% / 23.1% 7.7% / 15.4% 42.3% / 38.5% 19.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 15.4%
penalised in visible ways

Table 4.7 Response Summary – Motivation and Rewards, part 2

On the approach of the company, Q36, it was found that interestingly a clear majority of both
sets of respondents - 19.2% BBB and 15.4% IT Supply strongly agree, and 38.5% and 23.1%
respectively agree with the statement that they support change because there is little
advancement in the organisation otherwise. From the responses it can be seen that change is
promoted from the top in IT Supply, which makes the employees feel positive about the
changes, however this is not the case in BBB. Both companies’ respondents highlighted the
importance of the immediate manager promoting change because it makes them feel positive

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and supportive of the change. Likewise both sets of respondents agreed with the statement that
they feel more positive about the change when they see the person in charge of the change being
committed to the change. Other factors seen as positively influencing attitudes towards change
in both companies included; opportunity to participate, chance to give feedback and
improvement suggestions, and having a sense of personal ownership of the change.

4.2.4 Leadership

Question 47 to 55 investigated the leadership in the organisation and asked the respondents to
rate the reaction of the personnel to the leadership of the management team in their organisation.
The responses from the two companies were fairly similar, however IT Supply does have lower
level of effort to follow the leaders, which means employees tend to get on with their jobs
without the need to be actively managed. There is a clear difference in the leadership between
the two companies; in BBB leadership is considered to short-term focused, whereas in IT
Supply, it is considered to have a vision for the future, allowing for more freedom without the
need to give strict restrictions about tasks. Further differences can be seen in the way leaders
stay at IT Supply and live with the results of the changes they initiate, whereas at BBB leaders
tend to leave before they see the results of their actions.

In both companies the top management have been successful in creating a belief that the change
is necessary, however there is no clear change leader in BBB, whereas IT Supply has one.
Interestingly though, both companies disagree with the statement Q55; “Management time,
patience and support are given to those who need it due to experiencing difficulties adjusting to
the change”, BBB with 68.5% and IT Supply with 38.5%.

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High level of effort Average level of Minimal Level of The organisation There is outright
to follow the effort to follow effort to follow does not support resistance to the N/A
Leadership leaders leaders leader the leaders leadership
IT IT IT IT
BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply
Rate the reaction of the personnel to the
Q47 leadership of the management team in your 0.0% / 0.0% 57.7% / 46.2% 23.1% / 46.2% 19.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
organisation.
Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
The leadership in the organisation is
Q48 0.0% / 23.1% 19.2% / 38.5% 11.5% / 30.8% 38.5% / 0.0% 30.8% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
leadership with a vision of the future.
The leadership is transactional, i.e.
Q49 38.5% / 15.4% 23.1% / 7.7% 19.2% / 53.8% 19.2% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
concerned only with activities of the day.
Management allows the organisation
freedom to act within a set of predefined
Q50 0.0% / 7.7% 23.1% / 53.8% 26.9% / 15.4% 26.9% / 15.4% 11.5% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0%
boundaries without a need to give strict
restrictions about tasks.
When the organisation develops and
implements goals, initiatives, and activities -
Q51 0.0% / 0.0% 30.8% / 38.5% 38.5% / 0.0% 19.2% / 38.5% 11.5% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
those involved in the project are held
accountable for success.
The leaders in the organisation remain in
Q52 their positions long enough to live with the 0.0% / 53.8% 0.0% / 7.7% 7.7% / 30.8% 34.6% / 0.0% 57.7% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
results of the changes they initiate.
The top management create a belief that the
Q53 0.0% / 53.8% 57.7% / 7.7% 19.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 30.8% 23.1% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
change is necessary.
There is clearly a particular person or
Q54 0.0% / 15.4% 46.2% / 30.8% 7.7% / 46.2% 23.1% / 0.0% 23.1% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
persons driving the change.
Management time, patience and support are
given to those who need it due to
Q55 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 7.7% 19.2% / 46.2% 38.5% / 7.7% 30.8% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
experiencing difficulties adjusting to the
change.

Table 4.8 Response Summary - Leadership

4.2.5 Support

Questions 56 to 65 on the questionnaire investigated the support company provides for change
and how changes are introduced in BBB and IT Supply. It is interesting to see from the
respondents opinions how the introduction of change is perceived different in the two
companies, but the actual handling of the changes is similar. The respondents were asked what
sort of information they received when introduced change (Q56-60). The respondents indicate
that changes at IT Supply are clearly introduced with an explanation of advantages to the
stakeholders, discussion of how the structure systems and people practices will change, and a
description of new core values and/or beliefs needed to make the change successful, in contrast
the employees at BBB do not experience these types of support to change according to their
responses. Both companies are lacking in the areas of strategic planning to detail the steps of

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change and an indicating to employees how change is going to affect their job. Somewhat
worryingly neither of the companies seem to have adequate staff provision to provide support,
sufficient financial or human resources to support the changes, or a clear timetable of the phases
involved in change processes, or appropriate training to enable employees to cope with the
change.
Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Support
IT IT IT IT
BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply
The introduction of change is accompanied
by an explanation of the advantages to key
Q56 0.0% / 15.4% 11.5% / 38.5% 0.0% / 7.7% 69.2% / 30.8% 19.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
internal and external groups (employees,
management, customers, etc.).
The introduction of change is accompanied
by a discussion of specific new ways in
Q57 0.0% / 0.0% 30.8% / 53.8% 0.0% / 7.7% 69.2% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
which structure systems and people
practices would change.
The introduction of change is accompanied
by a description of new core values and/or
Q58 0.0% / 15.4% 11.5% / 46.2% 19.2% / 30.8% 69.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
beliefs needed to make the change
successful.
The introduction of change is accompanied
Q59 by a plan detailing the various steps needed 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 15.4% 19.2% / 7.7% 50.0% / 69.2% 7.7% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
to implement the change.

The introduction of change is accompanied


Q60 by a clear indication of how the change will 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 15.4% 11.5% / 0.0% 46.2% / 61.5% 30.8% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
impact upon your job.
Throughout the change there is always a
Q61 distinct network of people at all levels who I 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 23.1% 19.2% / 30.8% 69.2% / 7.7% 11.5% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
can get answers/action from.
The allocation of financial resources is
Q62 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 19.2% / 15.4% 61.5% / 23.1% 11.5% / 23.1% 7.7% / 30.8%
adequate to support the change.
The allocation of human resources is
Q63 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 26.9% / 46.2% 61.5% / 7.7% 0.0% / 38.5% 0.0% / 0.0%
adequate to support the change.
A clear timetable is devised for the various
Q64 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 38.5% 30.8% / 0.0% 38.5% / 53.8% 19.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
phases of the change.
I receive appropriate training to enable me
Q65 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 7.7% / 30.8% 80.8% / 46.2% 11.5% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
to cope with the change.

Table 4.9 Response Summary - Support

4.2.6 Work processes

The next section (Q66 – 71) of the questionnaire examined the work processes. There does not
seem to be much variance in the working processes between the two companies, however
according to the respondents BBB follows the company rules and regulations in work processes.
Employees also feel that BBB has been successful in developing work processes to conduct

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work as efficiently as possible. In contrast IT Supply is better in reviewing, updating and


improving their work processes.

Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Work Processes
IT IT IT IT
BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply
Work processes have been developed to
Q66 0.0% / 0.0% 57.7% / 38.5% 23.1% / 15.4% 11.5% / 7.7% 7.7% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
conduct work as efficiently as possible.
Work processes have been developed to
Q67 0.0% / 15.4% 61.5% / 15.4% 15.4% / 23.1% 23.1% / 7.7% 0.0% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
conduct work by the rules and regulations
Work processes are reviewed and updated
as improvements are made or as new and
Q68 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 53.8% 15.4% / 0.0% 50.0% / 7.7% 11.5% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
improved ways of doing the same tasks are
learned.

Processes are in place to determine if the


Q69 ways of working are effective. Corrective 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 53.8% 30.8% / 0.0% 46.2% / 7.7% 11.5% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
action is taken if they are not.

The working processes were designed to be


Q70 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 15.4% 19.2% / 38.5% 50.0% / 7.7% 19.2% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
used as goals for achieving excellence.
The processes were developed by a team of
Q71 experts (internal or external) whose goal was 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 38.5% 38.5% / 38.5% 23.1% / 15.4% 38.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
to improve how work is accomplished.

Table 4.10 Response Summary – Work Processes

4.2.7 Group Learning

The section about learning and training in the company (Q72 – 75) asked the respondents to rate
the supportiveness of the management towards learning new and better ways of working within
the organisation. Neither of the companies’ management was rated very highly. Overall the
training is not very good in either of the companies as the respondents feel they are not allowed
time for training, or that the training would be improving their skill sets from what they already
know.

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It is not present
Very supportive Supportive Neutral Non supportive N/A
at the site
Group Learning
IT IT IT IT
BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply
Rate how supportive the management are
Q72 towards learning new, different and better 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 30.8% / 53.8% 57.7% / 38.5% 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
ways of working within the organisation.
Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
The personnel in the organisation are
allowed time for learning and training each
Q73 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 7.7% / 0.0% 50.0% / 38.5% 30.8% / 53.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
year (excluding obligatory training) and are
encouraged to use the time.
Training provided is not aimed just at skills
related to the performance in the job, but
Q74 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 15.4% 0.0% / 23.1% 57.7% / 53.8% 11.5% / 0.0% 7.7% / 0.0%
also skills that promote better interaction
and team work
When training is to be developed, an effort
is made to establish what employees
Q75 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 7.7% / 30.8% 50.0% / 30.8% 23.1% / 30.8% 7.7% / 7.7%
already know and what they need to know
and learn.

Table 4.11 Response Summary – Group Learning

4.2.8 Technology

When analysing the section about technology, it has to be kept in mind that IT Supply is in the
IT industry and has more critical and higher level views about technology than respondents from
BBB which is in the financial services industry (where all of the respondents were not directly
linked with IT in the organisation).

From the responses in the technology section of the questionnaire it can be seen that neither of
the companies keep their employees aware of the technological changes needed, or introduce
them to the plan of action. Interestingly the responses show that in BBB employees have not
been exposed to changes due to technology that have been difficult to adjust to, whereas 53.8%
of respondents in IT Supply have been.

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Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Technology
IT IT IT IT
BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply
Employees can affect what they are going
Q76 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 69.2% 0.0% / 15.4% 46.2% / 7.7% 23.1% / 0.0% 7.7% / 0.0%
to learn
The organisation has invested in essential
Q77 new technologies/software within the last 0.0% / 0.0% 34.6% / 38.5% 7.7% / 0.0% 23.1% / 38.5% 34.6% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
18 months
The employees are kept aware of the
Q78 changes needed and introduced to the plan 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 15.4% 57.7% / 46.2% 30.8% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
of action
I have had to change my working practises
due to technological developments in the
Q79 0.0% / 7.7% 0.0% / 53.8% 0.0% / 15.4% 69.2% / 15.4% 30.8% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
organisation, which has been difficult to
adjust to
I consider my organisation to be on the
same level technologically as the
Q80 0.0% / 7.7% 0.0% / 0.0% 57.7% / 0.0% 11.5% / 53.8% 30.8% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
competitors, and adopting new
technologies at this stage is not necessary

Software tools which support the work


Q81 process exist, are well utilised and 0.0% / 0.0% 34.6% / 0.0% 42.3% / 23.1% 11.5% / 61.5% 11.5% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
employees are made aware of them
Employees are provided with sufficient
Q82 training to be able to use the software 0.0% / 0.0% 46.2% / 15.4% 15.4% / 15.4% 11.5% / 30.8% 26.9% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
effectively.
The software is integrated into a single
electronic system to simplify their use and
Q83 0.0% / 0.0% 42.3% / 0.0% 15.4% / 15.4% 0.0% / 53.8% 42.3% / 7.7% 0.0% / 15.4%
avoid multiple entries and databases that
could cause problems
The data within the system is easily
Q84 accessible to all employees who need it, and 0.0% / 0.0% 42.3% / 0.0% 0.0% / 23.1% 46.2% / 61.5% 11.5% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
employees are made aware of it

Table 4.12 Response Summary – Technology

IT Supply appears from the data to be better organised in planning for the future; they have a
strategic multiyear plan for software improvements in order to stay up-to-date and provide high
levels of support to the workforce, however BBB is not considered to have a multiyear plan.
Another interesting finding is that despite having a plan, IT Supply does not seem to have
support readily available for the users and the systems in the company. One of the strongest
opinions in this section is for the statement Q92, as practically everyone (90.8% at BBB and
92.3% at IT Supply) agreed with the statement “I feel more positive about technological change
when I am involved in the change process and I am able to provide feedback”, thus it can be
concluded that employees consider participation and chance to give feedback very important in
a change process.

