Why a Change Management Strategy is Important for Your Technology Upgrade

New upgrades, technology change, and implementation are all part of the maintenance cycle for businesses that rely on computer systems to exist. The challenge can be to implement the upgrade without triggering workflow or operational glitches, resulting in an operational or sales impact. We have a term for this – “Stoppage” – when something breaks or stops working.

When implementing a new solution, organizations typically focus on the technology itself. They might select the software they believe will be the best fit and implement it as quickly as possible, often without considering how employees will respond to the change or if they’ll have any challenges using the new platform. It’s essential to have IT support services in place to ensure a smooth transition. 

The benefits you’ll get from change management principles:

1. Accountability

Accountability is a key element of any business change. By assigning an overall owner to the project and having a clear plan for achieving the change, you can ensure there is someone to point at if anything goes wrong.

An excellent way to keep the right people accountable is through regular meetings to discuss progress and report any issues. This will help you make course corrections as early in the process as possible.

Organizations that don’t take the time to think through all the implications of a new system will find themselves scrambling, trying to figure out how to handle user adoption, and responding to the inevitable pain points as they occur.

2. Stakeholder buy-in

Stakeholders include those who can influence or be influenced by the project and its outcome. Key stakeholders must be identified and their involvement secured at an early stage. Stakeholders can choose to support or resist the proposed changes, so it’s important for them to understand and agree with why these changes are necessary, what value they will provide, how they will affect their jobs and how they can help make them successful. The more involved stakeholders feel in the change process, the more accepting and supportive they are likely to be of it when it comes time for implementation.

3. Greater cost-efficiency

Companies that fail to recognize the impact of change management on their technology projects can run into cost overruns, project delays and user resistance. These unexpected problems can cause the initial objectives of a technology upgrade to be overshadowed by its unintended consequences. In order to avoid such outcomes, companies should consider applying change management principles to their technology upgrade projects so they can realize greater cost-efficiency and project success.

4. Clean handoffs

There will be gaps in knowledge about using new systems with poor change management. This means people won’t know what they need to do, and they may end up with conflicting instructions from different departments or even from management. The result is confusion and chaos, leading to mistakes and unhappy customers. Prioritize change management methods for the best outcomes. 

5. Sustainable improvements

The benefits of a successful change management program are many and include faster adoption, greater ultimate utilization, higher proficiency and proficiency levels and positively impacted employee morale.

6. Less likely to cause “change burnout”

Businesses have to adapt or die in a world where technology is constantly changing. The same goes for the systems your ecommerce business relies on — especially your ERP, which holds all the data that powers your online store. Change burnout is a serious issue in the business world today. 

According to Gartner, 70% of organizational change initiatives fail due to people-related issues (with “change fatigue” being one of the leading causes). IT support services are busy implementing your new updates and changes, so keeping everyone upbeat and happy is important when making any type of change. 

If you really want your technology upgrades to go smoothly, you need to apply a change management methodology. Change management can help smooth the transition and help ensure that the change positively takes place. If your organization applies a change management philosophy to its technology upgrades, there’s a greater chance of avoiding conflict and mistakes.