The business world has been steeped in digital transformation for nearly a decade, yet many organizations are still struggling to “become digital.” One of the most formidable challenges for business leaders is accepting the idea that digital is not something to implement or switch on, but rather an ongoing, complete change in the technology and the people who use it. Digital success depends on many factors, but mainly on an organization’s ability to transform how its employees get their jobs done—from anywhere and at any time.
Companies must put strategies in place that focus on the people to help facilitate adoption and inspire employees to embrace new ways of working. It’s simple because people, not organizations, drive transformation. Indeed, to bring about company-wide change, organizations must first understand how to create change at the individual level.
Technology changes are, for the most part, focused on achieving organizational goals. But for change to be effective—that is, for organizations to gain employee buy-in and acceptance—it must appeal to individual needs and goals.
A January Harvard Business Review article neatly sums up what’s necessary: “It requires foundational investments in skills, projects, infrastructure, and, often, in cleaning up IT systems. It requires mixing people, machines, and business processes, with all of the messiness that entails. It also requires continuous monitoring and intervention, from the top, to ensure that both digital leaders and non-digital leaders are making good decisions about their transformation efforts.”
That’s where it gets complicated.
Traditionally, IT implementations have been riddled with fatigue and the notion that it’s something that happens to or is forced on business users. Over the years, as we have grown from a software support center to a learning and development company, we have seen the effect such an approach can have on initiatives—if people do not know about the technology or how to use it to get their jobs done, the technology will fail.
We designed our PROPEL Methodology to foster adoption aimed at the human side of technology deployments through the four key project stages—discover, plan, adopt, and empower. Through the stages of PROPEL, we gain an understanding of where the client is and where they want to go. We design communication and learning solutions based on that data to achieve organizational transformation and ROI.
Traditionally, IT implementations have been riddled with fatigue and the notion that it’s something that happens to or is forced on business users
Because PROPEL is underpinned by Prosci’s ADKAR model—which is the leading change management approach focused on motivating change at the individual level—it enables us to drive successful projects and business outcomes through a full suite of planning and learning solutions.
The ADKAR model provides direction and structure by outlining the five stages individuals experience when making a change:
- Awareness of the need to change
- Desire to participate and support the change
- Knowledge about how to change
- Ability to implement new skills and behaviors
- Reinforcement to continue to support the user after the change has occurred
Helping people change can be an ambiguous process—through PROPEL, we are able to deliver services that drive individuals through the ADKAR elements.
- Our communications services make people aware of the change, explain the organizational goals and benefits (what’s in it for me?), and outline what to expect and where to get help. This information is delivered in various forms, including emails, posters, postcards, digital displays, and sponsor or stakeholder messaging. Additionally, we provide Excite Days, or onsite “pep rally” events with elements of gamification, promotional items and other opportunities to help foster the desire to participate in the change. These events also increase engagement and momentum leading up to the implementation.
- Our learning and development solutions—including instructor-led training, our Help Me kNow Hub, guides, and other services—provide users with knowledge that’s tailored to their organization and individual use cases or workstyles. In addition, our communications solutions provide knowledge through pre-implementation preparation and post-migration checklists.
- Our live, one-on-one software coaching and Help Me kNow Hub Skills Tracks (iterative learning modules) support users as they work toward the ability to become proficient with new technology and explore new ways of getting things done with new skills and behaviors. Through our data-driven learning solutions and continuous analysis of usage and adoption data, we work with our clients to reinforce and support users.
These solutions work together to deliver unique, employee-centric experiences that enable our clients to drive sustainable improvements for continued innovation and growth. Because of that, we are also proud to have been named the top U.S. Microsoft 365 Adoption Partner of the Year at the Microsoft Inspire conference. The honor validated the truly transformational service we offer our clients.
But there’s always room for improvement—in today’s digital business environment, it’s become a mandate. We, too, must stay on top of changes with continuous monitoring and intervention. With our PROPEL Methodology, and Prosci’s ADKAR model as a guide, we can continue to help our clients bring about more successful outcomes.
We’re excited about the digital future. Are you?
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As director of learning and development, it’s Wilmer’s job to propel Vitalyst and its clients toward a higher level of achievement. To do so, he relies on his proven experience in delivering successful, comprehensive learning programs, and his expertise in leading the design and deployment of global, high-impact learning solutions.
As communications champion, Courtney works with Vitalyst’s clients to foster smooth transitions to Microsoft Office 365 and other workplace technology, build excitement among employees to maximize adoption, and help organizations reach a higher return on their workplace investments.