07 Dec Tips For Introducing New Communication Tools To Your Team
Change is often a positive thing. In an age of digital transformation, where workplaces are growing increasingly remote, and the way we connect is evolving, change is becoming mandatory. Failure to be open and adaptable to change could mean you’re unable to run your company efficiently, serve your customers, or beat the competition.
During 2020, when the pandemic struck, many organizations discovered just how little agility their businesses really head. When offices and contact centres closed, only the companies capable of embracing rapid digital change survived.
Now that the world is back on track again, innovators are beginning to take advantage of the influx of new tools and technology on the market, particularly in the communication sector. Investment in a digital communication solution, such as UC as a Service (UCaaS) or Contact Centre as a Service (CCaaS) is higher than ever. Digital transformation isn’t just a way of unlocking new capabilities anymore – it’s a vital part of future-proofing the company.
Of course, that doesn’t mean your employees will be as excited about the change as you.
So, how do you introduce new tech to your team, the right way?
Key Tips for Implementing New Communication Tools
In today’s workplace, there are numerous generations of different employees all working together in the same, evolving space. Some of your employees will be naturally comfortable with the idea of embracing more digital tools for communication and collaboration. Others may be reluctant to abandon practices they’re used to.
Unfortunately, failure to plan for adoption and buy-in when launching your new UCaaS or CCaaS strategy could mean you don’t get the ROI you’ve hoped for. Transformative tools can only enhance your business when your employees actually use them.
So, where do you begin?
1. Create a Plan
The first step in any successful adoption strategy, is having the right plan. You need to know exactly why you’re implementing your new communication tools, what you hope to accomplish, and what you’re going to need to deal with along the way.
When searching for the right UCaaS and CCaaS provider, you probably had a few features or services you were prioritizing, based on the results you hoped to achieve. For instance, if you’re now implementing a new UCaaS environment, you may have been looking for tools with their own collaboration systems in place, so you could enable remote work.
If your plan is to create a hybrid office so you can improve work/life balance among employees and minimize overhead costs, make a list of ways you’re going to measure whether this new investment has been successful or not.
2. Highlight the Benefits to Your Team
You know there are benefits to implementing this new communication technology for your business, but your team members are more interested in what it’s going to do for them. Introduce the new tech to your employees in a way that highlights the benefits to their life. For instance, is your new CCaaS system going to:
- Bring multiple tools together (like communication services, CRM tools, and ERP systems) to save your employees time when they’re supporting clients?
- Enable more flexible working strategies, by allowing some employees to work from home?
- Make team members more productive, by helping them to access the information and tools they need instantly, with minimal stress?
Explain your new communication goals to your employees in a way that helps them to see the benefits of making the change. If they can get excited about the possibilities of the new features you’re introducing, they’re less likely to feel demotivated the first time they struggle with a new feature or have a question about a service.
3. Have Ambassadors and Answer Questions
If you’re introducing new communication tools into your business, you’re going to need some forward-thinking professionals to help guide the rest of your team. Often, your ambassadors will be people like managers and supervisors, who can take any training on how to use the tool before anyone else, and then help other staff by answering questions.
Depending on the structure of your business, you could also include other team leaders and digitally savvy professionals in your ambassador selection. Train the people who will be guiding the rest of your team carefully and ask them for constant feedback about how you can improve the performance of the tool, or better empower your staff.
If you really want to encourage buy in from your ambassadors when it comes to encouraging adoption, you can also consider getting them involved with the decision of which communication tool to buy.
4. Provide the Right Training
The good news for today’s transformative business leaders, is that communication technology is becoming increasingly accessible. Vendors are working hard to ensure their UCaaS and CCaaS solutions are feature rich, without being overly complicated. However, there’s a good chance no matter how simple your technology is, you’re still going to need to train some of your employees.
Make sure you have the right training solutions in place before you start rolling out new communication tools. It helps to have a range of different training options to suit people who learn in different ways. For instance, you might have video sessions for visual learners, and hands-on sessions with managers and supervisors for those who need face-to-face training.
Ensure everyone in your workforce has a good idea of how to use the services most important to their workflow.
5. Ask for and Listen to Feedback
After you’ve taken the time to carefully choose a UCaaS or CCaaS solution, you might be convinced you’ve picked the perfect new communication tool for your employees. However, it’s important to listen to their feedback and be aware of problems when and if it arises.
Welcoming both positive and negative feedback from your employees will make it easier to pinpoint any issues with your new deployment before it has a lasting impact on performance and business outcomes. If you need help encouraging feedback, consider sending out surveys where people can share their thoughts anonymously.
Once you’ve collected plenty of information from your staff, the next step is making sure you actually act on their suggestions. If your people feel like they have a say in the tools they’re using, they’ll be much more committed to them.
Make Your New Communication Tool a Success
Change can be a great thing – but even good things take time.
Rushing into the purchase and deployment of a new technology, whether a UCaaS system, a CCaaS solution, or just a video conferencing tool, can increase your chances of unhappy employees and lost engagement. With the steps above, you can make sure you’re on the cutting edge of the communication landscape, without the risk of lost productivity.