This paper explores organizational changes introduced in Canadian enterprises of different industries and sizes between 1998 and 2003. The data come from the annual Workplace and Employee Survey (WES) conducted by Statistics Canada. The study identifies the frequency with which the various changes have been introduced over time, the types of changes organizations consider the most significant (i.e., affecting the greatest number of employees), the key reasons organizations introduce changes, and the impact of size and sector on these processes. Overall, in this period of time, the pace of change gradually decreased. While this trend did not vary significantly across industries, the larger was the organization, the more likely it was to introduce any type of change. Organizations most frequently introduced structural changes such as re-engineering, downsizing, and integration of functional areas which they also considered to be the most significant. In addition, also such non-traditional work arrangements as adoption of flexible working hours and job rotation and multi-skilling were launched quite frequently, but greater reliance on part-time workers was among the most significant changes to work arrangements. Regardless of the year, industry and organizational size, 40-60% of organizations launched changes to achieve three main objectives: to reduce costs, to increase product and service quality, and to raise productivity. Organizations tried to achieve these objectives through a variety of changes and would benefit from a better understanding of the kinds of changes they need to implement if they wish to achieve the desired outcomes. This increased understanding should help organizations remain competitive.
|Keywords:||Organizational Change, Significant Change, Change Management, Objectives of Change, Canadian Enterprises|
Course instructor, Eric Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Professor, Eric Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
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