Adoption of software solutions
Nowadays, organisations are making changes rapidly in order to compete with other organisations and in order to be fit for the future. This shift is not always successful and many projects that were executed do not deliver the expected results.
Possible reasons for this are often shared in many blogs. Some of them are:
Not getting what was asked for.
Not being involved for the needs
Not being asked for details of requirements
A lot of the usual suspects, related to unsuccessful implementations, are related to adoption problems.
And the reason of adoption issues can be fed back to a lack of attention to this phase. Projects are often managed from a technical perspective or organisations want to do this themselves in addition to technical implementations done by other (consulting) organisations. And adoption doesn’t end at or after a few weeks after the implementation. The consequences of such a mismatch are
- a longer implementation time,
- quite some rework,
- a lot of frustration amongst the users.
If we are able to integrate all the aspects that are required for a successful implementation from the beginning, then adoption of the changes will be better managed. This is done in the Discover phase, where ideas are born and boundaries are set. And that requires a good focus on the Adoption part of that phase. Of course Adoption doesn’t stop and continues across all the elements of the project phases.
Discover – Adoption: Approach to successful changes
Looking at common project approaches, it is often the case that organisations have a strategy defined, which is the guidance for any changes in processes, systems and organizational set ups. That strategy is often input to ask consultancy parties to assist in the systems part, so leaving processes and organizational changes with the organisation itself.
Of course those areas can be managed by the organisation itself, but at least integrating this from the start is a key to success! How should this then ideally work?
The first part that should be considered is the strategy part. Many organisations do know what the strategic direction of the company is, at least on the different management levels. But translating this into smaller parts, that can be picked up by several parts of the organisation, is difficult. And how this is translated in an approach to guide the organisation in the transformation is pretty difficult. That part considers the mapping of higher level directions into processes that need a change. Change management, with proper communication, is needed in that case.
But how to find the proper things to change and what is really required on user level? That is the second part to think about. For that part, good user stories are needed. Built together with the users on all levels. Of course within the boundaries of the strategic direction, but defined with users. External and internal. Many ideas are gathered via brown paper sessions or post-it sessions. And of course this is a good way of doing this, collecting the details that are required. These might not be always effective as these ways are ‘putting ideas to paper’. But are you aware of SAP Scenes? A good way of visualizing processes and ideas. It can bring ideas to life and will help to have good discussions between the different user groups in the organisation.
The third part is about the organisation itself. We can think about the most fantastic and promising ideas, but if you are not able to implement and use those ideas, due to missing tooling or reporting options, less governance structures or less capable employees to execute those plans, it will not work. So focussing on those areas and modifying those in the beginning of the transformation is a must. Same as with sports: if you want to win the game, you have to be in shape on all elements.
Within Acorel, we believe that focusing on those elements from the beginning is crucial. Working on adoption from the beginning is the key to success!
In the next months, we will dive into the details of the 3 areas in this blog and complete the Discover – Adoption cycle. So stay tuned!
If you want to know more about this approach, please contact me via firstname.lastname@example.org