Selecting or developing the right technology for your business is just the first step towards making your business more efficient. You still have to get your employees to use it. New technology can be an unwelcome change to some, particularly if the previous technology has been used for ages and they are comfortable with it despite its issues. Overcoming resistance to change from potential users is a crucial factor in getting the desired outcome from your new technology. In order for any software to have its desired impact, it has to be readily adopted and used properly.
Here are some tips on how to smoothly introduce new technology to the workplace:
1. Involve Your Team: One of the best ways to ensure that any technology you choose or develop will be well received by your employees is to involve them in the decision-making process. Interview stakeholders and get their input. When the software is presented later on, be sure to highlight how it has incorporated the opinions of other employees. This will create a broader sense of ownership and facilitate a smooth introduction. Additionally, the better your understanding of how business processes are currently being done, the better any software you develop will be.
2. Prioritize User Experience: Your new software can perform all kinds of amazing functions, but if it isn’t obvious how it works or the function is buried deep within the user interface, no one will understand or use it. Making sure your software is user friendly needs to be paramount, especially when the end-users aren’t developers.
3. Communicate the Benefits: Ensure that everyone understands the intent behind implementing any new technology and how it will benefit them. This will impact the way they interact with it and help you reach your desired goal.
4. Accommodate Different Learning Styles: If the technology you are introducing requires some training and there may be a learning curve for some users, it can be helpful to provide different ways for them to learn. Tailor your training sessions to include kinaesthetic, visual and auditory learning techniques and be available for one-on-one training for those who would like more assistance.
5. Make it Fun: The more interesting your training sessions are, the more readily your staff will participate and retain the information. Make sure sessions aren’t too long, use some humour and consider gamification.
6. Find Your Cheerleader: There are bound to be a few users who have been more than happy to embrace new workplace technology. Find these team members and determine what it is about the software that they are satisfied with. Let them help those who are struggling with certain features and allow them to be the cheerleaders of your new technology.
7. Evaluation: After the technology has been implemented, it is important to conduct a performance evaluation. There may be a few bugs with the new software or functions that are not being utilized or understood by some users. Performing a thorough evaluation helps you ensure the technology is being used as intended and that your employees are adopting it. Furthermore, assessing its positive impact can further validate your decision to implement it.