Adapting to technological innovations is important for any business that strives to stay relevant and profitable. For instance, the early 2000s saw the introduction of the internet, which revolutionized the industry forever.
In 2019, the onset of COVID-19 accelerated the push for remote working and software implementation for businesses that may not have considered these changes for the foreseeable future. The use of technology has been a boom for businesses, leading to increased profits, lower expenses, and higher productivity.
However, it has created its fair share of problems as well, the prominent one being reduced focus on employee welfare and needs. In this article by Allen Marketing Communications, Inc., a boutique travel and lifestyle public relations agency based in New York City, we explore how businesses can help employees adapt to the new paradigm shift while reaping the benefits of innovation.
Maintain an Open Dialogue
Forcing changes onto employees is never a good idea, even if it is in the business's best interests. For instance, while most employees may welcome work-from-home, others may prefer to continue working in an office setting. Additionally, as research has shown, work-from-home has led to employees working longer hours than before, which eventually leads to burnout and lower productivity.
Hence, before fully committing to such a change, maintain an open dialogue with employees to gather feedback regarding their expectations, reservations, and concerns. Post discussions create new policies to make a smooth transition.
Delegate the responsibility of managing such transitions to a Chief Information Officer (CIO). If the business does not have a CIO, consider handling the role yourself until you hire one. As reported by The Enterprisers Project, an experienced CIO will ensure that new technology implementations are promptly communicated with all stakeholders and completed on time.
Software is only useful for a business when used correctly. If a major chunk of your employees struggle with the basics of new software enforced upon them, it is bound to reduce productivity and cause frustration. Similar to how new hires are provided training before being thrown into the thick of things, implement a company-wide training program to teach employees how to use new technology the right way.
While commonly used software such as a CRM (customer relationship management) tool will require training for all, team-specific training should be conducted as well. For instance, the marketing team can be trained in using the new social media management tool. Training will help employees adapt to changes faster and benefit from higher levels of productivity and job satisfaction.
Use Business Process Management Software
A common drawback of using multiple software tools for the business is the lack of cohesiveness between them. For example, the marketing team may not have access to tools used by customer service personnel. Hence, they’ll depend on emails or spreadsheets created by those in the customer service team to receive feedback on campaigns, customer demands, and more. Not only is this an ineffective and unreliable way of communication, but it also contradicts the whole point of using software to boost productivity.
A business process management (BPM) software connects all individual software used by the business, making it easy for stakeholders to access information as and when needed. Additionally, BPM & prioritization go hand in hand as by utilizing artificial intelligence (AI), BPM reviews your workflows and highlights inefficiencies and errors which can be rectified to increase productivity.
Gather Consistent Feedback
Adapting to a remote working schedule and using new software will be a big change for everyone. While training will make the transition easier, there will always be roadblocks along the way. One of the best ways to prevent new problems is to consistently gather feedback from employees, this can include:
Additionally, consider hosting in-person events periodically. This will allow employees to personally meet their co-workers, develop stronger bonds and receive a much-needed break from remote working.
Employees are the backbone of any business and by implementing these steps you’ll create a remote working culture that strikes the right balance between employee welfare and company goals.
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Guest Post: Chelsea Lamb at Business Pop
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