Given HCM & ERP systems is one of the biggest IT investments a business will make, particularly for mid-size organisations, it’s imperative that the journey from identifying a supplier to end-users going live is a smooth one.
Now has 31 million users, 2300 HCM customers and 530 Finance customers. Over 500 of those are in EMEA and APAC. That’s a lot of people and, with a customer satisfaction score of 98%, a lot of happy people too!
However…Gartner claim that as much as 75% of system implementations fail or miss the intended go-live date. But why?
It Is a well-known fact, that the human being is adverse to change. Whilst the reasons for this are still being disputed, many cite, uncertainty and fear of something new as the most commonly accepted ideas. Indeed, one of the biggest challenges that I have come across, when partnering with C-Suites’ undergoing over the last four years, is not migration, integration or even configuration, but rather employees being bought in to the transformation and adopting new ways of working.
Common objections…“It’s the way it’s always been done”, “I don’t understand the need to change”, “Our system works for us”, “I’ve just got used to doing it this way”. Admit it, we’ve all been guilty, right?
How do you go about winning the hearts and minds of the workforce?
Simple. Create and deploy a Change strategy and onboard individual or team (whom are external to the organisation & have an unbiased position) who are your Change champions. Overtime, this role can then be brought in-house.
“Change management is the discipline that guides how we prepare, equip and support individuals to successfully adopt change in order to drive organizational success and outcomes”.
For me personally, a change strategy is most effective when employed in the early planning phases. A change strategy should provide answers to:
- Why the business is undergoing the change in the first instance?
- What are our key business benefits for undergoing this Workday implementation & how that relates to the employee? Ie. Better overview of org structure = ability to more easily map promotion path.
- How are we going to communicate the changes to the business & what is the frequency and format of those communications? Ie. Workshops, Q&A’s etc.
- How as a business are we going to drive user adoption? What are the consequences for those that are not aligned to our end goal?
- How are we going to empower our workforce so that they feel comfortable in the transition of old ERP to Workday? Ie. What is our training rollout plan? Training should be continuous with recap sessions of the new system benefits.
- What is the timeframe of change? Having a clearly defined plan of rollout/go-live and communicating that to the users will make them feel part of the journey.
Formulating the change management strategy is the first critical step in implementing a change management methodology, and embedding change principles at the core of the business’s values.
Getting the above right can reap rewards such as:
+ The workforce embrace change more quickly and effectively
+ You minimise danger of productivity levels being impacted (for the worse!)
+ There becomes an improved ability to respond to Workday updates & new features post implementation
We recently interviewed Transformation Director, Chris Dunne who spoke about his time as an Interim Consultant at Fidelity in the UK. He claims he was “lucky enough to witness the power of the leadership team driving transformation throughout the business, it was an inspiring exercise and the output was phenomenal. The message came from CEO downwards, the vision was clear, people felt genuinely empowered and it was a thoroughly enjoyable experience”.
If we embrace change, plan accordingly & put into action a change strategy, I’m confident we can reduce the number of failing system implementations in the future.
“Change is the law of life and those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future”
Thanks for reading.