It’s a well-known fact that organizational change never comes easy. Change management is a vast topic that encompasses a lot, so it’s easy to get lost when rolling out new changes. For example, workflow changes will have different needs than an IT change (such as switching to another system or implementing new software).
As such, you need a diverse array of change management tools to help you meet the needs of each type of change. More often than not, those tools include software. These tools and programs will help provide order to the often chaotic change management process.
The best change management tools will help you with:
IT service management
Speeding up processes through automation
New employee training programs
Avoiding disruptions and eliminating resistance
As you can see, the right tools can help you implement changes with ease. But where can you find the most reliable change management software?
That’s the question that we’re going to answer today. Stay tuned to discover the highest-rated and most effective change management tools for 2022.
What Are Change Management Tools?
If you’ve never spearheaded major changes at a company before, you may not know why you need tools in the first place. After all, isn’t creating a robust change management plan and sticking to it enough to get the job done?
While a plan is undoubtedly necessary, implementing the changes included in the plan is far easier said than done. Consider this statistic — while nearly every company goes through changes these days — over half of all change management initiatives fail. In fact, only 34% report clear success, with 16% showing mixed results.
Organizational change is so difficult to pull off due to the nature of change itself. As humans, we’re naturally averse to change, especially if we’re used to things going a certain way for so long. For example, it’s almost always the case that some employees will resist change and want to maintain the status quo. It can be incredibly challenging to implement a change and sustain it into the future. That’s especially true whenever a change is highly urgent and necessary for the organization’s survival.
Luckily, specific software tools make managing change far easier. They can help you stay on track with your deadlines by using checklists and other helpful templates. These tools can assist with decision-making, project management, change control, etc. They can also help you engage with your employees to get them excited about the change instead of dreading it.
Let’s consider a brief example of software assisting with successful change management.
Say that a company has floundering returns and decides to reinvent itself with a brand-new focus. In doing so, their salespeople will have to sell completely new products. They’ll also need to learn how to use tablets and a new software program so they can pitch to clients on the go.
It’s a steep challenge that can go south without the proper plan and tools in place. The organization needs to fully support its employees as they go about redefining their roles and what it means to work for the company. To help, they use software to aid with employee engagement and training. They use the program to track changes and see which department needs help — such as a particular team struggling to grasp the selling points of the new product.
On the IT side, they use a program to create an interactive guide on how to use the new technology they’re rolling out (the tablets and software). The guide is user-friendly and contains PDFs, videos, and infographics — so the staff has no problem learning how to use their new gadgets.
Because of these tools, employees receive the proper training and support they need for a seamless change. That’s a simple example of how you can use software tools to make organizational change management more manageable and less chaotic.
The 6 Best Change Management Tools for 2022
By now, you should understand why tools are necessary for the change management process. Like anything else, not all change management software is created equal. That’s why you’ll want to use these criteria when evaluating a new tool:
It should have an attractive and logical user interface (UI).
There should be ample training and support available for the program.
The tool should have helpful metrics that you can use to measure your success.
There should be visualization tools like flowcharts and process maps.
Integrations are often useful and help you combine the functionality of two tools into one.
The pricing should be fair and include a lot of features for the money.
Without further ado, let’s look at the most effective change management tools out there today.
Best for: Employee onboarding and adopting new software.
Organization size: All sizes.
Most desirable feature: Intuitive step-by-step walkthroughs for adopting changes.
First, we have WhatFix, a platform best used for adopting new technology. It has a flexible pricing structure, and there is a free trial available, which is a plus. You can easily create workflows that serve as interactive guides for your employees. In other words, you can create customizable training programs for your staff on new software and more.
If you’re rolling out a new application at your company, WhatFix is a great tool to have by your side. You can seamlessly create contextual pop-ups and guided widgets to make instruction a breeze. Its dashboards also provide you with real-time updates on your change activity.
You’ll get to view:
How many queries you’ve served
How many times employees have played your workflows
Your most popular workflows
You can also track user progress to see how your employees are doing. That will enable you to discover who’s struggling with the changes the most so you can provide them with assistance.
Do you have zero experience with coding? That’s not a problem when you use WhatFix. You can create guides and workflows without writing a single line of code. That comes in handy for project managers that want to create instructional guides but aren’t familiar with code.
Additionally, if you have disabled employees at your organization, WhatFix, has built-in accessible technology that meets the compliance requirements of section 508 of the US Rehabilitation Act.
The walkthroughs you create with WhatFix can appear in several different formats, including:
This versatility comes in handy, as it grants you the freedom to select the best format for each guide. For example, you may find that your employees respond better to videos showing them what to do instead of PDFs with plain text. You can easily insert each guide into any help desk or LMS (learning management system).
Best for: Collaborating with teams.
Organization size: All sizes.
Most desirable feature: 400+ native integrations with popular applications.
Do multiple teams in your organization need to coordinate as part of your change management plan? If so, you’ll benefit from using Wrike. It’s a fantastic team collaboration software with over 400 integrations with other apps.
It’s also incredibly intuitive, so your staff can get started using it straight away — no training required. Users can effortlessly navigate dashboards, messages, reports, notifications, etc. That makes interdepartmental communication more accessible than ever. Managers can communicate and coordinate as well as stakeholders and executives.
