IT Governance

7 Essential Components of a Successful Improvement Program

Do you have the guts to change with the times? If you do not, you can just watch the business rust. But if you do, continual service improvement provides the means to maintain the business’s sheen for all times. In a guest post for Joe the IT Guy, Ian Clayton discusses the seven essential elements of a successful improvement program:

  1. Define the problem.
  2. Focus on the customer.
  3. Obtain the commitment of leadership.
  4. Socialize the program.
  5. Implement incremental change.
  6. Include cultural change.
  7. Have a system of checks and balances.

Change for the Better

Nothing can be solved if there is not a definitive problem that needs rectified. Defining the problem also can assist with persuading people to jump on board and help. This can be better accomplished if the problem is personalized. Everything should be seen from the perspective of the customer, because after all, without loyal customers the business would not exist. Having this perspective can help pinpoint the intended focus of what the project should do.

Even if it is only for a short amount of time, a commitment from leadership can help the project’s success. Obtaining this will be easier if the problem you are addressing directly benefits the leaders in some way. On that same note, it is important to have a plan regarding how to integrate the program into the organization. If the organization does not accept the changes, it will never work! Each change should be carefully scoped and integrated in small increments. The results of the change should be monitored, and if it is not going well, the change should be ceased.

Subtly altering the attitude, behavior, and culture of the office is a huge aspect of change. Illustrating to people the direct impact and benefit this program will have on them may be what sways them to endorse the change. But before any change begins, there need to be checks and balances in place to ensure everything runs smoothly and efficiently. There are always going to be risks involved with a project, but they can be monitored and managed.

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