Implementing digital assessment is essentially about people, not technology, and the implementation should be seen as a business-critical change management process. Read on to learn more about how to engage your stakeholders and motivate them through change.
Change can be driven by both problems and opportunities. Moving assessment online is a big change for everyone involved, and you need to analyse whether your organisation will be motivated by current discomfort or future challenges. Perhaps many of your stakeholders are quite content with the way things are. Are they motivated for change? What could make them commit to the transition?
If initiatives for change come too late, you’ll be left with not much runway. If you start too early, it can be hard to get your stakeholders to see the urgency. No matter what, having a holistic approach to the project and testing the process, as well as the product, will make a huge difference.
The importance of anchoring in management
Like any other change management process, it is essential that the project is anchored within the management of the organisation. It is equally important to involve all stakeholders from all relevant organisational units.
In some cases, a digital examinations project is driven directly by management as a strategic project. If that is the case, the project manager needs only to report diligently to the management throughout the project to ensure consistently anchoring.
In other cases, the project is driven by early adopters in the organisation, such as teachers, exam administrative units, or learning technologist units. In these cases, the project manager will need to ensure anchoring and buy-in from management to ensure the success of the change.
How to activate and engage your different stakeholders
There are various means to ensure anchoring and maintenance of management ownership to the digital examinations project. We recommend that you focus on ongoing communication, well-planned activities and regular reporting. Here are some of the tools you could use:
- Awareness activities
- Steering group reports
- Evaluation report
Now, let’s take a closer look at the activities and reports mentioned above.
General awareness and project communication activities are important tools to make the management accept and support the digital examinations project. The project owner should consider:
- to create a web page dedicated to communicating the project to students and staff with regular updates of the progress. The web page could link to Inspera’s introduction and awareness videos or any other communication materials created by the project team.
- to set up an initial meeting after the project kick-off with relevant members of management. At the meeting, the members should discuss the project goals, success criteria, and project plans – and how to align these with the organisation’s overall strategies.
Steering group reports
Regular reports from the steering group to the management will increase the transparency of the project activities and increase anchoring with management.
The evaluation report of the implementation project should ideally be based on inputs from the management. The report should ensure clarity and organisational alignment on the objectives of the transition to digital examinations.
The project manager/project owner should schedule an evaluation meeting with the management early on in the project. Early involvement of the management is important because it sends out the signal that the project will be reported on professionally and that the management’s attention will be required.
Do you want to learn more?
You can learn more in our ultimate guide for everyone who wants to plan and roll out a digital assessment project. Download the free eBook.
You are also welcome to contact us if you have any questions about e-assessment or the Inspera Assessment platform.
Written by Jo BowdenJanuary 12, 2021