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M&A Runbook for Infrastructure and Operations

Partner with the business to deliver value.

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  • Arnie Williamson, IT Executive
  • Elton Tucker, IT Architect and Strategist
  • John Ferrara, Senior Director, Windows Hosting Services
  • Justin Stratton, Senior IT Operations Manager
  • George Tunnicliffe, Head of IT Operations
  • Elton Tucker, IT Architect and Strategist
  • Nabeel Yousif, Executive Consultant
  • Sergio Zanardo, President, SZ Conseil Inc
  • 3 anonymous contributors

Your Challenge

  • I&O is often the last to be informed of an impending M&A deal.
  • The business doesn’t understand the necessary requirements or timeline for integration.
  • It’s hard to prioritize when you’re buried under a mountain of work.
  • Documentation may be lacking or nonexistent, and members of the target organization may be uncooperative.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Manage expectations. The business often expects integration in days or weeks, not months or years. You need to set them straight.
  • Open your checkbook and prepare to hire. Integration will require a temporary increase in resources.
  • Tackle organizational and cultural change. People are harder to integrate than technology. Culture change is the hardest part, and the integration plan should address it.

Impact and Result

  • Tailor your approach based on the business objectives of the merger or acquisition.
  • Separate the must-haves from the nice-to-haves.
  • Ensure adequate personnel and budget.
  • Plan for the integration into normal operations.

Research & Tools

Start here – read the Executive Brief

Read our concise Executive Brief to find out how to partner with the business to conquer the challenges in your next merger or acquisition.

1. Establish goals

Partner with the business to determine goals and establish high-level scope.

Guided Implementations

This guided implementation is a nine call advisory process.

Guided Implementation #1 - Establish goals

Call #1 - Plan stakeholder communication and establish M&A goals.
Call #2 - Review Project Napkin.

Guided Implementation #2 - Conduct discovery

Call #1 - Build discovery plan.
Call #2 - Conduct risk and value assessment.

Guided Implementation #3 - Plan short-term integration

Call #1 - Establish partnership and staff retention strategy.
Call #2 - Build day 1 minimum viable operating model and project plan.

Guided Implementation #4 - Map long-term integration

Call #1 - Determine long-term future state.
Call #2 - Build long-term integration project plan.
Call #3 - Conduct project and process post-mortem.

Onsite Workshop

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Onsite workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn't enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our project workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a roadmap in place to complete your project successfully.

Module 0: High-Level Scope

The Purpose

  • Establish goals and conduct discovery.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Alignment with business goals
  • Documentation of target organization’s current state




Consult with stakeholders.

  • Stakeholder communication plan

Establish M&A business goals.

  • M&A business goals

Conduct target discovery.

  • I&O M&A Discovery Template

Document own environment.

  • Current state of organization

Clarify goals.

Module 1: Target Assessment

The Purpose

  • Assess risk and value of target organization.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Accurate scope of I&O integration
  • Risk mitigation plans
  • Value realization strategies




Scope I&O M&A project.

  • I&O M&A Project Napkin

Assess risks.

  • Risk assessment

Assess value.

  • Value assessment

Module 2: Day 1 Integration Project Plan

The Purpose

  • Establish day 1 integration project plan.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Smoother day 1 integration




Determine Day 1 minimum viable operating model post M&A.


Identify gaps.


Build day 1 project plan.

  • Day 1 project plan

Estimate required resources.

Module 3: Long-Term Project Plan

The Purpose

  • Draw long-term integration roadmap.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Improved alignment with M&A goals
  • Greater realization of the deal’s value




Set long-term future state goals.


Create a long-term project plan.

  • Long-term integration project plan

Consult with business stakeholders on the long-term plan.

Module 4: Change Management and Continual Improvement

The Purpose

  • Prepare for organization and culture change.
  • Refine M&A I&O integration process.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Smoother change management
  • Improved M&A integration process




Complete a change management plan.

  • Change management plan

Conduct a process post-mortem.

  • Process improvements action items

Member Testimonials

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After each Info-Tech experience, we ask our members to quantify the real time savings, monetary impact, and project improvements our research helped them achieve. See our top member experiences for this Blueprint, and what our clients have to say.




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