Change processes in SMEs and how digitization projects become successful – a field report based on the introduction of digital signatures with sproof sign

Annika Koch, intern at sproof GmbH

Change processes in SMEs are often a topic that people want to avoid. However, it is essential for sustainable economic success to continue to develop through constant change. In doing so, it is important to maintain the successful and to implement the new. An important driver of change processes is digitalization.

In this article I describe my experience as an intern at sproof GmbH. We offer a digital signature solution with which small, medium and large companies can completely digitize their signature workflows. Printing, signing and scanning for a signature is therefore no longer necessary. I would like to share here not only my experiences with the digitization of SMEs, but also address the challenges of the associated change processes and present possible solutions.

Challenges of change processes

As an intern at sproof GmbH, I often experience how it is an overcoming for companies to digitize processes. At the recent Leaders Academy webinar on change processes with guest speaker Debora Karsch, typical mistakes that companies can make during change were highlighted. These include underestimating the blocking potential, the habit of wanting to do too many things at once, and not having access to an adequate competence team.

The solutions presented by Debora Karsch in the webinar correspond well with my experience in introducing digital signatures in SMEs.

Involve and understand employees

The potential for employees to block any change should not be underestimated. Digitalization issues in particular present employees with a challenge. Analog processes that employees have been accustomed to for years, such as signing internal documents on paper (vacation requests, orders, etc.), are now being eliminated and replaced by a new, digital system. Although the digitization of such processes, for example, brings significant savings potential, both in terms of money and time, which ultimately also benefits all employees, individual doubts quickly arise as to whether one is up to the new processes. These doubts are absolutely understandable, normal and comprehensible. Some employees will voice their resistance out loud, but it is important to also recognize the silent blockages and to seek dialog with the relevant employees. By communicating ideas, pointing out changes and not surprising anyone, security and appreciation can and must be conveyed. For example, if one decides to use the digital signature solution from sproof, each and every individual can try out the free version in advance. Since it is a cloud-based solution, no installation or IT project is necessary and all employees have immediate access. By carefully approaching and independently testing and using the product in everyday business, the inhibition threshold is lowered, the advantages are recognized and the change is accepted – even acknowledged and welcomed.

Example: Digitization of signature processes

sproof sign provides SMEs with an up-to-date, legally compliant and modern solution for the digitization of signature processes, as well as a competent team. The solution is user-oriented and designed to optimize processes, so that ultimately all employees benefit from more efficient work, less stress and bureaucracy, and more free time for individual creativity.

In conclusion, it can be said that when implementing such change processes, it is also necessary to proceed step by step. No one benefits from digitizing everything in one fell swoop. If you start with the digital signature, you will see the direct effects. Annoying printing and scanning is no longer necessary. Analog filing space is saved. Signature processes are accelerated and time is saved. A priority can be processed without any pressure. With the first positive change, it is easier to tackle further projects and to develop further in a future-oriented way.

Your experiences

What are your experiences and how do you deal with change processes in SMEs? Write in the comments!