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Streamlining for Success: An HR Guide to Managing Digital Change

By February 3, 2023No Comments

Technological advancements are changing the way businesses and their employees operate. One example of how technological advancement has affected businesses and employees is the widespread adoption of telecommuting and remote work. With the development of advanced communication technologies such as video conferencing, instant messaging, and cloud-based collaboration tools, it has become possible for many employees to work from anywhere with an internet connection.

This has led to an increase in businesses allowing their employees to work remotely, either full-time or on a flexible schedule. Organisations focusing on continuous improvement will embrace this technological advancement to remain competitive and increase productivity. They must, however, master digital transformation, including the change that comes with it. And this is something that often falls onto the lap of the HR department. So let’s look at digital change management and how HR can help to drive it.

Table of Contents

What is digital HR change management?

What are the four stages of digital change management?

    1. Assessment
    2. Planning
    3. Execution
    4. Monitoring and Evaluation

Challenges of digital change management

    1. Resistance to change
    2. Lack of skills and training
    3. Data security and privacy concerns
    4. Limited resources
    5. Integration with existing systems
    6. Measuring and tracking the success

How HR should drive digital change management

What is digital HR change management?

According to TechTarget, digital HR transforms services and processes through social, mobile, analytics and cloud (SMAC) technologies.  It is meant to improve employee experience and organisational success by transforming the HR function from paper-based, reactive and time-consuming to digital-first, mobile and optimised.

The goals include improving employee engagement and retention and measurably augmenting the success of an organisation by continually transforming in an agile way. And change management is the systematic approach to transforming an organisation’s goals, processes or technologies.  It aims to implement strategies for effecting change, controlling change and helping people adapt.

What are the four stages of digital change management?

Changing how an organisation does business digitally is a complex process that requires careful planning and execution.  Therefore, organisations need a comprehensive strategy to manage the digital change that includes goals, objectives, and critical elements of the change management process. Digital change management can be broken down into four main steps:

  • Assessment – Assessing the current state of an organisation’s digital infrastructure and identifying areas where improvements can be made.
  • Planning – Developing a roadmap for implementing changes organised with measurable milestones.
  • Execution – Executing the changes on schedule and within budget while ensuring quality outcomes.
  • Monitoring and Evaluation – Monitors progress regularly to ensure that desired results are achieved.

Challenges of digital change management

Digital change management in HR departments can be a wild ride, and let’s be honest; it’s not for the faint of heart! But, it can be a success with the right approach and a good attitude. Some of the critical challenges that HR departments may face when undergoing digital change management include the following:

  • Resistance to change: Employees may be like, “Why fix what ain’t broke?” and be resistant to change, especially if they are not involved in the decision-making process or feel that the new technology will be challenging.
  • Lack of skills and training: Employees may need the necessary skills or knowledge to effectively use the new technology, which can lead to frustration and decreased productivity. Think of it as trying to teach your grandma how to use TikTok.
  • Data security and privacy concerns: Integrating new technology may raise concerns about data security and privacy, which can be a significant concern for HR departments.
  • Limited resources: HR departments may need more resources, such as budget and personnel, to implement and maintain the new technology.
  • Integration with existing systems: Integrating new technology with existing systems can be challenging, as it may require significant changes to current processes and ways of working. It’s like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole.
  • Measuring and tracking the success: it’s difficult to measure the success of digital change management in HR departments, and there needs to be more data and analytics to support the process. Think of it like trying to find the end of a rainbow. A study by Gartner found that 70% of digital transformation initiatives fail due to employee resistance and lack of leadership support.

How HR should drive digital change management

When driving digital change management, HR should pay attention to a few key things to ensure a smooth transition for the company. First and foremost, it’s essential to communicate the reasons for the change and how it will benefit the organisation. This will help employees understand the “why” behind the change and be more likely to buy in. Additionally, HR should work closely with IT to ensure that the technology and resources are in place for the change to succeed. They should also provide training and support for employees to help them adapt to the new technology or processes.

Another critical aspect to consider is employee engagement. It’s crucial to involve employees in the change process and gather feedback to address their needs and concerns. Here are a few examples of strategies that HR can use to drive digital change management:

  • Providing regular communication and updates on the change process to keep employees informed and engaged
  • Organising training sessions and workshops to help employees adapt to new technology or processes
  • Creating a “champion” program where employees who are exceptionally skilled with the new technology can serve as mentors and resources for their colleagues
  • Encouraging open communication and feedback channels to gather employee input and address concerns
  • Providing a clear roadmap for the change process, including clear timelines and milestones, helps employees understand the bigger picture and what to expect.
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