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  • Renewing, Rebuilding, Reinvesting

    Organizational Change Management&

    Incremental Growth of System Engineering

    Presented by:

    Dale A. Brown M.Eng. P.Eng.

    Director of Systems Engineering

    June 24, 2015 Salt Lake City, Utah

    2015 Rail Conference

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    MARTA at a glance

    MARTA was established in 1971

    48 miles of track 4 lines (2 N-S, 2 E-W)

    38 stations

    9th largest transit system in the US

    more than 4,500 employees

    average of more than 550,000 passengers a day

    Five Points Station sees 57,000 riders per day

    350 modern electrically powered rail cars

    operating at speeds of up to 70mph

    more than 700 buses on 125 routes

    120 buses that operate on CNG

    75% of MARTA busses have wheelchair lifts

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    Today's Discussion

    1. The Silo Effect vs. Systems Thinking

    2. Organizational Change

    3. MARTAs Roadmap


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    Organizations grow from disciplines.


    Quality AssuranceISO 9001




    Project ManagementPMBoK


    Asset ManagementISO 55001


    Legal / Financial Governance

    SoX RulesDOT 49 CFR

    Systems EngineeringISO 15288ISO 29110


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    Organizational Communication MARTA evolved along lines of classical disciplines

    Over the years habits can generate tunnel vision

    This evolves into Silos and eventually Fiefdoms

    Result is over the wall, batch communications


    The ability to see the Systems View is not innate.

    Many engineers do not evolve in their career this way.(e.g., many years doing electrical, software, mechanical, civil, etc.)

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    Our Biggest Challenge:The Resulting Silos





    (or CM)

    EngineeringDrafting (CAD)


    Quality Assurance


    Transit Operations

    Transit Maintenance

    Security & Transit Police

    Public Relations



    Assurance Engineering

    Inter-Silo communications is challenging and in some areas and can quickly get very political .

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    2 Quick Examples Transit Police desired a new system. They

    were convinced by an OEM. They wanted no interference from Engineering. But they are not QUALIFIED to consider dimensions of EMI, Lifecycle Support, Interfacing Systems, RAM

    Transit IT believed that anything with software in it is under their jurisdiction. But almost everything you buy has software in it now! Again, Interfaces, Real Time Control loops, RAM are not within their capabilities.


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    Establishing Communications One link at a time to build rapport and trust





    (or CM)

    EngineeringDrafting (CAD)


    Quality Assurance


    Transit Operations

    Transit Maintenance

    Security & Transit Police

    Public Relations



    Assurance Engineering

    Systems Engineering - Communicating

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    A Lot of Stakeholders to consider No single group has enough competence to generate

    contract documents for an AVIS as an example.


    Passenger Information System:

    Railway/Bus Data InputOperator InputAudio OutputVisual Output

    Mobile Data Output

    Audio/Acoustic Engineering

    Electrical/Electronic Engineering

    Software/Network Engineering

    Human Factors Engineering

    Mechanical Engineering

    Materials Engineering

    Civil/Architectural Engineering

    Environmental Engineering

    Lifecycle Support Engineering



    Safety Engineering

    Security Engineering & Police

    Operators, Dispatchers, Schedulers, Planners

    Board of DirectorsExecutive Leadership

    Finance, LegalTransit Patrons


    Quality Assurance

    Drivers, Platform & Station Agents


    FTA/DOT OSHA/DOLRegulatory Agencies

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    Cross-Functional Review & Sign-Off

    Systems Thinking demands review and sign off of Operations Concepts, Requirements, Interfaces, Architecture, etc. by all relevant stakeholders at various stage gates in the process - effectively adding more time & cost to a project!

    .but who will pay for all this new activity?


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    Actual Day in the Life Studies

    ENGINEER - CURRENT WeekDesign Work 22.5

    Review of Work Products 2.5

    Meetings - All 10

    Other (Admin, PD, V&V, social) 7.5

    TOTAL 42.5


    Review of Work Products 17.5

    Meetings - All 12.5

    Other (Admin, PD, V&V, social) 7.5

    TOTAL 42.5

    Implementing new Peer Review Process to support a safety case.

    In the example above, an electrical design engineer was

    shifting from spending a few hours per week reviewing work

    to nearly half their week reviewing the work of others.

    Multiplied across 20 or more disciplines, this is a huge

    organizational change and needs to be considered carefully!!

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    Workflow and daily practices will change


    How do you create a document?

    Where do you store a document?

    How do you review and approve a document?

    How is a drawing or document Published?

    Is this a valid requirement who must approve?

    Who is in charge of a particular interface?

    How do you gather evidence of competent review by practitioners of the art?

    Who oversees all of this makes sure it happens?

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    Motivation for increased Participation

    But where is the motivation for this? Who will pay for the peer review process and how do you enforce diligent participation by competent persons?

    The Spend now to Save later mentality is a difficult one to convince an agency to take on.


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    Organizational Change Management


    Change is the law of life. And those

    who look only to the past or present

    are certain to miss the future. (John

    F. Kennedy - Frankfurt 1963)

    Life is Flux (Panta Rhei in Greek),

    meaning all things change .

    the only constant IS change

    (Heraclitus of Ephesos c. 500 BCE)

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    Understanding Organizational Behavior

    Like people, organizations can become addicted to certain behaviors. It takes about 21 repetitions to form a human habit.

    At some point, people are repetitively going through the motions of their comfortable behavior it becomes unconscious activity and results in stubbornness and complacency.


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    Not in our Nature


    Creative people, such as engineers, do not truly like discipline it runs counter to innovative thinking and problem solving.

    Engineers, however, understand the benefits of discipline and can be convinced that sensible process is their ally and does not just represent some arbitrary bureaucracy.

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    Motivation & Reality


    People respond to their reward structure and related patterns not posters.

    A PM is NOT rewarded for good ergonomic design or FTA Compliance - they are mainly rewarded for cost & schedule performance

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    MARTA Operational Change Management Approach

    Shown success with a few projects by including additional stakeholders (not all yet)

    Generated better requirements as a result and the projects conclude with ever-increasing levels of success (time, function, budget).

    Initial simple incentive is providing a charge code for time and gaining permission from managers

    Next step is to get this institutionalized across the wider stakeholder group


  • Renewing, Rebuilding, Reinvesting 19

    Needed: Discipline & Accountability

    To generate motivation you must design the reward structures using a combination of enabling processes

    Then implement Engineering QA to provide feedback and consequences

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    Ignore Organizational Change considerations at your peril

    It is not necessary to change; survival is not mandatory.(W. Edwards Deming)

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    The Roadmap for SE at MARTA

    Involve a few stakeholders show

    improvement with better requirements

    Improve Enabling Processes such as Doc Control, CM, Change

    Control, Peer Review BUILD A FOUNDATION

    Introduce more SE technical processes and

    measure engineering process performance

    Engineering QA

  • Renewing, Rebuilding, Reinvesting 22

    Phase1 - Foundations Phase 2 Requirements Management Phase 3 - Systems Integration Phase 4 Lifecycle Support and AM

    Change Control

    Document Control


    3Q 2015

    System Architecture & Modelling

    P02 P03 P04



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