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Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Technology
IT IT IT IT
BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply
The company has a strategic multiyear plan
for improving and updating software in
Q85 order to stay up-to-date with the 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 53.8% 42.3% / 15.4% 23.1% / 15.4% 23.1% / 0.0% 11.5% / 7.7%
technology and to provide high levels of
support to the workforce
Support that is readily available for both the
Q86 users and the system is available in the 0.0% / 0.0% 23.1% / 0.0% 42.3% / 53.8% 11.5% / 38.5% 11.5% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0%
company
The software is reviewed on a regular basis
and updated if there are alternatives
Q87 0.0% / 0.0% 46.2% / 7.7% 19.2% / 46.2% 11.5% / 23.1% 23.1% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
available which enable more efficient
working
Technological changes in the organisation
Q88 have been successfully implemented 0.0% / 0.0% 34.6% / 0.0% 7.7% / 30.8% 38.5% / 15.4% 19.2% / 46.2% 0.0% / 0.0%
without problems or disturbance to working
The technologies adopted are quick and
Q89 0.0% / 0.0% 69.2% / 0.0% 11.5% / 38.5% 0.0% / 38.5% 19.2% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
easy to learn
I feel more positive about a technological
Q90 23.1% / 0.0% 26.9% / 30.8% 26.9% / 15.4% 11.5% / 23.1% 11.5% / 23.1% 0.0% / 0.0%
change which is urgent
Technology change initiatives in my
company are relevant and improve my
Q91 0.0% / 0.0% 46.2% / 30.8% 42.3% / 38.5% 0.0% / 30.8% 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
working practices, therefore I welcome and
support them
I feel more positive about technological
Q92 change when I am involved in the change 34.6% / 30.8% 46.2% / 61.5% 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 7.7% / 0.0%
process and I am able to provide feedback

Table 4.13 Response Summary – Technology part 2

4.2.9 Communication

The last section (Q93 – 107) of the questionnaire was about communication. Communication
was seen as an important issue by the respondents in both companies; however there were some
clear differences in communication between the two companies. Change in IT Supply is most
people see the leaders believing communication to be important and acting accordingly, but in
BBB this is not the case as the respondents clearly disagree with the statement Q93 and the
following about managers supporting the change through word and action. In IT Supply change
is considered to be well communicated and employees know what is going on, however this is
not done through structured meetings. Meetings are not an integral part of change at BBB either,
and the employees feel very strongly that changes are not communicated well.

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Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Communication
IT IT IT IT
BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply
The leaders of the organisation believe that
Q93 communication is important and act 0.0% / 15.4% 0.0% / 38.5% 30.8% / 15.4% 11.5% / 0.0% 57.7% / 30.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
accordingly
Managers visibly support the change
Q94 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 23.1% 30.8% / 30.8% 23.1% / 38.5% 46.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
through word and action
Proposed changes are well communicated
Q95 so that employees are aware of what is 0.0% / 0.0% 7.7% / 53.8% 0.0% / 7.7% 11.5% / 30.8% 80.8% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
going on
Meetings are arranged to communicate the
Q96 0.0% / 0.0% 19.2% / 23.1% 23.1% / 15.4% 23.1% / 53.8% 34.6% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
required changes
Meetings include: an agenda, a pre-
established start and stop times, facilitation
Q97 0.0% / 0.0% 19.2% / 0.0% 23.1% / 0.0% 23.1% / 38.5% 34.6% / 53.8% 0.0% / 0.0%
and minutes, with action items of what was
discussed
Employees who are not able to attend the
meetings are informed about the issues
Q98 0.0% / 0.0% 7.7% / 0.0% 0.0% / 38.5% 50.0% / 53.8% 42.3% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
introduced in the meeting in a timely,
accurate and appropriate fashion
Communication tools (intranet, voicemail, e-
Q99 mail, phones, etc.) are provided by the 19.2% / 15.4% 61.5% / 76.9% 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 7.7% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
company to those who need them
The communication systems are effective,
providing the needed level of
Q100 11.5% / 0.0% 76.9% / 0.0% 0.0% / 100.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
communication among the workforce and
between workforce and customers if needed

Table 4.14 Response Summary – Communication

BBB respondents indicated that it is common for other departments and even external parties to
learn about changes affecting the respondent’s jobs before they do, this was identified as
unacceptable by the respondents. These sorts of actions were found to be unacceptable at IT
Supply as well, however employees are generally notified of changes before external parties.
The responses also showed that changes are communicated by the immediate manager rather
than senior management or external parties in BBB, but not in IT Supply. Both companies felt
that change is usually not communicated without delays and errors, and also that the
communications are not informative, more so in BBB.

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Strongly
Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree N/A
Disagree
Communication
IT IT IT IT
BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / IT Supply BBB / BBB / BBB /
Supply Supply Supply Supply
It is common that other departments within
Q101 the company learn about a change which 57.7% / 7.7% 23.1% / 30.8% 19.2% / 15.4% 0.0% / 23.1% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 15.4%
affects my job before I do
It is common that parties external to the
company (e.g. partners, shareholders) learn
Q102 69.2% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 61.5% 0.0% / 7.7% 19.2% / 23.1% 0.0% / 0.0%
about a change which affects my job before
I do
I don't mind when others find out about the
Q103 changes that have an effect in my work 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 7.7% 46.2% / 69.2% 53.8% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
before I do
Any change is communicated by my
Q104 immediate manager rather than the senior 19.2% / 0.0% 38.5% / 0.0% 7.7% / 46.2% 11.5% / 46.2% 23.1% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
management or other external parties
Any change is communicated without
Q105 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 30.8% 23.1% / 61.5% 76.9% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
delays and errors
Communications are informative and there
Q106 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0% 11.5% / 30.8% 30.8% / 46.2% 57.7% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0%
is little need for questions
I am usually aware of change before it is
Q107 30.8% / 0.0% 23.1% / 38.5% 0.0% / 38.5% 46.2% / 15.4% 0.0% / 0.0% 0.0% / 0.0%
formally announced

Table 4.15 Response Summary – Communication part 2

4.3 Interviews and Participant Observation

The full notes from the participant observation and both interviews are presented in the
appendices (see Appendix xx for the notes of the interview with BBB representative and
Appendix xx for the notes from the second interview with representative from IT Supply).

4.3.1 Findings from the interview and participant observation at BBB

BBB has a very strict hierarchy and structure, with lots of rules and regulations in place. Many
of the rules and regulations are due to the industry, as the company is regulated by the Financial
Services Authority (FSA), however also being listed in the stock exchange brings rules to the
business. The company has a special compliance department to make sure everything is done
according to the rules and regulations of the industry. The compliance department screens all
outputs from the company varying from marketing material to the letters sent out to customers
and partners. Some of the internal policies are not always adhered to, even though there are
written guidelines, as was found out in the participant observation.

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There are strict communication channels people need to go through, and the company has a
policy of communicating through the immediate manager of the employee or via a
companywide email. There used to be regular, formal communication meetings for all staff
where the senior management communicated the performance and plans of the company as well
as discussed any issues. Since about 2005 employees have been consistently unsatisfied with the
communication of the company and the meetings not taking place, because they have found out
about the changes taking place in the company from external sources such as stock exchange
information bulletins. Employees are aware and appreciate that being a public listed company
information needs to be released to the shareholders first, however they are not happy with the
delays in information reaching employees. This is has affected the working policies in the
company, as the interviewee said: “I find it that there is a lot of gossip and rumours before
official announcements are made, and this is not helping the atmosphere in the company” (BBB
Interviewee, appendix 2)

The managers at BBB are mostly very approachable, willing to help out when needed and there
is a degree of informality in the working relationships in the company, however there is very
little social interaction between managers and employees. The managers in the company are not
always people managers, generally they take care of their duties, but do not seem to go the extra
mile or take responsibility for managing proactively the business further and take on new
challenges willingly. Senior management in the company has changed significantly in the last
year, with leaders being in position for a relatively short period of time due to redundancy
through business restructuring or cost cutting exercises. The interviewee from BBB stated that
“there is a feeling of uncertainty in the air at the moment, and we’re not getting the reassurance
from our managers at the moment. The leadership in the company has been a bit unfocused with
no clear and visible leader in the company for almost a year now”. He also emphasized that
there is a difference between a manager and a leader by saying “A manager can be someone
who is just there because they’ve been around long enough to gain managerial position, but does
not really do much in terms of proactively managing the people or the business. Whereas a
leader is someone who makes things happen on his/her own”. He went on to say that change

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management is more complicated than normal day-to-day management, and it needs to be


planned for.

For the public company, a lot of information about the company is available through annual
reports as well as analyses made by the stock exchange. Everything is public starting from
financial information to performance statistics. The interviewee identified clear differences in
the formality and structure in private and public companies, with private companies being more
informal and flexible in their processes. He mentioned also the stock market can create extra
pressure and demand on the business; “the stockholders require return ‘immediately’ and the
trust of the shareholders can be seen with immediate effect in the share prices. Whereas the
private companies have clear ownership and the owners have more say in financial and other
issues with shorter timescales required. A public company is restricted because of wider
ownership due to multiple shareholders”. The interviewee explained that for example when the
company is in need of financial resources, it takes for the shareholders to be contacted and no
guarantees exist of their willingness to further invest in the business, this could eventually result
in the business becoming insolvent.

It can be concluded from both the interview and the participant observation, which fully support
each other, that BBB does not have a specific change management strategy in place, not IT
specific or for any other organisational purposes. The strategies in the company have not been
reviewed over the last couple of years, even though the organisation has gone through a number
of technological, organisational and business process related changes that have arisen due to a
variety of reasons. There are policies in place to implement technological changes, but not a
strategy nor guidelines on how to go about the process. Successful implementation has been due
to the experience and knowledge of the people implementing the changes, whether it being
technological or organisational changes. The changes the company has undergone include from
normal adoption of new technologies and software, to the more high level business changes,
such as mergers and acquisitions, which further lead to technology changes.

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Practically all of the employees at BBB have been exposed to change to some degree, one of the
major change programmes in the company, the integration of the two financial planning
divisions, has involved all employees. Managers or directors have been charge of the changes
taking place. Smaller scale changes have been more successful in the company than the larger
change programmes. The reasons identified for the failures of change programmes include lack
of direction and plans, people in charge not taking ownership of the issues, lack of experience
and people leaving during the change process. Resistance to change is frequently seen especially
in the larger processes, as people do not want to change their working practices, they do not see
the benefits of the changes. Not much has been done to manage and overcome the resistance to
change, rather changes have just been pushed through, and people are given training in using the
new systems, as there are no plans or policies how to manage resistance to change. The
interviewee concludes that a plan would be needed when ever there is a change in the company,
and the person in charge of the change should be a very organised, able to plan and envisage
problems, deal with them and able to keep calm when things go wrong and people cause
problems.

4.3.2 Findings from the interview with IT Supply employee

The second interview was conducted with a manager from IT Supply. The company used to be a
public company, but changed into a private company when it was bought out in 1999. The buy
out caused significant changes in the company, as it involved a merger and a relocation, as well
as the company loosing 85% of the head office workforce according to the interviewee.

The company has a relaxed hierarchy with all the directors being approachable, however some
unwritten rules exist and some written rules are bent. An interesting feature in the company
structure is that the IT director is also the HR director, when asked if this is feasible and whether
the person has time and skills for such diverse roles, the interviewee politically declined to
answer.

The company has training policies in place, though they are not well known to employees. The
interviewee highlighted the importance of training especially with managers, he said “The

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company realises that good managers make the difference and invests in its senior managers, a
number have been and are going on MBA courses. Seeing the changes in these people is
interesting and I believe the company does get a benefit from improved management.” However
the lower level employees get only the necessary training.

Communication is an issue in the company, which has been improved after it was found lacking
in a survey conducted in the company. A great deal of effort is put into communication. It is not
possible to obtain accurate financial information anymore, which used to be possible when the
company was a public one, and it is felt that some degree of secrecy exists in the company about
disclosing too much information. The issue of communications released to shareholders before
the company employees was not seen as a major problem when being a public company as the
interviewee said: “as a lot of the employees were shareholders, any information published to the
stock exchange was quickly spread around the office”.

Strategy formulation is done by the IT executive, and it seems that the employees working in IT
do not get consulted, which can cause problems in the long term, however there is a degree of
flexibility in the strategies as the planned directions can be overturned if a valid business case
exists. Strategies are reviewed regularly and communicated to employees. IT Supply has a
recently introduced structured IT change management strategy in place and the introduction of
the strategy itself was faced with resistance. People thought that with IT being a very reactive
business, a change management strategy would slow things down. The strategy has now been
accepted as something that allows for control and monitoring of changes, as well as a
contingency plan if something goes wrong. The company has change managers, whose role is to
make sure processes are followed and to help and give assistance to people when needed. The
person in charge of the change varies depending on the scale of the change.

The change management strategy covers everything from control and processes to monitoring
and contingencies, but it does not accommodate for the human aspects in the change process..
When asked about this the interviewee said “Generally we don’t seem to worry about the staff
impacted by the change, we plan on training them and providing a helpdesk and that’s it”.

