Communicating Technochange : Communication practices and how employeesperceive them

University essay from KTH/Industriell Management

Abstract:

Change is a prominent feature of the organizational life. Nowadays companies rely on implementing large-scale Information Technology (IT) systems in order to enhance their organizational performance. Such technochanges, similarly to planned organizational changes, unfold in stages and have an impact on the organizational members. They, however, are not immune to failures. In this respect, the process of communication has been recognized as a critical success factor and an integrative part of every change initiative. Therefore, this study has investigated the communication practices during technochange, how employees perceive them and eventually, how the communication can be enhanced in order to assure the employees’ engagement. This has been done by conducting a case study at an office of a company in Stockholm, Sweden. The study was carried out through a combination of qualitative data collection methods. The data was analyzed with a help of a theoretical framework and sorted in themes that emerged from the collected empirics.

The findings indicate the process of communication has been considered and acknowledged by the case organization. The use of several communication channels for disseminating of  hange information and collecting employees’ input have formed the employees’ perception of the change and communication processes. Specifically, intranet and meetings accommodate the applied one-way communication channels, while workshops and trainings represent the applied more participative communication methods. Furthermore, the study illustrates that the non-implementers are not a homogenous group and different stakeholders perceive the  hange in different ways that in turn creates different communication needs. Those findings lead to identification of improvement areas and practical suggestions for implementers and managers.

From a theory perspective, this thesis makes an attempt to gain deeper understanding of specific communication approaches and their effect on employees in the context of technochange.

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