While organizations respond to urgent demands to transition to the cloud, they may overlook the print environment. Even if printing is on IT’s radar, their time and resources are often barely enough to keep on top of day-to-day management tasks. There’s little time and not enough people for all current and new projects.

HP Managed Print Cloud Services helps you implement a comprehensive transition to the cloud. Designed to align to your print environment, you can count on HP to provide the right fit for your organization.

Elevate IT impact

Let HP manage your print environment so technical teams can focus on reinventing how the business works. HP can help optimize costs, maximize resources and personnel, and reduce the hassle of print management. Managed Print Cloud Services provides global, managed services for secure, always-on printing that encompasses your firmware, solutions, and servers. Proactive infrastructure and security monitoring with optimized upgrade strategies let you minimize downtime and service calls.

Help lower your technical debt

The key to game-changing digital transformation is pioneering, cloud-powered technology that lets you go further, faster. Let HP manage ongoing maintenance, monitoring, security, and reporting. With a cloud template that can be designed once and deployed globally, you can dynamically adapt and scale to meet the changing needs of your business. That translates to the ability to quickly deploy your print applications and environment to different locations. To help meet sustainability goals, migrating print solutions from on-premise data centers to the HP cloud can help keep your carbon footprint down.

Count on a full range of security solutions

A cloud strategy that is ahead of existing and emerging cyber threats empowers your business to make bold decisions and pivot to the future. Empower people to work in the way that best suits their needs, with authentication, job accounting, and pull-print solutions. HP Wolf Enterprise Security defends your network with layer after layer of hardened security atop the world’s most secure printers.1 Choose from Trusted to Zero Trust security architectures for your Managed Print Cloud Services implementation, and count on flexible options that can evolve with your business.

Click here to read the full guide. To find out more about HP’s Managed Print Cloud Services click here.

HP

It’s a new era for The Royal Mint, Britain’s oldest recognised company and the official maker of UK coins.

Six months have passed since the death of Queen Elizabeth II, but that’s not all that’s changed at an institution established back in 886 AD. More recently, The Royal Mint has evolved its business model in the face of declining cash usage, from its core business of coins and metal manufacturing through to bullion trading, a new consumer business and jewellery line, as well as tentative steps into digital gold and recycling e-waste.

It makes a challenging proposition for Rich Hobbs, The Royal Mint’s group technology director, tasked with not only supporting business transformation, in areas as wide-ranging as e-commerce, CRM and data analytics, but also ensuring cybersecurity isn’t forgotten at a time Royal establishments are seen as fair game for newly-minted cybercriminal groups.

The Queen’s death brings e-commerce innovation

Hobbs joined The Royal Mint in January 2020, bringing 20 years of experience from financial services, where he worked for Barclays Bank, Barclaycard, Lloyds Banking Group and Admiral Insurance.

Now as group technology director at The Royal Mint, a limited company wholly owned by HM Treasury, Hobbs has looked to transform the technology landscape, modernise cybersecurity, and grow the IT function amid the organisation becoming, in his words, “more of a suite of businesses”.

The technology team has grown from 25 to 60 people over the last three years, with Hobbs now supported by heads of development, data, operations and digital performance, as well as a CISO and head of delivery. He says that IT remains largely in-house across helpdesk, data analytics, cybersecurity and development, bar small pockets of outsourced capability for software development and testing, and suggests that business growth hasn’t been the only challenge—not least in the days after Queen Elizabeth II’s death last September.

Hobbs says a hive of activity kicked off, noting new projects to redesign the website, for content delivery, and greater web resilience and security. The Royal Mint also had to prepare for the launch of the King Charles III coin.

“As a function, I brought together a core team and we started addressing the immediate needs,” he says. “Starting with the website, we needed to build new content and elevate existing content to reflect the event, which included a number of new web pages being built. As our link to the monarchy is extremely strong, we quickly recognised the need to ensure our website was prepared for the considerable interest from the public globally. We needed to scale up our platform and make sure customers still received the great experience they were used to.”

Cybersecurity threats require business language lift

This heightened business demand, along with the Royal moniker, does, however, come with risks. In the aftermath of the Queen’s death, Hobbs says there was a surge in website visits and online transactions—with up to 40 transactions a minute in an 18-hour period. An unfortunate by-product was a variety of cyberattacks.

“Our attack surface is huge,” says Hobbs. “Our [network] perimeter is scanned 30,000 a day.” This he attributes to the ‘Royal’ name, press coverage of new collector coins, and cybercriminals looking to disrupt service through DDoS attacks.

Hobbs has nonetheless looked to modernise security by communicating with the board and raising the business risk, working hand-in-hand on aligning tech and security objectives with CISO Rich Fowler.

The Royal Mint now sees cybersecurity as a competitive advantage over its competitors, boldly proclaiming its intention to be the most secure mint in the world. Yet Hobbs admits there was a degree of fortune about the timing.