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The company has gone through a great variety of changes, mainly technological and IT changes
due to the business, arising from the external environment, for example the government and
customers. IT Supply are trying to manage and reduce the amount of technological change; they
are aiming to move into a one systems environment and one development approach. The
company is currently getting ISO accreditation, i.e. a series of standards specifying an effective
quality standard as stipulated by the International Organisation for Standardisation The adoption
of the ISO standards is a significant change for the whole company. When asked about the
changes taking place and who is affected by them, the interviewee gave an example of a change
in the warehousing system, he said that “A change to our warehousing system will, when fully
rolled out affect 18 warehouses and thousands of employees”, and further mentioned that
managers are the ones responsible for the changes and who manage the whole process.

Change programmes usually succeed at IT Supply, the company cannot afford to have
unsuccessful change programmes due to the nature of the business and low profit margins.
Employees accept changes as the nature of their business, and there is usually little or no
resistance to change. Mostly the resistance comes from the outside, customers, who are not so
used to the change. Handling of the resistance depends on the change; the interviewee explained
that “… [when handling resistance] normally the aim is education. If people understand why
we’re doing something and how it’s going to change that is seen as enough”.

A question about change being an emotional process was presented to the interviewee. “It
depends on the change. In theory business is a soul-less animal and change is a natural function
of the attempt to survive. In reality, change involves people, business and personal relationships,
investments of time therefore it becomes personal to people. This makes it emotional, the degree
depends on the personal involvement” the interviewee said, and further mentioned that planning
of the change usually helps, as people tend to get upset when changes have not been planned. In
IT Supply changes are usually planned and prepared for as much as possible, however due to the
dynamic nature of the business it is impossible to be fully prepared. The projects at IT Supply
have ‘closedowns’ where lessons are learnt and mistakes investigated to see what can be

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improved for the future, the degree of success of the implemented change is evaluated and
feedback obtained.

The interviewee makes a differentiation between a leader and a manager; he stated that “…a
leader is someone who gives direction. A manager is someone who looks after something and
implements the direction” and that change management is very different to everyday
management. He believes that change agents are there for a reason, and have saved the company
from many costly mistakes. The change agents need to be as flexible as possible, need the
ability to put up with people complaining and have sense of humour.

4.4 Conclusion

The findings from both the questionnaires and interviews show that there is considerably greater
flexibility in IT Supply compared to BBB, this can be seen in the rules and policies, as well as
communication channels, and relationships between managers and employees. The strategy
formulation at IT Supply is done by the executives with contribution from the employees and
enables realistic and feasible plans to be formulated, which are then communicated to everyone
and reviewed regularly. At BBB the strategies are formulated by directors, approved by the
board, with no input from the employees and to make matters worse the strategies are not
reviewed regularly nor are they communicated to the employees.

Relationships at BBB are not supportive of change initiatives. The organisational culture is a
barrier to change in the company due to the beliefs, attitudes and policies in the company. There
is no top-down commitment or support for change, nor are there change agents to drive the
change. Communication is a significant problem in the company, as well as motivation and
rewarding. Overall IT Supply is found to be performing better in change due to planning and
preparing for change, more effective communication, and the overall open and relaxed
atmosphere where change is welcomed and supported from top management to the lower level
employees.

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The data from the questionnaires, interviews and observations has been presented in this chapter
and the key issues about change management in the two companies have been identified.
These findings are critically analysed and evaluated in the following chapter in relation to the
findings from the literature review of current research into change management.

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5. Critical analysis

The primary research data collected for this project indicates that the change programmes at
BBB have not been successful or successfully implemented. The literature reviewed in the area
of change management highlights that ‘people’ are central to any change process regardless of
they type of change in question, indicating that people are the driving force in change processes.
However, people are also identified as a possible cause for change programmes failing, due to
issues such as organisational culture and resistance to change. The results from the
questionnaires, participant observation and the interview support this. The organisational culture
at BBB was identified as a hindering factor as a result of the data gathered from the
questionnaires.

The questionnaire respondents from BBB expressed feelings of ‘not being valued in the
organisation’ which can be linked to motivational problems. The relationships on and between
different levels of the company have also been found not to be functioning well and being
unsupportive of change initiatives.

In contrast, IT Supply has developed a change culture; the questionnaire responses highlight an
open and relaxed atmosphere, where relationships are supportive of change initiatives. The
attitude towards change in IT Supply can be seen from the questionnaires as positive with most
of the respondents (46.2%) indicating support for change. Also continuous learning is
encouraged in the company according to 69.2% of the respondents, which creates an
environment where changes are accepted, minimising resistance to change. Rogers et al. (2003)
support this finding by stating that the change process can be made easier for the employees by
organisations encouraging a learning environment and treating change as a positive thing; this
will help with the attitudes and beliefs of the employees when implementing change.

Resistance is not the only cause for change programmes at BBB failing. The questionnaire
respondents, participant observation and the interview also identified staffing issues as a reason
for failures. The important role of managers and leaders in the support of change is highlighted

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in the questionnaires. However BBB has experienced a number of set backs during change
processes when key staff have left the company, which causes significant problems. The
questionnaire’s statement (Q52) “The leaders in the organisation remain in their positions long
enough to live with the results of the changes they initiate” resulted in 92.3% of BBB
respondents disagreeing with it. Furthermore, top-down commitment is found to be lacking at
BBB with 80.8% of respondent disagreeing with the statement (Q38) “I feel positive and
support change because change is continually promoted from the top”. The lack of commitment
from the management is an apparent recipe for failure – any change needs buy-in from the
management; clear and visible top-down commitment are critical success factor as highlighted
in the literature review (Mullins, 2005; Hardgrave and Armstrong, 2005).

While the situation at BBB has been identified as prone to failures, the interview and
questionnaire data from IT Supply identify a more positive situation. The success factors in
change management have been attributed to strategic planning; with a change management
strategy being in place. The interviewee highlights:
“All change within IT Supply is controlled via the change management process. This took a
long time to implement as the business can be very reactive and this was seen to slow down
change. It is now widely accepted as it allows us to control, approve and monitor change. If
things go wrong we have the chance of putting them right without a disaster.”

The interviewee also said that the reason for having a change management strategy is mainly
financial as “mistakes can cost the company huge amount of business and profit”. This is also
supported by the literature, as Hardgrave and Armstrong (2005) found in their study that lack of
guidance and plans for the change can result in unrealistic expectations, which is an apparent
recipe for failure.

The research findings highlight serious problems at BBB in the provision of business strategies,
including change management, which are either nonexistent or not reviewed regularly. This has
resulted in no clear long-term planning in the company, and no strategy for dealing with change.
BBB is in need of up-to-date strategies with a clear, long-term plan, as this is an important tool
enabling companies to survive in the competitive environment in which they operate in
(Johnson et al, 2005). BBB especially needs a change management strategy tailored to its
specific requirements, due to the high level concerns employees frequently have about change

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(as shown in the questionnaire data) and with so many changes taking place on technological,
organisational and business levels.

Communication has also been found to be significantly lacking at BBB to the point where it has
started to negatively affect the working atmosphere, this was consistently highlighted in all three
set of data collected. The interviewee said that:
“…the employees get to hear all the news last and often through other media rather than
from the company directly. Due to the company structure and hierarchy the communication
process is slow, and I feel, a bit inefficient too. Sometimes information is given to the
managers who are then meant to cascade the information further down, but often the
information doesn’t reach all the relevant people due to mistakes or names being missed
from email distribution lists etc.”

Communication is identified as playing a crucial role in companies by many of the authors


included in the literature review, highlighting the need to communicate at every stage of the
change process. For example, the introduction of change needs to include discussion about
reasons and benefits, people feel more committed when they are engaged and evaluation of the
process is needed with feedback being crucial for both the change process and the people
involved (Rogers et al, 2003; Smillie, 2005; Armstrong and Stephens; 2005).

IT Supply as a company has previously identified communication as an area of weakness in the


organisation and as a result measures have been taken to improve the situation. The interviewee
states that “There is a great deal of effort to communicate with the staff” and this can be seen
from the questionnaire responses, as a majority (53.8%) agree with the statement “The leaders
of the organisation believe that communication is important and act accordingly”. Also 53.8%
of respondents agree with the statement “Proposed changes are well communicated so that
employees are aware of what is going on”. The questionnaires indicate that staff support change
processes when they are able to participate and provide feedback.

Other issues arising from the findings of the research regarding BBB are highlighted below:

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• Organisational culture is very strict, with policies, rules and regulations. Employees feel
strongly that they are not valued and loyalty is not rewarded. The culture in the company
is not very goal oriented, and not experienced as competitive

• Though team working is encouraged rather than individual working patterns, teams do
not seem to be working well, innovation and personal development are not supported
and neither is continuous learning. Relationships in the company are not supportive of
change initiatives

• The reward plans in place are considered to be poor with the performance or change
efforts not being rewarded. Attitudes toward change vary according to individuals;
however generally employees seem to support change because there is no advancement
at BBB otherwise

• The managers are seen important agents in the promotion of change. Other factors
influencing a positive support for change include; seeing the person driving the change
committed to the change, and sense of personal ownership

• People feel more positive about changes when they are involved in the process and are
able to give feedback

• Leadership at BBB is seen as short-term focused and is seen susceptible to staff changes
which affect the longevity of change processes. Top management has created a belief
that changes are necessary, but with no clear change leaders, the process has run into
difficulties

• The introduction of change is very poor, and lacks the information, resources, schedules
and training needed

• Employees are not given time for or encouraged to take part in training.

The overall findings from the evaluation of change management at IT Supply are more positive
than the findings from BBB, and there are fewer areas identified for improvement. Compared
with BBB, they are well organised and prepared for changes, and change is considered part of

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the business which employees accept. Some additional findings from the research regarding IT
Supply are summarised below:

• There is an IS/IT change management strategy, however it does not address the human
side of the process

• The hierarchy is not considered to be very strict, but the communication patterns follow
this structure. Employees feel they are not being valued and employee loyalty is not
being rewarded or appreciated. The culture in the company is not very goal oriented or
competitive

• People in IT Supply are open to change, however they indicate in the questionnaires that
they go along with changes but still have some reservations which do not get voiced.
Employees also support change because there would be no advancement if they did not

• Managers are seen as key players in promotion of change. Other factors influencing the
support of change include seeing the person driving the change committed to the change,
and fostering a sense of personal ownership

• Leadership in the company has a long term view and vision of the future. Top level
management have created a belief that changes are necessary, and there are dedicated,
supportive change leaders who are seen very important in change processes, however
people feel they are not allowed sufficient management time when they need it

• The reward plan is rated very poor by employees, and performance or change efforts are
not adequately recognised in the company

• The introduction of change involves providing employees a wealth of information; the


advantages are explained, as are changes to systems and people practices, and new core
values and beliefs needed to successfully implement the change

• There are no clear training policies in place, and the management does not really
encourage training of the employee level, however senior management training is
supported

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• Communication has been improved since it was found to be lacking in a previous


survey, however there is still space for further improvement in communication with less
delays and more accurate and informative reporting. Overall leaders at IT Supply believe
communication is important and changes need to be well communicated

• Changes are usually successful, and resistance to change is minimal. When resistance is
experienced, it is dealt with through education and training, to enable employees to
understand why something needs to be done

• It seems success in change follows planning, as well as obtaining feedback, assessing


lessons learned and evaluating the whole change process.

5.1 Change management strategy

The most apparent issue emerging from the critical analysis of BBB is that as a company they
need a change management strategy to be developed.

The change management strategy should take into consideration company and information
technology specific issues. However important the technological side of a change management
strategy is, it is essential to consider the human factors, because it is the people who ultimately
implement the change, use it and either make it work or fail. The questionnaire data shows that
employees often experience concerns related to changes at BBB, as there have been various
changes in the company. Therefore it is essential to have a plan, a strategy, on how to tackle
these concerns and successfully manage the change processes. The issues that need to be
included in the change management strategy are discussed below.

The organisational culture at BBB is currently not supportive of change initiatives, continuous
learning should be supported and incorporated into the company, as this creates a learning
environment which is more welcoming of changes (Rogers et al. 2003). If change is treated
positively in the organisation, this will influence the attitudes and beliefs of individual
employees when implementing change. There are currently no individual reward plans in place
at BBB; one should be introduced which addresses performance and change efforts and thus

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encourages positive thinking towards changes. Organisational culture can be turned into an
enabler of change from the hindrance it is currently. More open policies and flexibility could be
introduced to the strict hierarchy than currently exists at BBB to encourage supportive
relationships both vertically and horizontally in the company.

The people who the change affects need to be involved in the process, and feedback should be
obtained from them in order to foster a sense of ownership. Employees should be educated
about the reasons and expected benefits of the change and appropriate training given to cope.
The introduction of any change should be accompanied by a plan which addresses issues such as
financial and human resources, information about how it is going to affect employees and
systems they use, along with clear and realistic schedules. The change needs to feel necessary
and urgent for the people to give it their full attention (Rogers et al.2003).

