A version of this article has been published in Forbes courtesy of Yoav Kutner, CEO and Co-Founder of Oro Inc.
Digital transformation isn’t easy and it can seem like a daunting task for a company of any size. Most often, companies decide to delay technology changes under the impression that the benefits are not worth the challenges- but this is an unfortunate misconception.
What is technology change management?
Technology change management is the process of identifying new technologies and then implementing it for improved productivity and profitability. Ideally, the right technology should be easy to adopt, should address major challenges, and should improve communication.
Why do technology change initiatives fail?
According to McKinsey & Company, 70% of digital transformation projects fail. And in a study by BCG, 75% of digital transformation projects don’t deliver the expected results.
Unfortunately, technology change management projects are often poorly defined and communicated. This can be due to a poor understanding of the technology itself or lack of communication on what the major challenges are and what needs to be done to fix them. In turn, instead of adoption, employees resist the change and the result is a huge misalignment across departments.
5 Tips to Successful Technology Change Management
At Oro, we have helped over a hundred companies execute changes in technology and have identified five steps to successful technology change management.
1. Set and communicate clear goals
No matter what type of technology you are introducing, it’s important to precisely define and align project goals with company goals.
Goals should address:
- Improving the customer experience
- Streamlining processes
- Consolidating mergers and acquisitions
- Future-proofing the business
Once goals are set, they should clearly show what problems have been identified and how they should be improved. Upper management should back up these initiatives in order for a successful first step.
2. Build a team
A technological change management team requires a unique combination of skills and personalities. You need a team of people who possess leadership skills, understand the need for change, and can relate to and reassure others to accept the change. Assemble a team that can adapt to changing situations, learn from setbacks, and adjust quickly. Make the team multigenerational. Older and younger employees approach technology differently, so it’s important to have a blend of both.
3. Define a strategy
A big challenge to technology adoption is too much change at once. The minimum viable product (MVP) approach addresses these fears. This method prioritizes generating value, gathering feedback, and adjusting in incremental stages to deliver the desired results. The MVP approach allows a company to test an idea without unnecessary risk, optimize resources and get to market faster. You experience quick wins with minimal investment. This, in turn, enhances the desire for additional changes.
4. Plan for resistance
You need to address internal and external factors for the highest success.
- Provide regular training. Create a knowledge base and training videos, host meetings, or introduce an online help manual.
- Reward early adopters. Use gamification, compensation, swag or company perks.
- Treat adoption as ongoing. Host meetings and training sessions, and encourage employees to participate in discussions.
- Solicit employee feedback. Incorporating employee ideas promotes ownership and adoption.
- Offer promotions, discounts, or access to exclusive products and services to reward early adopters.
- Create content such as blog posts, how-to guides, podcasts, case studies, video tutorials and webinars to educate customers.
- Solicit customer feedback through one-on-ones, surveys or discussion forums.
5. Ensure continuous improvement
Successful change management requires an ongoing commitment to improvement and adoption. It’s a process that requires patience and time.