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Ashoka: A Case Study


Problem: Ashoka is a global organization with global programs which was operating without global infrastructure. They did not have any way to share information about constituents between programs or countries. There were 12 discreet organizational units with over 200 users in over 30 countries with strong program growth expected.

Challenge: The relatively autonomous organizational units had almost no tradition of central support or cross-functional management protocol or standards. There was little basic technology infrastructure in place. All of the programs were managed at the country level through updates on spreadsheets and email communication. The country and regional staff offices are thinly-staffed and overworked posing potential adoption issues. A culture of distrust among the organizational units about sharing certain information created challenging security restrictions. Organization wide policies for managing currencies and languages also presented unique issues as each program solution was deployed.

Solution: Buan Consultants architected a pilot solution for one organizational unit across four countries. The basic structure, security, language and currency settings were validated by each country. Using a phased approach, stakeholders from the remaining eleven organizational units and from various countries were engaged in business process review, prototype testing in the sandbox, creating training curriculum and best practice user groups. Country based training took place as each organizational unit’s process was deployed into production.

Benefits/Results: The phased structure of the implementation helped to demonstrate the value of the solution to each new organizational unit as it was brought onboard. Collaboration and trust became the hallmark of the staff helping to support global change through social entrepreneurship.

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