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We welcome Atif Malik, Client Services, AlphaKOR Group on the subject of Organizational Transformation.

There comes a time for every organization when they must stop and reflect on where they are and where they want to be. This retrospection provides leaders with much insight into areas of a company that can be improved. This improvement can be with Technology, People, and Processes. However, it’s not just up to the leaders of an organization to reflect on how to improve their current state. On the contrary, this improvement is most effective when it comes from the bottom up. Every member of an organization has the responsibility to improve themselves and the processes that apply to them. The leaders then ensure the right tools are in place for their people to succeed. If this is not the case with you then you are at the wrong organization.

Here’s the tricky part. This is not an easy process and it is never ending. Organizational Transformation is a practice that is based on a cycle of Continuous Improvement. Continuous Improvement is a best practice based on the philosophy that as the business landscape is always changing and shifting, the organizations within this landscape must adapt to market demands. Markets demand accuracy, efficiency, and cost effectiveness. Really great organizations meet these demands with the utmost grace and exceed all market expectations, all with a smile on their face:) They are in a state of perpetual evolution with the mindset that what we have today is not good enough – that there is no such thing as good enough.

Take the case of BlackBerry, formerly known as RIM (Research in Motion). Confident that they possessed market superiority for smart phones, they were quick to dismiss the introduction of new touchscreen technology in their market arena by Apple. The Apple iPhone was an instant hit yet BlackBerry still ignored the threat as an irrelevant novelty product. Fast forward to the future: BlackBerry, once Canada’s largest technology company, cut 40% of its workforce (4,500 jobs) in a desperate effort to bring costs in line with plummeting revenue. The lesson here is simple: Adapt or Die.

The Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) was facing a crisis regarding documentation and backlogs. To be able to improve patient care they decided to make a big push to go digital. By this time the Canadian government had made it a priority for people seeking healthcare to use Electronic Medical Records. CHEO made a consolidated push towards this new system but faced challenges of users adopting to the new software required to register EMRs. They addressed this and other challenges related to their transformation by the putting the following people and processes in place:

  1. A dedicated team to show end users how to use EMRs
  2. End users of the software could attend practice sessions on using EMRs
  3. The dedicated team continued to provide training to end users after the software went live

Overall, initiatives like the one taken by CHEO had saved the Canadian Healthcare Industry $1.3 Billion over a 6 year period (2006-2012). Lesson: Digitization is key to remedying inefficiencies.

I am thankful to have a rare opportunity to witness the challenges that organizations of varying sizes and from various sectors face in relation to Organizational Transformation on a daily basis. Largely, these transformations come from the need to have a competitive advantage in their respective marketplaces. I am also lucky to have a great team that delivers the tools these organizations require in order to adapt to growing demands by their customers and increased rivalry from their competitors. These tools help provide these organizations with a competitive advantage through reduced costs and increased efficiencies. However, the key pattern I see among successful organizations is that they are always in a state of transformation to stay ahead of the curve.


Questions for you:

  1. How does your organization deal with Transformation?
  2. What are some of the challenges you face with Continuous Improvement initiatives?
  3. Where does technology fit in with your Organizational Transformation efforts?
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