"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
Martin Luther King Jr.
Read Some Examples of Organization Development and Human Resources Initiatives

Strengthening the entire organization by aligning strategy, structure, people, processes and culture. Organization development is a dynamic values-based approach to systems change in organizations and communities; it strives to build the capacity to achieve and sustain a new desired state that benefits the organization or community and the world around them. (Source: The OD Network)

Opportunity Knocks offers the following services in support of effective organization development and overall Human Resources:

Strategic and Operational Planning - We see strategic planning as a tool to craft the decisions and actions that shape and guide what an organization is and what it does. Our strategic planning work focuses on looking to the future for opportunities. We help clients identify a future vision, set goals, and develop an approach for achieving those goals. We work with clients to develop strategic plans that lead to action and high performance. Once the strategic plan is in place, work plans are needed to ensure the strategy is realized. Effective work plans are detailed, with specific deliverables, timelines, and identification of accountable parties. We work with clients to develop these plans, and coach clients through implementation of the plans.

Work Plans - Once the strategic plan is in place, work plans are needed to ensure the strategy is realized. Effective work plans are detailed, with specific deliverables, timelines, and accountable parties. We work with clients to develop these plans, and coach clients through implementation of the plans.

Change Management/Transition Management Support - Change is constant. Organizations succeed when change is embraced as opportunity. We help organizations manage and flourish during times of change such as restructuring, mergers, acquisitions, or implementing new processes or systems. The key is to manage change in a manner that achieves the organizational goals, minimizes day-to-day work disruption, and ensures the workforce is aligned to achieve. We also work with organizations in times when they must transition teams, leadership, systems or processes. We help clients navigate through transitions - so that organizations are ready to effectively and efficiently implement a new strategic direction or initiative. To ensure success, we work with clients to conduct a review of the current state of affairs versus the future state, and then develop a "gap analysis." We then develop strategies to "fill the gaps" in areas such as staffing, training, work flow processes, assets/equipment, or financials.

Business Process Reengineering - Organizations are continuously looking at ways to improve the efficiency and efficacy of their business processes. Sometimes this requires the review of a specific department or division, and sometimes it requires a complete assessment of an organization's entire suite of business processes and operations. We help organizations by working with them to document the current processes and workflows to give us a baseline understanding of how things operate at the organization today. We then analyze the current state to identify areas where the current processes can be changed or modified to improve efficiency and effectiveness or where new processes need to be put in place. We then present a new framework designed to increase the efficiency, quality and productivity of an organization's performance, while decreasing or limiting operating costs. To ensure successful adoption of the new processes, we work with the organization as the necessary changes are implemented in areas such as employee communications, training, and leadership coaching and development.

Succession and Resource Planning - For an organization to be successful, it needs to have the right people with the right skills available at the right time to get the job done. We provide full-service succession and resource planning to help clients ensure they have the pool of talent capable of doing the jobs necessary to achieve the organization's strategic objectives. We help our clients define their organization's needs in terms of key jobs that will need to be staffed, as well as the corresponding skill and knowledge requirements. We then work with our clients to review existing staff to determine current capabilities and potential for advancement into key positions in the future. We conduct gap analyses to determine where current staff is not able to meet future needs and work with our clients to establish staff development plans or recruiting strategies to ensure that the organization is planning and prepared for future vacancies. We also assist our clients in conducting detailed staffing analyses and project-specific resource planning to ensure the organization is able to deliver on current project and program requirements.

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Examples of Organization Development and Human Resources Initiatives

Worked in collaboration with a partner consulting firm to support a District of Columbia government agency's leadership with evaluating the current employee development program and to perform workforce assessment services. Key objectives included preparing for imminent succession planning needs, helping develop an organizational roadmap for the future, enabling the organization to attract a diverse range of talent, strengthening management capabilities, and retaining a workforce that will be competent to address the evolving service level needs of the District. We developed a customized roadmap for the agency, informed by the Strategic Plan, which documents a methodology that enables the organization to maximize its workforce planning effectiveness. As part of the analyses for the assessment project, our team reviewed position descriptions to catalog criticality of positions. We also performed a training needs assessment and gap analysis that identified workforce competencies necessary to achieve strategic objectives and successfully replace lost staff knowledge due to attrition. Our team used the newly developed strategic plan and findings of the workforce assessment to develop a final report, roadmap, and strategic framework the agency can use to successfully tackle the environmental and workforce opportunities that lie ahead.

