There are countless tools, programs, and applications designed to make life easier for businesses and employees. But which are the right tools? How do you establish them in the company? And how much does such a changeover cost?
The first question companies often ask themselves when choosing digital tools such as video conferencing or collaboration software is this: Do we need a set of highly specialized tools or rather an all-in-one solution? Such a general question cannot be answered in general terms. Nevertheless, some parameters help with the decision. For very small companies and teams, for example, it makes sense to rely on a solution that covers many processes. This is because a person usually takes on several roles, which is why it is rather exhausting to constantly switch between different tools. Highly specialized teams, on the other hand, do better with a tool that is tailored to their tasks and supports them perfectly. Which ones are, however, must first be identified internally in the company before possibly dazzling, but ultimately useless technologies are purchased.
Avoid chaos of tools
The more different platforms there are, the more unclear it becomes what should happen with which tool. When selecting the specific tools, there is a clear motto: “User first”. The best tool is of no use if it does not meet the needs of users – because, after all, it is the colleagues in the individual departments who have to work with the future systems daily.
To get to know the needs of the employees, it is advisable to first design a requirements workshop – depending on the dimension of the tool, it can take a few hours or extend over several months. Such workshops aim to understand where the shoe presses the users in today’s system and what improvements they want through a future tool. It is always clear that these are often very different things than management has in mind.
In addition to employees, management and management, IT experts and the data protection officer should also be at the table from the outset when choosing the right tools to ensure not only functionality but also security.
First Evaluate, then Implement
Once the software has been selected, the next big step is to implement it. From a financial point of view, it is advisable to evaluate the new tools in small teams before rolling them out throughout the company. External specialists can support this to increase the introduction speed – a factor that is decisive for the acceptance of employees.
At the latest, if the tool is to be established throughout the company, there should also be common binding usage rules, so that the tools are used by everyone in the same way. Under all circumstances, it is necessary to avoid leaving the employee alone with the new tool, both at the beginning and in the day-to-day business. For this reason, careful training that explains how the tools work and the advantages of the tools is not to be missed, especially with complex tools. Even if companies like to save on this: training is a real game-changer. Depending on the tool, the pieces of training can also be recorded as webinars and then offered as live or on-demand.
Additional Costs are a Necessary Evil
The question of the cost is very dependent on the tool and also on how many employees use it. Of course, a small team – an internal tool costs less than one that is rolled out throughout the company. That is why there is a great deal of room for manoeuvre. It can go from a few thousand dollars to the millions.
In addition to the royalties for the software, however, there are always costs for consulting, workshops and pieces of training. However, it is precisely these “additional costs” that make a decisive contribution to the acceptance and success or failure of a tool. If it is software that serves the digital transformation of the company and is to be used by (almost) all employees, it is essential to invest this additional money. Ideally, the productivity gain will bring the costs back in sooner or later.
High Effort, Great Impact
Whether large or small, companies should not underestimate the number of resources they need to introduce digital tools. But especially in times of increasing remote work, they become an indispensable tool for many. In the entire process, those responsible should keep reminding themselves: the digital tools should serve the employees and the company, not the other way around! Ideally, the software relieves employees in their daily work and creates space for new tasks and areas of activity.Tagged With Dr Sudip Ghosh