Technology can be a tremendous asset to your business. Whether you do it to facilitate collaboration, drive customer service, or create inner-office efficiencies, implementing new technology can be a big positive for your team and for your bottom line. With that said, it’s important to deploy new technologies wisely—and sometimes that’s easier said than done.
As you think about technology in the workplace, and also about the challenges of implementing new technology, we have just a few guidelines for you to keep in mind. We invite you to review the following tips for technology change management.
Understanding Your Tech Needs
Our first tip for technology change management is to know where you stand. What kinds of innovation technology do you currently have in place? Where are the areas of your business where technology is currently in play, and making a difference? And, how forward-thinking have you been in crafting a business technology strategy?
A good way to answer all of these questions is to conduct a basic business technology audit—simply going through your business, department by department and function by function, and chronicling the tech assets you have in place. This is an area where a business technologist can help you.
Choosing the Right Technology
Once you have completed this audit, you are ready to decide on some specific technologies to bring into your workplace. There are two basic considerations here:
- What are your pain points? Where are the areas of your business where you see inefficiencies, or where you believe that technology could play an impactful role?
- What’s your budget? It’s always prudent to put an innovation technology budget in place, providing some basic parameters of what you can and cannot purchase for your business.
Survey Your Employees
Before you make any final decisions, we’d recommend going directly to your employees to find out what they think. Survey your team to find out:
- What are their technology needs and wants?
- How much do they already know about these technologies?
- What will they need in terms of training or tutorials?
Often, your employees will be able to spot some potential areas for tech enhancement that you might otherwise miss. That makes the employee survey a critical step as you consider a new business technology strategy.
Get Early Acceptance from the Team
One of the biggest mistakes that companies can make is rolling out a bunch of new technologies without actually getting the buy-in from your team.
Simply put, technology won’t help a thing if your employees go into it kicking and screaming. You need their acceptance, and the employee survey helps with that.
Additionally, we’d recommend sending out a memo in advance, letting employees know what your plan is; what level of training will be offered; and how they can contact your IT team if they need any guidance.
Make it clear that you are rolling out technology to help them, and that you will tutor and support them however they need to feel comfortable with new technology.
Train Your Employees
Speaking of training, that’s one of the most integral parts of technology change management. You need to show employees how they can use new technologies effectively, deriving the maximum benefit with minimal headache.
Some steps we recommend:
- Find the right training approach, whether that’s a big seminar or one-on-one. This will look different from one team to the next.
- Be ready to adapt your training approach to accommodate employees of varying skill levels.
- Get help from the experts! Reach out to Salient for more information about staff technology training.
Consider a Pilot Testing Program
One additional step that we would recommend is starting small. Maybe you don’t want to unveil a new system to the whole company; instead, you can roll it out to just one small department, work out any kinks, and then expand to other departments at a later date.
This pilot testing process is a good way to ensure that you have selected the right technology, and that you address as many concerns as possible before you introduce it to the company at large.
Think Ahead and Don’t Give Up
The bottom line: You don’t want to stumble into new business technologies haphazardly. Think ahead, and have a clear business technology plan in place. And remember that you’re likely to have some bumps in the road at first, so hang in there!
One of the best ways to ensure a smooth and efficient technology roll-out is to work with proven IT professionals—like Salient Network. We can help ensure your success in deploying new technology. Reach out to us today to learn more about the role of technology in the workplace, and our own expertise in managing technological changes.