Inertia from the past
Despite this context, many organisations fall into the inertia of old mindsets and methods, developed in previous times of greater certainty and stability. For instance, today is still common to find change programs that:
- Concentrate on the deployment of technical solutions as opposed to the delivery of business outcomes and benefits;
- Overlook the ongoing nature of value creation during execution and the importance of stakeholder engagement in creating sustainable outcomes from change;
- Focus mostly on end financial benefits neglecting the many non-financial outcomes required to realise them.
Value delivery maps
To address these challenges, since 2010 River Plate Projects (RPP) has embraced the use of Value Delivery Maps (VDMs) — a visual management tool to collaboratively scope, design and integrate programs of change, based on the value they create for the business and stakeholders.
The facilitated creation of a VDM (figure below) ensures that stakeholders and delivery groups develop and maintain a common understanding of:
- Business objectives and vision for the change;
- Business benefits required to achieve the desired objectives;
- Enabling solutions and business changes needed to realise the benefits; and
- The interconnections between them (influence diagram).
The clarity of this logic enables stakeholders to build viable commitments to business outcomes and changes, and opens their participation in the ongoing optimisation of value throughout execution. For instance, finding the most valuable paths to business objectives at any point in time.
The maps also play a critical role in mitigating the fragmented thinking often experienced across stakeholder and delivery groups. Benefits become reference points for integration of delivery and creation of value, thus guiding everyone through change.
Value delivery maps at work
By combining value delivery maps with well-understood principles of program execution, RPP has enabled businesses from different industries to:
- Focus on outcomes and benefits as opposed to just deployment of technology solutions;
- Use benefits to drive program execution;
- Build viable stakeholder commitments to value and change;
- Maximise the return on the investment through discovery and prioritisation of most valuable paths during execution;
- Effectively integrate the delivery of change across stakeholders and diverse specialist groups (Lean Six-Sigma, IT Agile, Change Management, etc.).
Written by: Fernando Gaggero — founder and director of River Plate Projects | RPP