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Presentation on theme: "IF YOU BUILD IT, THEY WILL COME!"— Presentation transcript:

Best Practices for SharePoint User Adoption Sue Hanley President Susan Hanley LLC

2 About Me Expertise: knowledge management, information architecture, portals and collaboration solutions with a focus on governance, user adoption, and metrics President, Susan Hanley LLC. Co-Author: Essential SharePoint 2010 and Essential SharePoint 2007 Led national Portals, Collaboration, and Content Management practice for Dell Director of Knowledge Management at American Management Systems Mother of three “millennials”

3 We built it, why don’t users just come?
Adoption of new technologies, especially SharePoint, doesn’t happen all of a sudden, all at once, or without a plan. Users won’t usually rush to embrace a new solution unless it very clearly addresses their overall business goals. Before you can think about user adoption, you have to have a solution worth adopting! In the book Enterprise 2.0, and in his keynote last year at KM World, McAfee referenced a 2006 Harvard Business Review article by Harvard marketing professor John Gourville. Gourville traced the commonly used phrase about building a “better mousetrap” to a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson: If a man can write a better book, preach a better sermon, or make a better mousetrap, than his neighbor, though he build his house in the woods, the world will make a beaten path to his door.” Gourville concluded that this quote was compelling but wrong, citing that there are plenty of examples of products that have offered an advantage over others that they have replaced but haven’t actually replaced them. McAfee brought this example to light in his keynote address at the 2009 KM World conference. He asked the members of the audience to raise their hands if they had a TiVo. About a quarter of the room raised their hands. Then he asked people to keep their hands up if they loved their TiVo and couldn’t possibly imagine watching TV the “old” way anymore. Not one person lowered their hand. Then he asked, “Why don’t we all have a TiVo?”

4 Why is it difficult to adopt new technologies?
Delayed Gratification Early adopters give up their “comfort zone” immediately but receive benefits in the future. No Guarantees The new solution may not work the way it is supposed to. Squishy Benefits Benefits, especially with portal and collaboration solutions, are typically qualitative, which makes them very difficult to describe and compare. This is why collecting user success stories is so important.

5 The 9X Effect A new product has to offer a nine times improvement over the existing solution in order to be immediately or easily adopted.* A new product has to offer a nine times improvement over the existing solution in order to be immediately or easily adopted. If your solution is not nine times better, then you have to pay close attention to the fact that people inherently value what they already have or what they are used to over solutions or tools that they don’t own. This doesn’t mean that adoption isn’t possible – it just emphasizes the critical importance of a well thought out adoption plan. *Gourville, John T., “Why Consumers Don’t Buy: The Psychology of New Product Adoption.” Harvard Business School Note # (Boston: Harvard Business School Publishing, 2004).

6 Critical Elements for User Adoption Planning
Make sure that you’ve got a solution worth adopting Understand how users adapt to change Implement a training plan Implement a communications plan Have a user support plan Think about incentives and rewards Allow users to provide feedback Document your plan

7 Don’t be confused Don’t use user adoption as your measure of solution success. Remember – the ultimate key to solution success is solving a business problem. Achieving business outcomes – moving the needle – is the only way to measure success. And, by the way, if your solution actually helps uses do their jobs (see Critical Element #1), it will be easy to get adoption. User adoption is clearly an important topic in your solution strategy. But, any user adoption plan that is going to work has to rest on a foundation of a solution that solves a business problem. This is especially important for social computing initiatives, but don’t think that your intranet is immune. If you want to design an intranet that will be adopted, there needs to be a business problem that the intranet solves.

8 What’s the One Big Thing?
DONE From the Nielsen Norman Intranet Design Annual 2011: think of the intranet as a “perpetual beta needing continual improvements”

9 1. Have a solution worth adopting!
Identify Your Stakeholders Understand Their Business Objectives - WIIFM Understand Your Culture But don’t be a slave to it! Identify How Success Will Be Measured Prepare a Governance Plan Design a Good Site Well organized content Search that works Follow design and page layout best practices Plan Roll-Out and Launch

10 Business pain matters …
Quality suffers: when people can’t find what they need fast enough Quality suffers: 62% when people can’t find what they need fast enough Demoralized: 52% feel demoralized when they can’t manage their work information From Lexis/Nexis 2010 international workplace productivity survey: People feel demoralized when they can’t manage their work information

11 … so does solving a specific problem …
60% of the winners in the 2011 Intranet Design Annual have mobile versions Not full blown, but what employees need “on the go” Neilsen Norman Intranet Design Annual 2011 Understand how users need to get information Last year, 30% of winning intranets had a mobile version. This year, 60% Mobile: Specific features instead of trying to squeeze the entire intranet on a tiny screen. Specific devices: inside the company, you may not have to provide mobile access for every type of device because you can focus on company-issued devices. Think about what is important to “employees on the go” Meeting mobile needs can really help adoption

12 … and encouraging engagement
Comments Allow users to contribute content and comment on content contributed by others Ratings Grading requires less work than commenting and rating systems can broaden user participation. Ratings also add value in search listings. But, all kinds of issues with ratings (see presentation on social computing). Count and Promote On average, better stuff gets used more so usage count is a reasonable proxy for quality – and has the huge benefit of requiring no extra effort from users Consider points or badges (more later) More themes from the 2011 Intranet Design Annual

13 2. Why is change so hard? Comfort with the status quo
“This is how we’ve always done it … and it works for me.” Discomfort with being forced to change “I’m not broken, why are you trying to fix me?” No personal benefit “Sure, I see why the big wigs would want this, but what’s in it for me?”

