Think of project management and change management as two sides of a coin. Though they differ, you can’t have one without the other.
You need project management and change management for important initiatives like implementing human capital management technology. Such sweeping changes affect your systems as well as your people.
Project management focuses on putting processes and technology in place while change management encourages employees to adopt new ways of working. Just as failing to manage a project properly can cause delays and drive up expenses through costly problems, poor change management can prevent a company from realizing its desired return on investment or gaining the benefits and efficiencies that it had sought.
Understanding project management and change management and the importance of integrating them is essential for successfully implementing HCM technology or initiating any other change that can improve—or potentially transform—your organization.
If you are implementing HCM technology, project management covers all of the tasks needed to switch from your old system to your new one. This runs from designing the project plan to managing tasks, sticking to timelines, and adhering to budgets.
Project stages often include:
Approaching an HR tech implementation with a project mindset increases your chances of success. That is, you should see your implementation as a project that affects a desired change and has discernable starting and finishing points.
Managing change is crucial for HR because organizations evolve constantly. Companies keep changing technology, personnel, and processes as they strive to keep up with competitors or move further ahead.
“The primary goal of change management is to successfully implement new processes, products and business strategies while minimizing negative outcomes,” says the Society for Human Resource Management in guidance for managing organizational change.
“Effective change management goes beyond project management and technical tasks undertaken to enact organizational changes and involves leading the ‘people side’ of major change within an organization.”
SHRM defines “change management” as “the systematic approach and application of knowledge, tools and resources to deal with change.” Change management increases the adoption of new HCM technology for example by improving employee engagement through effective communication and education.
An integrated approach
So, though change management and project management differ in approach and scope, you need both to implement HCM technology successfully. And you need to have well-defined plans for both change management and project management and to execute them effectively.
“Project management and change management both aim to increase the likelihood that projects or initiatives deliver the intended results and outcomes. Although each discipline can function independently, the most effective approach is to integrate change management and project management to create a unified approach to implementing change on both fronts,” Prosci explains in a blog post on integrating change management and project management.
Lucidchart notes that the benefits of an integrated approach to change management and project management include:
- Increased efficiency
- Greater alignment
- Mitigated risk; and
- Improved communication.
Implementing HCM technology presents many challenges. From ensuring that new systems are configured correctly to migrating data properly to getting users to adopt processes and technology that they have not used before, you must manage the technical aspects as well as the people involved.
Project management and change management may cover different factors in the implementation equation. But you must put them together to get the right answer—HCM technology that increases efficiency, improves productivity, and enhances your return on investment.
Providence Technology Solutions helps companies streamline processes and services to enhance ROI and achieve business goals.
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