Why Transformational Change Management Requires a Digital Adoption Platform
With every technological advance, businesses have to reinvest in digital transformation (DX) to remain competitive. No surprise then that the annual global spend on DX projects continues to rise, with analysts expecting it to hit $3.4 trillion in 2026.
Even more jaw-dropping than this figure is the fact that 70 per cent of digital initiatives result in a disappointing outcome.
What is at play here are two misconceptions: that DX is about technology alone, and that “transformation” happens magically once you have implemented a new tool, platform, system, or workflow. What these misconceptions leave out are the employees who need to embrace the change and leverage the new technologies to make transformation a reality.
This is why change management is increasingly relying on Digital Adoption Platforms (DAPs) to help employees understand and welcome DX by making it easier for them to succeed. This is initially about the training. User-friendly DAPs such as Apty personalise the training process and deliver in-app guidance in real-time as employees take their first steps. This radically speeds up learning and acceptance, both of the new technology and the wider cultural shift taking shape.
DAPs also embed and adapt transformation as they monitor performance, using AI and data analytics to build actionable insight into how that performance can be improved.
Recent research has shown that effective change management makes it six times more likely that a digital project will meet its objectives. DAPs are a vital part of that success, as we explain below.
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Why transformational change is difficult
An extreme example of a failed digital project is the experience of the supermarket group Lidl and Germany’s largest software vendor SAP. A seemingly modest requirement to tweak Lidl’s inventory pricing structure led to a seven-year nightmare of increasingly complex implementations until the retailer had had enough and pulled the plug, having wasted in excess of €500 million.
How can that happen?
Change management is a high-wire act that has to do things that are in constant tension with each other: it has to set a cost-specific objective, fix a timeline, and plan for disruption, yet be ready to rethink everything as the nitty-gritty of the project shatters its assumptions.
DAPs take away some of this unpredictability because they optimise the acceptance and adoption of newly deployed technologies – not just during onboarding and training, but throughout the lifecycle of the application or the system, until they have become second nature, and embed transformational change.
How DAPs create the right mindset for change
Many IT implementations do not succeed because insufficient attention was paid to the cultural aspect of change. Transformational projects are liable to create friction, and you need leadership and sound change management to mitigate this. Getting everyone on board is crucial, or employees will – sometimes unconsciously – resist the technology and not use it to its full effect. Result? Your costly and disruptive project will fail to deliver its intended ROI.
DAPs get people over the threshold of change by transforming their encounters with new technologies and workflows. This happens in two ways. First, the learning curve is much less steep because a DAP gives real-time, contextual, and personalised training on how to carry out new tasks and functions. Second, modern DAPs such as Apty collect and analyse data about user behaviour which can be leveraged for insight into what is working and what isn’t – and why.
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How DAPs support and embed change
Technology is not an end in itself. To become transformational, it needs the energy and expertise of its users.
Part of change management is to give employees the tools to use and enjoy enterprise apps. This is how you build a modern digital workplace and get the most out of your IT investments.
Employees should be made to feel at ease with new features and product updates. An intuitive DAP such as Apty accompanies the user as they take their first steps with the new technology, giving them in-app assistance if and when they need it in real-time, building confidence in their new skills and ultimately speeding up the completion of the task at hand.
To summarise, these are the main reasons why a DAP goes hand-in-hand with change management:
- It creates a common platform for onboarding, learning, change, and growth.
- It builds a collaborative culture.
- It speeds up training and acceptance, keeping disruption to a minimum.
- It helps simplify work processes and identify areas for improvement to increase employee productivity.
- It provides a better view of current performance levels and helps you find ways to improve your capabilities and effectiveness.
How DAPs improve the employee experience and speed up learning
Change would not be transformational if it did not meet resistance. This is where leadership is vital to explain the change and put processes and tools in place to ensure smooth and rapid adoption.
While it is challenging to implement employee training programs at scale, this is what you have to do if you want to hold on to your prized employees. DAPs are indispensable in this regard because they personalise the learning process – not for “segments” of your workforce, but for each employee in real-time. Team leaders and managers use Apty to deliver the right content to the right people at the right time, whether it be through tooltips, announcements, or walkthroughs.
Employees relish change if they can quickly see the benefits. Apty helps them understand new workflows and technologies, reducing user error while automating business processes. This ensures your organisation operates optimally and generates the best return on your investment.
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A DAP-led approach to digital transformation engages employees, develops their skills, and unleashes their creativity so they can work as part of a more effective team.
A Digital Adoption Platform such as Apty is the perfect fit for change management as it gives insight into workforce efficiency and patterns. Without these insights, how can you build on the success of your project and invest in tools, technologies, and processes that align with your digital progression going forward?
Apty helps you structure what you want to do and where you want to go. It radically enhances your potential for achieving sustainable, transformational change management goals for any use case and for any project scope. It does this by understanding people, one-to-one and at scale, through data analytics.
Every change management project is different, but human needs don’t change. This is what Apty understands, and what helps you make transformation not only a success but second nature.
If you would like to know more about how Apty speeds up your transformational progress, we are here for you. As Apty’s only distribution partner in Europe, we have accompanied a multitude of organisations on their DX journey – and we would be delighted to join yours!
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