Change Management – Latest Perspective

Change Management – Latest Perspective

Insights | 19 November 2013

Project Management practitioners are well aware of the importance organisational change can play during the lifecycle of a project and the growing importance the two closely-related disciplines of project management and change management.

Preparing people and guiding the right behaviour plays a pivotal role to the success of your projects, however, it’s the knowledge, experience and understanding of what practices and techniques to use that has provided confusion for many Project Managers over the years.

Whilst best practices such as PRINCE2®, the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) and Managing Successful Programmes (MSP®) recognise the importance of managing change, project and programme management frameworks are not replacements for effective change management, and most are not designed to offer any guidance.

“Project management and change management disciplines both aim to increase the likelihood of successful outcomes. The success of an initiative however, results from an effectively designed, developed and delivered solution that is embraced and adopted. We have been executing projects for organisations for over 18 years and find that the most effective approach is to integrate these disciplines to create a unified approach that focuses strongly on desired business results and outcomes. A body of knowledge and accreditation for project managers that encourages project managers to integrate change into their practice will be a good outcome for business executives”
– Pete Swan, Director, PM-Partners group

The Change Management Body of Knowledge

The APMG-International (APMG) and the Change Management Institute (CMI)* have realised the growing need for organisational change capabilities within projects and have subsequently formed a partnership to develop and promote the Change Management Body of Knowledge (CMBoK) as best practice for change management.

The CMBoK, launched in October 2013 in Sydney, and is based on the experience of more than 600 professionals in change management from over 30 countries who have presented a competency framework for delivering effective change. The guide will form the basis for a new foundation accreditation level for CMI – the Accredited Associate Change Manager (AACM).

The CMBoK addresses 13 Knowledge Areas, each describing a significant aspect of the understanding and experience expected of an effective Change Manager. These are:

  1. A Change Management Perspective
  2. Defining Change
  3. Managing Benefits
  4. Stakeholder Strategy
  5. Communication and Engagement
  6. Change Impact
  7. Change Readiness, Planning and Measurement
  8. Project Management
  9. Education and Learning Support
  10. Facilitation
  11. Sustaining Systems
  12. Personal and Professional Management
  13. Organizational Considerations

This initial version of the CMBoK has concentrated on the ‘project’ level of change management with future revisions scheduled (end of 2014 and then on a 2 year cycle). Like all ‘bodies of knowledge’, the CMBoK does not seek to be all-inclusive or all-encompassing; instead it references key Change Management publications such as Kotter, and Cameron and Green and research from a global constituency to define and balance ideas in order to deliver change successfully.

“Effective change managers play a key role alongside programme and project managers in leading, facilitating and co-ordinating engagement with stakeholders through the full lifecycle of change”. CMBOK, 2013

Accreditation and Next Steps

CMI has an existing professional accreditation scheme for those with a minimum of 3-5 years’ experience, leading to the status of Accredited Change Manager (ACM).

The CMBoK will, however, form the basis for a new Foundation accreditation level for CMI – the Accredited Associate Change Manager (AACM). APMG are currently developing the training syllabus and examinations for this new accreditation. The ACM professional accreditation is being developed to support people at the beginning of their change management career, with one to three years’ experience.

“Change before you have to.”- Jack Welch

PRINCE2® is a registered trade mark of AXELOS Limited ; MSP® is a registered trade mark of AXELOS Limited ; PMBOK® is a registered trade mark of Project Management Institute Inc

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