Digital transformation is a long and multi-dimensional process, which affects the entire organisation of the company and impacts each department and each employee in their daily lives. This is why everyone must feel concerned and involved in thechange. So, how can we involve employees in the digital transformation?
To involve employees in the digital transformation, one imperative: talk upstream!
This is poetically called " evangelising ". When a company embarks on a digital transformation process, it has to carry out a major communication effort upstream. This involves talking about the changes to come, the tools that will arrive, the solutions that could be adopted... In short, preparing employees for the changes that are coming and testing their receptiveness. How do you go about this? By holding regular meetings in order to make " progress reports ". In this way, employees will feel informed and prepared and will welcome the various changes calmly.
To do this, your speech should focus on one element: the benefits that employees will be able to derive from the new digital solutions. This may include :
- new high value-added missions;
- time savings ;
- space savings (e.g. in case of dematerialisation) ;
- simplified processes ;
- new and more rewarding responsibilities...
The "employee experience " must therefore remain at the heart of management's communications. This is the only way to ensure that employees are willing to adopt the new habits that inevitably accompany a digital transition process. It is also important to give them a voice: the teams must be able to make proposals for the improvement of daily life thanks to new tools. What is it that makes them lose time? How do they see things? Do they know of any relevant solutions? The answers to these questions will be invaluable to the company, because they will provide the potential tools expected by the employees... which they will in fact never be reluctant to use!
Do not neglect training
To engage employees in digital transformation, you need to monitor the level of understanding of the new solutions being deployed. If they don't understand how a new application works, for example, they won't use it - even if they understand the promise it can offer them.
One thing is clear: do not neglect training. It can last a few days, or a whole week... the trick is to understand the needs of the various employees - which can vary from one department to another! Teams must not feel that they are being subjected to digitalisation. They must feel, on a daily basis, that they are able to meet the new organisational, technical and operational challenges that it brings. And only effective training can ensure this!
Finally, once the digitalisation process has been launched and the training has been carried out, it is useful toidentify leaders within the teams. They will ensure effective transmission of knowledge and will be able to answer, on a daily basis, the questions of employees who are less at ease with the new tools. In this way, employees will feel listened to and will feel that they are at the centre of the digital transition process. This is essential if they are to be truly involved and motivated!
Building on the corporate culture... or instilling a new one!
What if the main vector for involving employees in digital transformation was... the company itself? Let's explain: this is indeed an important moment for a company, capable of modifying both its present (its daily life, the way teams live, work and collaborate...) and its future (how many companies are angry today - for example Blackberry, in the telecoms sector - for having missed out on a crucial technological shift?)
Digital transformation is therefore the right time to strengthen the culture and identity of a company. To unite employees around a project. To create a new state of mind. To embrace change and win the poker game!