“We’ve been lucky that our transformation of cyber happened with digital transformation, so the last two years we’ve talked a lot to the board about technology,” he says, adding that even as a non-executive member (he reports to head of supply chain), he’s been to the boardroom approximately 50 times during this period.

“We’ve had to lift the language,” he adds. “[Members of the board] don’t care only about the technology. What they need to make sure is that the system is up and running—and it’s delivering for our customers.”

To land his message about cybersecurity, Hobbs said there was a focus on transparency and business language in the boardroom.

“We simply took away the technical detail and focused on a single goal that our executive team could buy into,” he says. “We used a security scorecard benchmark and said we could become the most secure global mint.” They then reported back on the score’s movement of the score, going from68 to 98 in a year based on 10 core security metrics provided by securityscorecard.com, with 100 meaning there were no vulnerabilities on the visible attack surface.

“At each release point, or vulnerability fix, we noted the score change and then reported it and its causes,” he adds. “For example, we undertook a three-week vulnerability hackathon where all operations resources were allocated to cyber tickets. The responding improvement in score outlined two critical levers we could pull to improve our score: increased visibility of vulnerabilities allows for better prioritisation, and focused resource over a short period of time can make real-world improvements.

“It made further discussions with the exec more black and white without the need for more detailed, technical discussions.”

Talent pipeline starts with valued university partnerships

Staff attraction and retention have been similarly challenging, especially in Llantrisant, southeast Wales, where The Royal Mint is based.

The firm is competing with Lloyds Bank and local start-ups for tech talent, but Hobbs attributes his growing team to robust professional development pathways, workplace flexibility and an expanding footprint at the local university. He’s also realistic that IT team members may one day move on.

“We’re really strong in accreditation, so every member of the technology team has an individual career path,” he says. “And included in that is, what accreditations do you want? How do they benefit you? How do they benefit the business? And if there’s a point in two or three years where someone says, ‘I don’t think you can give me anything more here’, then I’ll happily help you find something else.”

To develop this strong talent pipeline, The Royal Mint has partnered with the University of South Wales and the National Cyber Security Academy, while working with the Network 75 scheme on technical apprenticeships. Three of the team—two cyber engineers and a risk manager—were hired directly from the University in their third years, prior to graduation.

“We work closely with the University of South Wales, National Cyber Security Academy, and support them in a number of ways,” says Hobbs. “We undertake project and dissertation support, guest sessions with students, and also provide case study scenarios for assessments. In return, we get the opportunity to scout for talent among their undergraduate population and perhaps beat the competition to the punch when recruiting.”

The future is about modernisation and experimentation

The future, says Hobbs, is about continuing to strengthen the firm’s cybersecurity posture, enhance the e-commerce experience, migrate the server stack to Microsoft Azure, and continue inroads with its new data strategy and ERP implementation.

He says nothing is being held back yet despite cost-of-living pressures and recession, with experimentation underway on VR training, and leveraging AI and digital twin technology to digitise manufacturing processes. “We’ve made huge strides in all aspects, from strategic planning, tactical implementations, recruitment, technology enablement and engagement with the business that it’s really hard to not be overambitious with our plans for the next year,” says Hobbs. “We’re now in a position to stabilise these huge improvements and start to scale activity.”

Data and Information Security, Digital Transformation, IT Leadership, IT Management, IT Operations

Despite all the buzz about digital disruption, according to McKinsey, 70% of company transformations fail. A primary reason is that although technology gets a lot of priority, the aspects that make technology work – such as awareness, trust, and culture – get overlooked. Enterprises can tap into the true potential of cloud by harnessing change management in a digital transformation.

The digital transformation-led business shifts are likely to play out over three horizons: digital core, innovative business models, and new ecosystems. Across these three horizons, the value created by cloud will be differential and based on hyper automation and hyper engineering, which require different human skill sets. For digital transformation to be successful, organizations must adjust to new norms and collaborative ways of working.

Organizational change management in the dynamic digital era

Organizational change management (OCM) is about how an organization manages the transformation of its processes and technologies. This includes the strategies for enabling the transformation to take place on the people’s side, as well as plans for adjusting processes and making the organization ready for transformation from a technical standpoint.

Organizational change management is the methodology of tools and processes used to minimize the impacts of the change and increase business adoption. When the change management process is planned well in advance, it can help mitigate employee concerns about digital transformation. This might include:

Clear communication about the need for transformation and the vision and goals behind itUpdates regarding changes in plans and processesInformation about retooling and upskilling employees for the new technology

Driving cloud adoption through innovation, culture, people, and leadership

If you are looking to drive innovation on an enterprise-wide level, you cannot ignore the people, culture, and leadership aspects. Establishing your cloud readiness and implementing migration will impact your entire organization and its culture. To build an effective cloud adoption approach, be sure to consider the following factors:

An organization’s readiness to welcome changeThe prior impact of change on successes and failuresCommunication patterns across your organizationYour organizational structureYour organization’s leadership alignment and executive commitment

To be successful on an enterprise-wide migration to AWS cloud, you will need to have a dedicated pool of staff with production experience in AWS cloud, as well as established operational processes and a leadership team dedicated to mobilizing the correct resources and preparing your organization to overcome the transformational challenges.