Change also needs commitment from the top level as well as from the change agent. There
needs to be one person driving the change, whether it being the immediate manager of people
involved or someone else, he/she needs to be committed to the change process and provide
sufficient support to those not coping especially well with the process. There needs to be a clear
plan for the change, with contingency plans in case something goes wrong in the process such as
changes in staffing or unforeseen external pressures.

Communication is vital component of the change process. Change has to be communicated


efficiently, without delays and errors, and with sufficient information (Armstrong and
Stephenson, 2005). Whilst it is a requirement of public companies to announce changes to the
stock market first, the company needs to improve the system of communication with their
employees, who currently feel let down. Establishing decent communication with individual
employees allows people feel a sense of personal ownership and as a result they become more
committed to the change (Smillie, 2005). The research data shows that this is lacking in both of
the companies and as a result have varying degrees of commitment to change.

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Drawing from the issues identified in this critical analysis, and the previous knowledge gained
from the literature on change management, a framework can be created for BBB to enable the
development of a successful change management strategy, introduced in figure 5.1 below.

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COMMUNICATION

FRAMEWORK FOR SUCCESSFUL CHANGE MANAGEMENT

Business case
Aims and objectives
Reasons for the change
Long and short-term benefits
Success criteria

Assessment of barriers – especially resistance


Solutions identified

Support and commitment


Top-down, organisation-wide
Rewards

Change Agent
Change Leader
Responsibility
Accountability
Motivation
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Identify activities
Engage stakeholders
Schedule
Allocation of resources (finance, HR, systems)
Training
Contingency
Strategies for Successful Change Management by Paula Pieniniemi
Monitoring and evaluation
Progress and end result
Figure 5.1 Framework for a successful change management strategy

This framework has been developed from the findings of the questionnaires, interviews and
observations, as well as drawing on the work of Pettinger (2004), Mullins (2005), Smillie
(2005), and Armstrong and Stephenson (2005).

5.2 Recommendations

IT Supply has existing strategies for change management that are reviewed regularly. However
these strategies do not adequately address the human side to the process which is reflected in the
findings from the research. The organisational culture in the company supports change, people
accept change and feel fairly positive towards it. In conflict with these positive findings, the
questionnaires revealed that employees ‘do not feel valued’, even though relationships are good
with management and within teams. There is also no recognition of change efforts in the
company, and despite the fact that continuous learning is encouraged, it is mainly the senior
management who benefit from training. Communication has previously been identified as a
problem in the company and has subsequently been improved on, which is important in change
process.

The evidence suggests that it would be beneficial for IT Supply to incorporate the human side
into their change management strategy; this would enable their employees to cope better with
changes, and even though resistance is not a big problem, appropriate measures could be taken
to identify resistance and deal with it efficiently. Further improving communication, especially
regarding timeliness and accuracy of information can increase the success of change, as can the
development of a reward structure.

5.2.1 Differences between a private and a public company

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The data collected suggests that the two companies are very different in their approach to
change management; however there is practically no data to suggest that the differences are
caused by the difference in ownership. One issue which could be linked with the differentiation
between public/private, is organisational culture, which draws from the values, beliefs and
policies of the company. BBB being a large, highly hierarchical company reflects it in the
corporate culture, whereas IT Supply is a private company with open and relaxed atmosphere.
This causes differences in the organisational culture which further affects the change
management in the organisation. Therefore, organisational culture can affect successful change
management and should be considered when developing strategies.

Only other finding that can be clearly attributed to the fact that BBB is a public limited company
is that the BBB respondents find it unacceptable that communications go out to external parties
before they are informed. This is causing problems in the company as employees are very
dissatisfied though they understand the reasons for this happening, as can be seen from the
comments of the interviewee as well. Only recommendation that can be drawn from this is that
BBB needs to address this issue with the employees, explore alternatives and suggest a solution
which is mutually satisfactory for both the shareholders and the employees.

5.2.2 Recommendations for managers

From the literature reviewed and data collected in this research some key advice can be drawn
for managers leading change programmes. The questionnaire responses in both companies
indicated that change agents role is important in creating support and positive attitude towards
change, and communication is key factor in successful change management. Literature
researched supports this indication, identifying further strategies in successfully minimising the
key problem in change management; resistance to change, by planning, addressing the
resistance and engaging the people in the change process (Thomas, 2001; Cummings and
Worley, 2005; Thompson and Martin, 2005).

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6. Conclusions

This chapter gives a final conclusion for this dissertation from the secondary data discussed in
the literature review and the primary data collected using questionnaires, participant observation
and semi-structured interviews. This conclusion draws together the knowledge gained from
previous research in the area of change management and the findings from the critical analysis.

The overall aim for this dissertation was to investigate change management in Berkeley Berry
Birch Plc in light of recent change programmes being unsuccessful, and examining reasons for
failure. The literature reviewed highlights the importance of the human side in the change
management process regardless of the type of change. People can act as enablers as well as a
hindrance and source of resistance to any change (Rogers et al. 2003). This is supported by the
primary data collected from the interview and participant observation, where resistance to
change was identified as a factor resulting in the failure of change processes. Other reasons for
failures in change programmes at BBB were identified including; lack of strategic planning in
change, rigid organisational culture, poor leadership, support and commitment. Another crucial
issue attributing to the failures of change in the company is neglected communication strategies.

The research identified that IT Supply has more successful change programmes, than BBB, due
to a change management strategy being in place. It was also discovered that the organisational
culture is more open, relaxed and welcoming towards change. Overall, the employees at IT
Supply feel more positive about change and accept that it is a part of their business. The
company also encourages continuous learning which is seen as a significant enabler of change.
Key to successful change according to the employees at IT Supply has been continued
commitment and support from management, and the existence of a dedicated person driving the
change which is also highlighted in the literature review.

Building on the findings from the literature review and from the primary empirical research this
dissertation developed a change management strategy for BBB. The literature highlights the

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importance of strategic planning, and the data gathered from IT Supply suggest that their
successful change programmes are due to the existence of a change management strategy.

A framework has been developed in this dissertation which contains the components of a
change management strategy tailored specifically for implementation in Berkeley Berry Birch
Plc. The framework takes into consideration the current situation in the company, as identified
in the research (see figure 5.1). This framework highlights the importance of communication at
all levels, as a crucial factor in successful change management programmes.

Further recommendations arising from the critical analysis are that communication is key, and it
is recommended that both companies focus on improving their communication at all levels of
the change process. For agents leading change it was found that planning was key to anticipating
problems; especially resistance to change. It was also found that engaging people early on in the
process, helped to build a sense of ownership, creating more positive attitudes towards change.

The research found no evidence of differences attributable to the fact that one company is a Plc
and the other a privately owned company. Organisational culture can be affected by the fact that
a company is either public or private, however there is no data to differentiate which issues are
due to the ownership, as it is noted in the literature that every organisation has a unique
organisational culture anyway (Mullins, 2005). The issue arising from the questionnaires and
interview in regards to communication causing problems due to shareholders receiving
announcements before the employees is the only aspect linking the change management with the
differentiation of public/private.

To conclude, successful change management involves a combination of many factors, and


people play a key role in making the change process work and can also create the obstacles for
success. The research project has identified that change processes require a combination of
strategic planning, effective management, and communication in order to be successful.

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7. Recommendations and future research

Firstly, the research has shown that it is definitely advisable for all company to have a change
management strategy, for both the IS/IT and general organisational changes. There is a clear
need to be well prepared for and have a plan in place to tackle change, whether the changes are
arising from internal issues or in response to the external environment.

Every company needs to recognise and engage with the human side to change management as
people play a vital role in the change process. Effective change management strategies
accommodate for the human aspect of change allowing companies the opportunity to
proactively respond to and manage the issues, rather than responding reactively.

This research has discussed in detail change management in two companies, as a result the
findings are specific to these this investigation and therefore it would be interesting for further
research to investigate whether the issues identified here are company specific, or can be
generalised across the industry. Also it would be interesting for the wider business community
to investigate whether the findings can be generalised in terms of private and public companies’
change management issues.

Had access to IT Supply been available for participant observation, it would have been
interesting to follow a change being implemented from beginning to end, and observe the whole
process. Also a case for further study could be made from more detailed and in-depth
investigation the experiences of individuals, or perhaps the relationships between employees and
management, how the dynamics change in the change processes.

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8. Critical evaluation of the project

This chapter provides a discussion into the reliability and validity of this research and highlights
the limitations.

8.1 Reliability and validity of the research

Reliability is concerned with how repeatable the research and the findings are whereas validity
is concerned with truthfulness of the findings of the research (Bryman and Bell, 2003). It is
important to consider in this research, as with any research, whether the results would be the
same if repeated and if a given variable would be changed or if the method of collecting the
information would be different, how reliable and valid the actual research and the results are.
However, testing the repeatability of research which involves people is very hard in practice,
because people and situations can change (Easterby-Smith et al., 2002).

There are data quality issues related to the semi-structured interviews used in the research,
namely the fact that the lack of standardisation causes issues with reliability. Also interviewer
bias has to be considered, as well as interviewee bias. The interviewer may affect the
interviewee in different ways or interpret the responses in the wrong way. Taking part in an
interview is a stressful process and the interviewee may decide not to reveal the information
asked (Saunders, 2000). In this research the interviewer knew the interviewees personally, and
the atmosphere was very relaxed and open. This and the fact that the interviewees remain
anonymous is likely to have resulted in more honest responses and interviewees revealing
information they might not have if their identities were known. To overcome interviewer and
interviewee bias, the questions were open ended to enable further discussion and the questions
attempted to find out situations and settings within the company. However, the presence of
personal opinions cannot be eliminated from the interviews; therefore the interviews are used as
one form of data collection in addition to others.

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According to Saunders (2000) the reliability and validity of data collected using questionnaires,
as well as the response rate, depend on three issues; designing of the questions, piloting the
questionnaire and the structure of it. For the data gathered to be valid, the questions need to be
valid, which means the respondent has to understand the questions correctly and answer them
correctly. Also the researcher has to design the question appropriately and analyse the answers
accurately (Saunders, 2000). The questionnaire used in this research was piloted on two
occasions with different audiences before sending out to respondents, to enable as constructive
feedback in order to minimise bias and ensure data validity.

Triangulation helps to ensure validity and reliability and involves using more than one method
of research or source of data for research (Bryman and Bell, 2003). Using triangulation the
researcher is confirming that the data obtained from one source or using one method, with the
data obtained from another. To be able to gain a thorough understanding of any issue, the most
valid and reliable way to reach this is to use a combination of methods. This research used
questionnaires and interviews to obtain primary data from both companies, this was also
supported by participant observation with BBB, in addition to the secondary data used in the
initial literature review. Findings from all methods were compared and the validity and
reliability of the different sets of data crosschecked for consistency in the findings.

When using participant observation; there is a significant threat of observer bias, this was
addressed in this research through using other research methods. In addition, the observation
was done over a relatively long period of time, 7 months, which is likely to overcome a lot of
the observer bias. The analysis of the data shows that the data collected through observation
reflects the findings from the interview and questionnaires. Therefore the data obtained through
observation is valid and useful in this research.

8.2 Limitations of the research

Overall the research was a smooth process and there were no major obstacles. However there
are some limitations to this research which need to be considered. Perhaps the greatest

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limitations involve the researcher. Throughout the project the researcher has attempted to
remain as objective as possible in order to maintain the integrity of both the project aims and
data collected. The project involved the collection of three types of primary data, questionnaires,
participant observation and in-depth semi-structured interviews. The researcher triangulated the
data in order to ensure reliability and validity in the findings. The quantifiable questionnaire
data was analysed using SPSS software to further ensure reliability in the conclusions. The
qualitative interview methodology used semi-structure questions in an informal setting. The
researcher took every precaution in order to maintain objectivity in both cases. However due to
the researcher working at one of the companies this may have created a bias in the interviewing.

The response rates were lower than anticipated considering the company involvement which
usually attributes to higher response rates. Some problems were encountered during the
collection of data, as there were problems with receiving the questionnaires back due to the
University email server blocking some of the emails.

There were time some time related constraints, for example the participant observation would
have produced a greater variety of experiences had there been a longer time period available for
observation. Also budget was an issue when selecting the research methods, as online
questionnaire would have been used had there been sufficient funds to support this method.

