The implementation of the strategic plan is a matter of great importance as it is the facts which decide the success or failure of a strategic plan. In order to ensure that the strategic plan is effectively implemented, the concerned people must have clear understanding of the plan and the way of implementation. The implementation of strategy is not an easy task. It involves and requires proper arrangement, balanced fund raising, motivation, leadership, guidance and more over much focus on the operations level of the organisation.
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Steps in executing the strategy
- Developing an organization capable of implementing the strategy efficiently.
- Allocating the available resources based on the preference of the activities.
- Setting up of policies which can support the strategy
- Arranging practices, activities and programs for uninterrupted improvement
- Installation of variety of support functions
- Designing a compensations system which can fasten and help the achievement of the strategy objectives
- Framing out a corporate culture which support well the strategy
- Applying an efficient leadership
- Bringing the strategy into practice
A new strategy Implementation consists of developing a program that helps to change and improve variety of processes of the organisation. There are different programs that firms could be adopted for strategy implementation. Some of them are explained below.
Six Sigma is a business management strategy which is developed to improve production process by way of avoiding unnecessary flow or movements that may affect the customer satisfaction which is one of the objectives of the organisation. The basic purpose of the Six Sigma strategy is the carrying out of a measurement-based strategy which aims at the improvement of different processes and minimizing the variation by way application of different six sigma techniques ( Bruel, 2006, p. 351).
The importance of the six sigma can be understood from the fact that, the organisations which implement six sigma strategies ensures improved efficiency and quality. Therefore it can be said that implantation of six sigma strategy can improve the quality of product and at various levels of business operations. One of the greatest advantages of six sigma strategy is that, when the organization achieves one level of standard, then it will look for next level and this process continues.
Reengineering in business field refers to the practice of reforming the business practices and allied activities including organisational structure for improving the performance of the organisation by way of continuous monitoring of external as well as internal changes of the organisation (Business re-engineering and strategic enterprises, n. d.). The reengineering process can make the business processes more effective as it helps in designing a technology driven information system which is fertilizer for strategic management (Business process re-engineering, n. d.)
It is the process of merging or uniting the present jobs, designing work groups and also developing a system in the organisation which enables the employees to have a close contact with the suppliers and customers. If an organisation implements job redesign strategy, it can decide which job is suitable for an employee and act accordingly. While redesigning the job employees are divided into some groups and also they are guided for achieving the objectives of the organisation (Job enrichment, n. d.). Once the employees are given guidance they are given freedom act themselves. This can motivate employees as it is giving a sort pride self pride feeling to employees. All these help the organisation to achieve its overall objectives.
Financial Planning (Resources)
According to Blaine O’Connell chief financial officer at Froedert Hospital in Milwaukee “A strategic plan without financial backing isn’t much of a strategy” (Connell, 2000, P. 211). Financial resource allocation is one of the most important aspects of strategy implementation. The demands for new tool, reinstallations, preservation and introduction of new service line…etc is covered here. Without finance it is difficult to implement the new strategy. There must be a continuous assessment of the budget for the proposed strategic plan, so that the objective of cost reduction can be achieved. This ultimately results in smooth implementation and execution of the plan and thereby ensuring the organizational success.
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Role of HR in Strategy Execution
The human resource has a significant role in the effectiveness of the strategy. The new strategy shaped out by the efforts of different individuals by taking so many months, the designed strategy need to be properly communicated to employees, otherwise it will not the expected result. Sometimes the organisation present or deliver the strategy to the employees in a meeting and employees will know what the strategy is at that time, but later they will forget. Sometimes the e employees may not be having the clear cut idea of the strategy due to lack of proper communication and explanation. Whatever be the case, though employees know about the strategy, they may not have an idea about how it relates to them. This should not be happened. The human resource department can do much in this regard and make the new strategy grand success by way of:
- Ensuring employees know who are all at the top of the company
- Making sure that employees have and know the enough expertise and skill sets necessary for the new strategy
- frequent conversation regarding the goals, performance and improvement. Conversation is better than communication (Gay, 2007).
- Making sure that the objectives is designed in such a way that, the employees could easily understand the objectives, so that if there are any deviations in the process of such objectives employees can understand.
- Making clear to employees what is outstanding customer service and how it should be implemented in the organization.
Keys to Strategic Implementation Success
Mere strategy formulation is not sufficient for the successful integration of business plans with external environment. What is most important is the successful implementation of the strategies formulated. Following are the key elements that ensure the successful strategy implementation (Heathfield, n. d.):
- Regular and complete executive support,
- Efficient communication
- Employee participation
- Perfect organisational planning and competitive analysis
- Extensive apparent need for strategic planning
The Problems of Strategy Execution
It is well known that the process of planning and execution are complementary to each other. One of the critical factors of success of strategy execution is that the interest between the planning team and execution team must be the same and it must be communicated properly. Nevertheless, there might be some threats from the part of those who are responsible for the execution in the planning process.
Execution takes time
Though both planning and execution are interconnected and sometimes complementary, implementation takes more time than planning. This is because of the reason that execution stage must take care of various factors that may not find place in the planning stage. In other words, planning is forward looking where as implementation/execution is realistic. The reasons that make the process more complex are discussed below (Hrebiniak, 2008):
- Execution must have many peoples’ support:
- It is said that the complexity of execution increases with increase in the number of people in the process.
- Effective execution warrants managers/supervisors at all levels of organisational hierarchy:
- Strategy implementation is a process that needs to be undertaken with utmost care and attention. Unless managers/ supervisors are haired at all levels of the organisation, the implementation would be a failure that ultimately affect the organisational objectives and success
- Managing change is difficult:
- Strategy implementation involves many changes to the existing systems and culture of the organisation. All these need to be managed effectively so as to succeed in effective execution. However, it is not a simple task to implement strategy all of a sudden
Strategy Execution Evaluation
It is the process of measuring the effectiveness of the strategies implemented. The effectiveness of strategy is evaluated in terms of the parameters such as suitability, i.e., would it work, feasibility, i.e., can it be made to work, and acceptability, i.e., will they work it? This also requires from the part of the implementation team that necessary precautionary measures for even to change the entire strategy.
The main purpose of examining the strategy is to recognize the outputs, outcomes and effects of the strategy and formulate conclusions about the extent to which the given strategy is successful. Balance scorecard is one of the most commonly used tools. Balance scorecard may be interpreted as the strategic performance management tool for evaluating whether the smaller-scale operational activities of an organisation are adjusted towards its larger-scale objectives expressed as vision and mission.
Strategy implementation is a tough task and the successful implementation is the outcome of endless efforts of a group of people. It is necessary that the people involved in the strategy planning and execution process are to worked as if they are aiming towards the same direction with quest and curiosity.
Bruel, Jean-Michel (2006), Satellite events at the MoDELS 2005 conference: MoDELS 2005 international workshops, doctoral symposium, educators symposium, Montego Bay, Jamaica. Birkhäuser.
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Gay, Chris (2007), Creating line of sight between employees and strategy, Strategic Communication Management, Online, All business. Web.
Heathfield, M Susan (n. d.), Make Strategic Planning Implementation Work: Develop a Strategic Culture for Successful Strategic Planning Implementation, About. Web.
Hrebiniak, Lawrence (2008), Making Strategy Work: Overcoming the Obstacles to Effective Execution, Feature article, online, Ivey business journal. Web.
“Job enrichment” (n. d.), Business dictionary, Answers. Web.
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“Implementing Strategy Through Employees” (2009), Profitability Through Human Capital, Intellectual capital consulting. Web.
Six Sigma Assistant (2007), Importance of six sigma in the business world, aveta business solutions. Web.
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