14 My favorite quotes about change
Change is good - you go first. Kenneth F Murphy 1955-, former SVP HR of Altria Group and writer It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change. Charles Darwin People don't resist change. They resist being changed! Peter Senge, management writer famous for the notion of the learning organization

15 Think about how you can roll out functionality aligned with how users adopt new technology
When adopting a new tool, users typically pass through five stages, each involving a progression of behaviors and needs Adoption Stage/Time Awareness Learning Trial Application 100% User incorporates the solution as an indispensable tool. As such, the solution is a formal element within specific stages of work processes. User experiments with the tool on current projects to experience tangibly how it fits with current modes of working. Obtains real-time under-standing of benefits and experience. User achieves awareness of the new technology and begins forming perceptions around its importance and value. User obtains an understanding, both theoretical and demonstrated, of the tool’s fundamental attributes, such as what it does, its value, how to use it, and how it integrates with existing work processes. User applies the technology regularly and gains greater familiarity with it, specifically as it relates to fundamental tasks. Adapted by Reuben Danzing from "Diffusion of Innovations" by Everett M. Rogers, 5th Edition, Free Press, 1995

16 3. Develop a training plan
Don’t assume “it’s intuitive” One size does not fit all Training needs to be targeted to the end user’s role in the organization and role or responsibility with regard to the solution Don’t try to train all at once Adapt to the learning style of the learner Educational experts know that not everyone learns in precisely the same way. This is especially true for busy adults. You will get the best outcomes from your training initiatives if you can offer training in multiple ways: classroom, online, “just-in-time” via computer-based training (CBT), or short online videos, quick reference “cards,” and so on. Veronique Palmer has formalized an approach to training that mirrors what I have found to be successful with my clients. Break up the training in to consumable chunks. She goes for 1 day at a time with 3-4 weeks between courses. I have found that some times even one entire day is too much. Think about 2 ½ days, also spread out. Give people something to do – train with an example or better yet, a user’s own new site. At CIT, we built template pages for each business group and actually had users add content during the training classes so that the solution would go live with accurate information entered by site owners. Permission training is the LAST and most advanced course. You have to understand the basics. Security should be a “don’t try this at home” kind of thing – especially the first time.

17 4. Communicate, communicate, communicate!
Communications planning does not end at solution launch Communications needs to be persistent Get SHARP SharePoint On

18 Tested ideas for your communications plan
Leverage existing meetings and events Create (and use) an “anecdote” bank Target your messages Did you know …? rotating message (tip of the day) “Look what they did” success stories Cafeteria table toppers Message board/break room/elevator bank announcements or posters Desktop wallpaper Usability testing

19 5. Plan User Support Make sure that the help desk is prepared
They are often left out of training – big mistake “Seed” the organization with power users Pilot team Volunteers Launch week activities Lunch and Learns Ongoing support Office hours Center of Excellence

20 6. Think about incentives and rewards
Key Influencer Strategy Someone important “Mikey” People tend to follow others – when we see other people writing reviews, sharing knowledge, and submitting ideas, we get the sense that this is just what we’re supposed to do. Key Motivators Insights from MySite pilot Gardening and Yoga drive adoption? Fun Stuff Scavenger Hunt Snow and Checkered Flags Video Points, Badges, Prizes It's an apocryphal story by now: IBM needed to get Sametime adopted internally in order to support its massively distributed workforce. After almost a decade of having presence and chat available, there were still only pockets of adoption. Then in 2005 (so I'm told) CEO Sam Palmisano sent out a memo saying, "if you want to find me, you'll find me on Sametime." [So don't bother to send me an or leave me a voic .] In a single stroke, he convinced 400,000 IBM employees to announce their presence to each other, to make it much easier to find and connect. Sametime is now the most important application in the company. Without presence, work at IBM would slow to a crawl. So, why do we need incentives and rewards? Because typically adoption at a grass roots level is not enough to move the needle and create critical mass. Like the story of the hot dog vendor, the organization has to want to change – there must be some intent. You need your leaders to model the behavior – and demonstrate that they care enough to change the way they interact. As we talked about in step 5, there should be some ongoing support and coaching. Several companies (Microsoft included) pair up senior executives with younger hires to become tech coaches. This might be something to think about in your organization. Another thing to think about: patience. It can take a while to change organizational culture – even when the organization wants to change.

21 7. Allow users to provide feedback
User feedback helps identify where you’ve got adoption challenges Provide an opportunity to provide feedback on every page Get up out of your desk and ASK for feedback! Conduct usability tests and LISTEN to what people say but WATCH what they do Hang out in the cafeteria – set up a kiosk Hang out in the lobby

22 8. Write it down! It makes you think. It gives you something to share.
It involves other people. Adoption Plan If you know you have to produce a written deliverable, you know you will have to carefully think about what you are going to do. This is important. The least successful user adoption strategy for SharePoint solutions is one we call: “throw it over the fence and see what happens.” You can probably imagine why this strategy is pretty much doomed. The sad thing is that it is “applied” in way too many organizations. When you have a written plan, you have a document that you can review with others. More review means more ideas. More ideas mean more people are engaged. More engagement results in greater user adoption. In other words, you will build it and they will come.

23 Leverage Helpful Resources
Read User Adoption Strategies: Shifting Second Wave People to New Collaboration Technology by Michael Sampson Read Essential SharePoint 2010 by Scott Jamison, Susan Hanley, and Mauro Cardarelli Get addicted to Jakob Nielsen’s Alertbox: (Current Issues in Web Usability) Download the SharePoint Server 2010 Adoption Best Practices White Paper from Microsoft by Sue Hanley and Scott Jamison ( Follow Online end user training from Microsoft: Intro SharePoint 2010 training:

24 What are your adoption challenges?
This is the audience participation part of the program.

25 Contact Information Susan Hanley President, Susan Hanley LLC (o) (m) Blog:


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