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Tips on Deploying Self-Service Technology Effectively

December 22, 2000
Related Topics: HR Services and Administration, Service, Benefit Design and Communication, Featured Article, Technology
Workforce talked to consultants andproviders of benefits administration services about how they help clients rollout online systems. Here are some tips that can help you reach workers who areresistant to technology.

  1. Examinecurrent practice to make sure you understand what you need. You want to giveemployees effective tools and not just technology for technology’s sake.
  1. Makea survey of your workforce. Find out what employees think they need and why.Bringing them into the process creates greater commitment to change.
  1. Implementone technology at a time. Allow employees to build a base of skills beforepressing on to still further changes.
  1. Makethe advantages of new systems clear through letters, brochures, or e-mail.Good communication makes employees feel that their needs are being takeninto account.
  1. Considera tiered training structure. Well-built software should require minimaltraining, but more advanced systems for managers may necessitate classes oradditional help.
  1. Offerpaid time not just for training but also for employee play and practice onthe system. Remember: people learn from trying things out and makingmistakes. They must be allowed time for this.
  1. Providea help desk for answering immediate questions and emphasize that you expectemployees to use it.
  1. Double-checkyour system’s integration with back office software like payroll functionsbefore rolling it out. Nothing will turn off employees faster than initialglitches that could have been easily avoided.
  1. Rememberthat many employees worry about security. Make sure you understand thesecurity functions built into your system and demonstrate them to employees.
  1. Launchthe system with fanfare to build employee enthusiasm. That initial surgegets employees involved and moves them past early learning barriers.

Workforce, January 2001, Vol80, No 1, p. 56  SubscribeNow!

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