TCS has a dedicated and varied set of change management services aligned to the specific culture and leadership of an organization to drive change management spanning enterprise-wide transformation efforts. At TCS, we educate, engage, and upskill the workforce, drive employee adoption, and instill the readiness for change. This encourages actions that foster behavioral change in performance management, stakeholder engagement, and business management. The solution does not just speed up the adoption process by educating the decision-makers, but it also makes your organization prepared to adopt the shift positively and holistically.

Author Bio

TCS

Ph: +91 9818069874

E-mail: renu.parihar@tcs.com

Renu Parihar is the global head of cloud consulting and value advisory at TCS’ AWS business unit. She has worked with global customers to assess, define, and implement their cloud adoption strategy. She is responsible for curating strategic offerings for cloud enablement, ways of working and cloud value measurement. She holds several accreditations in AWS and Azure, DevOps, Site Reliability Engineering and is Design Thinking certified.

To learn more, visit us here.

Digital Transformation

Technology today has become the fulcrum for achieving business goals. With enterprises across verticals increasingly realizing the value of IT, career opportunities abound for CIOs willing to make the switch from one vertical to another. Doing so can provide financial gain, but there are other compelling drivers for IT leaders to make the shift — as well as unique challenges for ensuring success.

Rajiv Batra, for instance, worked in the telecom vertical for over a decade before making the switch to Mumbai-headquartered media and entertainment conglomerate The Times Group, as its Group CIO in 2016.

“Professionally it’s very satisfying and lends you the confidence that you can manage IT in any business set up,” says Batra, whose telecom work included roles at Bharti Airtel, Reliance Communications, and MTS as corporate VP and chief architect, president of IT, and CIO, respectively. “Such a move also fortifies a CIO’s standing in the industry as a risk-taker. The level of challenge and the amount of learning that come from working in a new vertical are humongous.”

For Gyan Pandey, who quit the pharmaceutical sector after more than seven years to join consumer durables company Voltas as its chief digital officer, there were both personal and professional reasons.

“It was difficult to keep shuttling between work as the global and group CIO at Aurobindo Pharma in Hyderabad and my family in Mumbai. Besides, the pharma sector is extremely regulated, which leads to a very slow pace of technology adoption. I was doing lots of proofs-of-concepts, but the actual implementation wasn’t happening. Professionally, I wanted a more fulfilling role, which made me look for other options,” says Pandey.

Whatever the reasons personal, professional, or financial switching verticals is never easy. Enterprise IT leaders need to properly weigh the challenges before taking the leap.

For those interested in making the shift, here are some important takeaways about winning the new role and quickly making your mark in the new vertical from CIOs who have been there and done that.

Proving you’re ready for the leap

Each vertical has its specific challenges, business goals, and expectations from the CIO, and IT leaders should be prepared to address these through several rounds of high-powered interviews during the hiring process.

In the fast-moving consumer durables market, parameters such as cost cutting and return on investment (ROI) are important. In February 2007, Nitin Dhingra, heading the digital initiative at two-wheeler manufacturer Hero MotoCorp, joined as chief digital officer at sanitaryware company Hindware. One of the questions he was asked in the interview when he changed his vertical was how he delivered ROI on IT projects.

“It is tough to deliver ROI in the manufacturing vertical. I shared a few case studies, which showed how I pulled the plug on certain projects that didn’t meet earlier assumptions. I also communicated how I converted some projects that were delivering moderate results into more successful ones. Responses to such questions automatically reflect not only the candidate’s technical knowledge but also whether he/she is a leader, follower, or somewhere in between,” he says.

For Vinod Bhat, who spent 28 years in the technology vertical at IT services and consulting company TCS before taking over as the CIO of Vistara Airlines in 2021, demonstrating global experience and the ability to handle large implementations were key.

“You need to articulate how are you different and what do you bring to the table,” says Bhat, whose tenure at TCS enabled him to “work with CXOs of 15 different verticals to drive digital transformation in their organizations.”

In addition, Bhat had the advantage of global exposure. “I have held leadership positions in the US, Europe, Canada, the UK, and APAC geographies for over 15 years, and managed large projects that included taking care of margins, driving business benefits for customers, and ensuring delivery,” he says. “Working in different countries also gave me an understanding of different cultures and enabled me to drive multi-cultural teams.”

Arvind Singh, chief technology and product officer at real estate company Puravankara, underscores the importance of leveraging your peer network when attempting to shift verticals.

