There is one thing that most organizations can agree on - customer is king. Organizations that are able to rally around customer needs are 60% more profitable than companies that don’t focus on customers. But this doesn’t just happen overnight. It takes a concerted effort from all executive functions and some pretty tight teamwork.
The technology team is now square in the spotlight transforming to make sure the organization has the tools it needs to be customer focused. Many technology organizations may be blocked by their own legacy technology systems. Actually transformation legacy technology systems is often easier said than done.
Forbes contributor, Serenity Gibbons, recently published five solutions to legacy technology transformation woes, citing a new piece by Credera executives, Jason Goth, Chief Technology Officer, and Sandra Beno, partner.
1. Go for the easy wins.
Take the old saying about how to eat an elephant, one bite at a time. One author calls it the “progress principle.” Their research explains that when research participants had their best day, it was 76% associated with having a step forward at work. It wasn’t necessarily a giant breakthrough, but it was progress. Finding ways to tear down the psychological hurdles to change to increase adoption and start momentum for more major changes down the road.
2. Cultivate champions in the executive ranks.
John Kotter’s famous article, Leading Change, highlights the need to create a guiding coalition. Kotter shares that the guiding coalition needs to include the most senior leadership, but also another 5 or 15 or 50 people outside of the normal hierarchy of leadership. The influencers at the organization.
In addition to advocates throughout the ranks of an organization, Credera CTO, Jason Goth, and Partner, Sandra Beno, share that, “Corporate boards need to step in and prioritize this transformation. Boards must make it a priority and hold the C-suite accountable to results.” Boards have a unique opportunity to stay focused on long-term thinking, when 86% of CEOs admit they are more focused on the short term. “Given this mandate [long-term thinking] and air cover, CIOs and other leaders can then drive toward results,” Beno and Goth write.
3. Break down digital transformation into bite-sized chunks.
Similar to the quick wins philosophy, using an agile mindset and focus on sprints. “Along those lines, you may want to look for simple answers that allow you to keep parts of your legacy system for even longer, such as putting ‘wrapper’ systems in place,” Gibbons says. Constant communication of timelines and goals as also critical to keep everyone abreast of what’s happening.
4. Give people training to make the most of replacement systems.
During our current socially distanced world large, in-person trainings are challenging. Organizations who find new ways to catch the attention of users to drive adoption can be the difference between success and failure. Gibbons recommends Zoom sharing sessions or socially distanced, in-person workshops. At Credera, we’ve tried questions and answer sessions and “office hours” where the experts are available to share tips and tricks. We’ve also seen success with sharing graphics that detail actions to be taken on our company chat platform.
Try out different mediums to see what works the best for your organization. Find your best channel and use it! Your teams will appreciate the communication and creativity.
5. Keep communications flowing.
Keeping employees informed of the change along the way is important no matter whether you’re on a digital transformation (DX) journey or looking towards another major change. At Credera, we recently acquired a consulting firm in the UK. Even before firm leadership made the decision to acquire an organization, they were sharing the strategy and goals with the entire organization. Sharing the available information as soon as possible (and prudent) creates the trust needed for major transformations or changes.
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Keep the Transformation Going
As these five tips suggest, successful legacy technology transformation is rarely about the technology. Addressing the people challenges will make sure that your technology changes are implemented and adopted to achieve the ultimate goal of a more customer-centric organization.