Ensuring a Seamless Adoption of New Technology Among Frontline Employees
Technology as a business necessity In 2017, nearly half of all Australian innovation-active businesses spent on new equipment or technology, making tech the most common innovation expenditure — and rightly so. Technology has become a necessity for businesses everywhere, and the most competitive companies are always looking to upgrade theirs to improve productivity. However, it’s important […]
J. Barbor, Guest Writer
27 August 2019 |
Technology as a business necessity In 2017, nearly half of all Australian innovation-active businesses spent on new equipment or technology, making tech the most common innovation expenditure — and rightly so. Technology has become a necessity for businesses everywhere, and the most competitive companies are always looking to upgrade theirs to improve productivity. However, it’s important to keep in mind that investing in innovative technology means more than just purchasing it. Often, the most crucial steps to maximise its benefits are what comes afterwards, when it is integrated into everyday business operations. Businesses must consider how new technologies will affect their employees, and although it might sound obvious, it’s a little more complicated than simply deploying them. Indeed, there are a lot of factors to think about, particularly with regard to how the technology will affect your frontline employees. They play a huge role in customer satisfaction, and the alienation or intimidation they may feel towards new tools will most likely affect their interactions with clients. Rosie Ramirez wrote that the smallest interactions with frontline employees can shape people’s opinions of your brand, meaning that even the small instances of bad customer service can make or break your company in the long run. That’s why getting frontline workers to engage with and accept new technology is essential in keeping them and your customers happy. That said, we’ve listed down some tips to make this adoption of new tech possible with your invaluable frontline workers. Choose user-friendly tech Frontline employees already face a lot of pressure at work — customer service workers know this more than most, and understand how stressful it can be to handle customers well. Adding new and complicated-looking technology can be frustrating (and terrifying) to those who already have a lot on their plate. Remember that there is a myriad of options for functional and user-friendly tech these days, so simply lining them up to compare your options will make a world of difference for your busy frontline workers. Think about day-to-day operations Considering how new technology will affect day-to-day operations is not a one-man job, and at this stage, it’s important to actually talk to your frontline employees who are likely affected by any changes made in the back office. For instance, if you change tracking systems for stock that will benefit your operations managers, how would this affect sales teams on the ground who rely on this information on a daily basis? Don’t assume that you know how everything works, and ask different departments how new tools might change operations from the ground up. That way, you and your workers know exactly what to expect and how to prepare for it. Be transparent about new tools Change can be intimidating, especially when employees don’t know exactly what is changing. It’s important to spell it out for frontline employees who are most likely going to be affected by the new tech. Verizon Connect’s guide on how to get employees to use new technology points out that it’s crucial to constantly repeat the benefits of new tools to employees until they’re integrated into the existing company culture. Resistance can be expected at first, but by being transparent about the new technology, you’re making frontline workers feel confident and included in the change. Guarantee effective training When you invest in new technology, it’s best to invest in effective trainers as well. This can make the adoption of new tools easier for both you and your workers. Staff won’t have to juggle trying to learn the new tech on their own while meeting with clients, since you will give them the one- or two-day training they need to understand it. Of course, follow-ups are key to knowing if additional training is necessary for certain employees, particularly the less tech-savvy ones. Data from the Australian Institute of Family Studies confirms that older generations are less likely to interact with new technology and often require extra training courses to improve basic skills for online activities. Listening to what individual workers need will help everyone gain the skills needed to operate new technology. It goes without saying that more changes should be expected in an increasingly digital world, and it’s critical to think about the individuals working on the frontlines when implementing these changes, given that they are the faces that drive brands forward. After all, what use is shiny new machinery to improve operations if your staff don’t know what to make of them? Ready to adopt a frontline-friendly technology platform? See how Tanda can make rostering and payroll more efficient when you start your free trial today.