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<URL:http://www.bbb.co.uk/main/about/>

(online) (cited 19.4.2006). Available from <URL:


http://www.firstdatabank.co.uk/pdfs/case_studies/IT SUPPLY.pdf>
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The London Stock Exchange (cited 160306). Available from


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APPENDIX 1 SWOT Analysis- Berkeley Berry Birch Plc

SWOT ANALYSIS

Berkeley Berry Birch Plc

Strengths
One of UK’s largest companies
Multi divisional
Weaknesses
Solvency issues
Variety; financial planning, insurance,
FSA investigations
risk, etc.
Staff retention problematic
Shareholder wealth
Recruitment not competitive
Nationwide locations
Changes in leadership
Large fleet of IFA’s
Strategies lacking
Centralised systems and head office
High costs of operations
operations in Coventry
Old IT systems
Strong compliance

Opportunities
Growing market Threats
Online financial planning and financial Solvency issues could prove fatal for the
advise business
New technologies for operations and FSA investigations damage image and
conducting business customer perception, reliability
Globalisation; new markets abroad, new Shareholder trust
customers in the UK Staff retention and recruitment not
High value customers competitive to attract new employees
New customer groups e.g. NAHT, West
Midlands Police

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APPENDIX 2 Interview – BBB


Interviewee – Would you like to remain anonymous in the discussion?
Yes, I would like to remain anonymous, please
How long have you worked at BBB?
I’ve worked at BBB for four and a half years now, I started in a more junior role within another department before
moving on to IT where I have been the last three years now. I have exposure on a few areas within the company
due to my role and daily duties.
Strategy
• What is the strategy formulation process?
The strategies are formulated on a departmental level, and they’re then taken to the board for approval, which
is quite a time consuming process but needs to be done due to the regulations. For example the IT strategy is
formulated by the head of IT, and he then discusses it with the CEO who sits in the board, and then the strategy
is formally taken to the board for approval.
• Is it evaluated regularly? Outcome?
The processes in the company were on a pretty good level a few years back, however the strategies in place at
the moment are about two years old. Even though the processes and software etc may be updated regularly, the
strategy itself does not get reviewed or updated. At least it hasn’t been done for the last two years. I don’t know
why this is exactly, perhaps the senior management is too busy to do it… Then again, the head of IT who was
pretty good in his job left about a year and a half ago and when he left, he took with him a whole lot of
expertise and knowledge about the company systems and software.. I guess there was no contingency plan for
him leaving because the people who were left behind did not have the same expertise he did and therefore
cannot solve the problems arising with the systems. And to add to the problem, the company has not been
investing in training people in the systems so that there would be someone able to solve any problems.
Change Management Strategy
• Is there one, formulation: who/how/process?
There is no formal change management strategy in place, at least as far as I know. There may have been one
earlier when the previous head of IT was here, but nothing has been discussed about change management
strategy in a couple of years. There are processes in place in IT to do the changes necessary within the
company, and also what to do if there are problems or the change goes wrong. However it is mostly at the
discretion of the IT personnel how to go about things, and the guys have been there quite long so they have
experience and their own ways of doing things.
• Do you have training policies in place?
We do. There are companywide policies, which cover all the Independent Financial Advisors, the network
members, as well as all the other personnel in the company. The training varies from financial planning
specific training to management skills and excel-training. Employee training is encouraged and supported in
the company, at least that is what the intranet and employee handbook state, however in reality the picture is a
bit different and getting into training is not as easy as you would think because everything needs to be
approved and there are no financial resources and everything takes ages to get done around here.
IS/IT Change Management Strategy
• Do you have one?
No, not really. Just some policies, but not a strategy as such.
Does the Change Management strategy have a ‘human’ side to it? I.e. are there policies in place how to
handle the people involved in the change, what are the communication policies, is someone accountable for
the change, is someone leading the change?
There is no mention of a “human” side in the policies, I don’t know if this would be an HR issue. There are
training policies for people who need to use a new software for example, but most of the time, when an
employee is introduced to a new software it is either a colleague or someone from IT to show how to do the
basics with the software. Everything is very informal and it is up to the employees to get on with it or ask help
if they need it.
Organisational Culture
• Hierarchy?
There’s the board, which has the divisional directors in it who then have the regional managers and
departmental managers under them. There’s also a CEO who the divisional directors report to. The

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departmental managers have assistant managers and team leaders answering to them, and finally the rest of the
employees..
It is all quite formal in structure and people have strict reporting channels to go through. There are differences
in the directors and managers though, some are more relaxed than others and like to be approached by
employees rather than them going through their managers etc. There are divisional differences too, the old
financial planning division has always worked with less hierarchy than the one that was bought and tried to
integrate with the rest of the company.
• Policies, rules, regulations?
The business is regulated by the Financial Services Authority, and as it is a public company listed in the stock
exchange there are some rules regarding that. I am not too familiar with those though as my area of expertise is
IT. There are company policies which are all in the intranet for everyone to see, and every employee is given a
staff handbook upon joining which states some basic rules and regulation about working in the company. The
rules and regulations regarding the company and FSA are strict and there is a compliance department in the
company to make sure everything is adhered to. However on a departmental level issues such as working
patterns are dependent on the manager in question and sometimes the rules are bent.
• Communication channels/policies?
Usually the communication to the staff is done by the immediate manager, or a companywide email is sent
with the communication. However, one issue causing a lot of friction among the employees is that when ever
there is an important announcement regarding the company, for example on FSA investigations the company
has been subject to or departure of an important director, all communication is released to the shareholders first
and staff get to know about the changes with a significant delay and through other channels than from within
the company. Though this is a requirement of a public company, we feel that the employees should be kept in
the loop a lot better than currently.
The company or the directors haven’t been very good in holding communication meetings. There was a policy
before to have at least a quarterly meeting with all the staff to announce the strategies and plans for the future
and discuss any major current issues. However, these meetings haven’t been held for quite a while now even
though there has been a clear need for them. I find it that there is a lot of gossip and rumours before official
announcements are made, and this is not helping the atmosphere in the company.
• Power distance
The managers are pretty informal with their staff on a day to day basis, however there are situations that
require certain degree of formality and the managers tend to take a bit of distance to the staff. There is very
little social interaction between managers and staff, however the managers do have all sorts of meetings and
conferences on a regular basis where they get to interact, but the ‘normal’ staff are excluded from this. There
are individual differences in managers of course and some managers have ‘made friends’ with the staff, and
this obviously is reflected also on the daily business. But generally the managers are approachable and help the
staff when needed, but I guess the management is more reactive than proactive when it comes to staff issues.
People and problems are dealt with as and when they arise, not aiming at preventing problems before they
become a problem…
• Leadership
It seems that some of the managers do not have any sort of people skills. They have just been made managers
because they have been in the company long enough. I’ve even heard one manager say to me that he doesn’t
like managing people at all! Managers do tend to get on with their stuff, but there is a sense of doing only what
is necessary, not much more when it comes to managing people and business. However I have seen real leaders
in the company as well, people who have driven the business forward and created business opportunities that
have been taken advantage of, unfortunately these people have been made redundant since due to reasons such
as cost cutting, business restructuring etc.
Private v Public –what are the differences you experience as opposed to a private company?
• Communication
There is a wealth of information about the company available in various sources, starting from the company
website to the various analysis made by stock exchange planners and analysts. Also the annual reports are
available detailing the company’s financial performance along with other communications about the business
from the directors.
However, as I said before, the employees get to hear all the news last and often through other media rather than
from the company directly. Due to the company structure and hierarchy the communication process is slow,

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and I feel, a bit inefficient too. Sometimes information is given to the managers who are then meant to cascade
the information further down, but often the information doesn’t reach all the relevant people due to mistakes or
names being missed from email distribution lists etc.
• Strategy, implementation
Used to be a lot more efficient than currently, as said some of the strategies haven’t been revisited in a couple
of years. People are just getting on with stuff without a refined plan or vision of the future.
I can see that this is affecting the business and especially the departments are lacking focus, there is no clear
aims of where they need to aim or what to do. There may a lot of good intentions and some discussion and
plans, but getting there is another matter….
• Hierarchy, structure
Being a large public company there is a structure and fairly strict hierarchy in the company, and I have some
experience of working in a private companies as well. Though private companies have a structure, the
processes are more informal and I’d say there is more flexibility. The CEO of the company can be approached
by the line employees without much consideration to formal reporting structures.
• Policies, rules
The business has the stock exchange regulations to adhere to, as well as the FSA regulations. All parts of the
business have a compliance manual to refer to. But I’d say the internal policies are more flexible and informal
as with the hierarchy mentioned earlier.
• Regulation (e.g. FSA)
See above.
• Working patterns
I don’t see a difference to a private company, other than the fact that we have a compliance department which
is there to make sure everything is done according to regulations, and to provide guidelines for employees and
financial advisors on how to be compliant. Other than that, on a daily basis it is very much like in any other
company not listed on the stock exchange.
• Power distance
There is the hierarchy from the board down which obviously affects the people in the company, but in general
employees and managers have a good working relationship where the managers are easily approachable and
available to help if needed. Though there is a clear distinction between who is a normal line employee and who
is on a managerial level. I don’t think there is much difference between private and public companies in this,
but the differences are probably more due to individual/personal characteristics of people and the size of the
company.
• External environment
The stock market creates certain demands for the business, the stockholders require return ‘immediately’ and
the trust of the shareholders can be seen with immediate effect in the share prices. Whereas the private
companies have a clear ownership and the owners have more say into financial and other issues with shorter
timescales required, a public company is restricted because of a wider ownership due to multiple shareholders.
And say where the company is in need of financial resources, it takes time to contact the shareholders and there
is no guarantee are they willing to invest more/enough in the business, which could eventually result in the
insolvency of the business.
The company is also prone to threats from the FSA and government, but so could a privately owned company.
• Leadership
Leaders have changed quite frequently in this company, more frequently than I have experienced in a private
company. However, this could be just the nature of the beast in this company or the industry, or maybe this
company just has issues with the management…. I don’t know….
There doesn’t seem to be the required ownership of the issues, people do not seem to take responsibility of the
business and management leaves or are made to leave which causes instability in the business and spreading
the responsibilities further…
• Change management
Do not know about this one, we do not seem to have much of change management policies in place.
Change in the company
• What types of changes does the company face?

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The company has gone through various changes in the last few years. There has been adoption of new software
to the operations departments, i.e. client services who deal with the product providers and process the
applications of customers.
Some time ago, the business started using the Internet as a tool for information gathering and distribution, as
well as gaining potential customers. However there aren’t proper methods of collecting the information, but in
many cases excel spreadsheets are used to store the information which causes significant data integrity issues
with multiple, untrained users… Many of the processes are very manual indeed, hence prone to error.
The company has acquired new businesses, such as employee benefit and risk businesses, another financial
planning group which was meant to become one with the existing financial planning group. This never
happened though, because the process of integrating the two groups was disturbed by key people leaving the
project and not having appropriately trained replacements, resistance from both sides of the business – the
existing and the acquired business, and finally there was a question of technology. The systems of the acquired
business were intended to be replaced with the systems of the existing business, however this never took place
to financial restrictions, not having the training in place, and the people were not willing to adopt the new
systems in the acquired company.
Also financial restrictions arising from the external business environment (FSA regulations for solvency,
unstable market, lack of business coming in, etc.) have resulted in business restructuring, which meant
redundancies for many and reallocation for others… There have been quite a few technological, and
organisational changes in the recent years.
• Describe a recent change process in the company?
A few mentioned above.
• Is technological and organisational change dealt with very differently?
No, there doesn’t seem to be any difference in them, considering there are no set policies about change
management either on technological or organisational level, any change processes are dealt with the same.
• Who deals with change, who is exposed to change?
Depends on the change in question, but I suppose all the employees of the company do get some exposure to
change of some sort in the company. The recent insolvency issues have definitely touched everyone, most of
all those who have experienced redundancies or changes in their job roles due to the restructuring. The people
dealing with the change also depends on the change in question, when it is a technological change it is the IT
department who lead the process, but in case of restructuring it is the divisional directors and managers in
charge.
• Do change programmes usually succeed? Reasons
To my experience the changes on a smaller scale have succeeded, i.e. a new application adopted on a
departmental level. However the greater change programmes have not been so successful. They have failed
because there has not been enough direction or detailed plans on about the change, there may have been one
person in charge overall, but they have not taken full ownership of the issue so people involved have been a bit
unfocused.
I have been involved in the merging of the acquired business into the existing business, and the people who
were given responsibility over the integration of the systems and training people in using the systems, were not
qualified nor experienced enough to do what they were asked to do. Some of the people also left during the
process which further complicated the integration…
• Do you see resistance to change?
Yes, for example in this merger I just mentioned. The people who were meant to learn the systems and
integrate into one big financial planning business were not happy about the change. I heard comments like
“everything was fine the way it was, our system was better than theirs, why do we have to do this when we’ve
always done it our way, etc.” People didn’t really want to adopt the systems and ways of doing things the BBB
way…
• How is resistance to change handled?
Well, at least in this instance I don’t think there was much done about it. People were just trained to use the
new systems, and told that this is the way things are done from now on.
• Who deals with it?
It is the managers on the senior level, at least when mergers or acquisitions are concerned. With IT change it is
the IT manager or IT department personnel, along with the departmental manager whose department is going
through the change.

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• Is change an emotional process? How do you see it?


