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22 February 2017 4 min read

How to Select the Correct Stakeholder Engagement Tools

 

A properly resourced stakeholder engagement plan that works towards an overall strategic direction is crucial for meeting goals.

A business without an effective plan, and without the correct tools or resources, will struggle to realise success in their business strategy & goals and/or their program & project objective.

If your plan is in place, what do you need next? 

Identify who you need to engage

Firstly you need to understand who you’re engaging with and how much engagement your stakeholders will require. It’s important to recognise the level of influence and interest/involvement that each identified stakeholder will have with your business, program or project.

While undertaking your stakeholder identification, also think about the messages you want to communicate, the most appropriate channels to reach them, and the frequency with which you’ll engage them.

When communicating with your stakeholders, be clear and concise in your messaging, tailoring each communication to the individual stakeholder. What works for one, may not work with another.

Articulate your goals

It’s important that goals and objectives are well articulated inside your program or business as this establishes a shared understanding across the project. Businesses often only measure success once the work is completed.

However, punctuating your engagement plan with milestones throughout the project will ensure it’s more effective overall.

Reporting regularly not only ensures you’re following through with your strategy, It means that any failings can be identified during the project and any course correcting can be undertaken more promptly.

Choose the right tools and software

A competent plan should identify the resourcing required to engage effectively and help to select the tools that will need to assist the engagement.

Planning poorly and not fully understanding which resources are required to properly carry out effective stakeholder engagement means that businesses often carry out their engagement plan inadequately.

More often than not, a business will look to software to help them to plan, capture, and report on their interactions with stakeholders as it reduces the failings that arise due to bad processes and procedures.

Before selecting software, thoroughly assess whether the specifications are going to meet the needs of your business or project. There are free online tools, but, whilst these claim to help you manage engagement, they’re more often than not inadequate and a just means of forcing you into a high-cost subscription service.

By planning first and identifying exactly what you require, you can find a software package that meets the needs of your engagement approach and avoid the inefficient and time-consuming process of navigating multiple free tools.

A properly resourced stakeholder engagement plan towards an overall strategic direction and is crucial for meeting goals. A business without an effective plan, and without the correct tools or resources, will struggle to realise success in their business strategy & goals and/or their program & project objective.

 

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