8 Things You Must Do to Drive SharePoint User Adoption


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As I explain in my Kindle eBook on Amazon.com, there are 8 things that you MUST do to drive user adoption of SharePoint in your organization. I've given this presentation at several SharePoint Saturdays throughout the South Eastern U.S. and have had great discussions with attendees regarding the challenges they are facing.

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  • Allow the flexibility of SharePoint to work for you. Businesses need to be nimble End users are very familiar with the concept of ‘BETA’, use to advantagePeople are resistant to change. Find out WHY. Prior experience with a similar product “Just another software solution we have to use”. Tell them they are empowered.Don’t shoot for the ‘BIG BANG’ application. Approach application building to occur over a period of time.Allow the system to grow organically with a good governance plan.You have a short time for user adoption to occur. System must be better than the way they were doing it before.
  • Train them on both the ‘how’ and the ‘why’.Users generally reach a plateau of learning once the tool fulfills their specific need.It’s your job to push them beyond that.Provide a sandbox to learn on. Allow them to explore SP’s capabilities.Educate management what’s involved for success Ask them to make SP work part of job description of their staff. “That which gets measured, gets managed.”Reach out to other companies using SharePointJoin the SharePoint User’s Group in your area.Host an e-mail attachment-free Friday where no attachments can be sent.Setup a specific workflow that is a common business need and that everyone must use Sometimes you must be a little more forcefulIntroduce heavy collaborators to lite collaborators so they share success stories. Invite successful collaborators to present their solutions in your company. Have them focus on PAR format: Problem. Action. Resolution.
  • A moose crossing may make a lot of sense if your users are in Alaska but it won’t make any sense if they are in New York. You need to provide the proper context for how SharePoint will be used within the environment.How frequently is the system backed up?What’s the DR plan for SharePoint?What business process does SharePoint enhance?People won’t store their business class documents on a system that isn’t tier one in the DR plan.Have the executive sponsor identify desired outcomes for the platform.Tell them what system SharePoint is replacing or enhancing.People are overwhelmed by their daily work. Tell them what the purpose of the system is and how it can help them.
  • Constantly evaluate your organizations’ maturity regarding use of SharePoint.Keep collaboration top of mind by sharing success stories.Adoption is not a point in time event, it’s a continual process.Build the adoption plan with an eye toward digestibility.Start with the basics.Roll out new capabilities slowly to keep interest high.Show how departments can use SharePointShow how the enterprise can use SharePoint
  • Track important events in your company and highlight themKeep the info up to date and delete old information immediatelyHave your CEO/COO or a respected person in your company provide intranet-only information that cannot be read anywhere else.Maybe we should make the mind-shift to stop thinking of SP as a collaboration platform, instead think of it as a platform to support collaboration Enable SharePoint to support both the formal and the informal discussions that occur naturally between coworkersMeeting notesDocumentsTasksProject managementBlogs by respected managementBLOGS aren’t the success…the COMMUNICATION is the successFAQ’s
  • I read the story of a group of friends that promised to hold one another accountable for working out three times a week. They started off strong and, over time, because to loose people. Someone came up with the idea to switch gym bags with someone in the group and be responsible for bringing another person’s workout clothes to the gym. The fear of letting down their friends and them not having clothes to work out in increased the accountability of the group dramatically and they stuck to their plan.
  • Focus on the findability of informationPodcasting your CEOUI Branding to draw people inVideos for training and video bloggingUnique URL for your siteProvide an area where people can share free form informationFAQSuccess and Failures areaRSS feeds to provide new information
  • Collaboration is sharing a particular pursuitCreating a docSharing infoPresentation of financial informationThought leaders should lead by example and utilize the platform to persistently communicate.People who have built fiefdoms do not like collaborationFiefdoms always fall apart and are torn down.The real-time feedback in a meeting between people cannot be mimicked in a SP environment.SP can support that interaction, however.Begin with the end in mind. Allow people to finish the sentence, “6 months from now, I am using SharePoint to….”
  • The flow is different for each department and each companyThis means that you address specific needs in the department, don’t simply deliver a pre-canned solution.
  • Some in Enterprise 2.0 say that you can’t DRIVE user Adoption.To them ‘driving’ means that same as ‘push user adoption’ or ‘pull user adoption’. This has a negative connotation.Enterprise 2.0 says that any type of growth or ‘driving’ that’s going to occur is going to come from the user community, from a need being identified and addresses through the ‘organic’ growth of the system. You must hand the power of SharePoint off to your user community, only then will it become a system that is being adopted by your users because they have built the system.Adoption comes from the rigorous process of ‘adaptation’. A rollout in Enterprise 2.0 is never really complete, because your users will constantly be giving feedback that they expect to be listened to and acted upon.Adaptation that is built into the system taps into natural energies. It helps people get behind the system, use it and persistently enhance it. Tapping into the natural energies that people have is important because it brings people ‘to the system’.
  • 8 Things You Must Do to Drive SharePoint User Adoption

