Discuss about the Impact of Change on an Organization case study of DHL .
As the proverb says, the only constant thing in this world is change applies to every aspect of work. If the organization does not implement change, it will not be able to perform well and it would not be able to compete with the competitors (Langley et al. 2013). It is up to the companies to implement the changes as per the need of the organization and the need of the external market (Paulsen et al. 2013).
DHL is one such organization that has implemented the change in the organization and has faced certain issues. The report will take into consideration the changes that have been taken into consideration the changes that have been taken into consideration by the organization.
The operations of DHL are present in 220 territories and countries (Dhl.com.au 2017). They have employee strength of 350,000. They are ready to cater to the needs of the customers as far as various logistics needs are concerned.
The report will evaluate the issues faced by the organization while they are implementing the changes. It will further assess the reason for the change and the feedback of the employees regarding the change. Finally, the best strategy that will help in managing the changes will be discussed in the report.
Identification and introduction of change
DHL is famous for its on-time delivery and its reach all over the world. However, recently the company has been facing issues with the records that are being kept over the computer. The moment a package is received, it is updated over the computer from every office. It helps the company to keep a track of the package as well as it becomes easier at the end of the month or in the weekly check up of the business. Even though the records are been kept daily, yet some records were found missing for two weeks consecutively. The records were later retrieved from the hard copy that is being stored after an order is being received and the franchises deliver them to the main office. As the hard copies cannot be dependent and the soft copy records were more easier, the organization thought of carrying out an investigation.
The symptoms that showed that something is wrong are the missing records of more than thirty orders. The organization tallied the date of receiving the package along with the employees who were being given the duties of maintaining the order. In addition to this, the computers that were used to keep a record of the data ere also being checked. After a thorough checking and analysis the records, the actual cause of the issues was being found.
The main cause of the issue was fault of the employees as well as the fault of the machines. It has been seen that the fifty orders could not be recoded were mainly because they were being handled by the employees who are approaching old age. Due to the changes in the work environment, a number of changes have been brought about by the organization (Cameron and Green 2015). The main changes that have taken place in the organization are with the technology. They have constantly upgraded technology so that work could be done in a faster manner (Hayes 2014). They have to keep a check on the growing competition and to serve the customers well, up gradation of technology was found to be the best way to keep track of the competition. However, while upgrading the technology, they did not keep in mind that the employees need to be trained about the use of the technology (Frankland et al. 2013). Especially, those employees who are aged and might not be well acquainted with the computers needed to be trained (Goetsch and Davis 2014).
Current organizational conditions
To make the employees learn about the new technology, DHL has to bring in certain changes in the organization. They have to change the systems into simpler ones so that the employees could easily use it as well as train the employees to use the complicated system (Hornstein 2015). Eventually, they could bring the changes in the organization. The main idea for changing the system and training the employees gradually is to make the employee aware of the technology. ‘Prevention is better than cure’ is one such idea that has been applied in the organization.
The older employees were motivated as they would be saved from making any mistake (Verhulst and Lambrechts 2015). They were getting confused with types of computers and were not able to understand the constant updates in the operations of the computers. They were trying hard to be well acknowledged with the technological operations in the organization, but they were making mistakes that were costing the company huge amount of loss. Especially, after the discovery of the mistakes in the organization, they have started feeling inferior (Hamraz, Caldwell and Clarkson 2013). They were not being able to perform well in the organization (Rock 2014).
They served the company for a long period and have helped the organization during the time of emergency. It was the duty of the organization to keep the employees motivated so that they are able to perform well in the organization. As the older employees are working in the organization for long, they used to help the senior management for taking any kind of decision. Change technologically is helpful for DHL but it should also keep in mind different kinds of employees who are present in the organization (Khattak, Latif and Lee 2013). However, they need to bring the change so that employees understand the change and then use the change in the organization (Parker et al. 2013).
Resistance to change
There is a huge chaos in the workplace as the employees were not ready to degrade or settle for simple system (Della Torre and Solari 2013). Especially the younger employees were resistant to the change because they were always interested in learning something new (Krüger 2017). The younger employees were not ready to comply with the issues faced by the older employees. The younger employees were more tech savvy and felt that if the systems are being changes then it will slow down their work. They were not ready to understand the issues that the older employees were facing. They were not even ready to take time to understand the issues of sudden changes in the organization. Hence, it can be said that the younger employees do not understand the idea of teamwork and the way working in a team helps the organization to get proper recognition in the market (Cummings and Worley 2014). The younger employees were concerned about themselves and they are interested for the career development of the individual rather than on the team. This increased the issues among the organization, as the younger employees were not ready to change their course of work (Pan? 2013). There was a clash of interest between the employees based on their age and experience (Holt and Vardaman 2013).
Another factor that was making the younger employee go against the change was that their payment might be reduced, as they will under the training (Jacobs, van Witteloostuijn and Christe-Zeyse 2013). In addition to this, the older employees were the ones who have to go for the training. The younger employees have started feeling that they have to take up the jobs of the older employees in the organization. They have to fill up their space while the older employees as they will be under training. According to the younger employees to work more but the payment will be the same (Jansson 2013).
