Every day, there are new tools that come into the market to make us more productive. More so since the global pandemic took hold.
It’s become essential for businesses to adapt to the new normal by using these new tools to keep their businesses running.
However, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t roadblocks in the way. In this post, I’ll lay out the challenges that appear when you introduce new technology to your work. And then we’ll cover strategies to successfully implement new tools at the workplace.
Why it’s challenging to Introduce New Technology
While new tools and processes can boost productivity by a wide margin, you may not see the benefits if they aren’t implemented well.
To begin with, let’s take a look at the major obstacles that can keep your business from adapting to new technology fasts:
- Not understanding your employees’ real needs. Be mindful that you don’t invest in sophisticated tools without talking to your team first. You may end up getting tools that are too difficult for them to use and with features that are unnecessary. Or the opposite may happen – you get tools that don’t have all the features people need
- Not doing a trial run: Don’t just buy a tool because it’s well marketed. Use the opportunity to take a trial of the productivity tools out there before buying one.
- Complicating your workflows: You want to keep your workflows as simple as possible. It isn’t necessary to use every feature just because it’s there. A simple Kanban board can be all you need instead of elaborate project management tools.
- Not offering training: Your employees need to have the training to know how to use tools. When you just give them tools and expect them to learn them, you’ll see very little adaptation.
- Resistance to change: Most people are resistant to any kind of change – even when it’s good. If you aren’t prepared to deal with resistance, your tools will lie unused
There are many reasons why new technology isn’t easily adapted to at work. We need to address this issue with proactive and practical steps.
Let’s take a look at ways you can effectively include new technology at work.
The Best Ways to Introduce New Technology
Even though it’s challenging to implement new ways of doing things with new tools, you can’t avoid it.
So, let’s look at the best tips to follow to introduce new tech to your company to boost productivity.
Get Employees Involved
A big mistake that businesses make is that they bring in tools and workflows without input from the people who’ll work with them.
Always ask your team members for suggestions on the best tools to use. You can assign a person or two to try out different tools and make recommendations.
Also, get your team to work on the tools for a month before committing to long-term investment. In this way, you’re far more likely to get the right tools and also will win your employees’ goodwill. Which can be a game-changer for your business since studies show that 27% of employees leave because they feel unappreciated. And 79% of people leave ‘good jobs’ because they don’t feel valued.
While this is obvious, many leaders don’t realize how much training is needed before people get comfortable with new workflows and tech.
Aside from investing in new tools, you may also have to offer your employees specialized online courses and in-house training. And such activities need even more investment from you – which is worthwhile.
It’s important to also repeat the training if necessary. Or to add video content and documentation to your internal hub. Your employees need to have access to such training material whenever they’re stuck, or at least, reach out to someone who can help them learn.
Personalize Your Training and Tools
Your employees will be more engaged and willing to learn when your training and tool setup is personalized.
Give time for people to ask questions or enable different teams to tweak tools so that it works for them. As long as things are running smoothly, you don’t want to dictate exactly how people work.
Make sure that you offer separate training sessions for those who need extra help to get comfortable with the new changes.
Win Over Champions to Your Cause
When even a few people in an organization resist change, it impacts everyone else around them.
Similarly, if you can win over a champion or two to advocate for change, then you’ll have an easier time implementing change.
To start with, begin by observing who in your team is open to change and is also someone who has a strong social connection with other people.
Let them know about your intent to bring in new technologies to the business and ask them to start using them. As you work with these champions, listen to their ideas for ways to make change easier in the organization.
For a specific period of time, you can enable such champions to spearhead a project to support change. They can have conversations with team members, arrange group sessions, and have fun activities around learning.
Your champions for change can make a tremendous difference by simply being encouraging and excited. So, identify them and encourage them to be a part of the change and lead it too.
Introducing new technology into the work environment can be a positive step for workplaces. The addition of new technology and tools boosts productivity and improves the company’s future.
However, before you deploy new software or infrastructure, make sure you’ve covered off all factors listed out here to make change easier.
- Train people
- Give them a heads up
- Personalize your training and support different learning styles
- Ask your employees to suggest new tools
When you follow these suggestions, you’ll find that creating change will be easier but not without conflict.
As human beings, we have a natural tendency to prefer familiarity even when change leads to betterment.
Understanding this will help you make necessary changes to your organization and support growth.