A Short Introduction to the Organization
An organisation that has recently had to undergo change is the Department of Municipal Affairs in Abu Dhabi. Having commenced in 2007, this entity is responsible for overseeing public works projects in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and is also the key focal point of all the municipal planning (Fullan, 2007). The organisation has recently witnessed a number of internal and external indicators of change, for instance, desire to penetrate into new markets and new economic conditions (Fullan, 2007).
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This has in turn forced the Municipal to consider organisational change in order to keep up with the current competition. As the management of the organisation have realised, today’s businesses are constantly being flooded by high rates of transformation, and internal pressures are experienced from those who push for such a change (Fullan, 2007). Outside pressure comes from transformations taking place in the economic, technological, legal and competitive environment.
Reason Why the Organisation Needs to Change
Organisations, such as the Department of Municipal Affairs in Abu Dhabi, need to change in order to remain competitive and survive in the current business environment (Fullan, 2007). There are three main types or organisational change, namely, strategic, transformational and operational. The kind of organisational change that the Department of Municipal Affairs in Abu Dhabi intends to undergo is operational. It means that it will involve new procedures, technology, structures or systems that tend to have immediate effects on working arrangement. Having conducted a SWOT and a PESTLE analyses, the Department of Municipal Affairs in Abu Dhabi realised that it needed to change in order to remain active in the business.
Some of the main reasons as to why the Department of Municipal Affairs needs to change include the fact that this particular entity was established in 2007. This means that it missed out on a lot of opportunities that were in existence prior to their commencement (Fullan, 2007). Its clientele base is also quite small and the Municipal is to put more effort so as to keep up with the current competition. Having a small number of employees is another reason as to why this organisation needs to change. Today’s businesses or organisations tend to employ more workers as a way of maximising its labour force as well as its productivity (Fullan, 2007). Having a small number of employees, means that less input is offered, and thus less work is done.
Another reason as to why the Department of Municipal Affairs needs to improve its strategy is because of continuous changes in roles. For this particular organisation to be more efficient and effective in its services, it is expected to constantly satisfy the customers’ needs which are ever-changing. As a way of keeping up with the competition and current trend, the Municipal has to provide training programs for its staff where they can take up refresher courses and enhance their current skills and update its knowledge (Fullan, 2007). By doing so, the management can assign various roles and positions to different individuals to achieve maximum productivity.
The area of politics has been quite stable in Abu Dhabi in the past couple of years, and this has provided security as the government introduced policies and restrictions for all the activities. The Department of Municipal Affairs should improve communication as it will help to save time, and that is why this issue should be addressed and dealt with by updating their technological systems and programs (Fullan, 2007). Today’s organisations are concerned about environment; that is why the Department of Municipal Affairs should support encouraging the surrounding community not to pollute the air or water. The Department of Municipal Affairs also needs to serve as an example to the rest of the society by implementing environmentally-friendly activities when providing its services (Fullan, 2007).
Internal Factors that Influence the Change
- The expansion or downsizing of the organization. The Municipal is planning on expanding so as to better serve its customers.
- Critical incidents which need to be rectified. Incidents such as miscalculations particularly in the financial department are bound to happen and the Department of Municipal Affairs has experienced a few of these critical incidents, hence the need for change (Fullan, 2007).
- Results from internal analyses that were carried out. The outcomes indicated a need for change and therefore influenced the organizational change.
- Continuous changing roles. Today’s business world is a rather competitive one and employee roles need to change in order to adapt to current business environments.
- Need for more employees. As I had indicated previously, the Department of Municipal Affairs is one that has so far employed a small number of employees. Today’s customer demands have forced this particular organization to reconsider its staff members and hire more employees.
- Strategic objectives. This simply means that the organization has realized the need for strategic objectives which will prove beneficial in future business dealings (Fullan, 2007).
External Factors that Influence the Change
- Need for more technological implementation. Keeping in mind that today’s business organizations are living in the technological era technological influences have gained more attention in organizations such as the Department of Municipal Affairs. It intends on installing leading technological systems as well as programs to keep up with the changes in the current business environment while at the same time improve communication.
- Legal influences. The organization needs to adhere to the rules and legislations of the Department of Civil Service which covers all the aspects (Fullan, 2007).
- Changing economic conditions. The current economic situation in Abu Dhabi is quite good but the organization needs to have a budget plan for the upcoming year which includes details for the number of training courses for employees.
- Political influences. The Department of Municipal Affairs needs to ensure that there is continued security since the government has stated policies and restrictions regarding all the activities (Fullan, 2007).
- Changes in social trends. Customer needs and preferences are constantly changing and that is why the organization needs to be in a position of identifying key preferences and demands of their customers in order to maintain and retain them.
- External analyses. Research on potential threats, competitors and so forth are part of the external analyses that the organization needs to conduct in order to stay ahead of the current competition as well as have a competitive advantage (Fullan, 2007).
Three ways Change affects Organizations
- Impact on Employees. When an organisation intends on changing its direction, it usually means that the job description for all employees will also have to change.
- Impact on Organizational Structure. An organisation may be intending to hire new managers or supervisors and thus change its structure
- Impact on Organizational Culture. New employees may be hired in the process of change, and they may be people from different nationalities and cultural backgrounds (Fullan, 2007). This means that organisational culture will have to alter in order to accommodate to the new comers.
Three Approaches to Change with the Process in use within the Organization
- There are various approaches to improve the business that the Department of Municipal Affairs can utilize, for instance, through education and communication (Fullan, 2007).
- Another approach that can be used is to give the employees time to adjust and come up with new goals after the change has taken place. It is true that not all the employees will agree with the innovations that are to occur, and it is therefore up to the management to try to negotiate with them, while offering to meet halfway (Fullan, 2007).
- The third approach to change with the process in use within an organisation, such as the one which is under analysis, is transparency. This means that its management should clear understand and come up as to why change needs to occur and also communicate all that is happening to the employees so that they have an understanding (Fullan, 2007).
Three Behavioral Responses Seen During Organisational Change and HR Support during Change
- As I have indicated earlier on, one of the most common behavioural responses that are to be observed by the Department of Municipal Affairs in the course of implementing the change is resistance to change. Since there are a few shifts to be made in terms of job positions, some employees may see the change as unnecessary and instead insist on the old ways of conducting business activities remaining.
- A second behavioural response that can be observed is excitement in the anticipated change. There are employees who would gratefully embrace an organisational change as they desire to stay ahead of the competition, no matter what.
- The third behavioural response that is most likely to be observed is anxiety and fear as the employees are unsure of their future employment.
Three Ways that HR can Support Individuals during Change.
- An approach that can be used by the HR to provide such a support is by identifying those who may resist the change and getting them involved in the process by putting them in a leading position so that to make the change their goal as well (Fullan, 2007).
- The HR should also make a point of meeting with employees on an individual basis and identifying the potential issues. By so doing, they will be able to overcome any barriers that may be encountered in the course of the organisational change (Fullan, 2007).
- The third approach that can be utilised by the HR is generally alleviating the fears that the employees may have. This can be done by stating the potential advantages that are associated with the upcoming change and providing the reassurance that their jobs are safe (Fullan, 2007).
Organisational change such as the one that is about to take place within the Department of Municipal Affairs in Abu Dhabi is inevitable. Today’s competitive business environment demands that organisations need to adapt to the necessary changes and meet customers’ expectations. It is, therefore, up to the Human Resource department to ensure that change is well coordinated and executed so that appropriate advice is given to those who may not feel comfortable with it.
Fullan, M. (2007). Leading a Culture of Change. USA: Jossey-Bass. Web.