After the best-suited HRIS has been selected, it can seem like the hard part is over. However, implementation and go-live stages are the areas where most HRIS projects fall flat. Without enthusiasm and support from the actual team users, the company will not be able to recover the degree of ROI or enjoy the level of productivity benefits they expect.
Rather than waiting until after implementation is nearly completed to begin change management, employees from several different departments should be involved in selecting and implementing the new system from the very start. The implementation plan should then be carefully introduced to all of the employees and carried out, with consideration to how employees are being affected and included at every stage.
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Create Thorough Implementation Plans
Before a meeting is held to unveil the new HRIS and implementation plans, it is important to establish a timeline and make sure that most contingencies have been planned for. Employees will notice a poorly devised plan, and as a result, they may become anxious. Anticipated dates for go-live and outlined goals should be clearly articulated so that employees can feel secure in every step of the implementation.
Dedicate Sufficient Resources
Sufficient resources should be devoted to each step of the HRIS project, starting with the selection process and continuing on through the rollout, implementation, go-live, and beyond. Employees will be able to identify whether or not adequate resources have been allotted to the selection process and the roll-out process.
If sufficient resources have not been dedicated to these phases, employees may feel that the rest of the project has been slighted – even if it hasn’t.
Make sure that the rollout does not feel rushed. Also, give employees ample time to ask questions and express concerns. Basically, allow employees to view the new system so that when the rollout meeting ends the overall feel is one of excitement, rather than anxiety or dread.
Provide Support for Employees
During the rollout phase, the support network for employees should be established. Throughout the training phase of implementation, there should be several managers, IT professionals, and HR professionals available to answer questions and provide assistance. It’s important to make sure that employees know there are several knowledgeable individuals ready to help if they encounter problems when learning about or using the new system.
Involve Employees as Much as Possible
Employees can be a valuable asset for the HRIS implementation project and rollout phase. When frontline employees from different departments are included in the major parts of an HRIS project, it can help the other employees feel more confident about using the new system. It can also make them feel secure because they have a peer to turn to, rather than a superior.
In turn, the employees that are involved are more likely to be enthusiastic about the project and may help inspire excitement amongst the rest of the company.
Evaluate Rollout Success and Respond to Feedback
After the rollout is complete, it’s important to take a step back and evaluate how well this first part of the implementation phase went.
Evaluating and responding to employee feedback after the rollout can help maintain overall employee engagement. Following this protocol may also allow employers and managers to address concerns that they may not have noticed before. If the rollout process went well, it is safe to start the next part of the implementation phase without making any major changes to the HRIS project plan.
Authored by: Dave Rietsema