BPR and Organisational Culture
Appendix 8 contains the Questionnaire.
The issue and hypothesis form the drivers for the content of the questionnaire. It is constructed using models derived from the literature review and which have been demonstrated in this dissertation to be applicable for defining and assessing the relationship between BPR and culture. Guidance has been taken from the book Questionnaire Design and Attitude Measurement by Oppenheim (1966).
Open questions have been avoided, because of the difficulties in classification. Structured questions have been provided that break down large issues, (like what was the impact on the organisation) into lower level inventories of elements. These are often grouped, counted or accumulated to provide an overall assessment of the larger issue. These inventory items are derived from the literature review and from the models used. Closed questions are avoided by the use of rating scales. Two versions of the questionnaire are used with the second having reversed inventory lists to overcome a natural bias to select early items in a list.
Respondents are senior management or similar who are presumed to have completed many questionnaires. Style, terminology and instructions to reflect this. The questionnaire has been kept to 1 sheet of 2 sides so as to not appear too time consuming. Factual information should be known to the respondents without recourse to files or research. Subjective answers require some judgement but it is the high / low nature of the answers rather than precise rating values that is of interest.
The 'Title' gives the context of the survey as organisational change rather than cultural change. This aims to avoid respondents colouring or biasing the answers towards what they consider to be the cultural elements.
The 'introduction' reminds respondent that the questionnaire is confidential, and it also provides an estimated time for completion. Many of the following questions relate to 'areas' and 'percentages' for which definitions are provided.
The organisational impact of the BPR project is assessed by using McKinsey's 7 S model. This was used in chapter 2 to show that BPR can in fact have major impact on the organisation. Unfortunately, the BPR label is being indiscriminately applied to many projects. By using the model and requesting respondents to scale the degree of impact it is hoped to assess the scope and organisational significance of the BPR project. Projects with little impact can be eliminated and, time and numbers permitting, form a control set. This control set can then be related to those classified as real BPR to see if there are differences in the cultural change techniques used and the perceived effectiveness of the BPR project.
By referring to 'percentage of area' the ranking aims to have some degree of consistent interpretation by the different respondents. Percentage area is assumed to provide a good correlation to the extent to which the BPR project impacted the organisation. It is recognised that it does not allow for varying degrees of intensity; e.g. is an extensive change to 'Systems' in a quarter of the BPR area equal to moderate changes throughout? Use of a 2 dimensional matrix is considered too complex. The use of 'Very Little' helps cater for the nominal use of a change element and provides a sort of 'face saver'. The use of 'Extensively' caters for not quite 100% coverage, which may be almost impossible in reality even though the intent may be there.
There are 10 questions that relate to McKinsey's 7 S elements:
|Structures||New types of organisational structure|
|Systems||Reengineered processes into one or few steps|
|New customer focused processes|
|New IT systems to support the new processes (from Q3)|
|Staff||The number of people employed|
|The competences of new people employed|
|Skills||New roles & multiple skills or competences by employees|
|Style||New type of management style|
|Shared Values||New organisational shared values & beliefs|
|Strategy||The business strategy drove the BPR project|
Element concerning 'staff quantity and quality' has been split as these may need to be rated differently. Systems, in the true sense of the word, reflects both IT and non IT systems and processes, and the questions relating to single or few steps, and to customer focused were used to help identify true BPR projects. Most elements are restricted to one or two words, e.g. 'Structures' as example lists was felt to confuse a single rating.
The second part asks respondents to indicate the extent to which Strategy drove the BPR project. Recall from Chapter 2 that strategy was seen as a driver rather than an outcome.
The third part asks respondents to qualify three of the changes by stating the previous and new type of structure, previous and new type of management style, and changes in number of employees (From and To columns). The first two of these BPR attributes provide a form of control or check in that true BPR implementations should move to a process structure and a Task management style. This 'To' and 'From' will be useful where respondents incorrectly mark change of 'Structure' as 'Extensively' yet all they have done is moved every one around without changing the form of the structure.
Culture has been defined using Rousseau's model described in figure 3.1. which defines the cultural layers. The literature has defined the elements within each layer. For example it was highlighted that artefacts level consists of symbols, stories, rituals and routines. Note that 2 questions (New IT systems and use of multi-functional teams) are to do with BPR and not culture. These are used in question 2 in-order to ascertain full BPR projects but included here as they are rated by percent of staff.
