We have helped hundreds of companies launch and adopt Zenput in their restaurants and retail locations over the years. A software tool on its own will not transform your business. It must be combined with a company-wide commitment to organizational and cultural change. To get you started on the right path, here are some tips from our most successful customers:
- Define success up front. Get clear on your goals and how you will measure them. Examples could be “we want to increase customer survey scores about store cleanliness from 72 to 85” or “we want our store managers to achieve 90% task completion rates on daily cash audits.”
- Assign a program manager. Designate a person on the team who will manage the Zenput program day-to-day. This could be a trainer, one of your district managers, someone in the HR or IT department, or the operations leader. The important part is that you select someone who has room on their plate to make the launch a priority.
- Review your existing work processes. Since paper templates are more difficult to edit, we find that many companies have been using the same forms for years without evaluating whether they still fit the current needs of the organization. Before sending Zenput your existing forms, we suggest reviewing each template to decide whether changes are needed before digitizing them. Is the sequencing of the items still aligned with the way that the team member should be conducting the audit today? Are any of the questions outdated? Does the scoring system need to be updated? Your team members are more likely to embrace change if you’ve taken a holistic view before rolling out a new process. Your Customer Success Manager can also make recommendations about form layouts based on the structure of the data that you think will be most valuable and actionable for your company going forward.
- Make an announcement. Send a communication out (email or announce at a team meeting) ahead of time before you make the transition to Zenput. It’s the most impactful if this message comes from the top down. Share your vision with the team about how this change is going to benefit them and the broader organization (e.g., operational efficiency, cost savings, better customer experience, etc.) and specify why you selected Zenput as the right solution. District Managers/Supervisors should be asked to reinforce this message when working directly with their store managers.
- Create short-term wins to ignite immediate change. In terms of prioritization, we suggest starting with recurring tasks that help store managers build the habit of using the app frequently, such as opening/closing checklists, cleaning checklists, and any other tasks your stores are expected to do on a daily basis. This will help keep the momentum going while you gradually add additional forms the team uses on more of an ad hoc basis, such as incident reports, maintenance requests, and HR-related forms.
- Train the team. If bringing store managers together for an onsite group training session is not practical, we’ve found that a “train the trainer” approach can be just as effective. You can train your field supervisors how to use the mobile app first. Then they can be tasked with downloading the app on the store tablets for the store managers in their own district as well as teaching them how to use it.
- Feedback and fine-tuning. After the first couple of weeks, solicit feedback from your store managers and field team members. You will likely need to do a bit of tweaking, such as editing form templates or adjusting the time range for daily tasks. The good news is that it is quick and easy to make these changes on Zenput and they will be reflected in real time for your team.
- Use data to drive positive outcomes. Once all of your store locations are using the app, you’ll have more visibility than ever before into your day-to-day operations. With powerful data at your fingertips, you will be able to see which stores and regions are consistently getting their work done on time and what your organization’s major problem areas are. Once you know where your team is falling short, you can develop employee retraining initiatives that emphasize these topics and then measure improvements over time. You can also set rules in the app that will trigger automated alerts and follow-up tasks when exceptions are found so that you’re actually closing the loop on both communication and execution.
- Build on team wins and institutionalize change. To set your team up for long-term success, reinforce the right behaviors. For example, you could give a bonus to the store manager who has the highest task completion rates each month. Conversely, you may need to retire or transfer some team members who just can’t get behind your new approach, so that they don’t drag the rest of the team down. Going forward, you will be able to bring new hires up to speed very quickly as all of their tasks will be centralized in one place. We recommend having them watch the Zenput mobile app training video on their first day so they can hit the ground running!