Software implementation can be challenging. Launching new software can mean big changes for your employees. Change is one of the toughest things a company can navigate but without it, growth can never happen.
Successful software implementation calls for a structured approach. Change management uses tools and techniques, like strategic planning, project management and organizational development, to help people within the organization adapt to a change and function in a new and desired state. Adopting new technology, like software implementation, is an ideal opportunity to use change management.
Implementing any new software system, like HR software, is likely to be met with some resistance. New SaaS technology, like a cloud-based applicant tracking system, onboarding or learning management system, often means more efficient and streamlined processes down the road. But initially it can be met with friction if employees don’t understand why the change is happening.
Change management addresses that resistance head-on by communicating the reasons behind the change. It requires strong leaders to help employees understand the change and make sure the process goes smoothly.
What is Change Management?
The Association of Change Management Professionals defines change management as “the practice of applying a structured approach to transition an organization from a current state to a future state to achieve expected benefits.”
A purposeful focus on change management helps organizations face resistance head-on so that adapting to new technology goes smoothly. Change management is used before, during and after implementing any new software and leadership plays a key role.
3 C’s of Successful Change Management for Software Implementation
Change capable leaders are critical to successful change management, according to the Center for Creative Leadership. This is equally true for software implementation. Effective change leadership can be broken down into the three C’s:
- Communicate. Successful change managers communicate with key stakeholders to understand the why and the what. They explain the purpose behind the change and connect it to the company’s values. The end result is a stronger buy-in and urgency for change.
- Collaborate. Effective change managers bring people together and encourage employees to work together and won’t tolerate unhealthy competition. They also include employees in the planning early on, engaging them in the process before resistance can occur.
- Commit. Successful change managers take part in the implementation of the change and encourage others to support the change as well. Successful change leaders are resilient, persistent and willing to step outside their comfort zone. They also devote more of their own time to the efforts of change management and are focused on the big picture.
Software Implementation Best Practices
Software implementation best practices should be used before, during and after implementation.
Outline the whys for upgrading your HR software and the benefits it will bring.
- Some of the ‘whys’ may include:
- Current time to hire is too long
- Cost per hire is too expensive
- Managing timesheets is time-consuming and prone to error
- Employees aren’t meeting goals
- New training and certifications need to be completed
- Turnover is too high
Benefits of Software implementation may include:
- It will save time.
- It will save money.
- It will provide a better overall employee experience.
Identify obstacles to changing and successfully implementing your HR software.
Consider what internal and external support will be required.
- Do you currently have the staff to fully implement the new software?
- Do you need to hire outside help?
- Can you train your employees yourself to use it?
Get buy-in from upper management and employees.
- As part of your software implementation, give employees a small gift for completing training, like a hot/cold drink container customized with your company logo and a fun “we did it” message.
- To emphasize project time-savings, encourage some time away from the screen with a company picnic, or, for remote employees, a gift card that would cover the cost of a movie or a meal.
- Plan a presentation virtually or in-person to recognize the software implementation team along with employees who have begun using the system, for example, the first manager to hire a new employee through the system, or the first few employees to complete an assigned course through the system.
Choose a vendor that can help the change go smoothly.
Arcoro’s HR software experts have guided thousands of organizations through the process of selecting and implementing the right HR and people management modules that best fit their needs. Arcoro offers modular HR solutions that allow companies to hire, manage and grow their workforces.
- ExakTime Time and Attendance
- Performance Management
- Learning Management
- Succession Planning
The support doesn’t stop with the sale. Our team will guide you through setup, configuration and testing of our software. Arcoro also offers targeted training, so you’ll be able to be an expert for your employees.
- “Train the trainer” approach tailored to the unique requirements of your business
- Co-authoring of your company’s workforce management goals
- Award-winning, responsive service every step of the way
- A dedicated implementation manager assigned to you and focused on your specific needs
- Custom development service available for clients with targeted functionality needs
Would you like more guidance on using Change Management best practices, especially when launching a new software system? Get our Guide.