“Before facing the interview, one should understand the profile and structure of the organization, the challenges that the company is facing, and what are the expectations of the leadership from this role,” says Singh, who made the switch to realty after six years in the retail industry. “I spoke to my CIO friends in real estate to understand the business and its challenges. Besides reading the annual reports and whitepapers, I also tried to understand the thought process of the leadership by watching their YouTube videos and interviews in the pink papers.”

Singh adds that switching his domain after every five years or so also worked in his favor, as it “showed that I am a risk-taker and a go-getter.”

Addressing the technology gap

For any new CIO post, organizations often seek candidates experienced with their specific technology stack. IT leaders switching verticals may come under a little more scrutiny given the industry leap they are already making. Here, doing your research and emphasizing process are key, says Pandey, who encountered this situation while interviewing for Voltas. At Aurobindo Pharma, he had worked on Oracle ERP whereas Voltas leveraged SAP ERP.

“It shouldn’t be a problem for any technology leader with 15 to 20 years of experience in convincing the interviewer. Understanding business processes is more important than understanding technology. While implementing various technologies across an organization, seasoned IT leader become a part of every business process. Regular audits, which show gaps in business processes, further help a CIO in enhancing business process effectiveness,” says Pandey.

To convince Voltas, Pandey took a straightforward approach: “I told them about the various business pain points that I had overcome in the pharma sector, and I was aware of the technologies available in the market that could do the same for their vertical also, which I could prove after joining them. The board saw merit in what I said,” he says.

Strategies for succeeding in a new vertical

Getting hired is only half the battle won. To win the other half, a CIO must adjust to the new vertical and start delivering as soon as possible, often within the first 90 days. Here are some strategies that CIOs adopted to prove that they were the right fit for the new vertical.  

Invest time in understanding the business and technology

Most companies have intensive induction processes, and a new CIO should make the most of this time to get acquainted with the business and technology environments of the organization, Bhat says.

“I spent the initial settlement period in one-on-one meetings with the top management. This helped me in getting insights into the history of the company’s strategy, projects, and programs,” he says. “Besides getting a grasp on the pain point of business, I also realized the difference in the approach to technology.”

Whereas TCS had used off-the-shelf mainstream technologies, Vistara Airlines leverages SaaS solutions in a distributed manner, including industry-specific platforms. “The time that I invested listening to people brought me on the same page as the leadership,” says Bhat.

Dhingra agrees with this approach and says, “The automotive vertical has company-owned dealerships that sees exclusive visitors per day. We used to run analytics on the footfalls and get valuable information. However, this strategy could not have worked in Hindware, as the company had a multi-brand store-in-store marketing strategy and witnessed non-exclusive visitors. Spending time to know the dynamics of the business provides a much-needed context to the technology you aim to implement.”

Similarly, Batra spent the first six to eight weeks getting to know various aspects of The Times Group, including editorial, distribution, sales, and printing. “While in MTS, the expectation was to launch services as-soon-as-possible for the revenue to come in. In The Times Group, the expectations were to take the 180-year-old company from legacy to digital. This could happen only once I had complete understanding of the business to get the core systems in place,” he says.

Build consensus with the team and business leaders

For a CIO who shifts from a technologically advanced vertical to a legacy vertical, there is scope to do a lot. Management, however, may not share the same urgency. CIOs are best advised to build consensus before throw their weight around.

“At MTS, we were using data lakes, data warehouse, and analyzing millions of customer records on the fly. The billing happened through the CRM. Times Group, on the other hand, didn’t even have a CRM,” says Batra. Rather than impose his plans, Batra decided to demonstrate the value of IT to earn management’s trust. “I went for small wins first before hitting large goals.”

Within six months of joining, Batra was able to stabilize The Times Group’s basic editorial workflow system. He also sold management on how a CRM could help advertisement sale and customer care. “In serendipity, deploying one helped us in regaining business fast after the pandemic,” he says.

Having built consensus, Batra then went on to shape bigger projects, including implementing SAP HANA. He also deployed RPA across several departments; transformed the e-paper; and enabled digital payment through touch points that were not available earlier.

Plan multiple activities with different timelines

The grace period a CIO switching verticals may have doesn’t last forever. “One starts feeling the heat sooner than later,” says Singh, who suggests an agile approach to manage expectations and deliver results fast.  

“Instead of working on one big project with a big timeline, a CIO should work on several smaller projects in parallel. The aim should be to plan multiple activities with different timelines so that projects go live in a staggered manner and the management sees continuous action from the IT department in terms of process refinement, consolidation, and digital innovation,” he says.

“When I joined Puravankara, a major ERP transition from Ramco to SAP was already in progress. While I ensured the rollout happened as scheduled, I maximized the time by automating several manual processes, conceptualizing how the entire CX journey could be digitized, and built a roadmap for new technologies such as AI and ML that could be leveraged to draw business insights and predictions,” says Singh.

Never criticize your predecessor

In getting up to speed, you may encounter gaps in the IT infrastructure, or find that several important technology implementations are troubled or pending. While it is easy to blame it on the outgoing CIO, one should avoid doing so.

