The Acquisition Integration Playbook includes the following nine sections:

M&A integration playbook

Each section of this playbook represents a phase of the integration. For each phase, the playbook includes the following:

  • Key activities in detail in sequence
  • Success factors/lessons learned
  • Links to tools
  • Links to PowerPoint presentations

I.    Acquisition Integration Playbook

I.A. Pre-Planning


The Pre-Planning phase for an integration should begin as soon as the letter of intent is signed, or sixty days before the close of a deal, whichever is sooner. Right from the very start, the planning process should be managed in a methodical and coordinated way.

Key Activities in Pre-Planning Phase

  1. Determine the governance structure.
  2. Launch the Steering Committee.
  3. Launch the IMO.
  4. Finalize the integration strategy and guiding principles.
  5. Agree on the timeline for integration planning.
  6. Hold kickoff meeting with integration team leads.

Details on the Approach for Pre-Planning

1. Determine the governance structure. In this step, a single Integration Manager is named to oversee the integration planning and implementation process. The Integration Manager position is filled with a resource who will:

  • Set a brisk cadence and operate with urgency
  • Expedite the transition by pushing for decisions and actions
  • Closely track and report progress against goals
  • Mobilize teams to develop and pursue their charters
  • Create key milestones and timelines
  • Manage cross-dependencies between work streams
  • Set meeting schedules and facilitate reviews
  • Engineer early victories
  • Communicate effectively with all levels of the hierarchy

During Pre-Planning, in addition to identifying the Integration Manager, the following governance questions will be answered:

1) Who will participate on the Steering Committee?
2) What are the roles and responsibilities of the teams in the governance structure?
3) What are the decision-making protocols and issue escalation routes?

Members of a Steering Committee include ...

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