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Adapting to New Business Realities Together

By: Monica Fisher


The COVID-19 pandemic has already had widespread ramifications for organizations operating in nearly every field — ramifications that are only likely to proliferate in the weeks to come.

In an effort to safeguard the health and well-being of both our consultants and our clients, all SEI office spaces have been closed since March 13. But that does not mean we are taking a break. To help our clients adapt to and mitigate the ramifications of working in this new — and constantly shifting — business landscape, our consultants have started to flex into a variety of new roles that support an array of new functions.

Mobilizing in the Face of Uncertainty

In tumultuous times like these, remaining level-headed and bringing an agile mindset to bear on a portfolio of work is of the utmost importance. Over the last couple weeks, our consultants have quickly mobilized to help clients focus on the following essential actions for keeping things rolling in the face of uncertainty:

  • Create a highly-visible internal forum in which to disseminate information about COVID-19 — both generally, and in terms of what it means for business operations. Include links to relevant resources, a repository of internal communications, a list of key policies (particularly HR policies), inventory tracking, travel restrictions, and employee support and assistance materials.
  • Move business operations from on-premises to virtual. Doing so will require adept change management and logistical support as workforces transition to working from home. Do not forget to include plans for an eventual return to the office environment.
  • Establish a service management plan for delivery of essential services, including networks, identity access management, data centers, and shared services. Be sure to include incident management and vendor escalation processes, and conduct a gap analysis on the skills needed to perform new or significantly altered critical services.
  • Coach work teams on distributed agile team best practices. This will support a new way of working that is facilitated by the right technologies and strategically adapted processes.
  • Work with HR teams to craft processes for recruiting and onboarding new roles virtually. Encouraging existing employees to step outside their comfort zones is important, but in certain scenarios, new hires with specialized skill-sets may be necessary.
  • Adjust portfolio prioritization processes to reflect the changing business landscape and support more dynamic demand management. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected nearly every organization in some way, but not in the same way. As such, companies must evaluate their portfolios to ensure the clients that need the most attention right now actually get it.
  • Optimize the customer experience wherever possible. This may involve finding innovative ways of interacting with customers, mapping changes in customers’ journeys, and/or approaching this period of disruption as an opportunity for differentiation — clients will remember if a company comes through for them in a pinch.

The SEI Difference

At SEI, we hire committed, experienced professionals who have worked through times of crisis before. We have the flexibility to pivot as needed and proven frameworks for quickly deploying and executing on a wide range of critical capabilities — including those outlined above.

Please reach out to learn more about the ways we can help your organization in these tumultuous times. We will get through this together, and wish all our clients and professional associates continued good health.

Monica Fisher

Managing Principal

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