“The new CIO should realize that the predecessor took those decisions in different circumstances. Maybe the company didn’t consider IT as critical at that time or there could have been a budget squeeze,” says Pandey.

“Look at the new organization as a clean slate. Draw a list of all critical projects and prioritize them. Understand the budget needed to implement them and sensitize the top management accordingly,” he says.

And if budget is not allocated immediately? “Consider this as a blessing in disguise because it gives you time to set clear goals and prepare in terms of building the bandwidth for the projects,” Pandey adds.

Enjoy the role

Last but not least, IT leaders must be passionate about the new vertical and role. A raised salary alone can’t be enough of a motivating factor. There must be a serious inclination to take up the new challenge.

“I am very passionate about IT. The fast-moving consumer durables sector is growing steadily, and is now gaining momentum towards digital. I saw a lot of work and fulfilment for myself. I could start from scratch and satisfy my passion for building both the enterprise as well as satellite applications,” says Dhingra.

“The business is already seeing a lot of transformation and IT must enable it to deliver more. This can become possible only when the technology leader enjoys the role and passes on positive vibes to the business and the digital team,” he says.

IT Leadership

Businesses are constantly evolving their use of technology, resulting in almost constant organizational change. Whenever an organization implements a new process, updates an existing process, deploys new technology, or fine-tunes services, its leaders must be mindful that even a simple change to a single process can start a domino effect, introducing issues in a range of other processes that must also be addressed. That’s why it’s vital to have a strong change management plan in place, so that the company can remain agile and flexible, without interruptions or downtime. 

But every change management plan, large or small, requires skilled professionals who understand the intricacies of change management. Change management is relevant to nearly every industry, but it’s particularly important for businesses looking to improve processes, increase efficiency, and reduce errors and risk in IT, project management, and software and product development.

Looking to become an agent of change at your company? Here are 10 change management certifications you can earn to prove your skills.

Top 11 change management certifications

AIM Change Management Certification
APGM Organizational Change Management Foundation
ATD Change Management Certificate
Certified Change Management Professional (CCMP)
Certified Local Change Agent
Certified Problem and Change Manager (CPCM)
Change Management Institute Certification
Change Management Specialist (CMS)
ITIL Foundation
Project Management Professional
Prosci Change Management Certification

AIM Change Management Certification

Accelerating Implementation Methodology (AIM) is a change management methodology that can be used for a wide variety of organizational efforts. It focuses on the human side of risk; rather than look at how technology or software fails us, it encourages leaders to strengthen processes that involve employees, given that human-error is one of the biggest risks for failure. The certification is targeted at human resources, organizational development, IT, and business and clinical leaders, as well as project managers. Classes can be taken virtually or in person at sessions open to interested professionals, or organizations can opt to have employees accredited on-site with a session tailored to your business’ specific projects. The certification course will also count as professional development units (PDUs) for your ACMP certification.

Exam fee: $3,100 for the entire course

APGM Organizational Change Management Foundation

The Organizational Change Management Foundation Certification, created by APMG International in collaboration with CMI, certifies your ability to support organizational change. The exam focuses on the key skills for change management, including motivating employees, engaging stakeholders, assembling teams, and delivering on effective change strategies. Once you pass the Foundation level exam, you’ll qualify to take the Practitioner level exam, which is designed for change project managers, transformation managers, senior responsible owners, business change managers, and change program managers.

Exam fee: $390

ATD Change Management Certificate

The Association for Talent Development (ATD) offers a Change Management Certificate that focuses on improving efficiency, productivity, and service quality. The program takes place online or in person, and covers implementing change processes, change management tools, qualities of a change leader, and how to encourage the organization to embrace change. You’ll learn how to conduct diagnostic assessments, define change efforts, analyze data, provide feedback, understand change management theories, select the right change model, create implementation designs, develop communication plans, and manage any consequences of change. The online course takes place over six sessions, totaling 12 hours; the on-site course takes place over two days.

Exam fee: $1,495 for members, $1,745 for nonmembers

Certified Change Management Professional (CCMP)

The CCMP certification, offered by the Association of Change Management Professionals (ACMP), aligns with the ACMP’s Standard for Change Management. The standard was developed by ACMP as a “collection of generally accepted practices in change management” and is the foundation of the CCMP exam. It was developed by The Standard Working Group (SWG), led by group chair Sumreen Ahmad, and claims status as the “first legally defensible, globally accepted standard for change management.” It’s one of the more popular and widely recognized certifications for change management.

Exam fee: $595 for members, $745 for nonmembers

Certified Local Change Agent (CCLA)

The Certified Local Change Agent certification from APGM International is designed for those who are in a supporting role during organizational transformation. It’s aimed at those who need to understand the fundamentals and principles of change management, and who are responsible with assisting the organization during times of change. This includes team leaders, supervisors, junior and senior managers, nonmanagerial staff, and anyone who wants a better idea of what change management entails. The exam covers approaches to helping others engage with organizational change, aligning changes with departmental or organizational changes, developing change plans, and creating relationships between change professionals in the organization.

