Page 5: Managing the change
When a business or its employees are used to working in a set way, there may be some resistance to change. Good communication and a clear explanation of the reasons for change are therefore essential.
Managing change effectively involves putting in place appropriate systems and ways of working that enable people to accept change smoothly.
The Commission has strong communication practices. All staff affected or involved in services to be centralised were informed about the proposed changes through the Commission”s intranet and team briefings. When the work of a local office is about to be centralised, members of Shared Services visit the office and discuss the changes and explain the benefits. Additional information is provided in literature and online briefings as well as in specialist guides for managers. All staff have been provided with a welcome pack and guide outlining how the new systems work.
Improving organisational culture
The centralisation of shared services has also helped to improve the culture of the organisation. For example, Commission employees can see how the changes have improved their own and the organisation's efficiency. This improves motivation.
As part of the change process, it is important for employees at regional offices to feel that their needs and concerns are being listened to and dealt with. An example of this has been the establishment of standardised response time for queries. These are set out in Service Level Agreements for employees. Everyone knows what the standards are and what service levels look like. For example, all emails have to be dealt with within five days.
The Shared Services Centre is responsible for providing timely support. In this way those working in local offices will be able to feel that their needs and requirements are being listened to and efficiently dealt with by the Centre.