Imagine: You’ve been watching Freeview TV for as long as you can remember, and one day, you finally decide to upgrade to something with more channels, like Sky. Why do you do this? Because you want more stuff to watch. So, you upgrade to Sky and get all that extra content at a touch of a button. There’s just one problem, you have no idea how to use your new remote or navigate the menu. All this great new content, and you can only use your TV in the same way as before.
This is what it is like when you introduce new tech into your workplace, and don’t properly plan and manage the training and adoption. People will naturally just try to work as close to their original way of working before the upgrade – and therefore you miss out on all the great new features and chances for improved productivity.
Where to Start?
At the most basic level change begins either from the top or the bottom, but neither of these approaches are fool proof. For example, top-down change is more structured, but the workforce may be reluctant to change their practices. On the other hand, bottom-up change may be met with less resistance but will take longer to implement.
Real results will be seen when you blend the two approaches together, utilising the structure and organisation of a top-down approach and the inclusiveness and input of a bottom-up approach.
Do your research.
During the ATD International Conference & Exposition of 2016 it was revealed that 90 percent of training is designed without a well-defined strategy that facilitates it. Executives will stress why the training they want to implement is beneficial to the organisation, but workers may be left wondering what is in it for them? How will the change benefit their day-to-day work?
Therefore, it is important for executives to do training needs analysis, and communicate with your workforce on their everyday practices, how they work, what motivates them, what they struggle with day-to-day etc. This will enable you to address how the training will improve workforce experience, and implement a structured training program tailored for them.
Don’t expect enthusiasm. Inspire it.
Management may think the new software they are rolling out is the most revolutionary thing since spreadable butter! But this doesn’t mean the workforce will share that enthusiasm. While it’d be easier for everyone if executives, line managers and workers were aligned and motivated to implement the change, that dream ticket is rare. That being said, there will be a minority of people – cited around 13% of the affected population – who will support the change in question. Those early adopters are the people you need to utilize, they are the people who can implement social learning in the workplace where people learn from one another, which is an important theory in learning and social behaviour.
Moreover, one of the biggest priorities in workplace training should be to make it fun and engaging – in a study presented by SH!FT Disruptive eLearning, they found that 1 out of every 3 employees said uninspiring content was a barrier to their learning.
When to Stop?
Firstly, don’t think that a one-off training program will be enough. You can show people how to use new software or technologies, but it requires further supplementation to cement the new practices.
A strong training program will be followed by regular and consistent opportunities for practice, punctuated with post-training follow up sessions. The goal is to utilise the knowledge while it is fresh in people’s minds and reflect upon it in order to cement the new skills. Post-training follow-up sessions can also help identify gaps in the training program. Trainees may report being unable to recall learning points after training is complete. So, if the follow-up sessions identify a common gap in users’ recall, a refresher course can be tailored to cover them.
From the get-go it’s important that every single person in your organisation understands their accountability. The simplest example is when the workforce are accountable to engage with learning and management are accountable to transfer learning. But accountability is not simply a matter of telling people what they need to do and reprimanding them if they do not do it, the worry being a pecking order will emerge where everyone experiences mounting pressure.
Accountability involves ensuring everyone knows what is expected of them, and how best to achieve it. So, to expand upon the initial example, workforce is accountable to communicate with their superiors about what skills, knowledge, and experience they already have relating to the change being implemented; and what they need to improve upon. Equally, management are accountable to design and facilitate a training program tailored to the needs of their workforce.
Managing the Change
Within the last 12 months, TechQuarters have identified the need to support the adoption toolkit and have now introduced a Change Management service suited to larger rollouts of 100-plus users to manage the implementation of training tools, giving users an ROI on purchases of Office 365 and Microsoft 365.
This Change Management service will help users understand the Microsoft 365 applications through our A.I e-learning training systems, with continued messaging across several months to reinforce training and user stats and analytics to help with accountability. Benefits to the customer include a more productive workforce, less downtime, ROI on Microsoft 365 purchases, improved staff morale, and positive client perception.
By signing up to the 365 Cloud Academy / Cosmo Bot, our staff will ensure that your needs are fulfilled with monthly calls and regular assessments on any assistance you require.
For more information on our Change Management service, call 08001 148 8001 or fill out the form below: