About Analyze

Analyze Consulting was founded in 2007 with the purpose to help businesses get to the bottom of and solve business inefficiencies. The cornerstone of this dream is a passion for quality business analysis and project management.

We are motivated and rewarded by helping businesses be more efficient and solve problems.

We believe that the best way for us to do this is to start with a deep and thorough understanding of the problem or opportunity. The discipline and insight that we apply to this enables us to be confident and truly objective about defining the best possible solution.

Our vision is to be the partner of choice in solving business challenges through the appropriate use of technology, process and people.

Change Management

/Change Management

Succeeding during uncertainty: Re-evaluating the status quo

The arrival of COVID-19 has introduced social distancing and remote working as the new normal. Business as usual approaches are being disrupted, re-evaluated, and modified.  Companies that have been resistant to a work from home policy have been forced to move to a virtual environment. Organisations that were once slow to market have mobilised themselves to expand their digital offerings and strategies. Amidst the disruption it is critical for organisations to question the status quo and establish improved and sustainable ways of working.  As we navigate this fast-paced transition period, organisations need to interrogate their existing decision-making structures, knowledge sharing capabilities and communication channels in order to identify potential inefficiencies and areas of improvements. Re-evaluating decision-making structures Organisations should question whether their current decision-making structures support informed and swift decision making. The pandemic has forced many companies to make difficult decisions relating to employee safety, business strategy and customer engagement, with the number and gravity of decisions increasing exponentially.  It is important, therefore, to take a critical look at all current decision-making structures in order to identify those that need to be streamlined or changed. Companies should identify which decisions are most critical and then categorise them in order to understand where in the organisation those decisions should be made.  Previous approaches which limited decision-making authority only to the very top level of management no longer enable leaders at various levels to respond urgently to pressing issues during the crisis. Now is the time to empower more stakeholders in the decision-making process.  To encourage new ways of problem solving, some companies have created a forum for rapid debate. It is an opportunity for individuals from across the business to participate and share their perspectives.  In this way, more viewpoints can be considered before any decision is taken. Coordinate knowledge sharing While organisations respond and adapt to the challenges of the pandemic, consideration for how knowledge is coordinated within the business becomes pivotal. As companies that used to be co-located move towards virtual environments and teams, clarity on how knowledge is stored, shared, and leveraged must be established. Internal processes and procedures need to be documented, digitised and accessible to all employees. What information should be digitised is an important question to ask. If the decision is made without careful consideration, the information may be incomplete, incorrect, or irrelevant. Companies should identify critical operational, product and customer service knowledge to be documented and digitised in order to support business continuity. Technology also becomes an important factor to consider. Organisations have started to leverage document sharing software like MS Teams, Google Docs and DropBox to share knowledge.  Finding the right tool will depend on your specific needs, but the important thing to remember is that it should promote fast and easy knowledge sharing to support the ever-changing environment that the pandemic has created. Effective and frequent communication As the workforce has become distributed and remotely connected with little human interaction, effective and frequent communication is more important than ever before.  Organisations have the responsibility to put their employees’ minds at ease, provide hope for the future and to bring clarity to the crisis. The level of information that is communicated during this crisis is therefore very important. The change that the pandemic has brought has likely unsettled your employees and therefore these changes should be communicated with a level of empathy to minimise anxiety. Scheduling team huddles via videoconferencing tools such as Zoom, Google Meet and Skype enables management to deliver difficult messages with empathy and compassion. We’ve also seen how companies have shared important COVID-19 messages through FAQ guides, newsletters and internal systems such as the company intranet. Delivering the right information to the right people in a timely manner is key.  Therefore, consider ramping up your business communications by providing weekly or even daily updates where possible.  The impact of COVID-19 across the world is unprecedented and may be felt for years to come. Tried and tested business approaches may be too slow to keep up with the current pace of change. There is no better time for organisations to reassess their current approaches to ensure maximum business value.   If you have any ideas on topics you’d like us to cover on this blog, please leave a comment below.  We’d love to hear your thoughts on what information would add the most value to your business during this challenging time. 

Looking at the importance of business agility in times of crisis

As Covid-19 continues to spread across the globe we’ve seen how many companies have had to act quickly by launching crisis management plans and transitioning to a virtual workplace almost overnight. But in times of crisis, like the one we find ourselves in today, what is it that gives some companies the ability to adapt quickly to ensure their survival? The answer:  Business Agility  Defined as the ability to rapidly respond to change, be it adapting products and services to changing customer needs or adjusting to changes within the business operating environment, it’s the “X factor” that sets a company apart from their competitors.  And while some companies are generally more agile than others, we’ve seen how the covid-19 pandemic has required even greater agility than ever before. Research has shown that companies who are typically more agile place a high importance on: Customer-centricity – i.e. Having an in-depth understanding of your customers’ needs & ensuring that these are top of mind in everything you do.Cross-functional team dynamics – i.e. Building strong interrelationships between various teams across various functions to promote collective problem solving and task execution. But further to this, other considerations that promote business agility are: Understanding your employee needsThe health & safety of your employees go hand in hand with your ability to continue any form of business operations.  We’ve already seen how companies have relooked at their office policies to support social distancing to minimise the risk of covid-19 infection, and how work-from-home policies and employee support are now receiving a lot of attention.  Now more than ever, employee flexibility is key, both flexibility in how people can get the job done as well as flexibility around company expectations, rules and regulations. Focusing on emotional agilityDifferent people process stressful scenarios in different ways.  Some will easily be able to keep a positive outlook, while others will be overcome with fear and uncertainty.  As an organisation, your role is to provide as much emotional stability at possible.  This is achieved by focusing your energy on drafting action plans, stimulating idea generation, and providing communication channels to not only share updates and information with your customers and employees but also to give them the opportunity to engage, share their fears and gain access to advice and emotional support. Promoting a culture of innovation & failing fastCompanies are facing some really tough questions right now:  How can we reorganise ourselves to continue day-to-day operations?  How do we keep doing what we’re doing in a world that’s likely never going to be the same again?  What other opportunities are there to keep meeting our customers’ needs?  Companies who promote innovation and are quick to try new things already have a leg up.  This is because they’re used to having to think outside of the box.  They also understand that ideas don’t always work and that this is OK.  Crisis situations require lots of new ideas and tons of bravery.  It’s the only way to establish your company’s “new normal”, whatever that may look like. If you have any ideas on topics you’d like us to cover on this blog, please leave a comment below.  We may not be able to control what’s happening in the world right now, but we can continue to share knowledge and ideas to help each other through this challenging time.

