Infotech Infocenter

Humans are a fickle bunch. We moan and gripe about the way things are and throw riots when things change. It’s never really about the “old way” and the “new way” - it’s that interim change period that mucks things up. The old way is comfortable and the new way may be better, but getting there takes effort and compromise. Often, it’s easier for people to convince themselves that the way we’ve always done things is the best way rather than putting in the effort to adapt and learn. 

The adoption of new technology is often a struggle in the construction industry. As more organizations adopt digital project delivery solutions, supervisors often find it challenging to implement new software with their field staff. Usually, the problem isn’t with an intuitive interface or training; it’s with philosophy. By shifting how you approach field staff change management, you may find it easier to overcome dissenting voices and bring excited team members on board. In our advice to managers, we suggest thinking small. 

1. Sell Small Change 

Upgrading from spreadsheets or pen-and-paper to construction administration software is exciting. It enables teams to be more efficient, decisive, and cost-effective when completing projects. But in the face of individual team members worried about their day-to-day, those are just words. 

Sometimes, it can be better to not present an upgrade as a monumental shift or a new era for your company. Chances are it’s just an improved way of doing things you’re already doing - and should be presented like that. If you treat it as a minor shift in the day-to-day operations, it’ll be accepted as such. Don’t shrug things off - acknowledge any discomfort you sense about the change. Since your new platform will likely save time and make the field team’s work easier, it will be easy to address these concerns. But if you try to sell people upfront on a major improvement, it’s possible they’ll reject it as administrative posturing. 

2. Test Small Groups 

After announcing the move to a new construction management software, take volunteers for a small team interested in performing an initial test run with the product. This process will help with implementation in a number of ways: 

  • It creates an aura of exclusivity around the software and excitement when it goes live to the entire company. 
  • It allows you to deal with issues and concerns as they arise in a small beta, rather than putting out company-wise complaints.
  • It increases word-of-mouth interest in the new software as test team members share their findings with their coworkers. 
  • It allows you to form concrete expectations on how teams will use the software before distributing to the entire organization. 
  • It provides your team with a sense of control over the process. 

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