Implementing new software can be an exciting step for your business — especially when you aim to scale and compete. But even before rollout, there's one thing you need to ensure before everyone actually uses the software: a solid change management plan.

Below we cover how you can go about change management at your company and some of its key benefits when it comes to implementing custom software.

Software change management: simple steps to get started

In general, change management is an approach to embracing change at an organizational level (and any disruptions it might bring.) When you plan with it in mind, there is less resistance. And in the long run, it's what will help your business compete. Because no matter if you're going digital, growing, adapting to new regulatory requirements, or adjusting to the broad impact of something like a pandemic or war — you and your team, can handle it better.

A change management plan is also how you overcome the inevitable groan or two from your coworkers when implementing a software change. You encourage them to be a part of the process instead. Here are a few key steps to get you started.

Pick a solution that aligns with your employees' needs

A common problem we've seen is top management implementing new software without accounting for their employees' needs. Maybe it's the latest tech on the block or what the competition is doing. So start by asking yourself: is this new solution something we can all use for the long term?

Here's our take: it's not enough to just introduce new software and hope it'll automatically help you scale. Successfully implementing it means putting your employees' needs first. It's why one of our first steps at TRIGO is a thorough discovery phase to gauge what's working and what isn't for your business software. And part of this process is getting the input of the people using it regularly.

This means taking the time to understand what bottlenecks your employees are running into — and whether you even need a new solution in the first place. It's a process that worked quite well for our client, BFI Burgenland, and their new, modernized tech stack.

Involve your key stakeholders

Next question: who's most likely to be affected by the change? It could be individuals, teams, or entire departments in your organization. And these key stakeholders need to understand the benefits of your new solution — like how they can save time and be more productive with an automated workflow.

Even with these perks, it's normal to experience resistance from your employees. So you can make the transition easier by involving them in every step of the rollout process. Which might look like the following:

Your choice of business software directly impacts your employees' happiness and productivity. But it's how you involve them in the rollout process that inspires them to adapt to its changes and better trust your leadership.

Keep a pulse on the rollout mood

Once you're done implementing, check in regularly with your employees to see how they're getting on. You can create a supportive environment for them to share their experiences, bugs, and all. This can help you identify what's working and what isn't with your new software — and whether it makes sense to continue as is, optimize, or consider an alternative.

A good software change management process encourages employee input. A great one uses this input proactively to improve work processes continuously — both now and in the future.

3 key benefits of a software change management approach

A change management plan for software goes a long way when it comes to transforming your organizational culture. Here are a couple of practical benefits you'll see once you've set yours in place.

Reduced expenses

A well-structured change management plan cuts your expenses in the long run — big time. Here's how: when you've involved your employees during implementation, you have more insight into their workflows. You also know what risks and unintended consequences might pop up.

In the long run, this both keeps your employees productive and protects you from the cost of unplanned downtime expenses. You also save yourself time, money, and effort from fixing errors and can better handle their impact on your business overall.

More control

Great change management means planning with your capacity in mind — i.e., your time, resources, and budget. This means you can implement your new software in a structured and controlled way, which might look like the following:

With a step-by-step approach, you implement new changes more effectively and spend less time and effort managing them, which makes it easier for your organization to adapt.

An open, transparent feedback culture

We've covered how involving your employees during implementation can help them adapt to new software easier. But these benefits go beyond just your rollout phase and might look like the following:

By starting simple and involving your employees at every step, you set your new software up for success — no matter what kind of changes it brings. But when it comes to managing these changes more easily, you also want to ensure that your choice of software is the best fit for your business. Custom software can do that for you.

Why custom software can make for smooth change management

If you want to implement new software that fits your business like a glove and doesn't disrupt your processes — go for a custom software solution. You and your team will no longer be bending and twisting to adapt to off-the-shelf solutions.

Going custom benefits companies of all sizes and means easier change management for you in the long run. That's if you choose the right software development company in the first place. And if they're anything like us, they will take your entire team's needs into account from the very beginning.

The end result? A software solution that's a 100% fit for your business, adapts to your specific workflows, and creates minimal disruptions. So you cut your time and effort in managing software-related changes, keep your employees productive — and scale with ease.

Need a professional take on what solution might change your workflow the least? Book a free consultation with me, Christian, and let's get started.