Driving Employee Adoption of New Technology

June 29, 2022 | Blog

Three key takeaways:

  • Knowledge and communication are key to encouraging adoption of new technologies
  • Understanding objections before they are voiced can prevent employee mistrust
  • Communicating the benefits of new tech to employees can retrain a negative focus on the positives

Change is always hard. And for some, adjusting to new technologies in the office can be particularly difficult. Still, there are ways to gain employee buy-in and make the transition easier.

Driving adoption of new technology starts with managing that tech in a way that fulfills the needs of the company, while preserving relationships with employees. Improvements in productivity and efficiency – the usual goals when introducing any new technology – become much more difficult to achieve if employees are suspicious about their privacy or agency being compromised. The best solution: focus on changing the perception of technological change and help ease the concerns of employees who view change as a threat.


Introducing New Technology

A company has only one shot at getting the rollout of new technology right. Ensuring that employees are well informed about how their everyday jobs will change and making them part of the implementation team helps ensure their buy-in to the new technology. People want to be part of something bigger than themselves. New technology and its associated benefits make organizations more competitive in the marketplace. Often, workers only need to be convinced that adoption of new tech can help their company get ahead.

There are other ways to gain employee confidence. Employers can take the time to explain to their workers the thought process that went into selecting the new technology while highlighting the fact that it’s an additional tool in their professional development toolkit. Taking a proactive approach to helping employees understand the benefits of new technology – not only for the company but for the workers themselves – can convince them to step out of their comfort zone and begin to embrace change.


Addressing Privacy Concerns

When using new technologies such as contextual mobility management (CMM) software, some workers may worry that they are being monitored or controlled. When we don’t have access to information, we – employees and otherwise – tend to fill in the blanks ourselves. An employee might think, “There are monitoring features on my phone? I don’t want my boss reading my private messages.” But that isn’t the intent or functionality of CMM. In the case of TRUCE, we don’t audit or report on the apps and content on an employee’s device. No personal information, such as photos or videos, text messages, installed apps, or website history, is ever accessed, read, or shared. Employers can share our privacy policy and reassure their workers that the solution is there only to empower them throughout their workday.

Another factor to be considered: is work-life balance. Employers and workers often have different ideas about what that phrase means, so communication about expectations and context is critical to reducing the potential for friction. For some employees, the workday is compartmentalized – a 9-to-5 commitment, before and after which they are considered off the clock and otherwise out of pocket. For others, the workday is a bit more nebulous. If an employee’s supervisor calls outside of business hours, for instance, they feel obligated to answer. Yet another type of worker puts no boundaries on their time. These employees, who often put a premium on career development, tend to jump at after-hours and weekend projects. The software can assist in helping manage these varied worker contexts and personalities, preventing work apps from being used after hours and personal apps from being used during the workday.


No Employee Left Behind

For some, “This is how we’ve always done it” is reason enough to disregard any perceived benefits of new technology. Changes to well-established routines, including the introduction of the tech itself, can feel like a threat: “Will this technology replace me? Will it change how I have to do my job?” The adoption of new software may already feel like an imposition, and CMM that manages employee access to apps and features on a device could seem a bridge too far. But when that software removes distractions in key moments and locations but allows a personal device to function without restrictions during a worker’s break time or off-hours, it’s a benefit that helps keep an employee safe, focused, and at no risk of violating company policy. 

Workers may still approach this new tech with some hesitation. Transparent employee education and patience on the part of a company’s leadership can help mitigate these feelings. It’s important to anticipate these issues and demonstrate the advantages of the new technology as an investment in workers’ success.

Rolling out new technologies to employees can be a challenge, particularly when there is a perception that the employee’s privacy may be at stake. It is important to underscore how tech can increase productivity, and facilitate professional development while maintaining boundaries for those that require them.

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