    1. 1. 8 Things You Must Do to Drive SharePoint Collaboration leereed.me GYEONGBOKGUNG PALACE, SOUTH KOREA
    2. 2. Focus on SharePoint‟s flexibility Educate on the tool Communicate context Rate collaboration maturity Give people a reason to visit Create User Accountability Define „Collaboration‟ Place SharePoint in the Flow
    3. 3. Focus on SharePoint's flexibility, allowing for rapid improvements Users are used to “Beta” People are resistant to change. Find out why! Don‟t try to boil the ocean Allow the system to grow organically...with governance
    4. 4. Educate on the Tool Train beyond the plateau..take it slow Provide a sandbox for proof of concept experimentation IT‟s goal should be a handoff to the user community Internal user groups. Don‟t just attend, get involved.
    5. 5. Communicate the Context of SharePoint in the Environment Is SharePoint replacing any existing systems? Educate users on disaster recovery & backup plans Executive management‟s desired outcome? “When do I use PeopleSoft/HRIS/CRM vs SharePoint?”
    6. 6. Rate your organization’s SharePoint Collaboration Maturity 8 4 7 10 6
    7. 7. Document storage Some LAN Drive Replacement Task Management Storage
    8. 8. Information does not live elsewhere Central repository Trusted information Storage Information Creation
    9. 9. Authoritative source Focused solutions being addressed Project mgmt, contract mgmt (lite apps) Storage Information Creation Leveraging
    10. 10. Multiple contributors Value of solution is understood and fostered Key Performance Indicators are socialized Storage Information Creation Leveraging Sharing
    11. 11. Workflows Processes designed around SP capabilities Full life-cycle solutions (heavy apps) Storage Information Creation Leveraging Sharing Process Enablement
    12. 12. Give People a Reason to Visit Keep information current, remove old content Create SharePoint-only information Think “SharePoint will support existing collaboration” Tech isn‟t the success, communication is the success
    13. 13. Foster a Culture of Collaboration Create a culture of sharing successes using SharePoint Highlight creative and interesting solutions Scheduled meetings, new member presents each meeting Add Content Owner responsibilities to job descriptions
    14. 14. Define what collaboration looks like in your environment Share a specific business pursuit Thought leaders should lead by example “6 months from now, I am using SharePoint to…”
    15. 15. Place SharePoint ‘In The Flow’
    16. 16. Enterprise 2.0 says You Can’t Drive User Adoption „Driving‟ means same as „Push‟ or „Pull‟ Adaptation is based on feedback, tapping natural energies Adoption comes from rigorous Adaptation Enterprise 2.0 = Organic Growth
    17. 17. Focus on SharePoint‟s flexibility Educate on the tool Communicate context Rate collaboration maturity Give people a reason to visit Create User Accountability Define „Collaboration‟ Place SharePoint in the Flow
    18. 18. 8 Things You Must Do to Drive SharePoint Collaboration leereed.me GYEONGBOKGUNG PALACE, SOUTH KOREA