I suppose it is, especially when it involves something like redundancies or unwanted role changes. I have seen
people cry many times, and get emotional at work when there is something major going on. But mainly people
tend to get on with it after some time, some might discuss it with their manager or colleagues rather, but they
get on with it.
Leadership in the company
• How do you see the leadership in your organisation?
I find the leadership has changed over the last year so much, people can’t keep up with it, and it has not always
been for the best. There is a feeling on uncertainty in the air at the moment, and we’re not getting the
reassurance from our managers at the moment. The leadership in the company has been a bit unfocused with
no clear and visible leader in the company for almost a year now..
• Is there a difference between a leader and a manager?
Yes, I think there is. A manager can be someone who is just there because they’ve been around long enough to
gain managerial position, but does not really do much in terms of proactively managing the people or the
business. Whereas a leader is someone who makes things happen on his/her own, who people want to follow.
• What is a typical change leader in BBB like?
A normal manager I’d say…
• Does the change leader have any effect on the change process?
Yes, they can affect how things are done and at what pace, also there is a lot they can do in terms of managing
the other people involved in the process.
• Is there a difference between every day management and change management?
Yes, probably there is. I think change management is more complicated than every day management, which
often goes at its own pace. However in change there needs to be a plan how to go about things and a backup
plan as well in case it goes wrong.
Change Planning
• Does the planning process when preparing for a change follow a rational structure? Are all the
necessary points taken into consideration or do you often find out that there are issues that
should’ve been planned and prepared for?
Yes, I think a plan would be good to start with. I don’t think there have been too many plans drafted about the
changes that have taken place, usually it is just the experience of the person in charge that determines the steps
taken. Quite often there are things that could’ve maybe been dealt with a bit different, or been prepared for.
• Do you evaluate the change afterwards?
It depends, with IT changes you usually see if things worked out or not. If there are no bugs or complaints from
the users everything went ok. But no, we don’t have a specific evaluation or monitoring system in place.
• Is feedback obtained from the parties (or employees) involved in the changes?
If it is given we take a note of it, for example if someone rings or emails helpdesk and complains about
something, we log it. But again, there is not set procedure about obtaining feedback. I’m not sure how it works
in other departments.
Change Agents
• Are the change agents in your company specially trained to be change managers?
No. They are just managers who may or may not have had experience or training in change management in
their previous employment, but the company does not train its change managemenrs.
• Do they need special qualities/characteristics for being or succeeding as a change manager?
I think it would be good, if you could see in to the future, so to speak, what I mean is to be able to anticipate
problems that are likely to occur. And anyone leading a change needs to be very organised and able to plan,
and also able to keep calm when it all goes wrong or people just don’t want to know about it.
• In your organisation, what are the keys to successful change management?
I think it is yet to be seen….

Would you like to add anything else?

Thank You!!

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APPENDIX 3 Interview – IT Supply


Company & Interviewee – Would you like to remain anonymous in the discussion?
I’d rather remain anonymous,. The company would prefer to remain anonymous.
How long have you worked at IT SUPPLY?
In total I’ve worked for IT Supply for the last 7 years.. I did work for them previously for a short time.
Have you changed roles within the company?
I have changed roles many times. I originally joined as junior developer. Over time I have worked my way through
the positions available to my current position as a manager.
IT Supply/
• What is the relationship?
IT Supply is an integral part of the wholesaler. We are a division within the company. Other divisions can use
outside IT companies to provide solutions but only with our consultation and agreement, for example if we do
not have the resources to provide a solution in the timescales necessary. It is the companies stated intention for
IT to provide all of the computing solutions. In reality, we believe the ‘business’ as we often refer to the rest of
the company see IT as the whipping boy. We’re the last line in the chain, we provide and implement solutions
therefore everything is our fault, irrespective of how accurate requirements are, how often they change or how
under funded a project is.
• How many employees in Coventry?
In head office we employ around 350 staff. We employ in total around 7 to 10 thousand people throughout the
18 warehouses in the UK.
Does IT Supply employ 350 people???
IT in head office employs around 100 people. We have most of the lower floor of a two floor building.
Is the IT Supply division autonomous, or does it have the same rules, regulations, policies as the ‘business’?
Can it be treated as a separate entity for the purposes of this research?
IT has to follow the generic rules laid down by the business. We have the same dress code, HR documentation,
time keeping rules etc. All managers are allowed a degree of discretion but at the end of the day we all report
to the same chief executive and what he says goes.
• What is the business, what do you do on a daily basis?
Primarily we wholesale drugs. That is we buy drugs from manufactures in huge quantities, store and deliver
this in smaller quantities to pharmacists. We supply the whole of the UK with 90% of customers receiving two
deliveries a day. If you add up the market share of our nearest two rivals they are still less than ours. The last
five years has seen 10%+ growth which is unheard of in this and many other industries considering our side
and market position.
What does IT Supply do?
Supply is the name for the development team within IT. IT is split into three sections, development (called
supply) demand and support. The helpdesk is a separate part of the company as its seen as being tied in with
the running of the warehouses (customer facing role). Within supply the roles depend on the product being
worked on. If it’s a large product the requirements will be deduced by demand, if it’s a small product or a
specialist team, you’ll do it yourself.
I am responsible for deployment for all systems installed on a customer site. This gives me a customer base of
around 2400 shops. Each shop will have between 1 and 5 pc’s.
I also act as liaison between the helpdesk and the development team making sure training is cascaded into the
helpdesk and problems are correctly identified, logged and investigated before being passed to a developer.
I am also responsible for liaising with the NHS governing bodies to make sure our software can be released
and am often used as a sounding board for new ideas.
The role is ever changing and developing as the products we release change in accordance with the demands of
the market and the government.
• Who did you distribute the questions to?
A number of colleagues in the business. These from my boss, helpdesk manager, one of my developers, a
manager at my level, company change manager and a technician.
• What are their jobs in the organisation?
IT SUPPLY Strategy

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• What is the strategy of the wholesaler and IT Supply if they’re different? Overall strategy of the
company?
Our vision is to be recognised as the best pharmaceutical wholesaler in the UK. This is backed up by the
magnificent seven – seven key tasks we should all keep in mind and try to achieve throughout the year. These
range from maintain and reduce costs due to the low margin through to sell more drugs imported from second
world countries (they are cheaper than UK sourced drugs therefore have a higher profit margin). IT is seen as a
vital part of the business and therefore underpins these strategies. It is widely accepted that IT runs the
business, at peek trading we will take 100,000 orders lines per hour. These will all be picked and dispatched
within a couple of hours due to our heavy reliance on IT.
To enable IT to assist in achieving these strategies we have our own strategies to reduce cost of ownership,
quicker to develop systems etc
• What is the strategy formulation process?
Good question! IT Strategies are formed by the IT executive. Sometimes it seems without input from the
people on the ground, which can cause problems in the long term. This is usually addressed and there is the
flexibility that directions / decisions can be over turned if a valid business case is presented.
Who formulates the strategy?
IT executive
• Is it evaluated regularly? Outcome?
It is reviewed periodically and the outcome is published. The senior development manger has quarterly reviews
where information like this is published / cascaded down to the team. We have monthly newsletter where this
information is also published.
Change Management Strategy
• Is there one, formulation: who/how/process?
All change within IT SUPPLY is controlled via the change management process. This took a long time to
implement as the business can be very reactive and this was seen to slow down change. It is now a widely
accepted ‘evil’ as it allows us to control, approve and monitor change. If things go wrong we have the chance
of putting them right without a disaster.
To enable this there is a team of change managers. There job is to make sure processes are followed, provide
assistance to people and help in times of trouble. Changes can be raised by any member of the development or
support teams via a internal web site. To make a change they must complete details on what the change is, who
will do it, how to back out of the change if things go wrong. This then emails the required approvers to the
change and only when the change has been approved can changes be made. In reality as I make so few changes
to internal systems I always get a change manager to assist me in raising the change. As my changes are
usually last minute I’ll also “walk the floor” and get everyone to approve the change there and then.
• Do you have training policies in place?
I believe we do – which probably says a lot about the policies as I have a number of people working for me
including contractors. We are currently applying for ISO9000 therefore I’m sure we will have policies in place
soon.
IS/IT Change Management Strategy
• Do you have one?
I believe we only have a strategy for IT as mistakes can cost the company huge amount of business / profit
• What does it entail?
Does the Change Management strategy have a ‘human’ side to it? I.e. are there policies in place how to handle the
people involved in the change, what are the communication policies, is someone accountable for the change, is
someone leading the change?
Change management is widely seen as something we do to computers. On the occasions we’ve had redundancies
these have had HR ‘running’ the process for the relevant director and advising the staff as required. Generally we
don’t seem to worry about the staff impacted by the change, we plan on training them and providing a helpdesk and
that’s it. For every project there will be product manager (PM’s). They are responsible for any changes at that level.
If many changes are need to make a product / project work then the product managers boss will become involved.
Therefore depending on the scale of the change depends on who is leading / accountable for the change. Because IT
often covers requirements, design, coding and testing we’re often seen as ultimately responsible irrespective of the
input from other departments.

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Organisational Culture
• Hierarchy?
Board of directors covering major functions, supply, sales, HR (& IT), Hospitals, Finance. Each of these has a
team of senior managers reporting to them, beneath them ‘normal’ managers and so on down to the ‘workers’
Is the hierarchy very strict, i.e. can the directors be approached easily by someone on a lower level, or should
you go through the appropriate channels?
Everyones door is always open, so anyone can approach a director, but, I think all managers would be
disappointed if you didn’t go to them first. As the implications if you don’t reflect badly on you and the
management team.
• Policies, rules, regulations?
We have a staff handbook which the company seems to generally adhere to, but, if a project requires the
company will request people ‘go the extra mile’. Sometimes I think some people don’t know what is in the
handbook and therefore oversights occur. All staff receives an induction upon joining the company and it is up
to managers to monitor staff.
So it seems that there aren’t very strict rules, and the ones in place are bent?
Managers are allowed a degree of freedom. If you are asking or hoping people will work extra hours to
complete a project it is incredibly de-motivating to insist a week later they can’t be 15 minutes late to work.
One of the issues is different managers will ‘bend’ the rules different amounts, this can cause some people to
see favouritism or miss treatment when there isn’t any intentionally.
• Communication channels/policies?
There is a great deal of effort to communicate with the staff. A survey was undertaken that highlighted
communication from the top as lacking. We now have communication days twice a year where the directors
tells us what is going on. Divisional managers have quarterly meetings and team leaders are supposed to have
monthly meetings.
• Power distance
There is a great deal of social interaction between groups of managers and staff. This tends to revolve around
long standing employees – a number of managers have over 20 years service. One of the support team has 25+
years. When the company relocated 6 years ago it encouraged social sports and we have a football and squash
organised by the company for any employee. At the same time most employees do not choose to socialise with
each other, most travel a distance to get to work and head home as soon as possible.
Are the managers easily approachable, can you ask any kind of questions from them, do they help willingly?
Next answer seems to imply people rather not go to their managers unless absolutely necessary? If you go to
your manager, do you get the help you need and is it hard to get some co-operation?
I think all managers will try and help in principle, it just depends how busy they are and what work they have
coming up. I can’t see any manager deliberately refusing to help, although if they disagree with the project / its
objectives I think it would only be natural for the manager to not give it a high priority.
• Leadership
All managers claim doors are open and they are, wise employees realise that every action has a reaction.
Are the leaders real leaders or are they just people who have advanced to the managerial positions over the
years? Do they drive the business forward or is it more reactive management? Are opportunities proactively
created and taken advantage of?
This is a very difficult question to answer. The nature of IT in IT SUPPLY means that we are very reactive to
the every changing business needs. We don’t have spare development capacity to work on ‘nice to haves’. It
isn’t often we get the opportunity to drive the system forward and when we do we try to make the most of it.
The argument is this makes us very ‘lean and mean’ allowing us to stay just ahead of the competition. The
company realises that good managers make the difference and invests in its senior managers, a number have
been and are going on MBA courses. Seeing the changes in these people is interesting and I believe the
company does get a benefit from improved management. Due to this lean and mean approach in IT it isn’t easy
for us to drive things forward. This is seen more as something the business functions do with our guidance.
When opportunities occur they are frequently grasped but I’m not sure we have many chances to create them.

Private v Public – IT SUPPLY being a private company, what are the differences you experience as opposed
to a public company?

