Let's face it; deploying a new system in your organization can be terrifying. A CRM or ERP application rollout involves customizing a standard application to meet and automate the unique needs of an organization - typically changing almost every aspect of the business processes and wreaking havoc on the status quo. Pitfalls lurk in every corner but often involve things like loss of productivity during the training period, management unable to provide the promised resources, key performance indicators (KPIs) and deadlines being missed, and fearful employees refusing or unable to adopt the new business application you want them now to use.
So what can you do to reduce the risk and ensure a successful application rollout and employee adoption? Here are a few tips for making everything come together smoothly:
- Make sure management and key stakeholders are involved
An application deployment’s ultimate success, especially if it is enterprise-wide or global, requires the full cooperation and support of top level staff and management. A good idea is to organize a deployment team, comprised of stakeholders from all departments, which will be deeply involved throughout the implementation process to determine functionality, monitor progress and share in the responsibility and decision-making.
- Engage in extra help
Often staff members will be required to increase their task load to provide the level of detail and support necessary for a new system implementation. This is especially the case for your IT department. They will not only be helping end users adjust to the change, but also adapting to the change themselves. Performance support systems can significantly reduce the number of calls to your Help Desk a typical occurrence following deployment of a new application. The performance support platform will provide employees with real-time guidance and automation to support them at their moment of need thereby preventing an onslaught of frantic and frustrated users calling IT for assistance. Consequently, your desktop support team and IT department can spend less time fielding calls about how to complete a task in the new system and more time focusing on technical support issues.
- Help your employees prepare for change
A new application rollout is a major overhaul that can disrupt every employee’s daily work experience and productivity. Research and human nature dictate that many users will initially be resistant to change, preferring to stay in the comfort zone of processes they already know and use. Take time to communicate to personnel why the new system is being implemented, what outcomes are expected, and the overall benefits once it is implemented. Users will be more inclined to embrace change if they feel that they are receiving the proper training and support. Therein lies another dilemma: How can we provide proper training without compromising performance?
- Give your training a boost
Performance support systems, such as Leo, shorten the training duration by supporting users in real-time, in the live application. Traditional training programs often run long because they need to take into account all scenarios including infrequent tasks. However, since these tasks and procedures seldom occur in live environments, the knowledge and skills required to handle them are the first to dissolve. With a performance support system in place, organizations can feel comfortable eliminating large portions of their training programs and shortening the training period.
A new application rollout doesn’t have to be a nightmarish experience. Involving key personnel and stakeholders early in the process will ensure informed decisions are made at key junctures. Open communication channels, extra support during the transition and performance support for employees will yield a better understanding, commitment, and faster adoption from all people expected to use the software.
Do you have any tips you’d like to share? Please leave a reply below.
Kryon Systems helps organizations around the world to improve their business results by shortening or eliminating training, reducing users’ mistakes, increasing productivity and facilitating compliance with corporate policies and procedures. Kryon’s flagship solution, Leo, provides performance support to organizations. When using Leo, business managers can rest assured that their workforce performs at the level they expect, from the first time, every time.