open fire hydrant in the east village, NYC
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More changes are happening in the world of technology than ever before, and at a faster pace to boot. 

The rate of technological advancement is affecting all industries and the day-to-day lives of most people. New generations of employees are entering the workforce, expecting to use technology that is as efficient as the technology they use in their personal lives. 

Additionally, a wide variety of new technologies are already available to help businesses work more efficiently, and more are launching each day. Existing cloud technologies are seeing agile updates that add up-to-date security measures and fixes to existing problems. 

Now more than ever, these frequent updates are also adding new features and capabilities to existing platforms and applications in the cloud. 

This rapid change, along with a plethora of available technologies that offer both unique and overlapping functionality, are presenting massive challenges to organizations, large and small. While the desire for increased efficiency and ROI pushes companies toward new technologies, it also pushes them toward massive hurdles that have proven more challenging than most could have imagined. 

Everyone is drinking from the firehose, and most are being knocked down. But IT teams can help.

Related Article: Where Process Management Fits in IT's Renaissance

How IT Can Be an Advocate for Ongoing Organizational Change

Choosing the right technologies to match business needs requires knowledge of new solutions for proper vetting. Adapting existing resources to deal with the fast pace of change inherent in the new world of SaaS applications requires a fundamental change in the way IT teams and organizations think about tech. To keep up with the pace of change and ensure workforces are taking full advantage of these new technologies, training has to be done more often than ever before. 

Related Article: Key Skills Every Digital Workplace Practitioner Needs

Enter Change Management

According to a 2018 McKinsey study, fewer than one-third of organizations believe they’ve successfully implemented change management while undergoing a digital transformation, and only 16 percent reported seeing an increase in workforce productivity. 

Without a clear vision for organizational change, organizations are either going to get better or worse — there is no longer a static “normal.” Organizations need to adapt the way they function to handle ongoing change, and the organizational approach toward IT and productivity tools is no exception. 

What’s even more challenging is if your employees don’t feel they are given the tools to work as efficiently possible, they’ll go online and find what they think will enable them to get the job done fastest. This is a problem. See my previous article on shadow IT.

Organizations need to be ahead of this curve, which benefits everyone by making employees lives easier while improving productivity for organizations — moving them toward the realization of their much sought-after ROI. 

Major obstacles may get in the way in the short term, but time has proven that in the long run such investments are not only worth it but are necessary to simply survive. Organizations need people to advocate for adaptation and explain the how and why. 

Related Article: How to Adapt Traditional Change Management for Digital Transformation Initiatives

So Where Do We Start?

A number of courses are available to help organizations understand how to implement these longterm changes. Microsoft and EdEx have published a free course called the Service Adoption Specialist (there’s a cost to receive the certification) which has tons of value and does not take a ton of time to get through. Also organizations, like McKinsey, have free and paid resources to help understand how to manage changes.

Check out these articles on CMS Wire to get your thoughts going, and brainstorm with your teams. Every part of the organization needs to be involved in some way, because they all are or will be feeling the pains of transition. Keep a look out for the second part of this article in August!