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IT SUPPLY used to be a public company but was bought out 7 years ago.
What happened then, was it a big change, did it affect the people in the company adversely, how did people take it?
Huge change. The german parent company bought a retail chain a while later, merged and relocated us together.
We lost about 85% of the head office workforce causing a great deal of problems for the business during and after
this period.
• Communication
It is no longer possible to get accurate company financial information, but, after the directors realised that they
did not communicate with us enough that is improving. There is a hint at times of secrecy that we are private
company and can’t / shouldn’t give too much away. As a lot of employees were shareholders (and encouraged
to be shareholders) any information published to the stock exchange was quickly spread around the office.
• Strategy, implementation
The management of the company has changed a great deal since the takeover and subsequent relocation, a lot
of directors / managers who’d been with the company 20+ years left. This, whilst being very destabilising, has
in areas outside of it enabled us to grow and develop (IT didn’t lose too many long term senior managers – just
everyone else)
• Hierarchy, structure
This hasn’t changed a great deal. The same teams still exist, the biggest difference was 2 years ago when the IT
director resigned and the HR directors role was expanded to include IT and HR.
HR and IT aren’t very close together, does the director have time and skills to take care of both or has one
area suffered due to this?
• Policies, rules
No noticeable change – although twice a year the company gets a clean as the Germans are coming over to
meet / review / check the building is still in one piece.
• Regulation (e.g. FSA)
Most regulation is government based regarding the sale and storage of drugs and is not related to being public /
private
• Working patterns
No change
• Power distance
Previously all decisions where made in the head office and the responsibility for these decisions rests with the
directors. This is no longer the case. We have strict rules about what can and can’t be done. For financial
decisions over a certain value (which most people at one point or another believe is unrealistically low as the
value changed frequently) the decision has to be referred to Germany and then wait for their monthly financial
meeting.
• External environment
Being owned by the largest pharmaceutical wholesaler in Europe who in turn are owned by a family that is in
the top 50 in the world for riches (and own their own bank) means we have potential access to a huge amount
of funding without the short term demands of shareholders
• Leadership
No – apart from all the old managers going and new managers replacing them.
So people are still managed with same expectations and policies as before?
The change happened such a long time ago expectations have naturally changed as the business has changed
and developed.
• Change management
Yes – but this has been implemented not because of us becoming a private company but because it was and is
the right thing to do.
Change in IT SUPPLY
• What types of changes does the company face?
Huge amounts. The government has realised that our customers (who are paid for everything they do by the
NHS) have been exploiting a loop hole in the amount of money the gov. pays them for a drug and the amount
they can buy it for. This means that they have made large profits out of the NHS. This year the Gov. has set
aside 500 million pounds to account for this creative supply chain management and have clamped down on the
differences they will pay for a drug and the amount we charge for it.

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The Gov. has also invested between 2 -5 billion in modernising the NHS. This is creating a huge amount of
change and problems due to the stated timescales slipping. With our development technologies lagging behind
industry standards and company aim to be first – this has been an incredible challenge.
With devolution Scotland, Wales and NI have also put forward plans to modernise the NHS and where
previously we had to make 1 change for the whole of the UK we’re now having to make 4 changes
(compounded by it looking like each country wanting different implementations of the same system)
Are there technological changes in the company, do you get for example new software
installed/intranet/extranet/e-commerce applications in the company so that the employees are exposed to it?
Technology change is something we’re trying to manage and reduce. We have many different technologies in
place at the moment.. The aim is to move to using one environment and one development approach (Java and
SOA). Depending on the project depends on what technologies are used and if new technologies are
investigated. In theory in the long term this will be reduced to the minimum to create maximum developer
flexibility but at the moment it does mean there is little change in different technologies being used.
• Describe a recent change process in the company?
What was the process with the ISO standards, are you still in the process of getting the ISOs? What have the
employees had to do about it?
The company is still getting ISO accreditation. We’ve passed the first hurdle but still have some more to go.
With ISO each department allocated staff to the ISO project, where tasked with making sure each stage was
successfully completed. Every senior manager had it as an objective to make sure ISO accreditation has been
completed. Employee involvement depended on there knowledge of the processes being accredited.
• Is technological and organisational change dealt with very differently?
Yes. Organisational change is handled, mainly, by the HR department. It is an infrequent change. Technology
changes are handled by the development teams affected. Depending on the change this happens more
frequently and is more localised.
• Who deals with change, who is exposed to change?
Every manager who’s team are affected by a change has to deal with a change by approving it. Changes can go
through the entire business. A change to our warehousing system will, when fully rolled out affect 18 warehouses
and thousands of employees. The actual change process is only exposed to those managers responsible for the area
of change and those staff involved in actually implementing the change.
• Do change programmes usually succeed? Reasons
We make 10’s of changes a week ranging in scale from a little modification to the firewall to implementing a
whole new warehouse. I don’t know how many fail, but with the nature of the business I’d expect it to be very
few as we are very low margin therefore can’t afford to make mistakes.
• Do you see resistance to change?
Everyone accepts change in IT, its what we do. I think the resistance, when it occurs, comes from outside IT as
we’re modifying what people are used to.
• How is resistance to change handled?
Depending on the change, depends on the approach. Normally the aim is education. If people understand why
we’re doing something and how its going to change that is seen as enough.
• Who deals with it?
The project / programme manager in change of the project is responsible for making sure it happens. If this is a
business led project then it is often the responsibility of the business unit with IT providing information / technical
support.
• Is change an emotional process? How do you see it?
It depends on the change. In theory business is a soul-less animal and change is a natural function of the
attempt to survive. In reality, change involves people, business and personal relationships, investments of
time therefore it becomes personal to people. This makes it emotional, the degree depends on the personal
involvement.
• ISO standards?
If not discussed earlier already…
Leadership in IT SUPPLY
• How do you see the leadership in your organisation?
Can I refuse to answer?

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• Is there a difference between a leader and a manager?


Yes, a leader is someone who gives direction. A manager is someone who looks after something and implements
the direction.
• What is a typical change leader in IT SUPPLY like?
We have all sorts. The visionaries tend to ‘live’ in the business as they have the freedom to affect and give
direction. IT tends to be implementations or visionaries constrained by business need.
• Does the change leader have any effect on the change process?
Not really, the process is defined and is proven to work. Any effect is minimal, perhaps shortening timescales,
affecting the approver list or in emergencies getting authorisation to rush a change.
• Is there a difference between every day management and change management?
Everyday management is done by all managers, change management is seen to only be relating to IT changes.
Taking a step back these should be identical but in reality change management is very structured, normal
management has the minimal structure to achieve the goals, only if these goals are consistently not met will
something be done about this.
Change Planning
• Does the planning process when preparing for a change follow a rational structure? Are all the
necessary points taken into consideration or do you often find out that there are issues that
should’ve been planned and prepared for?
The business is so dynamic that its impossible to be fully prepared for. People expect the change to be fully planned
and are upset when its not, but accept that things are missed. The issue is usually the scale of the mistake. If you
completely miss something blindingly obvious (apart from being extremely embarrassing) this can have a huge
negative effect and will therefore be investigated to see if we can improve next time. Most projects have
closedowns where lessons are learnt and we try to run a no blame culture.
• Do you evaluate the change afterwards?
All changes are reviewed for a degree of success, depending on the scale of the change depends on the scale of
the review. Most often this is very informal.
• Is feedback obtained from the parties (or employees) involved in the changes?
After the event feedback on its success – again depending on the scale of the change.
Change Agents
• You mentioned earlier that “…there is a team of change managers. Their job is to make sure
processes are followed, provide assistance to people and help in times of trouble.” How do you see
this in reality?
That is reality – they do work very well on IT changes. This isn’t the case (as far as I’m aware) on business
changes. Despite being a pain not being allowed to just “make a change” it is a real success in IT and I’m sure
its has saved us from many mistakes. The guys try to be as flexible as possible so as to provide as little
hindrance and maximise the benefit.
• Are they specially trained to be change managers?
No idea – they are trained on the change management software.
• Do they need special qualities/characteristics for being or succeeding as a change manager?
Ability to put up with people complaining about having to follow a change management system when they just
want to get something changed & Sense of humour.
In your organisation, what are the keys to successful change management?
Would you like to add anything else?
Thank You!!

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APPENDIX 4 Participant observation Summary


Summary of the participant observation in the company

There have been many change processes taking place in the company over the months the researcher has been
employed in the organisation. The observation was undertaken over the time period between September 2005 and
March 2006 with the full consent from the company and support for the research project. Working in the company
under investigation has enabled the researcher to obtain first hand information about the procedures, policies and
change programmes taking place in the company. The data was obtained through experiences in the company,
observing colleagues in the working environment, discussions with colleagues, managers and directors of the
company and obtaining information through the communication channels in the company, such as the company
Intranet, staff handbook, and strategy and policy documents.

To begin with the start of a new employment relationship in a company is a major change for anyone. The
introduction to BBB was a very informal process, involving being introduced to the company and colleagues on the
first few days. What was surprising was that there was no structure to the induction, and finding out some of the
key information was up to the new employee. Whether or not they knew to ask the right questions was another
matter. Information was given in bits and pieces without proper structure, due to the people giving the information
being inexperienced in training new employees. It was not until much later, times varying between new starters
from couple of weeks to two and a half months, when the proper induction for the new employee took place, which
was undertaken by the training department according to company policies as laid out in the intranet. At the time of
the induction the new employer already knew most of the issues due to asking questions and finding out for herself.
It was later discovered that there is a proper induction process, with a checklist for the inducting manager to follow.
The induction policy or the checklist was not followed in many cases, even though one exists, and in many cases
the process of introducing a new employee to the company, colleagues and software utilised in daily duties, was a
very unstructured and confusing process.

Many employees in the company utilise various software in their daily duties. After initial introduction, becoming
familiar with one of the software and learning how to use the basic functions, one employee asked to be trained in
properly using the software to its full potential. This was down to her own initiative and eagerness to develop in the
job role and to be able to create more useful reports for the managers. To this stage the training had been done by a
colleague who had used some of the functions of the software in her job previously. It was found out that after the
head of IT had left the company, there was no-one left who would be able to properly use the programme let alone
anyone to fix any potential problems. There was no contingency plan in place in case the head of IT was to leave,
no-one else had been trained to use or maintain the software, nor was there funds to put any of the employees on a
training course on how to use the software.

The merger of BBNFP and WFG brought about many problems. The vision of the board was to bring these two
together, with the same systems and processes in place, the systems and processes that were in place in BBNFP.
WFG had completely separate and different systems from those of BBNFP which they had used for years, and
suddenly they were bought and required to adopt everything, starting from the name and the systems of the
acquiring company. There were people in place to take the integration project through, with different people being
delegated different responsibilities. However, there was no structured plan or timescales how the change was going
to be implemented, nor were there any plans what to do if something went wrong. The integration efforts of the
senior management caused unsettlement among the WFG personnel, they did not understand why they needed to
change their systems that they had used for years and found nothing wrong with. The personnel was not consulted
on the change efforts, rather they were just told what to do, how to use the new systems and to start immediately.
This was not accepted by the employees; instead they kept on using their old systems and kept their ways of doing
things. The people working to integrate the two companies had their normal day-to-day tasks to do in addition of
running the integration project, they did not have enough time to focus on the integration, nor did they have the
personal commitment. Further disturbance to the project caused one of the key members leaving the company. He
was involved in bringing the back office systems and the administration personnel under one system and one set of
working practices. His leaving was very sudden; there was no hand over of the workload or information given

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about where the project was at that stage. This brought the project to a halt at the time, which gave the employees
resisting the changes a chance to go back to their old ways of doing things. In the end, the project was never
completed; the two companies kept doing business separately, doing the same things differently with different
systems.

There have been a few projects involving adopting a new technology or software for the whole company or some of
the departments. For example the IT department has worked in co-operation with some key people in the
departments introducing new software for dealing with client applications, or upgrading of software etc. These
projects mainly have some sort of plan, with clearly identified steps of the process and reasons why the change
needs to take place, a communication going out to the relevant groups involved explaining what needs to be done
and details of contact people who are able to advise or give m ore information if needed. It has been noticeable how
these kinds of projects usually tend to go smoothly without resistance and according to schedule. The key success
factors have been identified as people being aware of what is involved in the changes and reasons for them, and
having a person in charge who can be contacted if there are any difficulties.

Overall the change processes in the company have not been very structured and there have not been clear enough
plans for the changes. The communication has not been sufficient, though the management team may have clear
plans in place for the intended changes, they have not been communicated to the people involved, nor have the
changes been reasoned. Both of these factors have caused unsettlement and confusion among the employees who
have not understood why something is being done and what does it really mean for them and their jobs. It is clear
from the incidents in the company’s change processes that there is a lack of commitment from the people who
manage the change processes, or there is no clearly identified person taking ownership of everything. This causes
the change process to be unfocused and unstructured, which is likely to cause resistance from the people involved.

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APPENDIX 5 Capability Maturity Model

The Capability Maturity Model (CMM) (Davenport, 2005) is a methodology developed by the
Software Engineering Institute (SEI) and it is used to develop and refine an organization's
software development process. The CMM is similar to ISO 9001 standards which specify an
effective quality system for manufacturing and service industries. The CMM model describes a
five-level evolutionary path of increasingly organized and systematically more mature
processes. The most important difference between the two systems is their purposes: whereas
ISO 9001 specifies lowest acceptable quality level for software processes, CMM creates a
framework for continuous process improvement and is clearer than ISO standards in defining
the means to be employed. The CMM processes involved can be applied to the whole of
software industry and SEI promotes the adoption of the CMM.