Tips for ensuring productivity of remote workers

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic and the nationwide lockdown that’s currently in place, many companies have shifted to remote working as a way of ensuring business continuity. Even though remote working has been a rising trend over the past couple of years, with more and more companies offering it as an option to their employees, the change has come as somewhat of a large-scale avalanche that not everyone was equally prepared for. Some have adjusted better than others, but in general we’ve observed an overarching concern from companies around being able to ensure productivity of remote workers in an effective way. Having insight into what our clients have been doing to manage remote working during this crisis, we’ve been able to formulate the following list of tips to help you refine your remote working strategy: Set some ground rules With remote working, a clear communication strategy becomes even more important than ever before.  As part of your ground rules you have to define how and how regularly you’re expected to communicate not only with your team members, but also management.  You also have to be clear around your expectations regarding working hours and/or deliverables.  Remote working comes with many challenges and distractions, and in general we should try to support a bit more flexibility, but if you still need people to be accessible and available between 8am and 5pm, you have to specify this upfront.  Leverage different technology options for communication Email alone is unfortunately not going to cut it.  You have to leverage other technologies to support instant chat and online collaboration.  For many larger organisations MS Teams has become the collaboration platform of choice, others still make use of tools like Skype for Business and SharePoint, but there are also a variety of great “freemium” options (i.e. products with both free and paid premium options) like Slack and Yammer.   At Analyze we’ve actually been making use of Yammer for quite some time and it’s become a great way to ensure that our consultants, who are typically spread across our various client sites in both Johannesburg and Cape Town, are able to stay connected with company news and happenings. Regular team check-ins are key Many organisations have implemented a daily “health check” of sorts to check-in on each other and discuss company changes that have an impact on the employees.  For more specific team deliveries, most teams are adopting the daily stand-up which is a concept well known to anyone working within an Agile delivery context.  It’s a way to regularly check-in with your team members, discuss what their goals are for the day and also see where you can help a co-worker with something they’re struggling with.   Still make time for those one-on-ones As much as team interactions are important, one-on-ones should not be overlooked. It’s a chance for employees (and managers alike) to discuss issues they may not feel comfortable discussing within a group.  It’s also where career guidance and developmental discussions take place, something which must continue to ensure that career goals stay on track. Don’t forget about the importance of social interaction Even though we can’t meet up in person, we as humans still need social interaction opportunities that allow us to connect and talk about something other than work.  It’s how we build a rapport with each other, how we’re able to provide mental and emotional support during a very challenging time, and also just an opportunity to let off some steam.  Whether it’s a 5min, daily, weekly or monthly connect, it’s important to create a space for people to learn more about each other, even if it’s sharing what their home work environment looks like via video chat or taking part in a general knowledge quiz, now’s the time to get creative and find new ways to interact.   At Analyze, we understand that this is a very challenging time for most.  Projects are being put on hold, businesses are having to reinvent themselves and budgets are tighter than ever.  If you have any ideas on topics you’d like us to cover here on the blog to support knowledge sharing and discussion, please do leave a comment below. 

The very real reasons why people resist change

Some say change is as good as a holiday, but the reality is that to many people out there, change is not something they’re comfortable with at all.  It can be a very unsettling experience – one which can cause a lot of stress and anxiety. For companies to be successful in rolling out change, they need to be cognisant of the reasons why people resist change to ensure that they put mitigation actions in place to avoid these. Through our experience assisting clients with various change management processes, we’ve identified the following as the top reasons why people resist change:

Culture clash – how to effectively manage diversity in the workplace

The effects of globalisation aside, the South African workforce has always consisted of a diverse mix of cultures.  Being able to effectively manage diversity within the workplace therefore becomes less of a nice-to-have and more of an absolute necessity if you want to ensure that your business is successful. First, let’s take a look at what exactly culture means…

Our top 6 tips for effective change management

Change has become a constant in today’s ever-evolving business world.  Due to this, there’s an expectation that we all automatically need to be change experts.  The reality, however, is that many change initiatives fail, and in most of those instances the source of the problem is due to some form of organisational resistance rather than a technical or operational issue that couldn’t be overcome…

How to achieve organisational agility

American businessman, hedge fund manager & billionaire, Paul Tudor Jones, once said: “You adapt, evolve, compete or die”. Very strong words indeed, but in today’s constantly evolving business market, this is a harsh reality that all businesses need to face up to. Organisational agility is defined as a company’s ability to rapidly change or adapt to market changes. The higher your degree of agility, the better your chances…