We write for GreenBook on the secrets behind successful technology implementations

Our Group Services Director, Horst Feldhaeuser, writes about the best way to implement market research technology, all while balancing the unique human skills of insights professionals

Our Group Services Director, Horst Feldhaeuser, has written an article for Greenbook, "Successful Technology Adoption Allows Humans to Thrive." In the piece, he explores the ‘ever-blurring line between humans and technology’ in the market research industry.

With many of us so time poor, it’s perhaps little surprise that failed technology implementations abound. And, while technology is critical, this cannot mean using technology for the sake of it, he warns. “We still need the human aspect of market research to succeed: our ideas, our intuitions, our feelings … and most importantly, our curiosity.”

In order to provide the kind of insights that are foundational to successful business decisions, one common thread that connects successful projects is “human interference”, he says: “It’s humans that bring the smarts; technology brings the muscle.”

And so, with the industry facing ever-growing pressure for increased speed and efficiency, the right technology can speed up our processes and allow us, as humans, more time to really examine the data and to bring our skills to the table.

Horst also shares the key ways in which businesses can ensure they adopt solutions with both technology and people in mind.

First, he says it is critical to involve all stakeholders in the process - rather than an IT team making a unilateral decision when it comes to which type of platform to use, across departments. “Input from those who will be using it to improve their workflow is key,” he warns. “They must identify exactly where the roadblocks and inefficiencies are in current processes, and then identify how the technology can improve those sticking points.”

Second, minimizing workflow disruption. He advises teams to build upon successes gradually, taking a staged approach to streamline technology implementation, to gain more buy-in from entire teams and, ultimately, to deliver better results.

Meanwhile, leadership support is vital. “You will definitely need a senior leadership sponsor and a dedicated project manager for the implementation of any new technology,” he writes. “Find someone who understands that you need the efficiencies that technology brings, but that also knows change doesn’t happen overnight.”

Last, but not least, it’s essential that any implementation plan reflects business processes, priorities and objectives. Where are the sticking points in my current workflow when it comes to delivering quality insights? Where can the technology implementation impact these key deliverables? Do my current team members have the right skills for a new solution? 

Fortunately, while insights can help businesses to make better decisions and move forward in a landscape that is undergoing fast-paced change, technology can also support us in ensuring our work happens with ease, and with speed. Read the article in full here.

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