This question provides 3 examples of culture elements (techniques) from each
of the 5 levels which are each rated by the respondents:
|Layer||Categories 1,2||Question||Categories 3,4
|Artefacts||Hard||Employee badges, uniforms, logos, decor, etc.||Sec, Mgt->Emp|
|Passive||Old rituals and routines ended and new ones established||Sec, Mgt->Emp|
|How often success stories heard||Sec, Emp->Mgt|
|Behaviour Patterns||Hard||Performance related pay scheme||Prim, Mgt->Emp|
|Coercive||Appraisal scheme assesses new behaviour||Prim, Mgt->Emp|
|Use of new procedures, rules & regulations||Sec, Mgt->Emp|
|Behaviour Norms||Neutral||Management consistently exhibit required behaviour||Prim, Mgt->Emp|
|Passive||Employee Q&A sessions, schemes or surveys||Prim, Emp->Mgt|
|Line staff active in process redesign.||Sec, Emp->Mgt|
|Values||Soft||Regular commun. re ethics, codes of practice, etc.||Sec, Mgt->Emp|
|Passive||Staff support scheme re violation ethics etc.||Prim, Emp->Mgt|
|Group therapy or Organisational Development||Prim, Emp->Mgt|
|Beliefs & Assumptions||Soft||Regular commun. re business mission||Sec, Mgt->Emp|
|Passive||Regular commun. re what was important||Prim, Mgt->Emp|
|Individual therapy re emotional responses||Prim, Emp->Mgt|
Because it was considered that the terminology for the cultural layers and elements was less familiar to the respondents, these were avoided and examples given instead. This does of course risk narrowly focusing respondents assessment. It also introduces possible ambiguity when one example applies but the others don't - respondents may then reduce the rating, but the intensity and impact could well be high. Most examples come from the literature review and examples were given for both management driven techniques (e.g. communications) and employee driven ones (e.g. involvement in redesign). The question on individual therapy relates to psychodynamic theory (Fineman, 1993).
The rating unit of measure was problematic: some elements could be more easily related to coverage (e.g. 25% area impacted by BPR) and some to frequency (e.g. frequency of communications). It was therefore decided to split them into 2 main sub-groups plus the question regarding the extent to which management exhibits the required new behaviour into a third group of one. The comments given in Question 2 about rating percentages also apply to this question.
Category 1 separates the culture elements into hard and soft according to whether they are in the outer visible layers or the inner invisible layers. Behavioural Norms in the middle are classed as neutral.
Category 2 is concerned as to whether the cultural elements represent coercive or passive techniques. It is assumed that the 3 behavioural pattern examples suggest a coercive management style. All the others are more passive in that they can be less easily enforced. It is agreed some could be in either category; for example, employees may or may not be 'forced' to wear a company uniform.
Category 3 categorises the techniques according to whether they represent Schein's primary or secondary techniques and category 4 according to whether they represent management to employee communication or visa versa.
This checklist question aims to test the hypothesis by ascertaining the driving force behind the cultural changes that were chosen. The 3 stated in the hypothesis ('recommended by consultants', 'actions that staff could easily see' (i.e. visibility), and 'speed of implementation and results') are listed alongside 2 more neutral ones ('previously used to good effect', and 'gain staff commitment', and the free choice provided by 'Other'. '
In the pilot the original question 'Recommended by' was ignored even though a management consultancy was used. Changing to 'Suggested by' may correct the situation but there was no time for a second test. As a safety net, an explicit question is asked about the use of consultancies. 'Suggested by' is only counted if the qualification is a management consultant or consultancy.
Question 4 relates to all the elements selected by Question 3. It does not allow for the situation where some elements are chosen for one reason and some for others. This was considered to make the questionnaire too complex.
It was considered that simply asking respondents to rate the effectiveness of the changes was open to inconsistencies in the responses and a possible tendency to rate high. As most culture writers look to changes in behaviour patterns as the outcome of changes in culture elements, then respondents are asked to selected from a checklist of different behaviour changes expected from BPR. It is agreed that there may still be a tendency to 'up-rate' the impact but it is assumed that by offering a list then every respondent has a chance to select at least one genuine behavioural change. Further, by rating the impact by 'some' or 'lots', the 'some' provides a face-saver and can be discounted. Additionally, the respondent is 'forced' to make a decision one way or the other as to whether there were significant behavioural changes or not. Still, it is recognised that unless measurements are taken and analysed, this question will be answered in a subjective way.
This final cultural question, using a Likert scale, is a direct question concerning the opinion of the respondent whether employees values and beliefs can indeed be changed. The question is made open by the provision for qualification or other comment. It provides a form of benchmark against the previous questions. For instance, if in question 3 many inner cultural elements were chosen and in question 5 there was significant behavioural changes then one would expected this question 6 to be answered 'Strongly agree'. If, on the other hand, many outer elements were selected but there was little behavioural change then it may indicate that espoused views are not realised. And so on.
This factual data is requested to ensure that the questionnaire has been completed by someone of a senior level who hopefully can take a broad view and can relate the BPR project to the overall organisational aims and requirements. Results may also show some bias towards the status or the role of the respondent. The request for a follow-up interview would be used, for example, to investigate unusual responses. Total UK employees is used to gauge the scale of the BPR by comparing to the number of employees stated in question 2.
Questions of a personal nature should always be at the end. Although this data is not considered sensitive, by positioning question 7 at this point it provides a simple and hopefully positive activity to round off the questionnaire.
These have been defined using the Handy (1985) definitions with the addition of Processes which is defined using the various BPR definitions given in chapter 2.
To Appendix 8. BPR Questionnaire
[Front Page] [Executive
[Content] [1 Introduction]
[2 BPR] [3 Culture]
[4 BPR & Culture]
[5 Preliminary Research] [6 Findings] [7 Summary] [8 Conclusions] [Appendices] [Bibliography]
Original report: January 1995 This page created: March 2000 © Managing Change 1995,96,97,98,99,2000 www.managingchange.com
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