Building a Foundation for PLM Success: Preparing for Change
Global Services InsightPTC.comPage 1 of 3 | Building a Foundation for PLM SuccessBuilding a Foundation for PLMSuccess: Preparing for ChangeBy Matt CohenHow can organizations ensure that peopleaccept the changes in their work flow thattypically accompany the deployment of newenterprise software and solutions?Training is obviously important but one of the most crucial initiatives comes earlier:Building real awareness and understanding of what lies ahead. In short, you needto give people ample time to digest and come to terms with changes and help themmake the transition.
Global Services InsightPTC.comPage 2 of 3 | Building a Foundation for PLM SuccessIt’s natural to resist change. Most people are resistant to change. It’s true in ourpersonal lives and in our professional lives. Yet some companies overlook thistruism when they implement PLM software and other enterprise solutions. Instead,if they keep this reality front and center, they can greatly increase the likelihood ofsuccessful adoption.Consider what happens when new software is introduced in an enterprise environ-ment. Many people immediately question why they should have to learn somethingnew, change their behavior, think differently, and/or interact differently with peersand colleagues. Even when there is frustration with existing tools and technology,there is comfort in sticking with a known quantity.It takes time for people to give up their well-understood ways of performing tasksand doing their jobs. Yet many companies wait until just a few weeks before new soft-ware goes live to alert them to the change and announce new training.This makes it incredibly challenging for people to prepare themselves for the change.Worse, it makes them resistant to the change, because they’re usually frustrated andresentful at being given so little consideration. At best, this slows down adoption andthus reduces the value of the new solution. In some cases, it even leads to revoltsagainst the new technology which creates problems across the organization.Paving a path to success. The good news is that organizations can turn this para-digm on its head by developing a simple yet well conceived communication plan thathelps employees understand the value in the change. The key is to make sure endusers understand three things:• How the new solution will help the company achieve its goals• Why the new software is important to them in their individual roles• How committed the organization is to helping them gain the skills needed tosuccessfully use the softwareWhen explaining the value of PLM or other solutions to the company, it’s critical toshare the true driving factors.At the same time, the organization must help employees understand how the changewill positively impact each of them in their daily roles. Almost every employee iskeen to better interact with their peers and colleagues. With that in mind, rather thanfocus on how PLM software helps better control product data, a company might wantto highlight how the new software enables easier collaboration.Once organizations get users intrigued about the new software and its possibilities,they need to clearly explain what will change in terms of processes and end users’daily work. They also need to spell out how they will support users throughout thetransition, not only with basic training but, ideally, with ongoing coaching, job aids,and on-call help.