How change and adoption can enable effective hybrid working

6 October 2021

Change isn’t easy. Even a positive transition comes with its challenges.

Digitally transforming your business to enable better collaboration through tools like Microsoft Teams can promote better engagement, align your employees, and enhance productivity. But before you can start reaping the rewards, you need the right strategy for your evolution.

Right now, the shift to hybrid work is one of the most significant changes facing a huge number of companies. Ever since the explosion of remote work in 2020, business leaders have been searching for the best way to combine the cost savings and efficiencies of remote working, with the engagement of in-house teams. Hybrid work is now the preferred model for around 83% of teams.

So how do you transform from a traditional, in-office team to a dynamic group of hybrid staff? Change and adoption support is the key to success.

What is Change and Adoption?

“Change and Adoption” is the name given to the strategic processes a company uses to encourage successful transformation in a business environment. The right change and adoption specialists can help businesses of any size to implement new technology, train team members, and get everyone on the same path to success.

Most of the time, change and adoption initiatives split into two segments. The first portion of the plan is dedicated to introducing teams to crucial technology or information and embedding new solutions into the business. For instance, a change and adoption plan focused on Microsoft Teams would show employees how to use the service and provide insights into where the technology can address day-to-day pain points.

The second part of change and adoption is the ongoing support of evolving teams. What many companies don’t realise is driving change isn’t a one-off event. Companies need a clear vision of how they’re going to continue optimising business performance after the introduction of a new change. A long-term plan means you can ensure your users are engaged (not overwhelmed), and ready to take full advantage of your company’s transformation.

Why is Change and Adoption Crucial to Hybrid Work?

Hybrid work has a lot of benefits associated with it. Hybrid teams are more productive, less likely to leave the business they work with, and even more affordable. With a hybrid working strategy, you don’t need to pay anywhere near as many overheads as you would in a traditional office.

Of course, there are challenges too. Face-to-face communication isn’t always possible in a hybrid environment, so new methods of conversation and collaboration need to be established. Platforms like Microsoft Teams enable effective hybrid working with file sharing, chat, video conferencing, and similar tools, but teams need to learn how to use these tools before they can see the benefits.

Using change and adoption strategies to enable hybrid work means companies can:

  • Successfully introduce employees to new technology: Change and adoption strategies are great at ensuring the best return on investment for collaboration tools, cloud-based software, and other essential systems.
  • Maintain a positive company culture: Keeping team members focused on the values and expectations crucial to the business.
  • Reduce risk: Any significant change comes with risk. There’s the risk your employees might not be able to use technology effectively, or they’ll lose data or information when struggling with software. Change and adoption helps businesses to predict and mitigate issues.

Change and adoption strategies also give companies the power to actively improve various business processes. You can pinpoint which parts of your company are less effective and use your transition to hybrid work as an opportunity to optimize and enhance them. For instance, if employee engagement is low, embracing a tool like Microsoft Teams for regular chat and feedback between staff can boost team interactions, even when your people aren’t in the same physical space.

Tips for Successful Change and Adoption for Hybrid Work

The switch to hybrid work can seem daunting, but there are many ways to reduce the potential disruption your teams will encounter. A good change and adoption strategy will help you to show your employees the benefits of making this transition while ensuring you can address the most significant problems in your business landscape.

Here are some quick tips to boost your chances of a successful hybrid work change and adoption strategy:

  • Set your goals: Start by defining the goals you’d like to accomplish during this transition to hybrid work. Do you want to create a more flexible working environment for your staff while maintaining excellent communication and collaboration? Are you hoping to improve work-life balance without compromising on productivity? Make sure you know what you want to achieve and share your goals with your team.
  • Answer the “whys”: Once you have your goals in mind, share them with your teams, focusing on how the changes you’re making are going to benefit them. Let them know which new technologies you’ll be implementing, why they’re necessary, and what you expect from your team when it comes to adopting and using the new tools.
  • Provide training: Shifting to the world of hybrid work will usually require your team members to use new tools and services they haven’t accessed before. If, like many companies, you’re building your new workplace in Microsoft Teams, make sure your employees know how to use all the services with adequate training. Microsoft even has a library full of training solutions for new people on Teams.
  • Create a feedback loop: Give your employees a way to share feedback and insights about how they feel regarding the new technologies and changes in your organization. You could even consider using a group of first adopters to test the essential technology you’re going to be using during hybrid work before anyone else. Your digital innovators will be able to pinpoint any issues before the rest of your staff encounters them.
  • Plan for the long term: Remember to consider how you’re going to continue supporting and empowering your employees going forward. The progress shouldn’t stop when the initial rollout of new tools and solutions ends. Schedule regular meetings and brainstorming sessions where you can come together and determine how to improve your operations even further.

The transition to a hybrid working environment might feel daunting to some businesses, but there’s no escaping a future of more flexible employment. Having the right change and adoption plan in place can ensure you leverage the benefits of hybrid work, without facing too many challenges. Get in touch if you'd like to find out more about our change and adoption services. 

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