Education at the senior level ensured budgetary and governance support.
Engagement throughout the process with users ensured buy-in.
An holistic approach minimised the development of point solutions, and maximised the benefits of the IM Improvement programs.
An energy company with operations in Canada, the United States, Europe and the Middle East recognised a number of business challenges that were the result of poor information management (IM). Following an internal IM assessment exercise to identify problems and issues, Flare Solutions was engaged to develop an improvement plan including an IM Framework, education module, business case and program roadmap under a fixed-price contract.
Flare proposed a five-phase approach under the governance of an advisory board composed of VPs, C-level business and IT executives representing the global organisation. This was chaired by a Senior VP from the business and facilitated by Flare. Initial bi-monthly meetings included an IM education element for the board members, clarification and prioritisation of problem areas, and development of an IM vision. The board also reached consensus on the desired future state for IM based on an assessment of the current environment and emerging business requirements.
A corporate Technical IM Framework document was developed, approved and then used by Flare to deliver a series of IM workshops, customised to business function and geography, to which all staff and management were invited. In parallel, tactical and strategic IM improvement projects were identified and defined with associated costs and benefits captured.
Following review with the steering committee, strategic projects were prioritised and grouped into a number of IM improvement programs involving a combination of process, governance, standards, technology, education and information dissemination. A set of consistent and meaningful IM measurements and KPIs were defined in conjunction with internal IM/IT teams and reviewed with staff before being approved by the board.
Initial roadmaps were then developed in conjunction with an internal thirteen-person global implementation team and program ownership assigned.
- Establishing and educating an executive advisory board made it possible to identify and cost-justify a broader, more comprehensive and better integrated IM improvement program than had initially been envisaged, incorporating more than 30 projects.
- Involving the technical teams during the definition and selection phases greatly improved their understanding of the root-causes, reduced misunderstandings and helped ensure buy-in to the final programs.
- The resulting IM improvement programs were well-integrated across functions, business units and geographies to maximise consistency of approach and economies of scale while accommodating unique solutions where warranted. This approach minimised the deployment of standalone, point-solutions that are endemic in most large energy organisations.
- Using internal resources to accomplish much of the work, with Flare providing methodology, guidance, facilitation and education, allowed for the transfer of skills. Additionally, the approach provided an opportunity for geographically separate individuals to work together on a common set of problems and demonstrate their unique knowledge and accomplishments, resulting in greater consistency across locations and a more collaborative global IM team.