Eight simple ways to get innovative IT right and dodge the pitfalls of tech's bleeding edge

Tips from those in the know...

...can cope with queries, and courses should be made available for staff to learn about the new technology.

"Organisations also have to address something called the perceived behavioural control, which is basically, 'Can I wrap my head around how to use this technology?'

"Make it really clear, step by step, so it doesn't affect the flow of their work and they can get their head around it fast," Hammarling said.

4. Spare the rod

Faced with a workforce obstinately clinging on to an established technology and way of doing things, it doesn't pay to adopt a 'use it or else' attitude.

Staff should only be cajoled into using new technology as a method of last resort, according to Hammarling.

"It's not a great way of bringing about behaviour change. It should definitely be a last resort because otherwise staff can come to resent the new technology as something that has led to them being rapped over the knuckles," she said.

However, Birmingham City Council's Evans said that given the natural resistance to change among staff, to some extent managers may have to be insistent that the workforce toe the line and adopt the new technology and working practices.

"It's a combination of positives and threats - you do have to be hard-nosed about this. People have to follow the organisation's rules."

5. Lead from the front

Staff have a herd mentality. Once they start seeing managers and colleagues switching to new technologies and ways of working they'll be far more willing to follow suit.


If you want staff to use Twitter, get some of the senior people in the business to start tweeting firstPhoto: pixelbully

In order to exploit what psychologists call 'subjective norms' - the desire among people to follow the crowd - Hammarling said managers need to set an example for staff on how to use the new technology.

"You need the managers, the senior people in the business to be seen to be using the technology themselves.

"If they are people who your employees would like to be like, it would be a really good way of improving attitudes towards the new technology.

"For example, if you're thinking about getting staff to use Twitter accounts, then getting some of the senior people in the business to be part of that initial tweeting would be one of the most effective things you could do to make sure it catches on."

Once two-thirds or so of staff have adopted new technologies and working practices it will become much easier to...