Managing changes in technology

As the insurance industry continues to adopt the latest technological innovations, it’s important to do your homework to manage this transition smoothly. Read on to discover more about our recent experience with upgrading some of the tech at our office and what we learned in the process.

Without exaggerating, we have been performing major surgery on a crucial body part: our phones, or more accurately, the lifeline to our customers. Any impact to our phones results in a big impact to our customers.

We encountered many challenges throughout the transition process, some of which we could have mitigated had we been more proactive at the outset.

We learned that asking the right questions (and knowing what those questions are in the first place) is key.

It turns out that it’s not possible to just plug a new piece into existing systems and expect it to work. The depth and complexity behind the scenes was a little more than we anticipated. In this situation, we saw that we needed to have all of our partners and providers communicating with one another.

Unfortunately, we didn’t include some of our partners in our calls and emails and had to catch them up as they came in at a later date. This is one reason the upgrade took longer than expected. Had they been in the process from the beginning, we would have been able to anticipate challenges and address them proactively.

We sincerely believe the following tips will benefit your organization as you initiate upgrades.

1. External communication. Identify all the parties who may be relevant to a given process and bring them together around the table. Involve them in your conversations from the very beginning. If you determine that a given party is not relevant to the conversation, they can safely leave, but you can do that only if they’re part of the conversation to begin with.

2. Create a plan. Understand what you need to complete and by when. Do this by breaking down the project into smaller components. Then delegate tasks and responsibilities to the various parties. Build buffer time and flexibility into your plan to manage delays and disruptions.

3. Consider costs. List a full breakdown of all direct and indirect costs associated. Indirect costs include business interruption. Direct costs include any additional resources/specialists to be engaged.

4. Future oriented thinking. Consider the long term impact of whatever technology you’re installing. Ensure that the solution you’re putting in place today can sustain growth. If it can’t, know the limitations and implications.

5. Internal communication. You must inform your team as to the state of the project. Give them tools and workarounds for any disruption while you conduct the upgrade.

Are you making large scale changes in your business? Call us today so we can help you navigate that process.