Exam fee: $390

Certified Problem and Change Manager (CPCM)

The CPCM certification, offered through the Global Association for Quality Management (GAQM), focuses specifically on identifying and fixing problems in an organization. This is the type of course that would be best for those working with development processes or overseeing product life cycles. It covers everything from identifying areas for change, implementing that change, encouraging employee buy-in, and creating resilient strategies.

Exam fee: $213

Change Management Institute Certification

The Change Management Institute (CMI) offers three levels of accreditation to prove your skills as a change manager: Foundation, Specialist, and Master. The content of each exam is based on the institute’s Change Manager Competency Model. At the foundation level, you will need to send in a written application that provides your capabilities and competencies, along with a reference from a manager who has “directly observed your behavior in a change management role.” You’ll also need to complete relevant change management education, either through a CMI-endorsed course or one that aligns with the Change Management Body of Knowledge (CMBoK). For the specialist level, you’ll need 3-6 years of experience operating at the project or program level. You will also need to submit a written assessment that provides evidence of your skills, backed up with references from those who have observed your abilities, and you’ll need to complete a virtual interview with an independent assessor. The master level accreditation is for “highly experienced, senior change practitioners to stand out from their peers as leaders in the profession,” and is best suited for those with more than 7 years’ experience.

Exam fee: Foundation: $525, discounted to $450 with CMI-endorsed training; Specialist: $675; Master: $1,050

Change Management Specialist (CMS)

Offered through the Management and Strategy Institute (MSI), the CMS certification covers the basics of change management and how it is applied in the workplace. The training material covers the “key competencies required to function in the role of a manager within a changing corporate environment.” The program covers the basics of change management principles and helps students understand how it can be applied within an organization. The course focuses on why organizations fail, how change is inevitable, the different types of change, leadership and management styles, theories of change, how change impacts everyone in the organization, how people react to change, and the principles of effective organizational change management.  Training and the exam take place online, so it’s easy to work into a busy schedule since it is self-paced.

Exam fee: $299.95

ITIL Foundation

ITIL 4, released by Axelos earlier this year, offers an IT service management framework that has a strong emphasis on change management. ITIL helps give businesses a standardized, yet customizable and flexible, framework to help with the selection, planning, delivery, maintenance and lifecycle of IT services. Change management is inherently a big part of ITIL, because the focus is on constant and continuous improvement. If you work in an ITIL environment, the ITIL Foundation certification is a great way to demonstrate you have the capabilities for IT service management, and the change management that comes along with creating, fine-tuning, and implementing change management.

Exam fee: $3,100 for the entire course

Project Management Professional (PMP)

The Project Management Professional (PMP) certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI) is another great option for those looking to validate change management skills and expertise. Project and change management often go together — the PMI states that a project is a “task with a defined end target,” and that the role of project management is the managing of the change process that will help achieve the end goal, while keeping time and budget in mind. Change management and change process often require full-time management, and that can often fall to project managers. The PMP certification is a perfect fit for anyone who finds themselves straddling both roles — project and change manager.

Exam fee: $405 for PMI members; $555 for nonmembers

Prosci Change Management Certification

This certification focuses on Prosci’s ADKAR model of change management, which is a proprietary methodology that the company says is useful for IT professionals. It takes place over the course of three days, in which you will learn how to apply Prosci’s methodology and the ADKAR model to real-world projects. The exam fee is steep, but it includes hotel accommodations, all meals, and any activities included in the program. The company also handles your hotel reservations, as it is a requirement to stay at the venue for the three-day workshop. Workshops take place in a variety of locations across the US, typically at picturesque resorts and vacation spots; you can also opt for a virtual experience instead.

Exam fee: $4,850

Careers, Certifications

By Serge Lucio, Vice President and General Manager, Agile Operations Division, Broadcom Software

Over the course of 2020 and 2021, the fabric of our work lives was radically altered, ushering in a world in which hybrid models were the norm. In 2022, these changes will be solidified and entrenched. Because of this, it is now more critical than ever to address continued demands for agility, while establishing methodologies, tools, and technologies that unite hybrid teams and facilitate new, and better, ways of working.

Meeting these objectives and adapting to new realities simply won’t happen by working in the same way. That’s why the adoption of approaches like value stream management (VSM) has continued to accelerate. For example, according to Broadcom Software’s recent survey of business and IT executives to better understand how they are adapting to the new realities by utilizing value stream management, they are adopting VSM to focus on increasing efficiency (70%), improving product quality (67%), and increasing customer value (63%).

Value stream management: A brief introduction

VSM is a framework that enables new ways of working by helping organizations focus on optimizing the delivery of value to customers.

