5 ways to inspire your payroll team to adopt new software
So, out with the old and in with the new. It’s exciting to bring your business up to speed and get your hands on a new piece of kit – but getting your team to feel the same can be tricky.
Have you ever tried to encourage an older relative to switch to a new smartphone? You may be familiar with resistance to change and fear of needing to re-learn common tasks, in turn risking not picking up a whole host of new features and a better way of doing things.
If your payroll team is used to their current software – even if it causes regular frustration – they may be reluctant to move over to something new.
However, it doesn’t have to be that way, and there are some simple steps you can take to ensure your team hits the ground running.
Let’s get started!
1. Explain the reasons for making change
It’s important to involve your team members at the earliest possible stage to give them time to adjust. Getting not only buy-in from those that use the software regularly, but also professional insight, is the starting point for a successful project.
This also means they should trust in your selection process and understand or even support the rationale behind your choice. Tie in your explanation with the business’s strategy and the value that change offers to the direction of the company.
Not everyone will want the same things from a new solution, so it’s important to consider individual nuances. This includes reinforcing the benefits of the new system over the old one.
There may be resistance if the new software doesn’t include a feature that the old one does, meaning discussion should be centred around the opportunity cost of moving.
Your business will stay stagnant if it doesn’t adopt better ways of doing things, and it’s important your payroll team understands this too. While an adjustment period is necessary, it’s a short-term loss for long-term gain.
2. Deliver engaging training
When people have a learned way of doing things, they dislike having to do things differently. However, it’s important to inspire your payroll team to work with the new way rather than trying to use the new software in the same way as the previous one. Forcing old habits onto new software is a pointless exercise as the benefits of the new technology won’t be realised.
Your new software provider should provide the tools necessary to ensure you fully understand the solution (e.g. knowledgebase and onboarding resources), but you should also have an active involvement in steering this to ensure it resonates with all team members.
Training is often seen as a box-ticking exercise, but it’s the most important stage of onboarding and should be treated as such. Without it, the true potential of the software will never be accessed, and it could lead to an unsuccessful project.
Your team members must be made aware of the importance of training also to maximise engagement. While the software provider may have multiple training options available, it’s up to yo to decide how to implement these programmes to your team, whether it be a training session with the provider or accessing their training resources to build out your own schedule.
Here are some tips for boosting training effectiveness.
- If it’s a training session, ensure a senior leader is present and taking an active interest
- Some vendors will offer offline syllabuses. Set aside some time with your team to ensure all understand how to use and learn from it (some may prefer this style of individual learning)
- If your vendor offers a training instance of the software, use this to the full. Test your processes, make mistakes and collaborate with your teams
- All training should be geared up to team requirements without overriding the vendor’s training syllabus
- Ask team members to put everything down for the time of the session, whether that’s phones, emails, or so on
- If meeting in person, make sure the room is booked and equipped prior to the meeting time to set the tone
On the last point, if you decide to add a training session, also determine whether a remote or on-site meeting best suits your team’s needs. It’s said that e-learning takes 40%-60% less time, but also consider engagement. Remote sessions can be just as engaging; especially when cameras are turned on to minimise temptation from distractions.
Ensure training sessions are successful
In a recent webinar hosted by Sourcebreaker, the audience completed a real-time quiz on the biggest challenges of training teams on new technology. Here were the results:
- Not interactive enough (62%)
- Tech too hard to understand (15%)
- Training sessions too long (15%)
- Too many people in one session (8%)
- Not enough training provided (0%)
So, interactivity plays a huge factor in keeping team members interested throughout training. When it comes to payroll software, there can be no shortcuts as a full understanding of the software is essential to ensure workers get paid. This is why some colleagues may prefer to self-serve with training materials.
While the vendor should be able to provide training that’s both comprehensive and manageable, you can also play a part in increasing engagement. Ask your team to prepare questions to ensure they are willing to speak up and listen.
Also, as we mentioned previously, get them involved early on and provide updates during the sales process. An internal catch up may be helpful to answer any questions not related to the functionality of the software (e.g. team roles, etc), to keep any training programmes productive.
3. And don’t stop there…
Take an ongoing approach to training to ensure employees are using the software correctly and to the best of its abilities. Training is something to take seriously – it isn’t just a one-off box-ticking exercise.
By cutting corners on training, you waste time down the line as employees won’t be able to complete their tasks as effectively as they could. Plus, it’s essential for employee satisfaction too! If staff aren’t trained in a way that resonates, their job satisfaction could decrease and their work may be less efficient and accurate.
Schedule regular check-ins to update your team on progress and to get their feedback on how the technology performs, including any successes or failures. This will not only keep the buzz going, but ensures they familiarise themselves with all the features to report back.
4. Collect feedback – the good, bad, and ugly
That nicely leads us onto the topic of feedback, an essential part of the whole process. This includes feedback on the training itself and the software.
This collaborative approach of keeping the discussion going will encourage the software to be explored and generate interest in its features and updates. It will also validate your team’s input and make them feel heard, helping to make the transition a success.
If any feedback can be actioned, make sure this is handled with importance. Collecting such insight will also give you a better understanding of the workings of the team and how they could be managed more efficiently.
5. Allow for adjustment
Hesitation from your team may stem from concerns that their performance may be impacted. Reassure your team that transitioning over to a new solution will take time and there’s time to learn before go-live. A slow introduction is beneficial, and of course involving your team as soon as possible.
When it comes to payroll, mistakes are taken seriously, so the need to train correctly is imperative. Your software provider should provide you with temporary login details to demo the system and complete test pay runs beforehand. Use this time wisely and ensure all team members get involved using all training materials provided.
Allow your employees to ‘break’ the system to test its capabilities and complete all their day-to-day tasks. Then, encourage everyone to share their thoughts in your regular catch-up meetings. Your software provider should be happy to help if you need assistance outside of their training syllabus.
The Codapay Way
We have a thorough training syllabus to cover every element of Codapay in digestible sections, with friendly faces to present our simple-to-use software on-site or online.
Plus, our experienced training team isn’t afraid of feedback or direction to make the process resonate in the best way possible.
When we onboard new clients, we also provide training documents that cover everything you need to know – all in plain English. If you have any questions after training and testing the system, you’ll have access to our dedicated UK-based support team forever.