When it comes to digital transformation, some companies have been slower on the uptake than others. Reasons for this include a lack of investment in new resources, overly hierarchical or siloed structures that hinder innovation, and delayed or insufficient impetus from executive management.
But here’s a question: what if employees themselves show resistance to digital transformation, at an individual level? For example, what if engagement rates on enterprise social networks are low, employees’ use of external social networks for business purposes is underwhelming, or they make little use of resources such as e-listening tools, content curation and employee advocacy platforms – resources that are introduced for the very purpose of simplifying and enhancing employees’ online business activity?
When Employees Are Reluctant to Embrace Digital Transformation…
It’s often said (and rightly so) that innovation and digital dexterity are things more and more people look for in an employer. Nevertheless, employees’ reluctance to embrace digital transformation – whether it be new tools, attitudes or work processes – remains a challenge faced by a large number of organizations. It’s a challenge that often relates to gaps in employees’ knowledge and skills or, quite simply, their resistance to change.
Of course, key to ensuring the success of digital transformation is effective communication and onboarding. All too often, employees’ lack of engagement is rooted in the fact that they aren’t fully aware of the resources available to them, or haven’t received sufficient training in using new tools.
But another crucial aspect of any digital initiative is communication focused on the value of that initiative, and how employees themselves will benefit. Let’s take the example of an employee advocacy platform: what’s in it for employees themselves?
An Example: Employee Advocacy
The arguments for are many. Firstly, an employee advocacy platform aggregates company content as well as relevant third party content. It therefore acts as a one-stop information hub, where employees can stay up to date by viewing all the latest company news, and access pertinent content that relates directly to what they do. This content is easy to find because of the way it is organized on the platform – on Sociabble, for example, companies can create themed channels that correspond to employees’ needs and activity.
Secondly, by having access to the most up to date, relevant content, and being able to share it with their own connections from the very same platform, employees are in the perfect position to strengthen their online profile and build a presence on social media, which is where an increasing amount of business interactions take place. According to the conversations they are having (or want to initiate), they can relay a mixture of company and third party content and, by adding their own messages and insights, share their own expertise.
Social media is transforming the way companies communicate and do business, and employee advocacy is something companies should embrace as part of this transformation. But it’s also the perfect example of an initiative which, though valued by those who pioneer it, needs to be presented to employees in terms of the benefits it brings for them. Like all aspects of digital transformation, employees’ enthusiasm should not be taken for granted; communication and training are key if the initiative is to succeed.