In the early days, VSM was used across DevOps teams to boost product delivery efficiency by identifying and eliminating waste. Today, top organizations are expanding from their laser focus on efficiency to also include maximizing effectiveness across the enterprise by establishing end-to-end project visibility and funding the initiatives that matter most.

Through the effective adoption of VSM, teams can realize a number of key advantages:

Get to market faster. VSM helps optimize product lifecycles and enables teams to get releases out the door on an agile cadence and make enhancements iteratively so they remain better aligned with evolving customer priorities. Further, teams can deliver value faster than the competition and get revenue sooner.

Build high-quality products that customers value. VSM promotes a user-centric approach, enabling teams to deliver value in short cycles. VSM also promotes the effective integration of customer feedback into the value stream, so teams can effectively align strategy and development work around building what customers want most.

Reduce risk and waste. Teams are contending with significant product development challenges that are stifling their ability to meet key objectives. Teams lack visibility throughout the product lifecycle and struggle with inefficient processes. Through VSM, they can gain a clearer picture of resources, work, and customer requirements, enabling them to make more informed trade-off decisions. By aligning with customer feedback and iterating more quickly, teams can respond more effectively and reduce the risk of expensive market misses.

Collaborate more effectively. Silos continue to represent a persistent challenge for organizations in 2022 and with the expansion of work from anywhere, these challenges aren’t going away. Through VSM, teams can be more fully empowered to build better products and increase productivity. VSM supports alignment between teams through transparency to reduce inefficiencies and improve ROI and business outcomes.

How to get started with VSM

The first step is the creation of a value stream map. Your map will provide details on how work flows through your organization, from idea to customer value. Every step throughout the process needs to be documented to achieve transparency throughout the organization.

As teams are often focused on their own projects and tasks, it becomes helpful for everyone to see the broader picture to understand what is happening in other areas of the business and how things get done. Understanding how critical your contribution is in the value stream helps make better decisions because they understand the impact those decisions have.

Also, VSM technologies can provide transparency and consistency across stakeholders, no matter what their discipline, role or location. Ultimately, this empowers organizations to realize the true value of VSM and helps them maximize the value they deliver to their customers.

Conclusion

VSM is the framework that enables the new ways of working that are required to succeed now. Through well-executed VSM initiatives, organizations can accelerate digital transformation and boost agility, which can, in turn, increase the ROI of products and thus company profitability.

VSM can help establish value-focused teams and align people around customer value. Ultimately, this sets the groundwork for building responsiveness into an organization’s DNA, enabling it to become a market disruptor rather than being the victim of disruption.

To learn more about how Broadcom Software can help you with your digital transformation, contact us here.

About Serge Lucio:

Broadcom Software

Serge Lucio is Vice President and General Manager of the Agile Operations Division at Broadcom Software. In this role, he is responsible for the company’s solutions that help organizations scale their digital transformation by fusing business and IT.

Digital Transformation, IT Leadership

In the 1970s and ’80s, IT was the recognized driver of business change, albeit under the moniker “data processing,” followed by “management information systems,” followed by “information systems.”

Having automated the daylights out of general accounting, IT’s programmers and their friendly supplicants — business managers under constant pressure to cut costs — attacked business processes with glee to automate the daylights out of them.

The fun lasted until Joseph Juran invented the so-called “internal customer” and IT’s leadership role in helping the enterprise and everyone in it be more effective evaporated.

Instead, IT, in its role as “supplier,” sent out its business analyst emissaries to find out what these internal customers wanted from the products they were buying from IT.

That’s when we all fell headlong into perdition.

Hear me out: Business analysts in old-school, industrial-age, internal-customer-focused IT organizations asked business managers what their requirements were — what, that is, they needed an application to do.

Old-school, industrial-age business managers tried hard to provide useful answers, even though to their ears the question sounded a lot like “Explain the roles of dark matter and dark energy in keeping the universe from flying apart.”

You can see the problem: Business managers weren’t supposed to be experts in what software can do. The question they wanted to answer, if only the business analyst would have asked it, was, “How do you want your part of the business to run differently and better?” followed by “Would you like some help figuring that out?”

IT’s failure to ask the right questions led to its sad transition from business change leader to the dispiriting supplier-to-internal-customer perspective that continues to distort our industry.

It also led to the rise of business process optimization methodologies that promised business managers a route to making their part of the business run differently and better — without having to involve IT.

Sure, business managers, encouraged by business process optimization “belts” and supported by a bunch of spreadsheets that business users create when the IT they need isn’t the IT they have, can improve the business processes they follow.

But not as well as they can improve them when IT is integrated into business process optimization.

How? Start with a clear picture of what the leading business process optimization methodologies are for. Then, and only then, can you improve on them.

Making sense of process optimization methodologies

Four methodologies have come to dominate business process optimization efforts: Lean, Six Sigma, Theory of Constraints, and Business Process Reengineering. To succeed in today’s digital world, each should be second nature to IT’s business analysts.

