Helping to ensure that a new website/app rollout benefits your business
When your company is considering changing it’s website or rolling out a web application, one of the challenges that the management team will face is to ensure that the appropriate business benefits are achieved with such an investment of time and money (i.e. that the rollout of a new system/website will be the right thing for the business).
Doing the right things
To take a quotation from Stephen Covey “People and their managers are working so hard to be sure things are done right, that they hardly have time to decide if they are doing the right things”.
In relation to the part of the quotation, where people may not have the time to ensure that they are doing the right things, I believe that help is at hand in the form of the balanced business scorecard concept.
What is a balanced business scorecard ?
The following quotation from Howard Rohm of the Balanced Scorecard Institute in America illustrates the scope and potential of the business scorecard approach which “is a performance management system that can be used in any size organisation to align vision and mission with customer requirements and day-to-day work, manage and evaluate business strategy, monitor operations efficiency improvements, build organisation capacity and communicate progress to all employees”.
Looking at this definition in the context of rolling out new websites/apps, there are a number of aspects worth noting:
- The approach is adaptable for use in any organisation from an SME to a large corporation
- It enables a business to define a set of goals and objectives related to customer requirements and the day-to-day work processes thus helping to focus attention on the practical benefits that the rollout is planned to achieve
- It facilitates the ongoing monitoring of these goals and reduces the administration burden in the management of the rollout
- It builds organisational capacity ensuring that as changes occur, the appropriate training and communication is in place to ensure a smooth progression of the rollout
Different perspectives in one scorecard
One of the principles behind the Balanced Business Scorecard is a recognition that any business project, including rolling out new systems, will require a business to view the changes and benefits from a number of different perspectives:
- Financial (i.e. what are the planned cost and revenue improvements?)
- Customer (i.e. what are the improvements in customer service?)
- Internal business process (i.e. what are the reductions in cycle times and non-value add?)
- Employees (i.e. what are the training requirements and new growth opportunities?)
So, the balanced business scorecard can provide a framework to kick-off a system rollout with a focus on the business objectives that it is expected to deliver, monitor it’s progress and ensure that the resultant change is being managed through effective communications and on-the-job training, but how do you build a scorecard ?
Before going into the detail of building a scorecard, it is important to remember that your project team charged with managing the new system rollout should be the one responsible for building the balanced scorecard. Also, the communications about the balanced scorecard and its continuing usage should be a part of the overall communications being used to update employees on all aspects of the rollout.
Further information can be sourced at The Balanced Scorecard Institute.