One of the great challenges for many companies when it comes to technology and its impact on corporate transformation isn’t whether to invest in it, it’s how to get employees using it after that investment is made. People are creatures of habit, and we become comfortable with the platforms we’ve grown to love. And, considering the pace of change that’s occurring today when it comes to new platforms, devices, and apps, it can be hard sometimes to keep an open mind about new technologies—and even harder to integrate them into everyday work habits.
This isn’t just an issue for the rank and file. It’s an issue for companies from the top down. Remember when the character of Eduardo Savrin in “The Social Network” confessed to not knowing how to change his relationship status on Facebook even though he was the CFO…? We can giggle, but this is exactly what happened at corporations everywhere. If company leaders aren’t adopting the latest and greatest technology, how can they expect their employees to eagerly jump on board?
Why Adoption Isn’t Happening
Here’s the thing—in my opinion, adoption will be more important in the future, as technology’s shelf life continues to shorten. This means that companies must be proactively in front of the changing landscape of devices and application usage. They also need better education plans to help employees learn about new innovations and methods of adoption.
If not? Here’s the outcome: Employees attend easy, breezy, workshop-style training sessions, and then are left to their own devices. These workers don’t know how to incorporate what they’ve just learned into their established daily routines. They forget everything they learned and continue performing duties like they always did, using the tried and true apps and platforms they’ve come to love. Six months later, the C-Suite is shocked to discover that employees—who should be hips deep in the newest technology—are toiling away using an outdated system, and money is flying out the door.
To solve this learning gap, businesses need to focus on adoption efforts rather than just teaching efforts. While I think training employees on how to use devices is still important, it’s the actual implementation of the devices that’s being lost in the shuffle. On-demand learning, training, and user experience prioritization are going to be key when it comes to adopting new technology at an enterprise level.
To successfully navigate the wide world of constantly updating devices and applications, we need to implement solid education plans plus adoption techniques, as soon as the technology becomes publicly available. This combination ensures the people in your company will come out of the technological gate ready to go.
Build a Toolbox for Success
If you’re ready to build a transformed digital organization, armed with the capability to adopt the latest tech, employees must be given the tools needed to successfully adopt new technology. These include:
- Innovative and user-friendly training programs.
- Employee monitoring after new technology has been introduced.
- Question-and-answer forums about the new technology through a shared space, like a virtual whiteboard or a collaboration application like Slack.
- Top-down leadership—giving employees a role model to follow while trying to integrate the new technology.
- Ensuring there’s follow-up employee progress so everyone is benefitting from the new technology, and no one is left behind.
- Comprehensive plans outlining the ways in which the new technology will be used in the future.
- Incentives for those who go the extra mile in the first legs of adoption, which can increase employee involvement and lead to better overall implementation.
Follow Up on Transformation
To improve business productivity, I believe new technology can’t simply be introduced and then forgotten. It must be constantly tweaked, reevaluated, and replaced as evolution in the space occurs. Adoption encouragement will always be a practice well worth your company’s time and collective energy, and will always result in positive ROI. Businesses that fail to incorporate new innovation trends will be left in the dust in today’s fast-moving and rather merciless tech-savvy universe.
Don’t be disheartened by the challenges that come with implementing corporate wide tech adoption and transformation. After all, what is new technology for if it isn’t to improve our lives?
Additional Resources on this Topic:
Daniel Newman is the Principal Analyst of Futurum Research and the CEO of Broadsuite Media Group. Living his life at the intersection of people and technology, Daniel works with the world’s largest technology brands exploring Digital Transformation and how it is influencing the enterprise. From Big Data to IoT to Cloud Computing, Newman makes the connections between business, people and tech that are required for companies to benefit most from their technology projects, which leads to his ideas regularly being cited in CIO.Com, CIO Review and hundreds of other sites across the world. A 5x Best Selling Author including his most recent “Building Dragons: Digital Transformation in the Experience Economy,” Daniel is also a Forbes, Entrepreneur and Huffington Post Contributor. MBA and Graduate Adjunct Professor, Daniel Newman is a Chicago Native and his speaking takes him around the world each year as he shares his vision of the role technology will play in our future.