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31 May 2023
by Lauren Hoare

How to sell the benefits of new HR technology to a workforce

Without employee buy-in, even the best technology will fail

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Having the right HR technology can be a massive benefit to a business, from driving productivity to attracting top talent, boosting retention and enhancing the employee experience.

But even the best technology won’t deliver without buy-in from employees and is likely to result in a poor return on investment (ROI).

Adoption is, therefore, a vital component that needs careful consideration. To ensure success, HR professionals need to act like salespeople and view employees like customers. This means making employees aware of the need and reasons behind implementing the new technology and demonstrating how it will benefit them.

A few simple steps before, during and after implementation can help encourage adoption and ultimately secure employee buy-in.

1. Intro sessions – before implementation

Introductory sessions on any new HR technology will help address questions such as why the technology was selected and how and when it will be rolled out. It’s important to give employees the context and clearly communicate the reasons for picking the new tool.

People inherently don’t like change – addressing this head-on in a transparent way will remove those barriers and help with adoption by building trust.

Next, make the sessions about them. Emphasise the specific problems the technology is set to solve and support the reasoning with data. Point out how it will help employees and the immediate benefits they will see. For example:

  • Will it reduce or eliminate dull administrative tasks?
  • Will it free up their time so they can focus on the more meaningful and rewarding aspects of their roles?
  • Will learning to use this technology contribute to their continued professional development.

These sessions are also important two-way conversations, so invite employees to ask questions and give feedback. This makes them feel like their voices are heard and that they are contributing to improvements to their ways of working. This approach can help the HR function make better decisions before implementation by unearthing potential improvements.

2. Training – during implementation

Having a robust training plan is key for any new technology. By investing in training, a business can show employees how important it is that they understand how the system works and how they can make the most of it.

If employees don’t know how to use the system, they won’t know how it benefits them and ultimately won’t use it.

Clearly demonstrate how the new functionality will improve or ease employees’ time is key. For example, a new payroll system may provide employees with instant access to all their payslips on a web and mobile app and let them access them at any time without the need to contact HR/payroll.

To support this training, businesses can also train the most knowledgeable or tech-savvy employees to act as champions or experts of the platform. Because they’re embedded in the business, these champions can be role models, beacons of support and advocates of the system after the initial training, undertaking a lot of the hard work for HR.

3. Feedback – after implementation

Employees are more motivated to use a system they’ve helped create. Throughout and after implementation, businesses should request employee feedback and follow-up on their suggestions. This can be through focus groups, employee surveys, or even during the introductory sessions or training.

If the new technology works well, employees are bound to notice and will be grateful. This will also enhance the employee experience and boost retention.

Employee adoption is arguably the most important step when implementing any new HR technology. By investing in and undertaking the simple steps outlined, the HR function will quickly and easily be able to show ROI to the business.

In partnership with Lockton People Solutions

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