OrgIQ: Solving Workforce ChallengesFebruary 6, 2017
As organizational missions become more complex every day, leaders face key workforce questions:
- How much time and effort are we spending executing our key functions?
- Where are our biggest functional redundancies and process improvement opportunities?
- Where can we be more nimble and take smarter risks in meeting the mission?
- How can we better align to our strategies, priorities, and customer needs?
OrgIQ™ is a customizable and innovative platform and approach that answers these questions with real data, quickly and visually. Our product helps organizations understand and manage workforce challenges, including the following:
- Outsourcing vs. Insourcing cost benefit analysis,
- Succession planning based on attrition assumptions unique to your organization,
- Developing competency profiles associated with certain functions, and
- Identifying opportunities to reduce management complexity through consolidation of responsibilities
Launched in 2015, OrgIQ™ has already been deployed within the U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, House of Representatives and the Department of State. The process begins by identifying organization-specific functions and then adding manager and employee data to measure the time spent on each function, as well as other complementary information such as competency assessments or other relevant employee perspectives. To determine actual time spent in these functional areas, direct employee and supervisor inputs are gathered and coupled with other relevant timesheet data with the intent of capturing a comprehensive viewpoint as it relates to each employees scope of work. This organizational data is then displayed in web based dashboards that managers can manipulate to deep dive and test scenarios.
Workforce Findings and Insights
In a recent case study, OrgIQ™ was originally tested within one department of an organization, but was so successful that, starting in January 2017, the client will be deploying the tool organization-wide.
This particular client wanted to get a handle on a number of challenges. Several leaders were concerned that staff members were overworked and not optimally organized in terms of core mission and goals. The management team wanted to make the clearest case when making resource decisions by leveraging data as an advocacy tool.
There were immediate findings related to how specific team members spent their time. For example, OrgIQ™ identified that senior team members may spend too much time on administrative tasks, such as travel preparation and documentation.
In a bigger-picture view, OrgIQ™ identified a cultural behavior that was causing a lot of overtime and keeping ideas from being delivered. OrgIQ’s analysis found that when a new requirement was placed on the organization, it was likely to be assigned to many people as a tiny part of their role on top of their already full workloads, rather than assigned to one or two employees as their primary responsibility. These employees became dabblers, meaning they were involved to a small degree in many different functions, and thus, were constantly being pulled in many directions. This was a common occurrence for many members of the leadership team and other high performing employees.
OrgIQ™ showed that where there are more dabblers, there is more likely to be overtime. Switching between projects and managing too many projects diminished the efficiency of the organization’s employees.
Testing Scenarios before Choosing a Strategy
Once OrgIQ™ helps an organization identify inefficiencies, there may be multiple ways to tackle those challenges. A great strength of the tool is that organizations can use it to virtually manipulate the time spent on certain functional areas in order to test likely impacts of process improvements, outsourcing, or reductions before announcing a single change.
For example, in the case where senior team members spent a lot of time on travel preparation, the organization could evaluate outsourcing by choosing “travel preparation” as a function and moving the dial from 100 percent to 0 percent. The OrgIQ™ dashboard would show how that would impact the workload of people who are currently performing that task as well as what this function currently costs, thus setting a ballpark budget for an outsourced vendor.
Another usage of OrgIQ™ is succession planning. There are dials the organization can turn based on its current attrition rate. For example, do employees tend to retire after for 20 or 30 years? Organizations set their own thresholds to see likely outcomes for the current year, three years out, or longer. This is vital for recruiting, training, retention, and succession planning strategies.
Leveraging OrgIQ™ to Ensure Mission Alignment
Another use of OrgIQ™ is to evaluate whether employees are spending time on the right tasks to best fulfill the mission. In the survey process, employees look at the functions they are performing and assess whether they are spending the right amount of time on each function as it relates to their current position. With OrgIQ™, managers can quickly identify where people are spending too little, too much, or the right amount of time. As with any survey-based assessment, the process is prone to some subjectivity, but the tool has proven to provide reliable direction toward the areas that might benefit from further evaluation.
Managers can use OrgIQ™ to quickly find where employees do repetitive, low-value tasks. When those tasks are budgeted out across the enterprise, leadership can evaluate the technological investments that may speed up those tasks. For example, if a certain low-value function costs $1 million per year to fulfill, and there is a technological solution that costs $500,000 to do that work much more efficiently, the cost savings could be reaped in only a few years.
In this way, OrgIQ™ assists the highest organizational levels with a dashboard that reflecting quantitatively the heartbeat of the organization and assists managers to reach optimal performance at the granular team level. Leaders can see where resources need to move and managers can see how moving resources can benefit the team’s efforts.