By Kristen Hollinger, CRP
Kristen Hollinger has been with Aires for 15 years and currently serves as the Aires Implementation Director. Kristen’s credentials include the Certified Relocation Professional designation from Worldwide ERC® and the Project Management Professional (PMP) designation. In this two-part blog series, she provides insight into implementation success.
In last week’s blog post, we discussed how to ensure you are properly prepared for an implementation. This week, we will focus how to translate that preparation into a project plan and strategy.
FAIL TO PLAN, PLAN TO FAIL
Make sure your RMC provides a project plan and assigns a project lead. The project plan should include a summary of the outstanding items that need accomplished (e.g., work breakdown structure and detailed activity lists), an estimate of resources needed, a schedule, and communication plan. Your RMC’s project lead should create these project documents, obtain your approval, and keep the documents current throughout implementation.
Ensure the project team, key stakeholders, and leadership are aligned and approve of the project plan before you begin – particularly on the schedule. Don’t forget about functional managers who may need to give permission for their team members to do project work.
Weekly project calls are critical to keep the project team on track – you should insist on these. For larger projects I also recommend monthly status calls and progress reports to keep stakeholders informed and functional managers aware of upcoming resource needs.
“Strategy is style of thinking, a conscious and deliberate process, an intensive implementation system, the science of insuring future success.” - Pete Johnson
Implementation is also a perfect opportunity to perform a strategic program review. Your RMC should bring subject matter experts to the table such as Consulting or Innovation/Design teams to help you consider key factors about your program such as:
· Is the program helping achieve departmental and organizational goals?
· Is the program aligned with organizational culture?
· Is The program successful in measuring the mobility experience through the eyes of your internal customers? To find out:
Analyze exception reports and quality scores – these reflect where your transferees perceive the current policies or mobility providers are falling short
Consider anonymous surveys to collect data from key stakeholders in Talent Acquisition, Human Resources, business leaders, etc.
Benchmark against your competitors – are you positioned to attract and retain key talent?
· Evaluate processes – where are there bottlenecks to eliminate and opportunities to streamline or automate?
· Consider Design Thinking exercises for a fresh perspective on the mobility journey or to brainstorm & prioritize solutions to complex problems.
Above all, be open to the ideas and concepts that arise during this process. Take the time to determine what’s right for your organization and partner with your RMC for trend data and suggestions. Implementing a program that serves both you and your relocating employees is paramount to retaining talent and achieving ongoing success in your program.