Introducing any new software, technology, process or procedure in the workplace can be challenging if you don’t have the right approach. Change can be hard for some individuals to come to terms with, and often the response you see is the opposite of what you hoped for. Effectively introducing new software in your workplace doesn’t have to be impossible. There are a number of ways to effectively manage the change and help everyone come to terms with that change. For some extra guidance on introducing your new software in the workplace, consider these simple tips.
Make it a program
Any new software is going to bring with it a number of questions, concerns and potential speed bumps along the way. The best way to tackle each of these is with effective change management. Change management is the program of work you build around any new software or changes to the normal process. It isn’t a buzz word or term to make employees feel as though you are considering them. To effectively roll out your new software, ensure there are appropriate resources dedicated to planning the implementation, communications and training. Investing in a solid change management plan will help eliminate any difficulties in the transition period.
Help them see the ‘why’
With any change, there is a natural departure from a process or way of working that people have probably gotten used to. To effectively introduce your new software, one of the most powerful tools at your disposal is a compelling ‘why’. When you are crafting the strategy or the why behind your new software, show empathy for the employees. Try to put yourself in their shoes and help them to see the reason behind the software in terms that will make sense to them. Don’t use jargon or management buzz words, instead, be honest and forthright with how the new software will benefit them day to day. Establishing a powerful story and a compelling ‘why’ will help tackle those initial challenges you may face.
Never stop communicating
With any change management program, one of the biggest challenges is working out how much communication is enough. For any successful or effective introduction of new software, the answer is, the more the better. Keep staff engaged at every step of the process with showcases to provide transparency on where the change is at. Send communications via the channel that staff can most easily access and at a time that suits. Be open and honest about challenges, get excited about major milestones and share the journey with them. The more clarity you can provide, the more confidence you can instil.
One of the bigger challenges and one of the more often overlooked is the need for knowledge from staff. Whether you believe staff need to know the intimate details of the project or not, sharing the information with them will empower them to talk about it. Without that knowledge, you will face stiff opposition and the change will take on the persona of ‘another management decision’. Empower your staff by training them on the system, even if they aren’t a direct user. This kind of involvement and empowerment will mean when questions are asked, every staff member is confident to answer in a positive fashion.
Implementing new software in any business can be tough. Managing the technical aspects of the project are enough of a challenge, without the added complication of the people challenge. Effective change management is all about how you bring staff on the journey with you. To effectively plan and execute your new software system project, consider these simple tips to help you along.