What is the most important thing to think about when transforming a business and entering new markets?
Answer: ensuring that you have the support of your employees.
This is what DigitalRoute did – and they are moving forward at full speed.
”In a couple of years we will probably have another 100 employees,” says Maja Samuelsson, Global Head of HR.
On the surface everything is calm and peaceful. Some unopened moving boxes are the only thing that indicates the opposite, that we are at a company in the middle of its most intensive period ever.
”Right now we are completely restructuring our product. We are expanding what we offer and targeting new sectors. A lot is new, even though we simultaneously have a great deal to lean back on. But the really major change is taking place in the individuals, everybody must learn to talk about our product in a new way, more value-based and in relation to new sectors which want to use our product in new ways,” Maja Samuelsson says.
DigitalRoute develops software which helps businesses to manage large quantities of data and create value based on their data. The company was set up when a group of friends quit their jobs as IT consultants and collectively decided to spread their wings.
And boy did they fly.
The first years, ”start up”, were shaky, but were fairly soon followed by a period of intense growth. In recent years the business has grown at a more sedate pace. Until now. With a new CEO, new premises in several regions and a new offering, a new growth journey has begun. But this time with completely different conditions.
”The management realised at an early stage that the only way to tackle this was by getting the support of the employees. So we had to gain a better understanding of each individual. A lot of last year consequently concerned preparations and surveying the employees’ view of the change,” Maja Samuelsson says.
DigitalRoute started to work with &frankly in order to obtain an insight into where their employees were and how they viewed the change. The management grasped fairly quickly that the majority of the employees were actually behind the project. There was strong support and curiosity surrounding being part of ”the new”. However, there were no effective internal communication channels. Nor a clear vision.
”That was something the management and each team had to start working on straight away. Today we have a much better insight into the need for tailored communication and a lot has been clarified within the company during the last six months,” Maja Samuelsson says.
During 2017 questions were sent out once a month in &frankly. Varying sets of questions, but on the same theme. This enabled us to retain focus and obtain a high response frequency.
”We were able to follow the trends clearly and saw that we really were moving in the right direction,” Maja Samuelsson says.
The questions mainly concerned understanding of the new vision and what skills were considered necessary. For example:
- Can you perceive where the company is going?
- Can you perceive your role in this?
- Have you got the right expertise?
- Do you know what you need to learn?
- What forums do we have to share expertise?
- What is most enjoyable about the change?
Questions that are close to the employees and which are clearly linked to improvements and measures to be taken quickly raise the pace of change projects.
Today the management send out questions every other month. In addition to this, several teams supply their own supplementary questions. A relatively common arrangement and something which Maja Samuelsson feels works very well.
”There is a massive difference in the company today compared with one year ago. We have succeeded in elucidating our product vision and in many ways have actually become another company. We have a lot of new employees and partnerships in place. Furthermore employee engagement is at a high level – and moving in the right direction,” Maja Samuelsson says.
This is DigitalRoute
What: Software company that has been in existence since the year 2000.
Number of employees: 200 employees distributed throughout a large part of the world.
Operation: Helps companies to manage and create value from large quantities of data.
Are you also facing a change?
Want to understand and follow up how your employees are experiencing the journey? Get in touch today to try out &frankly!