Organizational change management is one of those things that you can’t get rid of – like it or not, or whether you agree with it or not. If you need to make significant changes in your organization, you need to have a solid change management plan in place. In fact, the way that you handle change management for your employees determines how successful the change is, and this is a core part of the change management process.
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So, let’s talk about organizational change management for a moment. Technology has advanced significantly in the past decade, and while that change has been all for the better in some aspects, other aspects, like organizational change management, have suffered greatly. So, in this blog, we’re going to look at organizational change management from back then and compare it to the journey now, examining the evolution of change management while also showing you why proper organizational change management is so important and how tools like Workplace from Meta can aid your change management in the digital age.
Let’s dive right in.
What is Organizational Change Management (OCM)?
Organizational Change Management (OCM) refers to the process of planning, implementing, and managing changes within an organization to ensure smooth transitions, minimize resistance, and maximize the desired outcomes. It involves the systematic approach of managing the human side of organizational change to support successful adoption and adaptation by individuals, teams, and the organization as a whole.
Organizational Change Management: Where We've Come From
Before the Software-as-a-Solution (SaaS) era, getting a new tool was a lengthy process that took months, if not years, to implement. It was an ordeal but also an instructive change management case study.
It was a huge undertaking! Deciding to buy the tool, determining how you were going to roll it out, satisfying various hardware and software requirements, purchasing the proper equipment, implementing it in your organization then, testing and fixing bugs, investing in end-user training, and then finally rolling the new tool out to everyone – what an ordeal!
But there was a huge benefit to this amount of hassle to implement something. Since it was such a high price tag to get exactly what they wanted, organizations took much longer and were much more deliberate in planning out their long-term goals and objectives when it came to this new tool they were purchasing.
Importance of change Management Tools
Let's consider a real-world scenario to demonstrate the importance of change management tools. Jane, an employee, stumbles upon a fantastic, last-minute deal for a vacation but is unsure of her remaining leave days. In the absence of an automated system, she must email HR and wait two days for a response. Unfortunately, the vacation deal has expired by then.
This inefficiency sparks the CFO's concern, who proposes a company-wide intranet system to streamline such tasks. The idea illustrates a critical change management tool: leveraging technology for operational efficiency. The proposal is well-received, and plans for the intranet begin, considering various elements like hardware, software, and cost.
News of the planned intranet creates a buzz among the employees. Jane, despite her missed holiday, is excited about the forthcoming change and spreads enthusiasm amongst her colleagues.
The roll-out of the intranet six months later is met with anticipation and acceptance. The wait has allowed for robust communication and preparation, exemplifying another critical change management tool: effective communication and time management.
This scenario underscores the importance of change management tools, including tech solutions, communication, and time management, in creating positive and efficient transformations in the workplace.
Organizational change management: where we are now
With the introduction of Software-as-a-Solution and various Cloud-based technology, most of the tools that organizations are implementing nowadays are ready-to-use, easy to spin up and implement, and don’t require nearly the same amount of planning that they used to.
Why Software-as-a-Solution is Beneficial
In many ways, SaaS options provide your organization with a number of key benefits. For instance, monthly subscriptions provide organizations with easy payment options with no huge upfront costs required, and SaaS products allow organizations easy access to a number of great tools that will help them make work easier and get things done faster.
However, the ease of implementation does have one massive disadvantage: it doesn’t require the same amount of planning. This means that having an organizational change management plan is even more important now than it ever used to be. Not only to prepare your employees for the change that’s about to take place but also to plan out exactly which tools you’re going to implement and how they’re going to work together within your environment. Plus, some of these tools are quite similar – if you were to implement a tool in your organization that does something similar to another tool that you already have, do your employees know when to use what?
By introducing new tools (and even new features within a previously established tool), organizations often overlook the change management process and how this change will affect their end users.
There is an assumption that because it’s easier for organizations to implement, it’ll be easier for employees to adapt to it, but that’s not the case. Without properly preparing your end users, you’re forcing them into “resistance mode” – they haven’t been told how this new tool or new feature is going to make their lives easier, they see it as more of a hassle than anything else, and they don’t want to take the time to learn something new.
the Organizational change management process - 7 key steps to follow
So, in order to get the most out of your investment and aid in a smoother transition to the new technology you’re implementing, let’s look at seven key steps that we think your organizational change management process should be following:
1. Find an executive sponsor
Research shows that sponsorship from the top (C-Level) down is the most important success factor in implementing a new technology or tool. If you want to make your employees feel better about the change, have your CEO or the leadership team champion this initiative and actually use the new technology or tool.
2. Use champions to deliver the message, generate excitement and help with use cases
Just like Jane in our example above, change management champions can help your employees to get excited about what the changes to the organization will mean for them.
3. Identify the what's-in-it-for-me factors
Employees, as mentioned, need to understand what the new technology or tool is going to do for them. When you take the time to show them how this is going to make their life easier, they’re much more likely to embrace the new technology and, in turn, increase their ROI.
4. Understand how the employees currently work and unpack the use cases for the new technology or tool
Before you implement something new, understand how your employees are currently doing their jobs, and determine what pain points they’re experiencing. This, along with the previous step, will help you to ensure that you’re implementing something that’s going to make them work smarter, not harder.
5. Communicate a clear message, highlight the business goals, and again the benefitsLet your employees know why you’re implementing this new technology or tool in a clear, concise way (and make sure that you’re doing this well before the implementation!).
6. Generate excitement using internal marketing technique
Show people the new tool or technology in action, create one-pagers and graphics that will help employees understand the benefits of the new technology or tool, and let people know when they can expect changes to take place. Internal marketing techniques like these will help you get everyone on the same page long before the new tool or technology is implemented.
7. Training: Make sure your employees know exactly what to do with the technology or tool
Host training, lunch and learns, or town hall meetings where you walk through the new tool and give your employees the proper training that they need to be successful in using it.
In this rapidly evolving digital era, effective organizational change management is more crucial than ever. The successful implementation of any new technology or tool is significantly amplified when an organization adopts a strategic, systematic approach. This involves sponsorship from leadership, employee engagement, clear communication, and thorough training. These key steps will help organizations leverage the full potential of their investments and foster a smoother transition to new tools or technologies.
Workplace from meta can ENHANCE CHANGE MANAGEMENT
Here at LineZero, our focus on organizational change management is paramount. Our approach to integrating Workplace by Meta (Workplace) within organizations is holistic, ensuring optimal returns on investment. This spans initial planning, personalized communication, comprehensive training, and post-launch support.
Workplace stands out with its multifaceted capabilities and high user acceptance, providing a powerful platform to boost productivity, enhance collaboration, and foster rapid innovation. It serves as a catalyst to enrich employee engagement and nurture a strong community while consolidating your knowledge management needs on a single, easy-to-navigate platform.
As a highly secure and customizable platform, Workplace seamlessly integrates with a wide range of enterprise software and file-sharing applications. Its cross-platform compatibility ensures it is readily accessible from any device. Its robust conversation and file search capabilities ensure the required content is always at your fingertips. Ultimately, the Workplace paves the way for an efficient, collaborative, and thriving work environment, significantly easing the journey of organizational change.
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