So, you’ve decided the time is right to deploy an HR system within your organisation. You’ve gone through the process of defining your needs, reviewing the different options and you’ve come to a decision. Now you need to ensure that the implementation and deployment of your new system are as smooth and straightforward as possible. The question is – how?
Start communication early
First up – ensure that your entire workforce knows that the new system is coming well in advance. New technology can be disruptive (in positive as well as negative ways!) and requiring your employees to use an entirely new system for, say, claiming their expenses or booking their holidays is quite a substantial shift. Ensuring that the workforce has an adequate amount of warning, and time period for getting their questions answered, is critical for a smooth rollout and buy-in from across the organisation.
For line managers and members of the HR team, the change will be even greater, which means the communication needs to be even more thorough. Involve them early, particularly when it comes to elements like choosing which optional modules to include, or which bespoke alterations to make.
Anticipate concerns and roadblocks
Obviously, it is impossible to always predict bumps in the road with pinpoint accuracy. However, it is always useful to give some time and attention to what is likely to be the biggest worries in the first days or weeks of a new system. Is there are an element of the new system which is likely to represent a particularly big behavioral change for your workforce? This is often particularly salient when it comes to replacing previously manual processes with digitised and automated ones, because people are forced to shift from a flexible approach which they defined for themselves, to a more rigid one where they are required to toe the corporate line.
Identifying these potential points of friction from early on can make it easier for you to tailor your communication (see above) and your training and support (see below) in order to ward off serious problems.
Prioritise training and support
Adequate training and support are essential for all new technology rollouts, particularly when the new system is something every staff member needs to access. Naturally, you will have based your procurement decision in part around how intuitive and easy-to-use the new system is. However, you also need to be clear from the outset on the lines of communication and escalation for individuals who have questions or are struggling to use the new system, particularly when such struggles could result in an individual, say, not receiving their expenses claims on time.
The feedback loop
To get true, organisation-wide buy-in for your new HR system, and to secure the greatest likelihood of your staff using the new software properly, you need to ensure that there is a proper mechanism in place for them to share their feedback. Are particular functions not working as well in practice as you hoped on paper? Would particular functions be especially useful to add? Not only do you need to enable staff to share their feedback – but you also need to genuinely take it on board, consider it and, where necessary, use it to drive future changes. This is crucial in enabling staff to feel empowered and involved.
Want more support in rolling out a new HR system? Contact Smart IT today.