Ads

Using online business strategy development and execution tools to increase collaboration

The digital revolution is transforming almost every aspect of almost every business. As strategists, it is important to remain abreast of these trends in order to be able to advise our employers or clients appropriately.

But there is one aspect of the digital revolution we often overlook. And that is how digital can change the way we do strategy itself.

Most strategy processes still boil down to circulating large Powerpoint decks or Word documents by email. Just like we did 30 years ago.

Fortunately, that is now starting to change. StratNavApp.com is an online business strategy development and execution tool designed to:

  • ensure best practice,
  • improve consistency, and
  • increase collaboration.

StratNavApp is arranged around a unique Strategy Board. This brings together the 4 core stages of the strategy development and execution cycle:

  1. Analysis
  2. Articulation
  3. Planning
  4. Control

Analysis

The Analysis module is all about understanding the current situation and anticipated future(s). This includes the organisation's

  • operating model: capabilities, strengths and weaknesses,
    as well as its
  • operating environment: competition and industry forces and trends.

This understanding provides the WHY of your strategy.

StratNavApp provides a number of tools for doing this, such as:

  • The Business Model Canvas. Summarise exactly how the business works (Learn more.)
  • Porter's Value Chain analysis. Understanding how the organisation uses its operating model to create value. (Learn more.)
  • McKinsey 7S analysis. Understand the internal factors which lead to success. (Learn more.)
  • PESTEL analysis. Understand the Political, Economic, Socio-economic, Technological, Environmental and Legal trends. (Learn more.)
  • Porter's 5 Forces analysis. Understanding the forces that shape competition in your industry. (Learn more.)
  • Strategy Canvas. Compare and contrast how different competitors win customers. Differentiate your the organisation from the rest of the market. (Learn more.)
  • BCG Matrix. Understand how different products and services in a portfolio contribute value. (Learn more.)
  • SWOT analysis. Summarise the organisation's Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. (Learn more.)
  • Scenario Analysis. Deal with uncertainty. (Learn more.)

The different models are all integrated behind the scenes where this makes sense. For example, the insights generated in the other tools will automatically show up in your SWOT analysis. You can also attach them to processes in the Value Chain analysis, etc.

Articulation

The Articulation module is where you express WHAT your strategy is. StratNavApp allows you to articulate your

  • Vision
  • Mission and 
  • Values

You can also set your strategic

  • Goals,
  • Objectives
  • Key Performance Indicators (KPIs),
  • Targets and Actual Results
using a Balanced Scorecard framework.

The Scorecard provides a useful summary of your Goals, Objectives KPIs and Targets. (The scorecard is in the Control quadrant.) It also helps you identify any gaps in your strategy.

The Strategy House provides a handy summary of your strategy. This is particularly useful for communication. (Learn more.)

Planning

The Planning module allows you to map out exactly HOW you plan to deliver your strategy.

Initiatives move through various stages, such as proposal, approval, delivery and completion.

You can also organise your Initiatives in:

  • a timeline or Gantt view. 
  • a Three Horizons view, helping to ensure you strike the right balance between short, medium and long-term activities.
You can link Initiatives back to the Goals they support. And you can capture Cost and Benefit details.

The Goal/Initiative Matrix allows you to map your Initiatives to your Goals. It highlights

  • any Initiatives which don't explicitly support your Goals, or
  • any Goals which don't have any initiatives supporting them.

The Initiative RASCI helps you to ensure that the right people are involved in the right initiatives in the right roles.

The Initiative/Scenario Matrix helps you test the robustness of your initiatives against the uncertainties you identified in the Analysis phase.

Control

The Control module runs across the other modules. It provides tools to assist in the development and execution of your strategy. To make sure it actually gets done!

A RAID log allows you to record Risks, Actions, Issues and Decisions. You can also link these to your to the appropriate items within the other three modules. (Learn more.)

You can also record Stakeholders. These are either Individuals, Organisations or Generic Groups. Using a RASCI framework, you can map them as being either Responsible, Supporting, Accountable, Consulted or Informed for Goals, Initiatives or Actions.

The Meeting Manager allows you to plan and record all of your meetings. You can record which Stakeholders participated in which meetings. You can also record Agendas, Minutes, Actions and Decisions. The Actions and Decisions are automatically included in the RAID log. You can also then link them back to the relevant Insights, Goals and Initiatives, etc.

Lastly, the Scorecard provides a graphical summary of all of your KPI's Target and Actual Results. This allows you to easily track if your strategy is delivering. You can also feed this back into the ongoing Analysis and refinement of your strategy.

Collaboration

Collaboration is baked into StratNavApp at every step along the way.

To invite someone into your strategy project, simply enter their email address. StratNavApp will then email them with appropriate instructions which will then link them to your project. Only people you invite can see your strategy projects.

All changes are recorded, using a familiar legal red-lining approach where applicable. They also timestamped together with the author who made them. So you'll always know who did what and when. There is also a handy notes feature allowing teammates to annotate and comment on any element of your strategy. This ensures that all collaboration around your strategy remains attached to the strategy content to which it relates. No more trawling through email archives and old versions of documents to remember who said what when!

Once a day, StratNavApp will email you a summary of all the changes and notes your teammates have made, ensuring you're always up to date and engaged in the conversation.

Reporting, Search, File Archive & Multi-device

The Reporting module enables you to extract a snapshot strategic plan at any stage in your journey. Because it is a dynamic snapshot at a point in time, your strategic plan truly becomes a "living document", not an annual report which just sits on the shelf until next year.

You can also export your strategy plan into Strategy Markup Language (StratML). StratML is the ISO Standard XML Schema for Strategy and Performance Plans and Reports.

Your projects are also fully searchable, and available from any device connected to the internet, be it a PC, laptop, tablet or smartphone.

And you can upload files/documents and attach them to your analysis and initiatives. So the industry report you needed is always right there when you need it. And the business case spreadsheet is always attached to the initiative.

Give it a go, NOW

StratNavApp is free to use for up to three projects. If you want to do more than three projects, there is a subscription version available for a small monthly fee. Enterprise licenses are also available.

Why not click here to give it a go, now?

No comments:

Post a comment