Making the case for change

Louise Pipe, a successful and experienced Programme Manager, with over 20 years of experience of delivering multi million pound Business Change and IT Portfolio’s/Programmes.

Building the case for change in IFS projects

When you’re planning the move to IFS Cloud, you’re embarking on a programme to transform the whole business. You’ll have a set of strategic goals for the business to achieve and you will empower people with new technical capabilities. They will change how they work.

You’re asking people to boost their discretionary effort, form new habits and adopt new processes. To get their buy-in you’ll need a compelling and memorable narrative about the impact and benefits.

The vehicle to capture this is a Business Case.

This will establish right from the start that it’s a whole business project.

The Business Case is a critical stage in the move to Cloud. It lays the foundations of:

  • Why the change is needed
  • What opportunities or challenges it will address
  • The scope
  • Costs
  • How you are going to measure success

How to establish the business benefits:
what are the opportunities and challenges you are trying to address?

Start by asking strategic business questions to understand how your current processes and systems are holding you back:

  • Any new markets/products or services that will be different to how you sell, onboard and deliver today
  • Any changes to the business model and pricing
  • Changes to the operating model
  • Any future regulatory/compliance changes or disrupters to the industry
  • Plans to change any software/suppliers that could be integrated
  • Future growth in sites/workforce/customers
  • Acquisitions or mergers

Now you know where you want to be, you need to figure out where you are. You’ll work with business teams on a solution gap analysis.

The solution gap analysis establishes where the organisation’s current technical capability is holding people back.

You’ll then work out how far your current IFS Apps product addresses these challenges and opportunities, and how the new functionality in IFS Cloud will fill the gap.

There is a reverse driver for change, which is that the current ERP product is falling over and the business needs stability and protection from security risks.

While these are essential factors, stability and security should be the minimum you expect from IFS Cloud. You still need to work out how the new functionality will meet the business’s strategic goals.

The business case will give you a set of tangible and intangible benefits. Tangible benefits will be things like measurable cost savings, increases in productivity and efficiency. Intangible benefits will be things you can’t measure as easily, and will include the effect of increased data accuracy, more rapid access to information, and higher levels of customer satisfaction.

You’ve identified the benefits. But how will you know when you’ve got them?

By now you have identified the objectives of the upgrade, the scope and the benefits. You should have a good framework for the business case:

  • An understanding of the business problem or opportunity the upgrade to IFS Cloud will address
  • Knowledge of how that will be achieved – scope
  • A benefits matrix setting out what the changes will give the business
  • An understanding of the cost, budget and timeline

More Knowledge

What is IFS Cloud?

The launch of IFS Cloud was a landmark for IFS. The new product is a step change from Apps 10. IFS Cloud is built on the latest technology stack and is 100% cloud-based.

What does evergreen in IFS really mean?

Evergreen requires a shift in mindset from thinking of ERP implementation as a single event, to adopting a cycle of continuous improvement.

Understanding the impact on people

Change Management gets talked about a lot and people often think it’s a bit of training and communication. It is more than that.