Wrike comes with plenty of visualization tools as well, such as:
You also have the option to start using Wrike completely free — regardless of the size of your organization. If you’re interested in their premium version, you can enjoy a 14-day free trial, and plans start at $9.80 a month per user.
Clear, concise communication is one of the core components of any successful change management plan. Poor communication is one of the leading causes of resistance and disruptions. That’s why a tool like Wrike is so helpful. It makes it extremely easy for departments to coordinate and communicate at all times. Due to its many integrations, employees can use Wrike in conjunction with apps like Salesforce, Dropbox, and offerings from Microsoft and Google.
Should a team member have an essential question for staff from another department, they can simply leave them a message on Wrike.
Lastly, Wrike has fantastic customer support in place at all times for its users. Should you hit a snag with the program, there’s a bustling support community online ready to help you. Wrike also has interactive training guides and videos to use whenever you’re getting started.
Best for: Controlling IT changes
Organization size: Large
Most desirable feature: Dedicated ITIL (information technology infrastructure library) processes
If your large organization is rolling out IT changes, Giva eChangeManager is a must-have tool to have by your side.
It’s fantastic for tracking and navigating:
You can use Giva not only to roll out change but also to plan it. There are detailed analytics in place that will help you measure KPIs with ease. It’s also one of the few programs with processes designed explicitly for ITIL. These speed up approval times and make document management effortless.
For larger organizations, it can be challenging to keep track of their IT changes due to moving at such a rapid pace. Luckily, Giva has an extensive reporting system in place. It keeps detailed records of all IT changes for long-term visibility. That means you’ll have an easier time keeping track of everything you’ve done so far in your IT department. As such, you’re far less likely to hit a snag or become confused by a new change.
Giva’s interface is highly customizable — so you’ll be able to tweak it to your heart’s content. You can customize fields, screens, business rules engines, and options to align with your needs. There are also workflow processes for routing new IT changes. That will help your staff keep all their ducks in a row when tweaking servers and networks.
Give enables you to send out notifications to your staff through several different methods, including:
That way, you can always keep your staff informed with status updates and messages. Give eChangeManager has a 30-day free trial, and monthly plans start at $29 a month per user.
Best for: IT service management
Organization size: Medium to large
Most desirable feature: Documenting, monitoring, and coordinating change management requests
When rolling out a change, you’ll want to make sure your IT department is ready to handle all your process requests. A perfect tool to assist with that is BMC Ready Change Management 9, an ITSM (IT service management) tool from BMC software. It’s also an ITIL compliant process and has a customizable dashboard that’s easy to navigate.
IT staff can monitor change requests, create change plans, and manage new releases in one convenient location with this tool. Its automated notifications will go out to stakeholders to help streamline communication. The program also works on desktop or mobile phones, thanks to its cloud capabilities (it works on-premise too). That’s a valuable feature for managing change from any location, such as a hotel room or from home.
Other useful features include its automated collision detection and impact analytics. A collision occurs whenever you have two change requests with overlapping implementation schedules. As you can imagine, that will drastically affect the success of your change management plan. If a collision goes unnoticed, it can cause serious timeline problems for your strategy. BMC Ready Change Management 9 will automatically detect collisions, so you’ll never have to worry about them throwing a wrench in your plans.
The program’s impact analytics will help you identify key stakeholders in a change and assess the overall impact on your organization as a whole. That is invaluable information to have when creating a change management plan.
There are free trials available, and you can find information about pricing on their website.
Best for: ITIL and DevOps
Organization size: Enterprise
Most desirable feature: SLA (service level agreements) management
ChangeGear Change Manager was specifically designed to serve three roles: IT, DevOps, and business.
Change Manager has many valuable features, from PCI compliance to limiting bottlenecks in DevOps. In fact, it has built-in change model workflows for all three of its roles. The program also makes heavy use of automation to streamline changes and improve communication. The dashboard features visual reporting, key metrics, and KPIs that are easy to understand.
If you’re attempting to manage a significant change at an enterprise-level organization, ChangeGear Change Manager is the perfect tool. With it, you’ll have a central hub for all the changes that occur throughout the organization. That makes it easier to stay on track with your timelines and measure your success so far.
If you’re interested in ChangeGear, you can sign up to take a free test drive.
Best for: Managing changes for employees and customers
Organization size: Any
Most desirable feature: Error-preventing guidance tools
Do you need employee onboarding for Salesforce? If so, WalkMe is a tool you can use to simplify the process. That’s because the program has built-in guidance tools and onboarding for Salesforce, Jira, NetSuite, and many others. There are also guidance tools that can help you encourage desired behaviors from employees and customers.
For this reason, WalkMe is an essential tool for companies eager to make changes with their employees and their customer base. The tool also comes in handy for resource planning during changes via the way it simplifies back-office functions.
Effortless HelpDesk access
Custom desktop notifications
Insights into employee and customer behavior
WalkMe has a free demo and starts at $7,500 a year. They also have custom pricing plans based on many factors.
Concluding thoughts: Essential change management tools for 2022
Since effective change management never comes easy – it’s best to use every tool at your disposal to simplify the process. All the tools on this list will help streamline the change process and assist with essential tasks for IT, HR, sales, and DevOps.
No matter the size of your organization, software tools are often necessary for analyzing metrics, measuring success, and managing timelines.