If your organization was able to shift to a remote or hybrid work model due to the coronavirus, there’s a very good chance that you quickly deployed new technology or scaled up existing tools.
There’s also a good chance that some of these technologies – like unified communications, team collaboration apps, videoconferencing and more – are new to employees. That means your organization has to provide training to ensure end user adoption to maximize the benefit of these new tools.
It’s no surprise that Enterprise Connect Virtual last week touched on many aspects of the IT’s department’s role in responding to the coronavirus pandemic, including the session “Best Practices for UC&C Training and Adoption in a World of Distributed Work.”
Kevin Keiller, co-founder of EnableUC, and Blair Pleasant, president and principal analyst at COMMfusion LLC, detailed steps your organization can take to ensure end users – whether they’re in the office or at home – make the best use out of these technologies.
Here’s what we learned:
Adoption drives usage, which drives return on investment
If end users aren’t using the collaboration tools at all, or if they aren’t using them in an effective way, the return on investment will be little to none. If they were inadequately trained, then that poor usage isn’t their fault.
Rather than focus on feelings and opinions about certain tech, organizations should focus on the analytics to help them identify what solutions are working and what aren’t working.
Organizations can boost both use and adoption by:
- Differentiating between usage and adoption and treating both as important metrics. Usage is defined by the quantity of a service consumed, while adoption can tell you who is making use of a service.
- Tracking usage and adoption. Data and analytics – rather than personal opinions – should be consulted.
- Focusing on the end user to drive improvements. Find out what they need to get their job done and help them overcome resistance to change.
Next comes the difficult task of executing those goals, and there are five steps toward effective end user adoption, Kieller and Pleasant say.
- Deploy technologies with end users in mind. If you were one of many businesses that scrambled to find a temporary solution to remote work
- Executive buy in. Executives and managers – not just IT the department – should set the example and champion the use of these new technologies.
- Communications and change management. Communicate the benefits of these new tools to end users so they are aware of how they can use these tools to be more productive. Explain to employees the long-term goal of these new deployments.
- Training. Employees should be regularly trained before, during and after the deployment. For the hybrid workforce, consider virtual training like webinars, videos, FAQs and other methods.
- A collaborative culture. Emphasize success with new technology throughout the organization rather than just individuals or certain groups to make the transition a positive experience.
If end users are inspired to use new tools that will help them be productive and efficient employees, your organization should benefit both now and in the future, Pleasant says.
“Whether it’s a pre- or post- COVID world, adoption still does matter,” she said.