Seven Tips to Improve the Technology Adoption at your Organization

Sachid Tharayil

Sachid Tharayil

Director, d'frens

 

Employee Technology Adoption

Hari is the new HR Head who’s recently joined a sizable digital organization and saw that the company was hardly using any technology to improve the employee communication and engagement. Hari’s first charter was to transform the HR department and make it agile & technology-led. He invited several consultants and created a technology roadmap for the HR team and the employees to use. After several discussions with the CEO, he finally signed up with a bunch of cutting-edge tools and launched them in the organization with a lot of hullabaloo.

Hari is very excited about the new implementations and is all fired up to transform the engagement within the organization. After a quarter, it was time for him to present the initial report and Hari asked his team to pull up data from the tools and get insights. To his shock, he’s realized that the employee technology adoption of the new tools was very poor and that less than 5% of the employees had downloaded the latest collaboration app. He sent out an email to the employees to start using the tool and requested the CEO to send a reminder, after which a further 10% of employees downloaded the app.

Six months passed, employee technology adoption remained poor and Hari realized that it was a sunk investment! Employees slowly forgot about the tool and went back to their old style of communication.

Do you relate with Hari and his problem?

We do.

We see it every day when companies invite us to help them improve the technology adoption.

There are a host of unique technologies coming out in the market, and each brings a lot to the table. But technology works only if the employee technology adoption is high. All too often (such as in Hari’s case), the adoption and utilization barely touch double figures.

Here are some top tips to improve the technology adoption:

Tip#1 – Millennials: Don’t assume that Millennials will grab any technology

Yes, Millennials love technology but not every technology. Especially, if it is work related.  Do not expect the millennials to grab on to your internal social sharing app as they did Facebook or Instagram. What millennials like is the freedom technology offers. To express themselves without being judged. So, ensure that your technologies do the same. Challenging in a corporate setup, but vital if you want them to use it.

Tip#2 – Change Management: Treat technology implementation as a change management process

Technology adoption is not usually given much thought when being introduced in an organization. However, it needs a serious plan and design. What is changing here? The behaviors of the employees and the HR staff. Managing behavioral changes is the most difficult in the process of managing change. Ensure that you treat technology adoption as any significant change management process.

Tip#3 – Utilization: App download is not equal to utilization

We have several apps on our mobile phone, but we end up using only a handful of them. The rest is as good as not being on the phone. Your app being downloaded by 50% of your employees doesn’t mean that 50% of your employees are using the app. Focus your campaigns and define measurement criteria for improving utilization.

Tip#4: Sustenance: The real story starts after three months

The real challenge in the technology adoption is in sustaining the utilization. You might have a high utilization rate initially, but the curve starts dropping after three months. This means that the initial excitement wears off and this is when the drop-offs start happening. Depending on the technology you use, focus on keeping it fresh at all times.

Tip#5 – Consumer Tech: Think like a Consumer Technology provider

Consumer technologies become successful because of continuous improvement. They constantly take customer feedback and continuously add exciting new features. This is a rarity in a Corporate technology development. Has your technology gone through the number of changes that Facebook has? Unlikely right? It is essential that you think like a technology provider to keep the product exciting at all levels.

Tip#6: Experience: Design and track the customer experience

This perhaps is the most important thing. Customer experience, or employee experience, in this case, is the driving factor for any technology adoption and sustenance. Most of the corporate level technologies ignore this fact and launch a one-size-fits-all product. The lack of personalization makes the technology generic and less useful to the employees.

Tip#7: Positioning: Who are you launching the new technology for? What’s your product positioning?

Are you launching the product for the organization or the employee? What you will perhaps say is that it’s for the employee benefit, but the truth is otherwise. Or at least, that is not how an employee will see it. There are a ton of “employee survey” products and most of them still struggle with lack of responses. That is not an adoption issue, it is the way the product is internally positioned. It is essential to position the product such that employees see the benefits directly. And, they will look at the benefits only when the transparency is maintained, and the results are delivered.

Apart from the above, there are a number of things that will help you in improving the ROI of your technology investments – key among them is actual engagement and experiential communication of benefits – creating employee experiences that stand out. We’d love to talk to you one-on-one and understand your problem better.

And yes, please do add your thoughts and any other tips you have in the comments below.