There are so many things to consider when it comes to implementing a new HR or payroll system; but ignore stakeholder analysis at your peril.
Why? By getting to know your stakeholders, you can better understand how engaged they are in the project from the outset, as well as establish what they want, when they want it and how your planned changes will affect their goals.
Establishing their needs through detailed analysis will create the basis of an effective engagement strategy – enabling you to translate these needs into organisational goals.
“If you find a shared motivation, it will help all of your stakeholders arrive at a decision and a meaningful outcome.”
So what sort of stakeholders might you have?
A stakeholder can be defined as “a person with an interest or concern in something”, a rather broad definition yes, but this is helpful, particularly when that something is a new HR or payroll system.
Individuals and groups of individuals can have varying levels of interest and engagement in a project so it’s important to properly identify, define and analyse each one to ensure that nobody is overlooked.
In an HR or payroll context, your stakeholders may consist of: employees, HR, payroll, IT, accounting, SMEs, board, suppliers/vendors, investors, government and business owner(s).
Mapping your stakeholders
Once you’ve identified who your stakeholders are, you can begin to ‘map’ them and establish their current and desired level of commitment and influence.
A stakeholder map is a really useful way of prioritising stakeholders and can be used to inform your Change Strategy & Plan, Stakeholder Engagement Plan and Communications Plan.
We touched on stakeholder maps previously in our post on ‘getting HRIS project ready’ which highlights the different types of disruptive employee personas you need to be aware of when commencing a project.
To begin, make a list of all your stakeholders and number each ‘group’. You can then plot the numbers onto the a grid (example below) and indicate their desired position.
When mapping, it’s important to pay attention to the stakeholders placed in the top left quadrant of your grid, or ‘map’, as they will be critical to the success of your programme.
Building on your map, you can then start to add in some detail and analyse each stakeholder to determine their anticipated concerns.
For each one, you can develop an action plan to engage them and move them toward the desired level of commitment.
Here’s an example of a stakeholder template, using HR Administrators to demonstrate how you can identify the issues and concerns relevant to them and how to influence these:
What are the benefits of stakeholder analysis?
Effective stakeholder analysis will not only result in far fewer surprises, your stakeholder engagement will be much more valuable thanks to the deeper understanding you have built of their respective needs and concerns.
This will in turn lead to much improved communication and allow you to manage expectations whilst enabling stakeholders to feel accountable. It’s important to build trust throughout your implementation project and demonstrating that you understand where each stakeholder is coming from will help you to do this. Effective analysis will also help ensure that you invest time in the right places going forward!
Ultimately, taking the time to analyse your stakeholders will lead to more effective decision making throughout the process.
How to maintain positive relationships
There are various ways in which to maintain the positive relationships you have established with your stakeholders throughout your HRIS or payroll implementation project. We have outlined some of these below:
- Group your stakeholders
- Clearly communicate your scope
- Gain trust from the start
- Stay consistent with your messaging
- Meet up with stakeholders who are resistant to change
- Use data to summarise key info
- Keep surprises to a minimum
With all HRIS implementation projects, we can support you through the process of mapping and analysing your stakeholders to ensure your project gets off to the right start. We also have a number of free resources available to you including this stakeholder map template.
If you have any questions about this element of your upcoming implementation, get in touch – we’d be happy to answer.