Guest Blog from Lectra: Weaving We into the Apparel Industry, Part Two

September 10, 2012 by Kate Robinson in Guest blogs with

Suppliers mentioned in this article: Lectra

Following an introduction to collaboration, this chapter will take a closer look at collaboration’s essential ingredient—people.

Blog 2/4: People, by Kate Robinson, Editor at Lectra

People are the originators of information, whether it’s a design or an item price. Getting that information where it needs to go is their biggest challenge. Introducing new tools—especially technology—into our tried-and-true ways of working is a difficult change for many. Fashion is fast-paced and no one wants more work to slow them down. New tools and well-intentioned process change are often met with suspicion or skepticism: change is scary for most people, even if it’s for the better.

Show me the proof

When big problems draw management’s attention, it’s usually time to question how things are being done. Most people just need a clear explanation of how a new tool or process is intended to improve their lives and not rob them of their independence—and tangible proof of that. The more they can engage with the proof themselves—through running a parallel process, for example—the greater the chance they will come to trust the new system on their own.

Engage with change

Building collaboration usually implies change, either in a process or a tool. That reluctance can be overcome by proving to people the value of what you have to offer, not by forcing them into it. User input is a big part of initiating successful long-term change. When designers can give feedback on a new PLM system, for example, not only do they contribute to making the tool itself more effective for the overall process, but they feel engaged in the change. The introduction of new technology can be particularly stressful for some people, so creating the opportunity for engagement can help them weather the initial discomfort.

The next chapter will outline the importance of having the right tools to ensure successful process. Read us on September 24.th

About Kate Robinson

Kate Robinson is Editor at Lectra, and has contributed a series of blogs to WhichPLM in that capacity.

View Kate Robinson's profile →


One Comment

  1. MarkHarropSeptember 15, 2012 at 12:40 am

    Can’t agree more “Change Management” is an essential part of any project and/or technology introduction, people should have the opportuntiy to understand the impact and value of chang,e even if that means that their process may take a few clicks longer to process the operation but the people up stream may take a lot click less to complete their tasks….!

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