Getting Your Team to Use New Software Does Not Have to be a Struggle

by

Rachel Lama
Customer Success Manager
May 29, 2019
/
3
minutes to read

Get to the Point:

  1. Discomfort With a Technology Switch Should Be Expected — However, getting your team to comply does not have to be a struggle.
  2. Listen to Concerns and Then Explain Your Decision — Discuss how the reasons behind the decision contribute to your vision for the company.
  3. Give Your Team Time to Get Acclimated — Pick a goal date to have everyone onboard but be realistic.

OK, so you’ve chosen your field service management software, and you feel good about your selection. All your questions have been answered and you have the features you wanted.

But then you tell your techs and office staff that they will need to learn and use something new … and the mood turns sour. What then? After all, employee buy-in is essential. Your new software won’t help your business if your team is not going to use it properly.

This type of reaction is par for the course. In fact, discomfort with a technology switch should be expected. It’s understandable for a switch to cause some irritation.

However, getting your team on board does not have to be a struggle. Here are some simple tips for encouraging compliance with your new software.

Listen to their concerns.

Encouraging team compliance with new processes was the theme of a recent webinar by Pointman VP of Human Resources Deb Spearing. She explained that you should never avoid listening to the opinions of your employees. Plus, “providing multiple outlets for feedback will make people feel heard.” Have some all-staff meetings. Follow up with one-on-ones. Above all, demonstrate that you are there to talk about their concerns at any time.

Make clear why you made your decision.

Listening is one thing. Being able to explain why you made your software decision is another. Discuss with your team how the reasons behind the decision contribute to your vision. Show confidence in the move you made, and be ready to explain why it’s going to work.

Lead by example.

As Deb explained in the webinar mentioned above, you will have an impossible time implementing new processes if you do not believe in them yourself. Take an active role in learning the software alongside your team, and show that you’re all in this together.

Emphasize the importance of training.

In a recent blog, we outlined the questions to ask when making your software choice, and one of these involved training. Let’s assume the company you went with has satisfactorily gone over what the training process will be, now and in the future. Let your techs know what to expect and watch some of their skepticism fade away.

Provide praise, support and encouragement.

OK, it’s no surprise that people like to receive praise. What could be surprising, though, is the positive impact it will have when it comes to team compliance. Complimenting your techs as they learn the new software will increase their confidence and engage the entire team.

If some techs are on board quickly, have them help with the learning effort.

It’s very possible that some of your techs will be excited to use your new software right away — and it’s likely these are your younger techs. Pointman’s Andy Bagner discussed how millennial employees can help train their more seasoned counterparts in another recent blog: “Give them the chance to take an active role in sharing their technological expertise. Even if they lack the job experience, they’ve got knowledge in other areas, and they are ready to teach.”

Give your team time to get acclimated.

While you want your new software to be used as quickly as possible, it might not happen as fast as you’d like. Remember, though, you know your business. Pick a goal date to have everyone onboard but be realistic. Give your team the time it needs.

Team compliance takes time, focus and dedication from the top down. But if you’ve made the right software choice, and you approach the situation the right way, any short-term struggles will fade away in time.

As explained above, training from the software company you’ve chosen is essential. At Pointman, we work closely with our PACT members to ensure that they are trained properly and have all the support they need. Ready to see PACT in action? Get a free demo today.

Look at Pricing

The start of the year is a great time to look at pricing. Usually, you have an idea of how your company fared the year prior, and you want to ensure you will continue to grow in the months to come. Many of us make New Year’s resolutions with respect to spending or saving in our personal lives, and it’s no different for business owners. Making sure your pricing is in line with where it should be is one of the strongest ways to start the year the right way.

Part of looking at your price book is finding where the issues are, and that can take time. An HVAC company in January is going to be very busy, so it’s a difficult time for a close look. However, a plumbing company might not be as busy. Whenever you tackle this job, your best bet is to look at what your labor rates are. Start there, and let it trickle down across the board. Ask yourself, “Are my labor rates helping my business stay profitable?”

Remember, there are many different services out there and many different groups or communities that you can engage. Never hesitate to say, “Hey, I’m a business owner in Florida. What should my labor rates be?” You can build your price from there. There are also some great billable hour calculators available.

Set Goals

There is no better time of year for looking inward than January. Set your personal goals and company goals for the following 12 months. If you can break those down into departmental goals, even better! Perhaps that means a CSR booking closing rates a little better, or a truck doing 250,000 a year rather than 200,000.

Many companies have found that using an Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) goal-setting system pays off. Looking for a guidebook when it comes to OKRs? Check out Measure What Matters: How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs by John Doerr. 

One key question is the best way to handle setting goals: Is it smarter for business owners to handle this solo, together with staff, or to delegate completely? 

The best approach is to set goals at the department level. As an owner, you need to take the time to understand what the goals are in each department, and make sure they are in line with your goals for the company. No one likes to set unattainable goals for themselves, so make sure you push your departments to set goals that are lofty, rather than simple ones to feel good about hitting. Entrust your staff to aim higher, and watch how they respond.

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