Factors providing pressure for change
The competition outside the organization and the constant pressure to make the employees at par the requirement of the external market has helped the organization to instigate the change in the organization (Paulsen et al. 2013). The earlier change that was made in the organization was also due to the demand from the external market (Langley et al. 2013). The second change where the systems will be changed and the employees will be trained will also be done for the external environment. However, the internal factors are also important for the organization as far as recent changes are concerned (Cameron and Green 2015). The employees should feel connected with the organization so that they can perform better. In this situation, the older employees were not feeling connected with the organization, which in turn is affecting the work of the organization (Hayes 2014). Due to the mistakes made by the employees, the organization is gaining a bad name in the market.
The stakeholders involved and their likely reactions
The stakeholders who are involved in the business are the customers and the financial organization (Frankland et al. 2013). The financers are helping the organization with monetary help and hence, they would be looking for proper business of the organization. The financers might be skeptical with DHL for making the process simpler as they might feel that they will gain lesser business from company (Goetsch and Davis 2014). However, when they will see that it will help them in gaining better business with the help of the training, they are likely to support the change.
The customers will also be at loss if the records are not being kept properly (Hornstein 2015). Thus, if the customers come to know that the training will help in better delivery of services, they will also support the change. They would not mind the temporary glitch in the services in the company if they were assured of better services in the future (Verhulst and Lambrechts 2015).
Implementation of change
To implement the change in the organization, it is up to the leaders of the organization as well as the organization as a whole who would decide the way the changes should be brought in an organization (Rock 2014). To implement the changes in a manner so that it calls for maximum amount of cohesion and minimum amount of resistance, Kotter’s eight-step model of change management could be used in the organization.
Figure 1: Kotter’s eight-step model of change management
(Source: Hamraz, Caldwell and Clarkson 2013)
Implementing the Kotter’s eight-step model of change management will be the best strategy that an organization can use while they are bringing a change in the organization. However, the leaders have the most important role to play when it comes to implementing a change or applying a model (Khattak, Latif and Lee 2013). The main issue that DHL was facing was problems between the employees. The earlier change has been done in haste by DHL and it is getting the negative consequences. Hence, it would be intelligent to implement the next change in a systematic manner as explained in the model.
The older employees are facing issues to use the computers that have been upgraded to a great deal (Parker et al. 2013). On the contrary, the younger employees are enjoying the upgrading and working as per the requirement of the organization. DHL has not thought of the issues they will face while they were upgrading the systems. They have thought of training the aged employees in the organization and degrade the systems for the time being. They will gradually upgrade them, as the aged employs will get the training. The younger employees were oppose to the idea because they feel they will be responsible for doing the work of other employees while they will be training period (Della Torre and Solari 2013). The younger employees are still not are of the positive side of the decision.
The leaders will be responsible for ‘creating urgency’, ‘forming a powerful coalition’, ‘creating a vision for change’, ‘communicating the vision’ and ‘empowering the action’ at the initial stage (Krüger 2017). The younger employees have to understand the importance of change and they might face even worse consequences if they do not implement the change (Cummings and Worley 2014). Some of the aged employees will retire after some months. If they are not able to understand the operations well, the younger employees will have to rectify the mistakes when the employees will not be there. If the aged employees are not able to understand the functions of the computer well, they will make mistake and it will eventually affect the business of the organization (Pan? 2013). If the organization will not be able to get good business, it will in turn affect the pay scale of the employees (Holt and Vardaman 2013). In addition to this, the aged employees have more ideas regarding the functionalities of the organization than just the computers. Computers are used to make the work faster and easier. The aged employees know the issues tan have been faced by the organization and have an idea about the ways to get out of those issues (Jacobs, van Witteloostuijn and Christe-Zeyse 2013). Hence, ignoring the knowledge of the older employees just because they are having problems in operating the computers will not be right (Jansson 2013).
Once the younger employees will be able to look into the matter other way round, the issues of the company will be reduced (Paulsen et al. 2013). They will be able to get ‘quick wins’ as the problems will be less when the aged employees will learn (Langley et al. 2013). Both the younger and aged employees will be able to build on the change and the together they will be able to make the changes stick for the betterment of the organization (Cameron and Green 2015).
After going through the case study of DHL and the issues that the company is facing, it can be said that any issue that should be brought in an organization should be done in a steady and systematic manner. The organization has earlier implemented a change, which was done in haste. The computers were upgraded without training the aged employees. As a result, they started making mistakes while keeping a track of the changes. The organization decided to degrade the technology and train the aged employees accordingly. They will then gradually upgrade the systems. The younger employees of the organization were against the idea as they felt that it would slow down their work. In addition to this, they felt that they would have to extra work while other employees will be working.
The Kotter’s eight-step model of change management found to be best suited for the organization to make the younger employees understand the importance of the change. The leaders will have a major role to play to make the employees less resistant to the change. It has been concluded that they should be made to understand that once the aged employees make the mistakes, it would affect the business of the organization. Once the business will be affected, it will affected the pay scale of the employees. In addition to this, the aged employees have more knowledge in solving bigger issues and if the younger employees work with the older employees, they will able to gain knowledge for surviving in the future.
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