Last month I talked about the growing emphasis we see on People. Now, getting on the transformation and disruption bandwagon, I want to focus on pushing forward the need for organizational disruption, transformation.
We cannot deny the fact that there are many amazing and transformational changes happening in every aspect of our lives; Apps, digital house, self-driving cars, wearables, bitcoins, blockchain, and more. Everything from answering your door from across the globe, your house learns your patterns and adjusts thermostats accordingly, your watch monitors, prompts, and coaches you to maximum performance, to just scratch the surface. We aren't managing change, change is in control, and it whips us around at every turn. Yet, with all this change going on, I see some things that still haven't changed and I wonder if they should.
Let's talk about the business world. Organizational structures are pretty much the same as they've always been, a chart of connecting boxes that cascades down from the top dog. In this set of cascading boxes lives a set of functional areas that don't connect to each other except somewhere higher up on the chart. You all know well the silo phenomenon where the left hand doesn't always know what the right hand is doing >> one consequence of performing in that organizational structure. Really, it's all we know how to do, we've managed in this structure for centuries. Can it be different? Should it be different? My answer is yes to both!
Well, change starts somewhere. Sometimes with the escalation of a problem, sometimes with a philosophical discussion for exploring that which we don't know. For me, in the world of Super Users, this change should be triggered by both:
- The escalation of a problem:
- Departments don't actively engage with other departments.
- Processes are encumbered
- IT struggles with the business relationship which can translate into higher IT costs.
- A philosophical discussion for exploring that which we don't know
- How can we generate new ideas for solving problems we keep complaining about?
- We all have too few resources, how do we get our work done AND help improve our business?
- How can we make employees as productive as possible? And what is "productive" anyway???
More and more companies are jumping onto the Super User business imperative, the new "organizational structure", to start this change discussion and journey. We call it the #departmentofthefuture, an organization (but think Community) of volunteer members. So how do you manage the long term performance of a team of volunteers across the entire company? They don't report to you. They have other jobs. They work in different areas of the business which can have their own "sub culture". They may only be loosely connected to you way up in the organizational chart. Can you see how this is different than your existing department focused organizational structure?
Whether you are well down that path or just floating the ideas, you shouldn't be doing it alone. You should be share lessons learned along with emerging best practices. This is part of why SAPinsight
exists. Together companies are creating the future, the #departmentofthefuture, Super User Programs.
I can't end the story without talking about why Super Users. So here are a few top reasons:
- Ensure your users are as productive as possible.
- Reduce IT support costs.
- Reduce IT project costs.
- Improve business processes from the front line.
- Develop talent.
- Retain key talent.
- Increase employee engagement.
All of this and more is achievable with existing resources. Are you ready for this game-changer? Plug in to the story at SAPinsight