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Hi,   There is always a mystery surrounding Organizational Change Management (OCM) in SAP projects. Depending on whom the client is, there are different expectations about what it is exactly a SAP OCM consultant should be doing.   Of course it is important for the right expectations to be created in the beginning as part of the project contracting process.   My approach to clarifying the role and responsibilities of a SAP OCM consultant is to go through the ASAP project phases as below…  image    …and discuss the deliverables of the OCM consultant as outlined in Solution Manager/ASAP Roadmap. (Example below)  image  ASAP Defines the OCM role:   “The Organizational Change Management (OCM) Expert is primarily responsible for ensuring that human and organizational risks to the implementation are identified and that actions are put in place to minimize them. In addition, he or she ensures that human and organizational benefits are maximized to achieve the greatest return on the investment made.   The OCM Expert serves as a point of contact for the organizational change management activities on the project. He or she sees to it that organizational change activities are conducted, that dependencies with other implementation activities are identified, and that synchronization takes place.”  Further, it gives an image of the skill-set a Change Management expert should have:  image I am hoping to prepare some pod-casts talking about personal experiences at each stage of the SAP OCM ASAP process and welcome your contributions to how barriers were overcome in your experiences. As much as possible I would like to keep a practical approach in this blog.   The error many people make is in thinking that OCM is a philosophical subject and can be approached by many different angles. I have met too many consultants and project managers who claim they are Change Managers. SAP OCM must be executed, based on sound organisational development principles using ASAP methodology in order to ensure optimum business readiness.  As much as possible, I would like for people to develop a clear understanding on how to ‘do’ ASAP Organizational Change Management in SAP projects. After all, the organization needs professional configuration as much as SAP in order to achieve the ultimate business solution.   With Kindest Regards, Paul
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  1. Former Member

    Great to see one of the new BPXers writing a blog, I think that all of the other have either been SAP or seasoned SDNers, lets hope it helps motivate the rest of us to start contributing. The topic itself is also very interesting to, typically its one of the major reasons for a successful SAP implementation, in fact I would call it one of the top 2 or 3 critical success factors. Looking forward to the next one!


    1. Former Member Post author
      Hi Paul T,

      Thanks for your continued support, I look forward to learning from your seasoned experience and hope that you can guide this blog in a manner which clarifies SAP OCM and as you suggested prviously puts a spot-light on the subject.

      With Kindest Regards,
      Paul W

  2. Former Member
    Now we’re getting in the right direction….it is sad how techies sometimes totally forget what a Change to Process Orientation & Service Orientation does to a company.
    OCM is one of the biggest Challenges we’re facing and will be facing….
    – How can we align certain departments groups to support a process and not the department/team agenda’s ?
    – adressing the right sponsorship – OCM is not the area of the CIO….
    – how do we have to improve the enviroment to support a process oriented Company
    – how can we help creating metrics/kpi’s which measure the Process contribution to a companies success ?

    The implementation of the Process comes last – change has to be initated way before….

    1. Former Member Post author
      Hi Sascha,

      Thanks for the comments, I look forward to seeing stories and learning lessons from your experiences in this blog.

      If I may offer a view on your questions:

      “How can we align certain departments groups to support a process and not the department/team agenda’s ?”

      It’s no secret that businesses have mini-empires or silos. Department managers are generally fierce in guarding their processes and pushing ring-fenced agendas. This is a culture which breeds bottle-necks, finger-pointing and many other nasty territory politics. The key here is breaking down silo-thinking and getting people to understand that they are part of a value-chain. One workshop trick I use with delegates who are managers across different departments, is to ask a delegate to pick a number, the delegate next to him must pick another number but repeat the previous numbers which have been called out.
      The difference between a process thinking management team and a silo management team is the silo managers will pick random numbers not thinking about the following manager who has to recall all the numbers. Of course after about four delegates, the numbers are forgotten and the process fails.
      However, a process thinking management team would start at 1 and each manager would announce a number as part of a sequence, for example 1,2,3,4,5…etc.

      This simple game very quickly shows the difference between managers who think for themselves and managers who understand what they do has an impact down the line.

      This is the kind of Change Management I really enjoy, creating learning organizations.

      “addressing the right sponsorship – OCM is not the area of the CIO….”

      I completely agree. CIO is ultimately responsible for his SLAs which very seldom include the effectiveness of business processes, which is why I completely agree with Dr. Wolfram Jost’s view that the CIO will morph into the CPO (Chief Process Officer – Read more here: )

      “how do we have to improve the environment to support a process oriented Company”

      There needs to be a shift in corporate culture. To get the culture right, core values like trust, care, empowerment and community development all need to be practiced first by the leaders of the organization. This means that an effective transformation into a process-driven organization requires a leadership intervention, which sometimes requires a revision of the corporate strategy. As I said previously, SAP OCM requires an approach which uses sound Organizational Development principles and the ASAP methodology.

      “how can we help creating metrics/kpi’s which measure the Process contribution to a companies success ?”


      Corporate performance must be aligned to corporate strategy. Very often I find a strategic initiative which states “Reduce employee turnover” but there are no KPI’s at a departmental or individual level which support these Strategic initiatives.

      Business Process Re-engineering (BPR) must start at the top with level 0 process which gets the entire business value-chain on one page. Each process should then be drilled down to level 4 process which includes Standard Operating Procedures (SOP)Sometimes you can go straight from level 2 to level 4, it depends on the depth.
      Once tehse level 4 processes have been mapped, then you can identify the process roles. KPIs are easily mapped to process roles. The next challenge is formulate job descriptions which detail the core process roles and where roles may be shared with other job descriptions. Of course in this rapidly changing world, job descriptions should always create the expectation that roles may change however, suitable training will be provided.
      As an endnote, KPIs only work, if they have the SAP training and authorization to do the work. Upfront KPIs must be Sarbanes Oxley compliant (Sox) and authorizations must be made available…how did I get to this??? ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Your last comment “
      The implementation of the Process comes last – change has to be initated way before….” is completely correct…however it can sometimes cast doubt as wether or not a project should actually be undertaken. From my experience I have become cynical about this point. In my view, SAP OCM should start before the SAP project begins. CIOs don’t think enough about operational impact and business readiness. This is why I am really excited about solution manager and the drive SAP is on about delivering business solutions and not just a configured SAP system.

      I look forward to further contributions,

      With Kindest Regards,

  3. Former Member
    SAP realizes that HR Data is very important for any organization.  They especially are putting more focus on being able to integrate this HR Data into their new product offerings.
    For example: SAP’s CRM is tightly integrated with SAP HR Data, making it very easy for customers to benefit from their investment in maintaining an Org Model within SAP.
    If you are looking for ideas for a podcast, I would be interested in hearing any experiences related to HR and CRM.

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