How does your institution do change?

June 12, 2020
  • Change Management
  • Competencies
  • Institutional Research
  • Research
  • Webinars
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Change management is a key professional competency for higher education  professionals. To understand change culture and institutional  preparedness to manage change, AACRAO partnered with Ellucian for a  change management  readiness assessment and experiences benchmark survey . The results of the survey, "The Ups and Downs of Organizational Change Management: Institutional Readiness, Practice, and Individual Experience," were published last month.

What is OCM?

Organizational change management (OCM) refers to the business practices and procedures that address  the human and organizational culture aspects of change.  Many open-source change management resources are valid and valuable. The Ellucian-AACRAO survey was adapted from the 2014 State of California Organizational Change Management Readiness Guide.

5 pillars of OCM success

The following are five pillars of OCM success, as defined in the Guide:

Communication: informing who is affected and impacted by change
Sponsorship: senior executive sponsorship (ES) for the change initiative
Stakeholder management: gaining buy-in from those impacted either directly or indirectly
Readiness: the degree to which stakeholders are ready for the change initiative

Training: providing an appropriate level of training to those impacted by the change initiative

Each pillar contains four to eight factors that affect an organization's readiness to manage change.

The importance of an executive sponsor

The survey found that  the use of an executive sponsor is  strongly statistically correlated with an institution’s measure of readiness for OCM.  However, in this sample, only 22 percent of institutions always identify an ES for a change initiative .  

The  Project Management Institute defines the role of an  executive sponsor as someone responsible for:
1) providing clear direction for the project and how it links with the organization’s overall strategy;
2) securing project resources;
3) ensuring the project is on time, on budget, and on scope;
4) providing feedback on status reports and making sure they reach the necessary stakeholders;
and

5) championing the project at the executive level to secure buy-in.

Learn more about the various approaches and cultures of change in the report.

Join the free webinar

Learn more about these pillars of success, gain perspective on your institution’s readiness for change management, and understand how to successfully manage change. Ellucian’s William Kartsimas and AACRAO Research Director Wendy Kilgore will share the survey report and more in a June 24 webinar "Getting it Right: Organizational Change Management in Higher Education." Register now.