Burt’s Bees: New System Implementation & Change Management

Burt’s Bees, one of America’s top personal care brands known for its natural, earth-friendly products was still handling sales forecasting and trade promotion management (TPM) with Excel spreadsheets. The company needed an end-to-end software system to help them plan trade spend, project future business, and ultimately, become Sarbanes-Oxley compliant with financial reporting. Seeking a way to incorporate the new complex system into their business without sacrificing employee productivity posed Burt’s Bees with a challenge. That’s when they turned to ArchPoint as their implementation partner.

ArchPoint devised a plan for Burt’s Bees to continue to run their fast growing business while implementing a new cross-functional system. The plan consisted of two components: project and change management for system implementation and employee training for the new software and associated new processes.

ArchPoint started with the end in mind – what business objectives did Burt’s Bees want to achieve by implementing this system?   After clarifying the strategic and financial goals of the implementation effort, ArchPoint created a detailed project plan to monitor, communicate and govern project roles, accountabilities, and timing.  As Burt’s Bees project management partner, ArchPoint oversaw business processes documentation, issue and risk management, status reporting and test script documentation.

Burt’s Bees also engaged ArchPoint’s people and change practitioners to support end-user training and change management. ArchPoint identified “Super Users” to collaborate in the development of the training program and help other employees through the implementation process. ArchPoint managed field-training sessions for the sales staff and functional training at headquarters for Sales, Finance and Accounting.

The training covered:

  • the case for change, why implementing the system was critical to Burt’s Bees business, customers and employees
  • end-to-end business processes that included customer relationship management, trade promotion set up, budgeting, deduction clearing, sales forecasting and reporting
  • organizational roles and responsibilities to provide clear documentation defining functional crossovers and hand-offs
  • governance and decision making for more efficient execution of day-to-day operations
  • organizational structure, metrics and rewards to demonstrate how the organization is aligned to support the TPM process, establishing measures of success for the new system, and building communication tools to recognize and reward early adopters.

  • The training was designed to accelerate implementation and productivity by including extensive hands-on system training in which employees brought actual customer plans to set up real promotions in the system.

    The implementation was delivered on-time and within budget. It empowered Burt’s Bees employees to look at their data with a different perspective and determine if they are spending in the right way. IT also cut 75% of the workload related to quarterly Sarbanes-Oxley compliance audits. The company is now enabled to project future results and take corrective actions when needed. Burt’s Bees now has an in depth view of their past, a comprehensive survey of their present, and an accurate foresight into their future.