This stage focuses on identifying the need for change. It includes gathering information and data from both inside and outside your organization to look at potential gaps and opportunities for improvement. At this point, it is also important to make a case for your change initiative by creating a sense of urgency and motivating employees to get ready for change.

Methods and Tools for NEED stage

Affinity Diagrams are part of the brainstorming process and help make connections and organize ideas into natural groupings. Organizations can use them to help achieve consensus on an issue and/or project idea.

Benchmarking compares an organization’s current state to how other related organizations are doing on indicators of interest. It helps identify and address potential gaps in practice.

The Change Process Form provides a series of questions to explore the current state of the organization, the driving and restraining forces of change, stakeholders potentially affected by the change, a risk/complexity matrix, a change schedule and a communication matrix.

Check Sheets help identify and track data on a particular issue or concern in the organization to identify the source of the problem.

The Customer-facing Remit Scale provides a series of questions to assess if organizations are meeting customer needs.

Fishbone Diagrams (also known as Cause and Effect Diagrams) help team members visually explore a problem and come to a consensus around the problem and its root causes.

The Six Strategic Steps for Situational Assessment outlines steps for conducting a situational assessment to inform planning decisions (e.g., setting priorities). It provides information about the population of interest, trends and issues that may affect the implementation strategy, and community wants/needs/assets.

Gap Analyses involve identifying and reviewing documentation for organizational practices/policies/procedures, facilitating in-person focus groups with key stakeholders, and reviewing these results to prioritize potential next steps.

The Instrinsic Motivation Scale measures employee intrinsic motivation and creativity.

Management by Objectives is a technique to help clearly define organizational objectives and ensure objectives are aligned between management, employees and other members of the organization.

The Nominal Group Technique (also known as Multivoting) helps teams come to a consensus on an issue or proposed solution by taking into consideration each individual’s importance rankings.

Pareto Analysis assesses different problems and causes in relation to their relative size and frequency to identify and focus on problems that offer the greatest potential for improvement. The Pareto Principle suggests that 20% of sources cause 80% of problems.

The Performance Improvement Momentum Assessment Tool (PIMAT) assesses the urgency and feasibility of implementing a change initiative.

Radar Charts provide a way to visually illustrate gaps in current performance areas in relation to ideal performance areas. They can also help support priority setting for projects.

Run Charts look at trends and patterns over a specific time period and can help identify problems and test for special causes. They can also be used to monitor, compare and predict data trends.

Strategic Assumption Surfacing and Testing (SAST) is a process to identify underlying assumptions of a policy or plan in order to explore issues and develop solutions.

Swim Lane Maps (also known as Process Flow Diagrams) map processes and the interconnections between processes, departments and teams to help identify gaps and inefficiencies

SWOT Analysis identifies priorities for action in an organization. It provides clear descriptions of harmful or helpful forces to programs based on the organization’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.