How to Encourage Employee Buy-In to New Information Management Systems

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You’ve done your research and determined that an Enterprise Q&A program like Quandora has the potential to significantly improve the flow and management of your company’s internal information. You’re excited about the possibilities such a tool offers – so why don’t your employees seem to share your enthusiasm?

The sad reality is that, in many situations, employees are resistant to change. Often, that’s because proposed changes increase their workload in terms of learning new systems and procedures – which becomes especially problematic when the benefits your new software program can bring to employees aren’t explicitly stated.

Getting your team members on board with your Enterprise Q&A program implementation is crucial, as disenfranchised employees like these run the risk of derailing your launch entirely. To encourage their buy-in to your new information management system, take the following steps:

Outline the benefits of an Enterprise Q&A program immediately

As soon as you’ve decided to add an information management system like Quandora to your company’s software arsenal, it’s critical that you disseminate information to your staff members on how such a system will benefit them. Don’t wait – if news gets out that you’re planning to add a new program before you’re able to communicate its benefits to your employees, you risk negative public sentiment forming that could derail your launches success.

To communicate the benefits of such a program effectively, envision how each participant will use the system and then convey these specific benefits – rather than using more general-level statements. For example, don’t tell your customer service rep that she’ll benefit from “better information flow.” Instead, make it clear that your new system will help her to access specific piece of process information without having to wait to ask a senior staff member in person.

Involve employees throughout the development phase

Next, before you even begin to roll out your new Enterprise Q&A program, get your employees involved in customizing the system to their unique needs. Don’t assume that you know what types of information your employees want access to the most. Ask them, and then use their responses to structure your company’s unique software implementation.

Of course, you don’t need to get every single employee involved – as too many voices can stall a project as effectively as a lack of team member buy-in. Instead, request that a 1-2 representatives from each department gather their team’s concerns and bring their recommendations to a planning committee that will ultimately be responsible for the program’s final design.

Conduct thorough employee training sessions

Once your development phase is complete, invest in thorough employee training sessions that ensure your staff understand how to use your new Enterprise Q&A program effectively.

Often, employee resistance to new software programs stems from misinformation or a lack of understanding on how to use the tool correctly. If program usage instructions are unclear, many employees will choose to ignore the program – rather than seek out information on how to use it appropriately.

To nip this in the bud, make sure all employees understand the roles and responsibilities that go along with your organization’s specific Enterprise Q&A setup – as well as how they can both respond to questions and access answers that have already been given. Even if many of these instructions seem obvious, repeating them to employees via training sessions ensures that misunderstandings don’t prevent important team member buy-in from taking place.

Incentivize Enterprise Q&A participation

Finally, if all else fails and you aren’t able to get your employees to embrace your new information management system, consider incentivizing their participation in order to get the program off the ground.

Keep in mind that these rewards don’t need to be financial. If your company has an employee recognition program, participating in the Q&A program by answering questions could help staff members to accrue additional “points” towards existing employee rewards. Or, get fun with it by offering the team members with the most questions answered a premium parking spot, a pizza lunch or special privileges at employee parties.

Be aware, though, that tying Enterprise Q&A participation to incentive programs may condition employees to expect rewards for responding to company questions – making it impossible to discontinue such promotions while still maintaining a similar level of activity.

If possible, encourage employee buy-in using the techniques described above and the inherent benefits of an information management system to motivate your staff members to use your new system. But if these techniques don’t work, consider incentive programs as a last resort in order to maximize the value of your new Enterprise Q&A tool.

Looking for a great way to ask questions and build knowledge with your co-workers? Quandora enables simple, efficient knowledge sharing with your team, way more fun than a mailing list or a forum. Try Quandora

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