Posts Tagged ‘change management


Organisation of a Financial Advisory Firm

I had been working on 1 year project that to setup a new Financial Advisory (FA) firm locally in Singapore.  There are lots of discussions with the parent Company, setting up the new FA’s organisation structure, the agents’ structure and roles & responsibilities between FA and parent financial institution.

Lots have been working on and today, I like to share the high level target operational model for this FA.  The organisations required are:

  1. Distribution Support (Agency Management, Compensation)
  2. New Business
  3. Client Services
  4. Claims Services
  5. Product Development
  6. Training & Competency
  7. Compliance
  8. Finance Accounting
  9. Human Resources
  10. Risk Management (includes Business Continuity planning)
  11. Technology Services
  12. Shared Services (outsource, if any)

Organisation’s Directions – Where are they?

It has been a 1 year’s anniversary of my employment with this current employer.  Since the day I took up the job position, I had not been involving or work on any of the job scopes that were indicated for this role.  All the while I had been “fire-fighting” production issues, managing on-going projects for others to get things move on.  Non of the things are working on the new initiatives and the directions on how to start off these initiatives as well.

At some points I were wondering what is the role of the regional IT organization and in order to do our parts on the new initiatives and business-IT alignments regionally do we really understand the changes on the cost-effectiveness, cost strategy among individual country IT organization, resource allocation and skills’ upgrade, roles and responsibilities of local country IT organizations, reporting structure, in-house IT support service and policies etc.  It was so embarrassing in one occasion with the business support team that we in the regional team do not know the exact scopes and charging mechanism of the SLA agreement imposed from each local country in which in return is charged back to our business unit for yearly IT support and maintenance’s contract with the Customer.  This is really very disappointing.

With the new goal-settings defined by my Manager for this year’s Key Performance Index (KPI), I do hope I have a clearer picture of the Organisation’s directions and alignments to make myself moving forward to achieve these objectives.  I pray so….


Action Plans for Improvements

For the last couple of days, major issues have reported in the projects.  Late feedback received from Customer on the test results on the portion of the data feeds being proceed by one of the system has failed.  The analysis of the root cause of the problem is not due to version control of the program (we have 2 new patches released a week ago) but the requirement has not been properly understood and not even detected during the unit testing.  Feedback from the Customer that the issue has occurred on the very first day of our joint-testings and it has been there since then and no one, even our development team has realised on this.  The requirement document has been shared to them even weeks before the joint-testing and it has been reviewed and discussed even during the conference call with the teams and repeatedly checking constantly with the development team if they have any issues.  This is a very disappointing moment for me to see the poor integrity of the work our Development team produce.

In another project, we are supposed to migrate 2 new change requests to the UAT environment as previously communicated by our IT manager to the Customer yesterday.  When I reached out to them on the progress, the next thing they mentioned to me is to test out these 2 changes on our development environment to see if they are working properly.  First of all, I am shocked we are supposed to migrate them and not in the stage to test on them.  Reviewing the ways of working, we lack of the processes to create prototypes of the requirements to review with Customer on the understanding of the functions that should be working to and doing things on our own ways.  But again, unrealistic time lines/pressure from Customer do not allow us to have the privileges to execute these processes.  We need to have a body, from both organizations, to highlight the importance of methodologies in having concept reviews and good understanding of realistic time lines and requirement gatherings.  Right now, the Customer is unhappy with the solution we providing, with unnecessary recurrence of previous bugs and setup issues during the migration to Production.

Moving forward as the IT Program Manager, I am working on the action plans with the Management from the above incidents on the missing gaps and improvements to be made to ensure we need to do things in the right ways.  As such, for every new project/initiative I am working towards the following items in tracking we have the necessary information to ensure smooth transitions for future projects and minising foreseen impacts as described in the above two paragraphs as much as possible.

  1. Resource Plannings/road maps from each functional team
  2. Gap Analysis – Functionality/Business Processes/Data/Administration/Operational Support (IT/Business)
  3. Business Requirement Document
  4. System Design Document
  5. Test Plan
  6. Deployment Plan/Cut over Plan
  7. Service Level Agreement
  8. Online Files Repository server to archive all project documents

With the above in mind, we will have to take actions on defining the road maps, resources planning and business continuity plans to fulfill the remaining scopes for each project/solution to work on.  Again, I will need to identify  and make clear of the roles and responsibilities for each team member and no assumption should be made.  All doubts and clarifications are to be made known and if necessary, involve the management team in the correspondences so that everyone is aligned and agree to do what they are assigned to work on.

New challenges are ahead of me and looking forward to manage them 🙂

April 2018
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