Any business engaged in organizational change should understand the ROI and importance of change management.
Attempting to change without management can have bad consequences.
In many cases, change will be executed expensively and ineffectively.
In worst case scenarios, change initiatives will fail completely.
Since many change initiatives aren’t successful, it is important to carefully consider the benefits of change management.
Let’s look at a few key reasons why change management is so important.
What Is the ROI and Importance of Change Management?
Organizational change without management is like a car without a driver…
It is less likely to reach its destination, and will certainly cause more damage along the way.
Here are seven reasons why every business should invest in formal change management:
1. Better Chances of Success
Not all change programs succeed.
Some are partially successful, while others fail altogether.
It is true that the much-touted “70% of change programs fail” metric has been cast in doubt.
However, some studies show that significant numbers of change programs do fail.
The reasons can include:
- Poor planning
- Bad communication
- Employee resistance
- Unforeseen circumstances
All of these factors can be mitigated or eliminated with change management.
In fact, this is one of the main purposes of change management – foreseeing and preventing obstacles.
2. Increased Employee Metrics
Employees are the beating heart of an organization.
In fact, some say that employees are more important than customers.
Without workers, change programs cannot succeed.
Yet all too often, managers attempt to push change programs through the pipeline. And when employees’ reactions, personalities, and goals are ignored, they resist.
Change management puts employees at the center of its operating model.
The result is improved employee metrics, such as:
- Employee engagement
- Employee productivity and output
- Learning and knowledge retention
- Satisfaction and happiness
These translate into better program results across the board, such as those mentioned next.
3. More Objectives Met, More Often
Every change program has unique objectives.
These targets are usually quantitative, not black and white.
For instance, a new software deployment may aim at:
- Increasing customer satisfaction to specific levels
- Decreasing the length of sales cycles by two weeks
- Reducing customer service calls by a specific percentage
Regardless of the program’s objectives, change management enables businesses to meet these targets more often.
If you employ formalized, structured change management, then expect better results across the board.
This can improve each target metric by significant margins. It can turn, for instance, partial successes into complete successes.
And, the more change programs you engage in, the more these benefits add up.
4. Greater Support
Support is a key factor for success in any change program.
But unless you plan to obtain it, you are less likely to get it.
This can mean:
- Greater employee resistance
- Decreased engagement
- Lower productivity
All of which can harm your program outcomes.
Gaining support – from employees, executives, users, or employees – requires a few things.
- A solid communication strategy
- Feedback and data
- Proactive attempts to obtain that support
To name a few.
As with the other factors mentioned here, change management professionals know that this support is essential.
And they always make that support a key tenet of their approach.
5. Lowered Costs
Formalized change programs can drastically reduce the cost of a change project.
These cost reductions can come as a result of:
- Mitigated risks and obstacles
- More efficient use of resources
- Greater support from employees
- Better training and onboarding
Among other things.
As with the other benefits mentioned here, the profits compound the more projects you engage in.
For an isolate project or two, these costs may amount to less than the costs of a formalized change program.
However, the greater – and more often – you change, the greater the benefits.
Early on, analyze the business problem.
And look at the costs of change, with and without formalized management.
An honest appraisal will help you realize the ROI and importance of change management.
6. Shorter Timelines
Today, change is happening fast, whether we like it or not.
The global marketplace is digitizing and transforming under our feet – and those companies that move the fastest lead the pack.
For the same reasons mentioned above, change management enables companies to move, react, and adapt more quickly.
This can translate into a variety of benefits, such as:
- Releasing products more quickly
- Reacting to changing circumstances more quickly
- Adopting new technology faster
All of which can help companies gain and maintain competitive advantages.
7. Higher ROI
For all of the above reasons – plus others we have not mentioned – change management delivers higher ROI.
To sum up, change management ROI comes as a result of:
- Improved project results
- Better employee engagement, support, and productivity
- Shorter project timelines
- Lower project costs
Change management, therefore, is an essential tool for businesses that want better top-line and bottom-line results.
We have seen the ROI and importance of change management.
Not only does it reduce risks, it generates greater profits.
Businesses that employ formalized change management programs will fare better in the marketplace.
And in today’s fast-changing marketplace, this is more important than ever.
Chris is the Lead Author & Editor of Change Blog. Chris established the Change blog to create a source for news and discussion about some of the issues, challenges, news, and ideas relating to Change Management.