The five maturity levels of CMM software are initial, repeatable, defined, managed and defined.
Initial level – processes are not organized, even chaotic. Success is dependent on the efforts of
individuals, and not considered to be repeatable due to the processes being insufficiently defined
and documented to be able to replicate them.
Repeatable level – basic project management techniques are founded. Success could be repeated
due to the essential process being made established, defined, and documented.
Defined level – greater attention to documentation, standardization, and integration have been
paid and the organization has developed its own standard software process.
Managed level – the processes are monitored and controlled by the organisation using data
collection and analysis.
Optimizing level – the organisation continuously improves its processes by means of monitoring
feedback from current processes and introducing innovative processes
http://searchcio.techtarget.com/sDefinition/0,,sid19_gci930057,00.html 24/02/06). Available
from <URL:

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APPENDIX 6 Questionnaire
Dear Respondent,

This questionnaire has been designed as part of a research project I am


doing for an MBA Dissertation on Change Management Strategies for
Coventry University. The questionnaire studies change management and
related topic areas such as organisational culture, resistance to change and
challenges faced in the management process.

Your participation would be an important contribution to the research and


highly appreaciated. Participation is completely voluntary.

Your responses will only be used for the purposes of this particular research
and everything will be treated with complete confidentiality. Your responses
will be used in the analysis anonymously.
The questionnaire consists of 10 parts, takes about 15 minutes to fill out and
all questions are multiple choice, which you answer by selecting the most
appropriate option from the dropdown menu available.

Thank you for taking the time to fill out the questionnaire. If you are
interested in the results of the research, let me know when returning the
questionnaire and I will email you with the results once they are available.
Should you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to
contact me.
Best regards,
Paula Pieniniemi
Email: pieninip@coventry.ac.uk

Please click on the second tab to start the questionnaire.

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Thank you for taking part in this questionnaire. The questions below are answered by clicking on the grey cell to the right of
the question and choosing the most appropriate answer from the dropdown menu. If you do not know the answer or you feel
the question does not apply to you, please choose "N/A".

1. Demographics - AAH
Which of the categories on the dropdown list best applies to your job? Middle line management
How long have you worked for this organisation? 6+ years
Have you changed roles within the organisation? Yes

2. Background - Change
"Change is an inescapable part of both social and organisational life" Mullins, 2005

Change management is the process of managing any type of change in the organisation. Change in an organisation can arise due to
various causes, such as technological developments, changes in the competitive environment, outsourcing, mergers and acquisitions.

Please indicate the level and frequency of concern expressed due to a change in the company.
I have expressed concern in the company due to a change that: Level of concern Frequency
* requires me to make an economic investment Somewhat concerned Not at all concerned
* requires me to make a non-economic investment, i.e. effort, personal time Very concerned Often concerned
* introduces a new technology Somewhat concerned Often concerned
* introduces new ways of working Concerned Very often concerned
* increases my work load Very concerned Often concerned
* involves a threat of job loss for myself Not at all concerned Sometimes concerned
* involves a threat of job loss for my immediate colleagues Somewhat concerned Sometimes concerned
* results in a reduction in staff numbers in my organisation Not at all concerned Sometimes concerned
* involves financial cutbacks Very concerned Often concerned
* reduces salary levels in the organisation Concerned Often concerned
* creates a pressure to complete work Very concerned Often concerned
* results in lack of time to cope with work pressure Very concerned Often concerned
* results in companies merging Not at all concerned Not at all concerned

3. Organisational Culture, Structure and Interrelationships

Organisational culture is involved in basically anything done in an organisation, it refers to the attitudes, beliefs, values, policies and
ways of doing things in the organisation.
Organisational structure refers to the responsibilities, authorities and relations organized in such a way as to enable the organization to
perform its functions.
There is a very strict hierarchical structure in my organisation Neutral

All communication patterns follow the hierarchical structure of the organisation. Strongly Agree

There are flexible communication channels and open policies in the organisation. Strongly Agree

Continuous learning is supported and encouraged in the organisation. Agree


The atmosphere is very open and relaxed within and across departments. Agree
It is clear to all that employees are valued in the organisation, and everyone is
Disagree
treated as fairly as possible with consideration to individual circumstances.
Employee loyalty is appreciated and rewarded. Strongly Disagree
High morals and ethical working patterns are emphasised throughout the
Strongly Disagree
organisation.
Rules and regulations are emphasised throughout the organisation and they are a
Disagree
big part of my daily duties.
I have sufficient access to resources and I am provided with the necessary tools
Neutral
needed for my daily duties.
The vertical working relationship across the organisation is developed to a level
Neutral
that supports change initiatives.
The horizontal working relationship across departments is developed to a level that
Agree
supports change initiatives.
When teams are formed to work on projects (including implementation of change),
Agree
the relationships are well developed and mutually supportive.
The working relationship between the workforce and management is supportive of
Agree
change initiatives.
The working relationship between the various locations (e.g. company head office
and branches/sites) is mature to the point that best work practices are shared and Agree
used.
The organisation encourages independent working patterns as opposed to team
Neutral
working.
Innovation and personal development are encouraged and supported in the
Disagree
organisation.
The culture within and across departments is competitive. Neutral
There are strict goals and objectives for employees to pursue. Neutral
Achieving goals and objectives is considered important in the organisation, and
Strongly Disagree
achievement is rewarded accordingly.
The organisation's structure was designed and implemented to support the
Agree
business strategy.
The structure of the organisation and the departments support the work processes
within a department and between departments (across the departmental Neutral
interfaces).
The structure supports people working together in teams to accomplish the
Agree
business objectives and conduct work efficiently.
The structure is designed to support delegation of authority and communication
Agree
both within department and between departments.
The levels in the structure from the bottom of the organisation to the top appear to
be correct in that they support effective execution of the work (bottom=the work Neutral
force, top=the management).

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Strategies for Successful Change Management by Paula Pieniniemi

4. Motivation and Rewards


A gain or a profit sharing plan is in place to share the success of the business
Strongly Disagree
between those who contributed.
A reward structure or plan is in place that links financial reward to the success of
Strongly Disagree
teams and work groups (as opposed to individual).
There is an individual merit/bonus/reward plan in place. Disagree
An individual merit plan is in place but evaluation is based on how the individual
Disagree
performed as a member of the team.
There is a feasible process or plan in place to provide short-term rewards to
Strongly Disagree
reinforce change efforts by the organisation.
Rate the rewards system or plan in your company based on your perception of its
Very Poor
ability to create rewards based on individual and team performance.
I feel positive and support change because I welcome any sort of changes. Neutral
I support change because if I didn't I would be penalised. Agree
I feel positive and support change because I get paid more than I would if there
Neutral
was no change.
I feel positive and support change because my team members do so. Disagree
I feel positive and support change because there is little chance of advancement in
Neutral
the organisation otherwise.
I support change because 'I play the game, but inside I am cynical about the
Strongly Agree
whole thing'.
I feel positive and support change because change is continually promoted from
Disagree
the top.
I support change when my immediate manager promotes change. Disagree
I resist change when my immediate manager resists change. Disagree
I feel positive and support change when I see the person driving the change being
Disagree
committed to the change.
I feel positive and support change because people are given full opportunity to
Neutral
participate in any changes that are introduced.
I feel positive and support change because I can affect the change by giving
Agree
feedback and suggestions for improvement.
I feel positive and support change because I feel a sense of personal 'ownership' of
Neutral
the change being implemented.
I feel positive and support change because people who promote change are
Neutral
recognised in visible ways.
I feel positive and support change because people who do not promote change are
Agree
penalised in visible ways.

5. Leadership
Rate the reaction of the personnel to the leadership of the management team in Average level of effort to
your organisation. follow leaders
The leadership in the organisation is leadership with a vision of the future. Strongly Agree
The leadership is transactional, i.e. concerned only with activities of the day. Disagree
Management allows the organisation freedom to act within a set of predefined
Agree
boundaries without a need to give strict restrictions about tasks.
When the organisation develops and implements goals, initiatives, and activities -
Strongly Disagree
those involved in the project are held accountable for success.
The leaders in the organisation remain in their positions long enough to live with
Strongly Agree
the results of the changes they initiate.
The top management create a belief that the change is necessary. Strongly Agree
There is clearly a particular person or persons driving the change. Strongly Agree
Management time, patience and support are given to those who need it due to
Neutral
experiencing difficulties adjusting to the change.

6. Support

The introduction of change is accompanied by an explanation of the advantages to


Strongly Agree
key internal and external groups (employees, management, customers, etc.).

The introduction of change is accompanied by a discussion of specific new ways


Agree
in which structure systems and people practices would change.
The introduction of change is accompanied by a description of new core values
Strongly Agree
and/or beliefs needed to make the change successful.
The introduction of change is accompanied by a plan detailing the various steps
Disagree
needed to implement the change.
The introduction of change is accompanied by a clear indication of how the
Strongly Disagree
change will impact upon your job.
Throughout the change there is always a distinct network of people at all levels
Agree
who I can get answers/action from.
The allocation of financial resources is adequate to support the change. Disagree
The allocation of human resources is adequate to support the change. Strongly Disagree
A clear timetable is devised for the various phases of the change. Agree
I receive appropriate training to enable me to cope with the change. Strongly Disagree

7. Work Process

Work processes have been developed to conduct work as efficiently as possible. Neutral

Work processes have been developed to conduct work by the rules and
Neutral
regulations of the company.
Work processes are reviewed and updated as improvements are made or as new
Agree
and improved ways of doing the same tasks are learned.
Processes are in place to determine if the ways of working are effective. Corrective
Agree
action is taken if they are not.
The working processes were designed to be used as goals for achieving
Neutral
excellence.
The processes were developed by a team of experts (internal or external) whose
Disagree
goal was to improve how work is accomplished.

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Strategies for Successful Change Management by Paula Pieniniemi

8. Group Learning
Rate how supportive the management are towards learning new, different and
Neutral
better ways of working within the organisation.
The personnel in the organisation are allowed time for learning and training each
Strongly Disagree
year (excluding obligatory training) and are encouraged to use the time.
Training provided is not aimed just at skills related to the performance in the job,
Agree
but also skills that promote better interaction and team work
When training is to be developed, an effort is made to establish what employees
Neutral
already know and what they need to know and learn.
Employees can affect what they are going to learn. Agree

9. Technology
The organisation has invested in essential new technologies/software within the
Disagree
last 18 months.
The employees are kept aware of the changes needed and introduced to the plan
Neutral
of action.
I have had to change my working practises due to technological developments in
Agree
the organisation, which has been difficult to adjust to.
I consider my organisation to be on the same level technologically as the
Strongly Disagree
competitors, and adopting new technologies at this stage is not necessary.
Software tools which support the work process exist, are well utilised and
Strongly Disagree
employees are made aware of them.
Employees are provided with sufficient training to be able to use the software
Disagree
effectively.
The software is integrated into a single electronic system to simplify their use and
Disagree
avoid multiple entries and databases that could cause problems.
The data within the system is easily accessible to all employees who need it, and
Strongly Disagree
employees are made aware of it.
The company has a strategic multiyear plan for improving and updating software in
order to stay up-to-date with the technology and to provide high levels of support Agree
to the workforce.
Support that is readily available for both the users and the system is available in
Neutral
the company.
The software is reviewed on a regular basis and updated if there are alternatives
Strongly Disagree
available which enable more efficient working.
Technological changes in the organisation have been successfully implemented
Strongly Disagree
without problems or disturbance to working.
The technologies adopted are quick and easy to learn. Strongly Disagree
I feel more positive about a technological change which is urgent. Strongly Disagree
Technology change initiatives in my company are relevant and improve my
Disagree
working practices, therefore I welcome and support them.
I feel more positive about technological change when I am involved in the change
Agree
process and I am able to provide feedback.

10. Communication
The leaders of the organisation believe that communication is important and act
Agree
accordingly.
Managers visibly support the change through word and action. Agree
Proposed changes are well communicated so that employees are aware of what
Agree
is going on.
Meetings are arranged to communicate the required changes. Disagree
Meetings include: an agenda, a pre-established start and stop times, facilitation
Strongly Disagree
and minutes, with action items of what was discussed.

Employees who are not able to attend the meetings are informed about the issues
Disagree
introduced in the meeting in a timely, accurate and appropriate fashion.

Communication tools (intranet, voicemail, e-mail, phones, etc.) are provided by the
Agree
company to those who need them.
The communication systems are effective, providing the needed level of
communication among the workforce and between workforce and customers if Neutral
needed.
It is common that other departments within the company learn about a change
Neutral
which affects my job before I do.
It is common that parties external to the company (e.g. partners, shareholders)
Neutral
learn about a change which affects my job before I do
I don't mind when others find out about the changes that have an effect in my work
Disagree
before I do.
Any change is communicated by my immediate manager rather than the senior
Disagree
management or other external parties.
Any change is communicated without delays and errors. Disagree
Communications are informative and there is little need for questions. Strongly Disagree
I am usually aware of change before it is formally announced. Agree

Would you like to add any additional comments?

Please save your answers and email the questionnaire to me on pieninip@coventry.ac.uk

THANK YOU!

Coventry University, MBA (IT) Dissertation, 2006


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