Let’s say you are implementing some new processes to help improve efficiency in your field service business. You’ve made your plan for implementation and you’ve started moving forward. However, you aren’t meeting the goals you set, and you find that implementation is off budget or taking longer than expected.
What is causing these challenges, and what can you do to shift in a more positive direction? Read on to discover the top four obstacles when it comes to managing change and what you can do to overcome them.
Obstacle #1: Staff aren’t adapting to the changed processes
If you notice that staff are having a hard time during the implementation stage, ask for feedback. Where are they struggling? Why are they struggling? Is it just one or two people, or is it the entire team? There may be a few people who need some extra support or extra time. If your entire team is struggling to adapt, you may need to re-evaluate and make adjustments. Just because you have to pause and make some changes doesn’t mean your implementation initiative will be a failure. If anything, taking the time to adjust based on staff needs will help ensure your success.
Obstacle #2: Implementation is taking longer than planned
The same way you need to pause and reevaluate when staff aren’t adapting, you may also need to reevaluate when you notice goals or objectives aren’t being met in a timely manner. Usually, when implementation is off track, it is because it wasn’t attainable in the time frame set, there weren’t adequate resources or there wasn’t a clear vision for the changes to be made at each stage of the process. You may need to provide more hands-on guidance, or you might need to break down bigger goals into smaller objectives.
By assessing the situation, you’ll be able to move forward accordingly.
Obstacle #3: You don’t have the right people leading change
Just because someone made the purchasing decision to use a new platform, that doesn’t necessarily mean they are the best person to lead out in using that new platform. As you are delegating someone to lead the change management process, think about what you are trying to accomplish and what is needed for the implementation to succeed. The person (or people) leading change should be strong communicators, have the bandwidth to be involved in additional training, and should have authority to make decisions to keep processes moving forward.
Obstacle #4: Staff are actively resisting new processes
It’s one issue if people are struggling to adapt. It’s another issue altogether if they are refusing to use new systems. If active resistance is starting to occur, make sure you have provided a clear picture of the benefits that will come from the new processes. Are you implementing a new software program so that field staff don’t have to drive to the office to hand over work completed forms? Make sure you have provided a clear picture of how the new processes will make life easier for your team.
It’s also important to be empathetic and listen to staff concerns when they are resisting change so that they feel supported during implementation.
Reevaluating goals, designating proper leaders and providing a clear vision is just a small piece of the puzzle when it comes to overcoming change management obstacles.
Download our latest eBook, Managing change within your field service business, to learn how you can create a change management strategy to help your implementation initiatives succeed.