Designed and facilitated a cultivating careers mentoring program for a regional office of a large federal agency. This program was established to ensure employees had opportunities to receive mentorship focused on career development. This included hosting developmental seminars and mentor-focused training, as well as incorporating mentor-led activities that assisted them in establishing professional goals and building trusting relationships with their mentees. We provided these tools through design and facilitation of training sessions for both mentors and employees in the following areas: Discovering Self, Developing the Leader within You, Breaking the Frame, Building Trust through Effective Communication, and Enhancing Your Emotional Intelligence.

Conducted multiple organization climate assessments for a large federal agency. The assessments focused on gaining an understanding of employee and management perceptions in their respective departments, as well as throughout the workplace. Using personal interviews and a custom designed interview tool, we were able to gain an understanding of the current state in regards to respect, sensitivity, teamwork, inclusion, and communication as well leadership effectiveness, organization strategy and structure, and worker perceptions on safety. We provided assessment reports with a summary of findings, as well as recommendations. Our findings assisted leadership with determining a path forward to improve overall organization effectiveness, as well as interpersonal relationships between management and employees.

Developed organization change methodology used as a mandatory life cycle management process. The methodology engages impacted stakeholders all along the project life cycle to ensure readiness of end-users and operations & maintenance personnel for their post-deployment responsibilities. It has now been used by hundreds of IT projects over the last 10 years, resulting in a repeatable approach to transitioning IT solutions from development to user adoption and operations.

Enabled the transformation to a modernized telecommunications infrastructure by providing integrated organization change management (transition), training and communications planning, and implementation support. This multi-year initiative was the first full-scale, enterprise-wide unified communications solution in the Federal Government to include Voice over Internet Protocol phones, a softphone allowing employees to make and receive phone calls on their laptops, a new voicemail system and webconferencing capabilities. Our services created an environment where over 90,000 end-users and hundreds of IT professionals were "ready" to perform their functions post-deployment of the new infrastructure, leading to staff efficiencies and producing cost-savings possibilities.

Provided transition management support to a Cybersecurity organization to ensure readiness of internal business organizations to own, use, operate, and/or maintain new applications, programs and capabilities being deployed for employee and contractor identity authentication. A comprehensive, cross-organizational effort was required to identify which of the 500+ applications and developer tools required updates or replacement in order to become compliant. As a result of our efforts, the organization now has a plan to meet requirements and enable agency-wide use of SMART-IDs. Also provided transition management support of data synchronization and identity verification projects within the organization, as well as the automated background investigation system and enterprise governance, risk and compliance web services, allowing the organization's ability to manage the digital identities of employees and contractors throughout their lifecycle to be expanded. As a result of these additional efforts, we were able to help move the organization closer to 100% compliance for the logical access elements of the government standards.

Facilitated stakeholder involvement and developed transition approach for the implementation of a new government wide travel system at a 100,000+ employee federal agency. Structured and managed a multiple-release plan to implement a new travel system to support employee travel activities. Establishing a rolling deployment schedule, engaging stakeholders and end-users early and often, and detailing clear and comprehensive communications led to a smooth transition to the new system. Customer service demand levels were forecasted and manageable with lower resource levels, and technical enhancements were monitored, as a direct result of the gradual user base increase. Due to the success of the rolling deployment, the implementation schedule was accelerated to realize cost-savings from early discontinuation of the legacy system.

Successfully facilitated the establishment of a multi-state, public, Federal Government, and private industry partnership to eliminate duplicative State regulatory reviews of environmental technologies. Established an organization infrastructure and project management system, developed trusting relationships between the parties, provided leadership coaching, and facilitated strategic planning, team building, and conflict resolution sessions.

Designed and facilitated an employee recognition program for a national media communications organization. The program design included establishing various award categories for both individual and team contributors. The nomination and selection process was also established and implemented organization wide. Manager training was also developed and delivered to teach them innovative techniques for recognizing and motivating their staff members.

Designed and executed succession and resource planning activities for an Information Technology-focused federal government organization faced with impending retirement of leadership and mission-critical technical staff.

Completed an analysis of the current state of HR organization functions for a private sector organization and developed a strategy to realign those functions to better serve business needs.

Completed an analysis of the current organization culture for a private sector corporation and made recommendations for a future state culture model.

Developed a comprehensive change management plan working with stakeholder organizations to assess the current state and the needs of the organization including staffing, skills, training and budget requirements to support a new communications infrastructure that was rolled out to more than 90,000 employees. Our analysis resulted in a reorganization within IT to include maintaining the span of control, specifying different work roles, and redesigning job scenarios.

Coached managers to cultivate not only acceptance of a new organizational change, but how to gain the support to successfully align the workforce with the change, utilizing effective communication and conflict resolution strategies.

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