Finding a way to create strategies that will encourage employees to embrace and actually love IT (internet technology) can be a difficult task. Not everyone is mentally prepared to jump on board for the wave of ever growing technology- which is extremely fast paced and increases each year- and you may even find that some employees are actually fearful at the prospect of learning because they don’t view themselves as tech savvy.
However, being able to provide informative and relatable information to your employees to help them understand how IT can improve their regular, day to day tasks is a way to open the conversation, as well as the mindset of your employees. Many employers feel like the segue of integrating more technology into the workplace is a challenge because it’s either a slow movement due to lack of urgency, or poor communication between the employers and the employees.
Here are some great ideas for positively encouraging the adoption of new technology in the workplace.
Vet Your Technology
Whether it’s a new software program, database technology or a new cloud management system that is being adopted, it’s important to firstly know what you’re dealing with. IN order to pique your team’s interest, there must be a certain extent of user-friendliness. The system in mind should be easy to explain, easy to manage and approachable. Running a comparative test on similar technologies to see which one would fit the best into your corporation is a smart move. You can even run live trials using your employees to see which ones are more preferable over others. This is also a great way to make your employees feel like their voice is important and genuinely spark interest in being a part of the new technology that you will be introducing.
Clearly Emphasize to your Team why and how the Technology is Important
When you’re getting ready to change the way your employees have become accustomed to working, you want to be sure that you’re fully preparing them to embrace it. Thus, you are going to want to point out, clearly, why the new technology will be important to them. Stress the fine points on what the improvements will be- whether saving time, tracking data more easily, cutting down on the guesswork, making more money for the sales team- emphasize how it will make their lives better. Focus on the short, as well as long term company and personal employee goals and make it clear how everyone wins.
Utilize your In-house Influencers
As you are preparing for the launch of your new technology wave, now is a great time to get those tech savvy champion employees of yours out there to help train and cheer on the rest of the team. Handpick those that are not just IT employees or areas of business that are extremely complex, as these individuals should be relatable to the rest of your team. Focus instead on those that are genuinely interested in technology. Getting them on board early is imperative to your success, as they will often be the go to for questions, concerns and feedback.
Training is Imperative
As you already have probably witnessed, everyone will not have the same level of technology know-how, so training is going to be extremely important. While some of your employees may prefer to take some basic online courses to do their training, there may be others that require a bit more handholding to familiarize themselves fully with the new system. Therefore, again it’s important to let your team know that they are a part of it all. Ask them what they are more comfortable with and find out what their strengths and weaknesses are in technology. This can help you to figure which team will do better with an online, versus a live training, as well as those that will require a more personal approach to being properly and fully educated.
Integrate Mobility into your IT strategy
Mobile technology integration is a must. When you show your employees that not just will they be able to utilize the technology to make their lives easier at the office, but they can also do so on the go, it’s a major plus. Think about strategies that will encourage your users to want to be more mobile, such as being able to access apps and data that they regularly use at their desks from any of their personal mobile devices. Automating controls for data sharing and allow the settings on devices to be able to print, store data and sync data, where team members can share information while they are on the go are some fantastic mobile strategy ideas to bear in mind as well. There are a plethora of useful apps and tools that can be used in conjunction with office technology to work hand in hand and make information sharing faster and easier.
Make sure the Technology Becomes Routine in the Office
Once the technology has been introduced and training has been executed, it is very important that using it becomes routine, otherwise the excitement dies down and the usage may die out. Essentially, this can be a waste of time, money and efforts. Therefore, monitoring the way that your employees are working after the new system has been introduced is important. Make requests that would require them to use the system- such as running reports that can only be done, or would be much easier to do using the new technology. Follow up with any questions or concerns that employees may be expressing about usage of the new technology so that they understand there is active involvement and that the technology won’t just go away.
Offer Rewards and other Incentives During the Onboarding Process
Making the learning process fun and interesting and offering incentives to your employees will get them excited. Whether it is a financial perk, the ability to perhaps work from home or a number of other options, bestowing rewards on those that are doing great work not just in learning, but in utilization of the technology once it has been set in place will encourage others to do the same.
Following suit with the aforementioned tips can lead to a simpler and more efficient approach to technology improvement and advancement in your workplace. Keep your employees interested, make them understand that the technology is there to improve their work, offer more efficiency and speed in getting things done and make their work- and ergo their lives- easier. In doing so, you will see many levels of success in integrating new technology into the workplace and lives of your employees.