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August 17, 2018

Mergers & Acquisitions and Cutover

Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) happen for many reasons, including those of synergy, diversification, growth, competition elimination, cost saving, talent and tech acquisition and roll-up strategies. M&As also take different forms spanning, for example, management acquisitions, consolidation, tender offers and purchase of assets. Companies coming together can require a huge amount of technology change. There will be a need to consolidate a plethora of technological platforms and processes; usually, the initial unification will need to take place within a briefer timeframe too, in order to maximize benefits as soon as possible.


Such a complex transition can be fraught with risk. In fact, according to a Harvard Business Review report and collated research last year, the failure rate for Mergers & Acquisitions is between 70% and 90%. Of course, how organizations define and measure this failure will differ between businesses. ‘Failure’ could be measured by looking at a number of things. For example, were shareholder returns boosted by a deal? Did the transition meet the board model? Does the post-merger value of the integrated business hold up? When looking specifically at the implementation logistics of M&As, poor program management is one of the top ten reasons mergers and acquisitions fail. Managing the integration of people, platforms and processes on a large scale is a mammoth task and needs impeccable planning and organization.


Both mergers and acquisitions can take months or even years and consist of hundreds of activities across both technology and the wider business leading up to its completion. Cutover's Event view allows stakeholders and managers to have a complete view of the entire program of scheduled changes, facilitating optimized event planning, progression tracking and course correction where required. With so many scheduled changes, visualization is key to success.

At the same time, having a shared, granular view of all planned activity within each technology change ensures that everyone involved is always on the same page. This means that during rehearsal and execution, you can avoid handoff delays and reduce the risk of execution errors, so there will be less chance of outages, disruption, and failure.


Cutover is a collaborative platform that brings together both human and machine orchestration to create a seamless process for M&A activities.


As well as ensuring success across technology change, this kind of event orchestration allows merging companies to simultaneously improve their wider business processes and performance.


  • Merger change event programs are costly and regularly incur more cost and time than planned. This negates any benefits in terms of cost saving, a primary goal for many mergers. Protecting the budget you put aside for technology change through efficient planning and orchestration means that you won’t need to “find” extra money, as well as allowing the business to achieve more with the money that they are spending on technology change.
  • Having a shared view of the changes planned within the organization’s technology landscape enables management teams to align their wider operational process changes accordingly, giving them the ability to tie technology change to business outcomes and de-risk many months/years worth of integration efforts.


Technology change in Mergers & Acquisitions is complex. Visualizing the entire program, getting into the detail of planned events and joining people up, as well as aligning your business process improvements in parallel, all play an important role in ensuring a successful and timely transition.

Request a demo to find out how you can use Cutover to support your Merger and Acquisition technology change.

Madz Wakefield
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