Being able to make good use of Microsoft’s services is very important for their customers to work better, faster and safer. Microsoft business is no longer just about selling licenses. Working on adopting the solutions and using a good Change Management methodology contributes to that success. Jeroen Jansen, Partner Success Manager at Microsoft explains what Prosci means for the success of Microsoft and its partners. Microsoft has a global partnership with Prosci. All Affiliates of the CCB.network work with Microsoft locally.
Why does Microsoft invest in Change Management?
We believe that Change Management is important in every project to make it a success. Where in the past we looked very much with our partners at rolling out solutions, we now increasingly see the demand from companies to think about the adoption of the new technology. You can best achieve this by using a good Change Management methodology. Two years ago, Microsoft started Customer Success Management. This department aims to help our customers adopt and make good use of Microsoft technology, so that they can work smarter. The approach is based on Prosci Change Management.
How do you expect it helps Microsoft to support customers even better?
The Microsoft business model is no longer just about selling licenses. Making good use of our (cloud) services, such as Microsoft 365, is of great importance to make our customers work better, faster and safer. The result for the organization ultimately depends on both a good solution and adoption and use of it by people in the organization.
Why did Microsoft choose the Prosci methodology?
Microsoft has been working in partnership with Prosci for more than 10 years. Prosci has been researching organizational change for more than 20 years. These studies yield a lot of data about what is needed for a project to be successful and deliver results. Prosci’s Change Management approach has proven to work. In addition to organizational changes, you also see that individual change is a very important part of ultimately changing as a company. The ADKAR model from Prosci is really key to achieve this. This approach works for our customers and partners and ensures that the people side of change can be managed in a structured and practical way.
How do you support Microsoft Business Partners in this?
The partnership with our business partners ensures that we can offer the same Change Management approach to our customers and use the same language. In cooperation with ‘The People Side of Change’ (TPSOC) we offer our Microsoft Partners the same Prosci Certification as we are attending within our internal Microsoft organization. For us, the collaboration between TPSOC, business partners and Microsoft is essential to jointly implement successful change with our customers.
How do you support Practitioners in their Change Management work for clients?
From the various Microsoft segments, we work together in a “rhythm of the business” in which the Microsoft account managers and customer success managers involve the partners when working for joint customers. In addition, we organize Practitioner Network meetings for the Microsoft community together with TPSOC in order to share knowledge about applying Change Management in daily practice.
Do you see success from working on Change Management with customers?
The answer to this is absolutely yes! We are able to make more impact with our customers when it comes to using the Microsoft technology they want to or have purchased. This also increases our customer satisfaction. We see that in all the numbers at the moment. Organizations are increasingly understanding that the success of projects cannot be achieved without managing the people side of change. The ADKAR Model teaches organizations that it is about people and their perception of the change. It is about working with individual people and dealing with it in the right way what ultimately ensures success. One of the most important skills of a Change Manager is therefore empathy. It’s about understanding what is going on with an individual and group and how this individual or group is experiencing a change. If this individual or group is able to change successfully at his or her own pace, the organizational benefits will be achieved.
What does the collaboration with The People Side of Change and Prosci look like? How do you experience it?
Very pleasant for me personally. We work together very well and are able to jointly support or Microsoft business partners. All Prosci Certification programs are provided ‘in house’ at the Microsoft office by The People Side of Change (TPSOC). TPSOC is able to explain perfectly the essential connection between Microsoft technology and Change Management to our partners. TPSOC is able to provide this autonomously within the Microsoft company. The setup made by Erik Steketee works great and we only see excellent results and great feedback from the participants.
Finally, if you talk to people about why change management makes a difference in supporting your customers… what do you say?
Change Management ensures a happy customer, ensures happy partners. What I mean by that is that as Microsoft we not only provide the technology and solutions to our customers, but we are also dedicated to ensure that it works for the customer in the right way and they can achieve their desired benefits and results. Change is not something that happens automatically, there is always resistance. That is a normal human reaction. Dealing with that resistance and understanding it, is really at the basis of making a change work… and that is a big difference with our services now and in the past.