Tech management, strategic lever to modernize management

Many leaders do not perceive the risk they take in favoring management that is still too hierarchical, in keeping management by objective in command-control mode, and managerial rituals such as the annual interview that prove ineffective. Witness the crisis in the vocations of managers, the importance of turnover in stressed workplaces, the disengagement of employees: all these signs should alert them to the need to modernize their “core business”: management. By accelerating nascent trends, the pandemic forces them to do so urgently. Hybrid management, for example, is no longer an option. Companies that have long been reluctant to telework can now only adopt it. Far from being short-lived, this phenomenon is lasting: it therefore implies a necessary review of managerial practices “at all levels”, from local managers to the heads of management committees.

Digital, strategic lever for modernization

Over the past two years, all organizations have accelerated the digital transformation of their sales, manufacturing or collaboration practices. Faced with the many upheavals and the need to modernize management, digital must be seen as an ally. It is not a question here of artificial intelligence that would replace managers. Nothing smoky but concrete: current technology is much simpler to set up, easier to use, even from your smartphone … Allows new (good) practices and new management support indicators to be accessible and operational, on a large scale , whether you are a “Scale up”, an ETI or a large group.

One of the most important projects is certainly the modernization of the annual interview, the benchmark management ritual, which however remains unsatisfactory for all players: as it is practiced today, it does not serve to improve performance, nor to grow the collaborator. Digital makes it more regular, more collaborative, more mobile and above all to spread a more impactful practice to 100% of managers for the commitment and achievement of operational objectives. Digital is therefore a real lever of transformation as it satisfies the needs of employees and managers, that of being listened to and understood, of being accompanied in their daily professional life, in their performance needs.

At the heart of the systems, the manager

For a long time, the systems offered for management only met the expectations of the HR or Finance departments: the functions were designed for them, not for the users! Executives and employees have been the forgotten greats of digital management. This time is over: today the customer is the employee, who manages, who is in the field … So, for example, beyond the monitoring of quantitative KPIs, it has become essential to take into account the motivations, the needs of the teams to give they have the means to progress and work better: the challenge seems simple. It is still too often overlooked by companies: they prefer to leave these subjects in the black box for fear of having to deal with the expectations contained therein! But the question becomes pressing: when employees are not pushing for change, it happens that investment funds encourage the movement because they understand the interest in the company’s performance.

Tools at the service of a managerial ambition

Digital adoption doesn’t have to be a trend, it’s not about equipping yourself to navigate a trend. “Technological tourism” can do damage: without a serious project and without a real intention, the implementation of these new tools is useless, the worse the pretext for postponing the modernization of management until later. If technology is not the panacea, it remains a powerful lever. It is still necessary that the “Management” – the leaders on the front line – bring a sincere project and a bold strategy of transformation of the profession of manager at the service of a specific ambition and a management of change to be implemented for others and for themselves same.

New solutions: Management Tech

A new generation of digital solutions, SaaS (Software As Service) is emerging and gaining more and more importance. Regular points, alignment, OKR, continuous managerial conversations, 360 ° feedback, continuous listening are the main features, at the crossroads between HR Tech and Digital Workplace.

As noted, management modernization solutions need to be designed for executives and employees. They must also adapt to the specificities of each company, unique in terms of culture, sector of activity, history. The transformation project is effective only taking into account its differences, configuring the uses as close as possible to the reality of the customers, accompanying them in their evolutions.

A theme of sovereignty: the domination of the American model (and of software)

But what do we see? Like the vast majority of digital sectors, “Management Tech” is already dominated by the Americans, the first to enter this market. They have the power of investment, the experience and the strength of marketing on their side. Is it a problem for our French and European companies? We think so.

Their “one size fits all” approach, while very pragmatic in addressing the global market, actually offers little flexibility. That will be a problem as we have seen previously. And then we must not be too frank: their vision of management remains different from that of Europeans, and of the French in particular. Their digital solutions are thus irrigated by “made in the US” management models. We take the position of manager coach which is very often the basis of American software. He is far from unique in France: the French coach can make people react, participate, propose, he still has all the legitimacy to impose decisions on his teammates. Whether we deplore it or welcome it is a fact to consider when implementing digital management solutions. The effectiveness of the system, its use by employees and, ultimately, the success of the desired transformation, whatever its extent, depend on it.

Rejecting a “ready-to-use” model constitutes an act of resistance against American “soft power” and will help prevent problems of complying with national legal requirements (the obligation of professional retention, for example).

We act to have Management Tech champions

Today there is the risk of a near monopoly on the part of American companies in the Management Tech sector, which is at the heart of corporate competitiveness. To rebalance the present forces and above all to promote more diversified management models, it is urgent to recognize and support the growth of the French champions. French Tech is very dynamic: CAC 40 companies have commitments to keep to help innovation, unicorns regularly appeal to patriotism to help them become leaders in their industry. Today Management Tech must be considered strategic to support. Several recent experiences show that this is not the case, even when the preference of the teams goes to the local player. Engaging in a responsible purchasing policy would be a strong first step to support French companies in the sector and start a virtuous circle for the performance and plurality of management, the competitiveness of our organizations and that of our economy.