There are three major barriers to tech implementation in your company, and not one of them are the old school “tech challenged” workers out in the field you think don’t want progress (or won’t be able to keep up). Technology fails because of bad communication, lack of collaboration and support, and poorly developed technology.
If your teams can use a mobile phone to access things like Facebook and Sportsbet, they can use technology in the field. Chances are, they just don’t want to or haven’t been shown how to. So, if you’re hitting a brick wall trying to get tech adoption in your company, you may need to push reset and consider changing your approach.
Your teams are talking, and you want to listen.
Every day teams are talking to each other, either complaining about outdated processes, how things could be more efficient if we did it this way, or complimenting an idea or process because it made their day easier. These are conversations you want to be involved in. They will help you increase adoption of new ideas or technology.
All those people stepping on and off your job sites have the day-to-day experiences you could use to improve your operations, to make sites safer, and create more efficiencies. Engagement with your site teams and subbies asking for feedback on processes or tech being used can help you gain immense insight into ways to promote healthy changes and increase adoption of new processes or technology.
Walking the site at the coalface with workers and asking pointed questions on specific tasks can highlight ways to make more effective and productive decisions.
Without input, expect your changes to have negative output.
Changes from the top are hard to manage. It’s not as easy as dictating changes be done and expecting they will flow downhill without barriers. To make any change successful, especially when implementing great tech, you need buy-in from your teams. And more than that, you need their feedback and collaboration before making any changes. Without that, technology that “should” save teams thousands of hours, could end up costing you thousands of dollars.
Before moving forward with any technology get your teams to evaluate what it does. Your great ideas to help your company’s progress can only be enhanced by the input from your teams out in the field.
Tech doesn’t solve problems, people do. Tech just makes things easier.
Technology won’t succeed if it isn’t implemented with good communication and collaboration from the people who will use it most. But more than that, if the technology isn’t built to suit your needs and easy to use, it won’t work under the best of circumstances. Technology’s job is to match, and eventually exceed your needs, fill in your gaps, and enhance your processes. Technology’s job isn’t to make you fit your processes into theirs (or require a PhD to understand how to use it).
Tech to improve processes is important, but without being field-tested and designed by people who know the pains they are trying to solve, it won’t be worth much.
To the companies who want to see progress and innovation on their job sites, people are the solution. Technology is what opens people up to new abilities, enhanced capabilities, and easier task management. Get your people together first. Evaluate your combined goals together, and then work to implement the best technology that fits your company’s needs and goals, and find a product and provider whose values are aligned with that.
Morgan Ward is a HSEQ Specialist and National Business Development Manager at HammerTech – a leading provider of HSEQ Software for the construction industry.
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