1. Many organizations struggle to switch quickly to new technologies and use them efficiently. Why is that?
One reason is the pace of change, which has really sped up in recent years. Another reason is that many organizations still regard the whole issue of digitalization as a purely technological challenge. They need to look at the bigger picture. Of course, it’s true that digitalization is about new technologies and that staff need to expand their skill set to use these tools. However, the change in terms of processes is actually far more extensive. This is where organizations need to start and systematically build up a willingness to change. It all comes down to digital adoption.
3. What exactly is business guidance?
Technology guidance helps users in terms of working with new tools. Business guidance goes much further, though, and also provides employees with organization-specific knowledge, whether this relates to processes, guidelines or workflows.
4. Why is business guidance so important?
Time and again, employees need to make decisions independently while they are working – and technology guidance alone doesn’t equip them to make these decisions. Without business guidance, they need to interrupt their work and search for information from a variety of sources if they want to avoid making the wrong decision, which could even have legal implications. When business guidance is provided, this kind of interruption is avoided. The digital adoption platform recognizes the direct context and offers the relevant help with the process.
Business guidance is therefore vitally important for two reasons. First, it results in smooth-running processes. And, second, it empowers employees to make the right decisions.
5. Where is business guidance already being used in practice?
A classic example is complaints handling. Imagine, for example, that a customer calls your service department and describes a product defect. To enter the customer information and defect details into your CRM system correctly, all the employee needs is technology guidance. However, as soon as the question arises as to whether it’s a claim under warranty or whether the claim can be settled as a good-will gesture, neither technology guidance nor the internet can supply the answer. Instead, what service staff need is organization-specific information and guidelines about this particular process, such as details of the conditions under which there is scope to offer a good-will gesture and how wide this scope is. This is the only way of ensuring that employees will act in compliance with the organization’s policies.
6. Can business guidance also help prevent legal infringements?
Yes, absolutely. Let me give you an example. Imagine a sales employee wants to log the master data of a contact she met at a trade fair. If the potential customer has given their consent to be contacted, the employee needs to enter a tick in the double opt-in box in the CRM system. Technology guidance would merely tell her she has the option of ticking or not ticking the box – it wouldn’t give her any information about the legal aspects involved. If she ticks the box even though the potential customer hasn’t given their consent, she is at risk of breaching the GDPR. However, if she doesn’t tick the box, her data will be useless.
7. So how does business guidance help this employee stay on the right side of the law?
The sales employee learns, in her precise moment of need, when she can tick the box and what she needs to do if there is no double opt-in, namely obtain consent retrospectively. In other words, in both this and every other compliance case, business guidance helps staff avoid legal pitfalls. What’s more, business guidance plays a major part in helping organizations achieve both a uniform public image and a consistent customer experience.
8. New processes, guidelines and procedures affect many areas. Do you have to have a digital workstation in order to utilize business guidance?
No. If you have a smartphone and WLAN, you can use business guidance anywhere in the organization. Take, for example, the sales floor in a store. I want to make sure that my goods are presented in a way that matches my brand promise. In this case, I can use business guidance to provide staff with criteria that they can apply when deciding how to arrange the shelves and which products to place on the bargain counter. I don’t just have to describe the criteria in writing either – I can also use photos. This means staff can immediately compare their sales area to the photos and see if it is arranged exactly as it should be. For the organization, this produces a consistent perception of the brand and a standardized customer experience.
9. If an organization wants to provide support for its employees in the form of business guidance, how much input is involved?
Since there’s no standard solution for an organization’s customized processes, organizations do, of course, need to invest a fair amount of time and know-how into their content production. However, from my experience, I can say that the workload can be kept within reasonable limits if an organization initially focuses on processes that are business-critical and help it stand out from its competitors. This means compliance and IT security, for example, and areas that have a direct impact on the perception of the brand or customer satisfaction.
10. Is the investment worthwhile? What does the organization ultimately get out of it?
The initial investment definitely pays off. As I see it, organizations reap three key benefits. The first one is reliable processes. Staff feel confident, make better decisions and work much more productively. The second benefit is legal compliance. Business guidance enables staff to follow compliance rules with next to no effort. And, thirdly, the combination of technology guidance and business guidance particularly helps organizations achieve their digitalization targets, since this support means that staff can use new technologies quickly and efficiently in their day-to-day work.
When business guidance is implemented well, it can really help people lose their fear of changes.
So, in conclusion, is it right to say that business guidance speeds up the digital transformation?
Yes, definitely. I would go so far as to say that business guidance is the basic prerequisite if organizations are to keep pace with the ever-increasing rate of change. When business guidance is implemented well, it can really help people lose their fear of changes. Staff understand what it’s all about and discover they can work well with the new processes and procedures. What’s more, they make decisions independently without any fear of far-reaching consequences.
Any employee who has been through this experience once trusts that their experience of the next change will be similar. Staff remain open-minded, despite the rapid transformation. So, as far as I’m concerned, business guidance is the absolute must for a good digital adoption platform.