As processes are digitalized and comprehensive software replaces cumbersome manual and paper-based processes, it is essential to prepare employees for this significant change. In the field services industry, this is often a big leap. A few weeks ago we discussed what it takes to get your organization ready for change. In this blog, our experienced consultants have come up with five practical change management tips for guaranteeing the easy adoption of new Field Service Management (FSM) software systems.
1. Communicate, communicate, communicate!
Don’t forget your users! They are one of the most essential parts of a successful transition to Field Service Management software. The earlier you start preparing your team for the switch, the more transparent and seamless the change will be. In our experience, many corporations expend substantial resources prior to implementation on the evaluation of new FSM solutions and not nearly enough on training and communicating to the future user of the software. Remember, the best digital solutions are worthless if no one understands how they operate.
2. Assign a Changemaker
When major across-the-board changes are executed within a company, it might sometimes be unclear what role everyone has to play. This problem is compounded in smaller companies where employees often perform more than one function. That is why it is essential to put one person in charge of communications. This could be a project head, application owner, product owner, or other service-oriented employee who takes on the responsibility of devising a timeplan and communicating essential information to all employees. Alternatively, you could turn to your HR department or internal communications team as they likely have the most experience with relaying messages to staff and monitoring company morale.
The ideal solution would be to assign a change manager, someone whose primary and only goal is to oversee the transition. Whatever solution you opt for, it is crucial that you do not simply impose changes on your employees without proper training and instruction. Without the approval and acceptance of your team, you run the risk of diminishing employee satisfaction.
3. It’s All About First Impressions
The only thing worse than springing a new FSM solution on your employees with no preparation or warning, is doing so with a solution that does not work or have real benefit. Countless studies have proven the benefits of Field Service Management software. Real-time response time and overviews, immediate reporting and invoicing, increased opportunities for upselling and cross-selling. The benefits are enormous. Be that as it may, such a comprehensive solution involves the integration of numerous interfaces with existing IT infrastructure. And the functionality of all these connections need to be tested.
If all the stakeholders are aware of the benefits, the foundation of a successful implementation is laid.
One benefit for technicians, for example is that they will no longer have to write reports by hand following a service visit, but will have completed everything once the visit is over.”
The dispatcher will then have a real-time overview and can simply drag-and-drop tasks to dispatch them to the technicians. There will no longer be a need for complicated Excel spreadsheets anymore.
4. Get Everyone Involved
We are all more receptive to new concepts and ideas if we have ample information about them. It is no different for your employees. By getting all stakeholders involved in company-wide changes at the very early stages of the transition, you will promote acceptance. Give your employees the opportunity to provide feedback. And take their input seriously! Especially if it is coming from those employees who will be relying on your new FSM solution most. The earlier necessary adjustments are made during the implementation process, the easier it will be to ensure a smooth roll out. On the contrary, if you wait too long to address any potential problems, you might compromise the entire implementation process and delay the software’s usability. Getting everyone involved is the simplest way to avert problems and ensure that everyone is satisfied with your new solution.
5. Celebrate a Job Well Done
Give your employees something to look forward to and thank them for all their efforts! A small, or large, get-together to celebrate the successful roll out of your new FSM solution is a way to show your employees that you appreciate their cooperation, involvement, and contribution to company changes. It is not only a huge motivator, it is also a great way to kick off this new start.
Digitalization is no longer a topic for Silicon Valley CEOs. It is a very real process that is affecting all industries.
So our final piece of advice to you: even if you are not currently in the process of implementing an Field Service Management solution, it would serve you well to start getting your company ready for these changes. Even if the only connection you make to IT is a Stephen King horror flick, it is critical that your company stay abreast of the latest trends in the digital transformation. Ease your employees into the idea of going digital with trainings, seminars, or visits to digital trade fairs. Resting all your hopes on the status quo could prove a decisive blow to your company’s future.