StratAFin Inc.: Auditing Change
(14 pages of text)
This case focuses on organizational transformation in an accounting firm in South Africa. It describes how the impact of both globalization and the transformation that the country had undergone since the advent of democracy in 1994 steered StratAFin Inc. towards a process of building a new identity. The firm’s senior management realized the need for transformation based on the many new challenges in the changing environment. Change was experienced at many levels within the organization: from the construction of a new building as a symbol of change, to corporatizing and growing the firm, changing the management structure, investing heavily in technology and human capital development, focusing on continuous improvement, and driving major diversity transformation. The case offers insights into the many drivers that had to be considered in the process, how the organization had to manage resistance to change and the need for flexibility during the process, and the importance of measurement of the many dimensions of the transformation process. The case concludes with the challenge of how the firm’s leadership could ensure that the continuing transformation maintained its momentum.
The objective of the case discussion is to encourage students to better understand the many components of organization transformation and how different inputs (general environment and industry analysis), coupled with the various internal strategic orientation components (strategy, technology, HR systems, measurement systems, and structure), impact the culture of an organization, which in turn affects the organization’s effectiveness (performance, productivity, and stakeholder satisfaction). The case provides an opportunity to debate when incremental change or radical change is more appropriate. Furthermore, the case is conducive to a discussion about the role of a leader in sustaining the momentum of change and the various types of leadership behaviour that are necessary in the changing organizational environment. The case also provides insights into doing business in professional services firms in an emerging economy. This case is appropriate for graduate-level programs such as MBAs or executive development programs. Appropriate courses include organizational development and transformation, strategy, leadership, sustainability of organizations, the role of business in society, and human resources. The case would also fit well into a module on organizational transformation.
Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
South Africa, Medium, 2010
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