The Key to Change Management According to 3 Experts
When it comes to B2B software, the last five years have marked an explosion of digital.
As companies rush to adopt, the rapid fire of change can have a detrimental effect on the organizational landscape. The sheer number of digital tools cause the ‘Overwhelmed employee’ effect.. This phenomenon contributes to today’s productivity paradox: Despite new tech, employee productivity has remained largely stagnant.
Ray Gobberg, WalkMe’s Director of Global Account Management summarized the problem artfully, “As wonderful and powerful as software has become, employees aren’t hired to hang out in tech platforms. It is our job to find a way to efficiently get people through these processes and back to their jobs.”
To discover how leading brands are tackling this issue, we co-sponsored a panel discussion alongside The Association of Change Management Professionals. This article will serve as your CliffsNotes guide to implementing effective change.
Change Management Tip #1: Streamline Your Processes
When we talk about change, we are talking about a process. For organizations restructuring the digital journey, Adobe Business Change Manager, Anne-Marie Grigsby, highlights the importance of keeping that process simple.
Unnecessary complexity is the enemy of any change initiative. The cognitive toll overwhelms employees. Grigsby describes a commonly frustrating situation, “I know I get very impatient when I go from one screen to another and I have to reenter my information for the 3rd time because there is no copy-paste.” This is one of many examples where software meant to improve workflow, does the opposite.
Grigsby explains how WalkMe serves Adobe’s change projects, “It is super important to streamline the path…WalkMe specializes in this.” The Digital Adoption Platform helps organizations simplify software adoption, whether it is heightening training efficiency or finding the best route to get from point A to point B within a specific software program.
Change Management Tip #2: Engage in Co-creation
Sherrod Patching, VP of Customer Success at Leadspace shares her organization’s hack for implementing a new platform: choosing a champion. This individual will advocate the platform among colleagues, encourage participation and lead constructive communication.
“I found the aspect of co-creation really interesting,” Patching shared with the panel, “We need to communicate clearly what it is we are changing to avoid surprises. The human [user] is at the center, and they should be part of the journey early on.” Using an internal employee to direct the conversation can go a long way to bolster support for organizational change.
Another tip Patching shared with the panel: Be picky. “We are very disciplined about the platforms we engage in. We use Salesforce, Slack, WalkMe and Gainsight. That’s it.” When it comes to change, often “less is more”. Vetting software for the value it can bring your organization prior to adoption can help avoid change fatigue.
Change Management Tip #3: Embrace Segmentation
Our very own Raj Sundarason, Global Head of Digital Adoption HR Line, concluded our change panel with a punch. “The biggest thing I have learned since I joined WalkMe,” he shares, “is really understanding the psyche of the end user: that one size doesn’t fit all. Once we start embracing that and bring true, personalized, change management programs to the different demographics and segments — I think we will see a different outcome in change programs.”
So how should companies go about segmenting their audience? Focus on data — leverage big data to gain a better understanding of the various segments. “For change to be impactful, we need to let the data tailor the experience.”
There is a multi-generational workforce that demands different ways of learning. Sundarason offered an example of this from the Financial Technology (Fintech) world. Banks are currently trying to find out how they can get t generations who are typically used to banking in person to adopt online banking.
By segmenting the audience and using data to track behavior, they found that this demographic is typically an early riser, most active between 6 AM & 8 AM. Banks that want to engage these users will be able to do so more efficiently by using this insight and targeting bankers during this time.
Interested in learning more about change management best practices? Watch the highlights from this engaging conversation here: