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Digital transformation requires upskilling and broad buy-in


Digital transformation isn’t just about rolling out new apps and services. It takes skilled employees to put these new processes and platforms into practice. Companies must ensure these people have the right skills for the job. In turn, that means securing buy-in at all levels of the organization.

Buy-in at all levels
At this year’s Knowledge conference, I had some interesting discussions with executives from the financial services sector who detailed their experiences with implementing ServiceNow inside their organisations. These executives emphasised how important it is to get upper management buy-in when rolling out new platform initiatives. It’s equally important to obtain buy-in from stakeholders who will come into contact with new technologies on a day-to-day basis.

We need management on board, but we don’t want too many managers sitting around the software development workshop when they don’t need to be there. We want to be talking to the people who actually push the buttons, especially in highly regulated environments like banking.

Creating internal change agents
Very often, organisations do things in a particular way that’s how things have always been done. This mindset is especially prevalent in highly structured environments like banking.

Traditionally, organizations spend a lot of time trying to change peoples’ minds and work them round to new ways of thinking. A better way is to create “champion calls” where employees are encouraged to dial in, get informed and become change agents who convince their peers to work differently.

Transparency as an enabler
In financial services, we recently did a substantial implementation involving the ServiceNow ITSM solution and our employee experience platform. Implementing these two solutions involved two different sets of stakeholders and users in the business. They were architected by two different implementation partners, so it was especially challenging to bring them online in parallel. These kinds of deployment challenges often occur, and they do certainly highlight the importance of transparency.

One speaker at a Knowledge 19 session noted that the further you get into an implementation project, the more you need to involve employees who will be responsible for keeping the lights on during the normal course of operations. If you are transparent with these people, they will be more likely to support the new process when it becomes business as usual.

Roadmap pipeline awareness
A key ServiceNow banking customer is currently  moving to the Now Platform Madrid Release and plans to move on to the New York release thereafter. With such a clear path to upgrade and progression, this business wants to make sure users know what functionality is on the roadmap so they don’t try to create tools and functions that are already in the plan

Our customers know they must continually upgrade their skillsets. That means running a program of information and knowledge exchange throughout the business.

I’d like to thank all the financial services, banking and related business specialists who came together at ServiceNow Knowledge 2019 to discuss the challenges that teams face when upskilling people to drive digital transformation. It was a pleasure to analyse and break down this compelling subject with them in Las Vegas.

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