Why User Adoption belongs to the Agenda of any CEO


User adoption of technology services is challenging. With the cloud services, this is becoming a critical success factor for all in the industry. Let’s face it, a half-way implemented solution does not bring the expected value to the customer, and due to low swapping cost, it is an instant risk for the technology provider. Together with ever-shrinking profits of the implementation projects, deployment partners have to find new ways to earn.

The adoption challenge is not only among the technology vendors and implementation partners. It crucial point of making the ROI of purchase for customer company as well.(1) Therefore, user adoption should be even on the agenda of the company executives.

The most competitive organizations are not doing great because they do more, but because they create less waste

User adoption has a direct impact on the company’s growth and profitability. These two key performance indicators are definitely something the key executives are measured against. Borrowing from the LEAN movement, minimizing waste is critical regardless of the industry. The most competitive organizations are not doing great because they do more, but because they create less waste. One of the biggest waste of a modern organization is time spent in searching and waiting for information one needs to get the job done.

Is the recently acquired productivity tool eliminating the waste in your organization, or increasing it? This boils down to user adoption.

Trends like cloudification, increasing mobility and BYOD have blessed the users with a plethora of productivity apps, services, and tools one can use to conduct the business agenda regardless of time, place and device.

However, productivity is not increasing at the same pace as the number of new tools. Based on the studies, taking new tools into use, can even slow things down. We forget to train and engage the users to new way of working. We forget the change management.

Based on a study of IT service requests, frustrated users report 4 times longer work time losses when facing an IT challenge, resulting in a yearly waste of 2 M€ in a company of 1000 employees.(2) In terms of productivity, studies show that engaged employees are 22% more productive.(3)

According to Microsoft 75 % of CRM project failures are caused due to failing in user adoption.

Cloud technology has made it easy for service providers to cost-effectively acquire new customers in high volumes due to fast service provisioning. Non-existing barriers to entry the cloud business has mushroomed the number of services similar to each other making it easy for the end-user to switch the service if the expected business benefits are not met. User adoption has a direct impact in the customer churn.

According to Microsoft 75 % of CRM project failures are caused due to failing in user adoption. The cost of delay and interrupts in the business are usually good reasons for the customer to swap. Success in user adoption is a make or break case for a deployment partner.

Today’s SaaS and pay-as-you-go business models set new requirements also for technology vendors like Microsoft. Revenue streams are in change. Software is not anymore acquired but rather leased and businesses act more like consumers. If they don’t get value for the money they’ll change service without hesitation.

Yet, the biggest price is paid by the end user company. In modern work, adoption of technology services correlates with employee experience that is directly related to customer experience. Companies with good employee experience rank much higher in critical successful factors, such as innovation, customer satisfaction as well as profitability.(4)

In the end, user adoption is about taking good care of your customers.

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  1. Source: “Diffusion of Innovations” Everett Rogers 5th Edition (1962, 2003)
  2. http://happysignals.com/benchmark
  3. https://hbr.org/2013/07/employee-engagement-does-more
  4. MIT Sloan Center for Information Systems Research, “Building Business Value with Employee Experience” – June, 2017. Global survey of 281 senior executives responsible for designing digital workplace

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