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Speed up cloud transformation with technology user adoption

How cloud and digital technologies can accelerate growth through disruptive change

Oct. 5, 2020 | By: Leslie Deutsch

cloud acceleration through technology represented through space image

Whether it’s solving business, IT or process problems, digital transformation and the use of emerging digital technologies has been looked at as the future. From automating manual processes or moving data centers and large applications to the cloud, being a digitally enabled organization is a sought-after business model. But there are various challenges that organizations face with integrating cloud-based technologies. In the latest issue of Version Next, Now around cloud resiliency, we discuss how organizations often focus on the technology, or the promises that technology will provide—yet, it’s the people that need to adopt these new technologies that should be prioritized. Your organization can plan and create roadmaps to roll out digital transformation or migrate to the cloud, but without proper user adoption, you won’t find success.

Lead change with a transformative mindset

One of the major challenges organizations run into is curating a mindset for change within their enterprises. You need to create a rally cry, a mission for change, a sense of urgency that people can connect with to build a mindset of growth, learning and change.

Digital transformation and cloud initiatives are big changes for an organization. Incorporating speed and agility, integrating DevOps or transforming the enterprise requires the adoption of vastly different behaviors and mindsets. And if your organization is steeped in silos, a digital transformation is going to hit a lot of roadblocks. Understanding the change management aspect is equally as important as the technology and technical implications.

From telehealth to higher education, organizations are forced to think differently

By now, it’s no surprise how the COVID-19 pandemic has forced a rapid speed of adoption for organizations—right out of the gate, companies were very focused on how to get their people productive and working (e.g., virtual onboarding). But there wasn’t much focus on how to work together. Now, it’s all about connectivity: how do we collaborate virtually, connect with customers and solve problems in a virtual environment? Leaders and managers must lead differently, workflows need to be reinvented and organizational structures rethought.

Of course, some industries have been more impacted than others. In the healthcare space, telehealth technology has been available for a while but historically always ran into regulatory and insurance issues, which is why certain states didn’t adopt it. But the pandemic has made telehealth services necessary, forcing hospitals, independent healthcare providers, doctors, clinicians and even patients to adopt, deliver and accept virtual healthcare quickly.

In another example, the higher education space has been forced to rapidly transform. Universities have had to navigate how to provide value to students in a completely virtual environment. Institutions are going through massive changes to adopt different digital technologies and transform how they’re delivering digital learning experiences to produce that value.

Version Next Now

Rethink the way you use digital technology to impact remote work culture

The fundamental ways of working haven’t changed, but they have been disrupted. Pivoting does not mean forcing a physical environment into a virtual one—just because structure and workflows worked in person may not mean they will work well remotely.

Shifting to remote and digital workspaces long term is going to certainly impact employee morale. And keeping up with the same—if not an increased—schedule of conference calls and meetings can result in video conferencing fatigue. How do we better support our workforce while also maintaining crucial communication and delivering business results? The answer is ensuring two-way conversations and collaboration, not just leaders communicating down direction or opinions. Virtual happy hours and water cooler check-ins can be used for keeping up team rapport and spirit, but there’s greater opportunity to use digital technologies to actually transform our ways of working. Leaders must be adaptive in order to remain empathetic and flexible—not only keeping in mind the health and well-being of their employees, but also creating a virtual, agile work culture where people feel comfortable to raise issues in a virtual format.

Put flexibility at the forefront to support learning and development

As companies begin to think “beyond” the pandemic, it’s important to continue to support the adoption of large-scale technologies through employee training. Leveraging the different modalities for your people, whether it’s virtual or partially virtual/live, will help you realize the real value of your modernization.

In the midst of a pandemic where people feel like they’ve lost control, a way to gain it back is to map toward the future. Through career development and upskilling, we’ve seen many people take comfort in focusing on career growth. We’ve also seen many organizations put an emphasis on virtual career development opportunities and take this time to close skills gaps with technology adoption. Exploring blended programs to include users who may not be able to participate in learning and development during normal business hours will still give them access and flexibility to gain the skills needed to adopt new technology.

While organizational leaders and managers are at the forefront of driving modernization, they need to be given the tools in order to build a wide sense of urgency and journey for their teams. Whether it’s training components or the empowerment to test new processes, you must be adaptable while also providing flexibility back to the business. It’s critical to evolve the standard organizational change management programs and alter them to be agile for remote working and learning.

As the director of the Learning Solutions practice within TEKsystems Global Services, Leslie Deutsch drives learning and adoption services within our clients’ organizations. These programs focus on building a workforce with tomorrow’s skills, upskilling and reskilling current teams, or changing behavior needed to impact productivity.