Communication is an essential part of any workplace change, especially when implementing new software or systems. Poor communication can derail a project before it even has a chance to get off the ground.
If you’re preparing to adopt a new enterprise application like Salesforce, Workday, or Oracle, you’ll want to include a communication strategy as a part of your overall change management plan.
Before and during implementation or rollout, your communication should:
- Build a Solid Business Case
- Focus on What Will Be Improved
- Explain the Impact for Every Level of the Organization
- Celebrate Successes
Change Management Communication Key 1: Build a Solid Business Case
A solid business case is essential for getting approval and buy-in for your project. When communicating with stakeholders, be sure to focus on highlights of your business case.
- How does the change add value to the organization?
- What is the expected ROI?
- What is the impact on productivity?
Change Management Communication Key 2: Focus on What Will Be Improved
While a strong business case will win over stakeholders, the rest of the organization will not be inspired by cost savings or increased productivity. Instead, focus your communications on the benefits that will improve the average user’s day:
- How will this make people’s jobs easier?
- Will it save time?
- How is it better than the old system or process?
- What can be done with the new system that the old system couldn’t?
Change Management Communication Key 3: Explain the Impact for Every Level of the Organization
People are naturally resistant to change. Companywide changes cause workers to worry that their jobs could be impacted in a negative way. In addition to communicating the key benefits of a change, you’ll want to make sure you provide adequate information about the timeline and impact of the change for each team or department. Being transparent about the process and providing information can help put people at ease. Common questions users may have include:
- How will the change impact my role and team?
- What are the details of what is changing?
- What is the timeline for the change?
- How can I get support or help with the change?
Change Management Communication Key 4: Celebrate Successes
Finally, in order to establish and build momentum for your project be sure you celebrate successes. With large-scale changes, it may be difficult for the average user to see the impact of the project. As a part of your communication strategy, be sure to give updates on:
- Reaching a major milestone
- Achieving project goals
- Team and individual successes
Product adoption and system implementation is a long and complex process. Developing a change management plan and communication strategy can make the process smoother and improve the outcome.