Regrettably, however, these methodologies have become competing schools of thought (pick mine!) that evolved into religions (mine is better than yours!). It’s about as sensible as arguing about which works better, a screwdriver, a pliers, a soldering iron, or a lathe.

And you wonder why we consultants answer so many questions with, “It depends.”

When it comes to supporting business change, the “it depends answer” amounts to choosing the most suitable methodology, not the methodology the business analyst has the darkest belt in.

But on the other hand, the idea of having to earn belts of varying hue or their equivalent levels of expertise in several of these methodologies, just so you can choose the one that best fits a situation, might strike you as too intimidating to bother with. Picking one to use in all situations, and living with its limitations, is understandably tempting.

If adding to your belt collection isn’t high on your priority list, here’s what you need to know to limit your hold-your-pants-up apparel to suspenders, leaving the black belts to specialists you bring in for the job once you’ve decided which methodology fits your situation best.

Before you can be in a position to choose, keep in mind the six dimensions of process optimization: Fixed cost, incremental cost, cycle time, throughput, quality, and excellence (for a refresher, take a quick scan at “The hard truth about IT process success.”) You need to keep these center stage, because: You can only optimize around no more than three of them; the ones you choose have tradeoffs; and each methodology is designed to optimize different process dimensions.

One at a time:

Lean

Lean is Henry Ford by way of Toyota. Lean’s core focus is shrinking waste, which, when you boil it all down, means reducing incremental cost. Lean can deliver other benefits as well, like improving quality and reducing cycle time, but only insofar as they don’t impinge on waste reduction.

Lean’s proponents will be quick to point out that it emphasizes continuous improvement, too. And rightly so. Just keep in mind that Lean equates improvement to less waste.

If waste is your problem, Lean is just the ticket for you.

Six Sigma

Six Sigma is the heir to total quality management. Its focus is reducing variance, which it accomplishes by identifying and addressing the root causes of variability — the reasons process outputs fail to be identical and don’t meet the specifications.

Six Sigma’s focus, then, is on improving quality. To the extent defective outputs are discarded or funneled back into the process for correction, Six Sigma can, as a fringe benefit, reduce incremental cost, too.

But at its core, Six Sigma is your choice if quality is what matters most to you. Otherwise, you might find it disappointing.

Theory of Constraints

Theory of Constraints is the best process optimization methodology nobody’s ever heard of. That’s unfortunate.

Invented by former physicist Eliyahu Goldratt, ToC assumes insufficient throughput is your problem, and that your process has bottlenecks (constraints) that limit it. Speed up or eliminate process bottlenecks and you increase throughput — capacity, that is — and reduce cycle time in the bargain.

If a symptom of a business process’s shortcomings is that it can’t keep up with demand, look to Theory of Constraints for help.

And while it isn’t part of ToC’s official doctrine, you can apply the fundamental ToC loop — find bottleneck, fix bottleneck, rinse-and-repeat — to whichever process optimization goal you decide is most important. It doesn’t have to be a capacity bottleneck.

Business Process Reengineering

Michael Hammer’s and James Champy’s Reengineering the Corporation was the book that focused business leaders on the importance of well-designed processes. The focal point for Business Process Reengineering is that the right place to start is a blank sheet of paper.

So where Lean, Six Sigma, and Theory of Constraints look for the few bad process steps that cause the most mischief and go about fixing them so as to reduce waste, defects, or bottlenecks, BPR’s primary impact seems to be maximizing consultant billing hours.

Which isn’t entirely fair — there are situations where BPR is your only choice, for example when you’re in-sourcing a previously outsourced business process.

But of the four dominant process optimization methodologies, BPR is the riskiest.

Take the fifth

While Lean, Six Sigma, ToC, and BPR are the major business process optimization methodologies of choice, IT groups that want to lead business process improvement have another alternative available to them: To offer the process flows built into commercial applications as the logical places to start.

Software is an opinion. Commercial business applications are opinions about how a business process should flow. And while these opinions aren’t always a great fit, they’re usually a useful place to start.

And while starting with an application’s built-in processes makes both initial integration and ongoing maintenance easier for IT, this isn’t just a replay of the old, tired, plain-vanilla versus chocolate-sprinkles argument that so often derails application implementations.

The problem with arguing about ice cream varieties was … is … that they’re arguments about whether IT or “the business” gets its way.

But as there’s no such thing as an IT project, arguing about which flavor of software to use shouldn’t be allowed.

Starting with the built-in process? Yes, this is, as a happy fringe benefit, closer to accepting more vanilla-ish software for IT to maintain. But vanilla-ism isn’t the point. Effective processes are the point.

Going with the application vendor’s process design opinion has a business fringe benefit, too: Nobody has to design it.

And a second: It’s a workable place to start applying Lean, Six Sigma, or ToC if it isn’t good enough out of the box.

Business Process Management, IT Leadership