Spartan Solutions has delivered mobile solutions to global field services companies including Aggreko, Balfour Beatty and Swire Oilfield Services. Our mobile and web apps are transforming the productivity of thousands of technicians and back-office staff. We work closely with our customers to design, plan and execute the rollout of mobile technology to a very diverse user population. Listed below are the 5 key lessons we have learned, through our 12 years’ experience in the industry, to increase the speed of adoption across your organization.
1. Find a Cheerleader
Management buy-in crucial to the success of any project. It is essential that the project sponsor is seen actively promoting the benefits of implementing new technology, convincing staff that this step is crucial to business growth. The project sponsor needs to promote the solution and its benefits in the weeks leading up to training and rollout. Additionally, they need to convince staff that the change is achievable.
2. Make the Technology Easy-to-Use
The first time our COO unboxed his first iPhone, he was immediately struck by the lack of documentation and user manuals. This ease-of-use (and lack of documentation) has become standard for modern devices over the last few years, and should now be the benchmark for any piece of new technology, even (or especially!) if it is for industrial users. It follows naturally that the easier tech is to use, the less training and hand-holding will be required to make your staff efficient and productive users. Therefore, buy technology that is easy-to-use and staff will have less reason to resist it. The training time for any of our apps is less than 30 minutes and all the apps are integrated and operate using the same simple controls.
3. Who Wakes Up in the Morning Thinking About the Success of Your New Solution?
Clear ownership of the solution, preferably by a senior operations staffer is crucial to rollout success. This person, with the support of other specialists, should wake up in the morning thinking about the things that need to be done to make the rollout successful and working hard to remove or mitigate any risks. They should have a clear training and rollout plan backed by their business sponsor and supported by the necessary resources for example, Operations, Back Office, IT, Training etc.
4. Build a Safety Net
Technology cannot survive in an organization vacuum, it needs a support network around it to survive and thrive. Build a robust ‘super-user’ network in each geographic region that can act as the first line of support to the rest of their team. They can typically solve a large percentage of issues, for example, “how do I login again?” “Oops I forgot my password!” “What happens if my mobile battery dies?” Furthermore, the ‘super-users’ will form a natural community and become additional cheerleaders, promoting the benefits of the solution and feeding back suggestions for future improvement. For the remaining issues, ensure that the technical support help desk is trained in the system (and particularly the computing infrastructure ‘plumbing’ e.g. your network and servers) and that the user community has a clear mechanism to raise and track issues until they are successfully resolved.
5. Take Control of Your Devices
A particular challenge for mobile solutions is managing tens, hundreds or thousands (for some of our customers) of devices spread across the globe. The only sensible way to do this is to invest in a Mobile Device Management (MDM) software tool and to train the IT delivery team and help desk in how to stage, manage, remote control and upgrade devices.
These 5 steps are key to a successful implementation of new technology. If you are interested in finding out what Spartan Solutions can do for your business, please contact us.