For any software to be effective, it has to be thoroughly adopted by the organization as a whole. If people refuse to use a new software program, then it won’t make much of an impact—no matter how much potential it has to be useful.
In this video, Javier Pereira talks about his history of teaching clients about Microsoft Teams and which feature was the most successful in getting people to use the software.
The Problem with Getting People to Adopt New Software
In the video, Javier tells a story involving his wife, who is a Sharepoint admin and a major advocate for SharePoint. According to Javier, her biggest obstacle was getting people to use the software:
“[My wife’s] like ‘I have designed everything the way you want it and I’ve laid out all the documents. If you need the contract information, it’s in SharePoint.’ And you’d go to the SharePoint site, you’d look up the client, it has all the contract stuff… and she’d say that nobody uses the thing…
...So I said ‘why don’t you just pin a tab in their #general team to the site?’ And she says suddenly, she got 30% more adoption… the major obstacle was typing in the URL to SharePoint!”
Simply by removing one barrier (manually typing in a website address) and creating an easy-to-use shortcut in Teams, Javier’s wife was able to significantly increase adoption of the software.
Why Employee Adoption of New Software Matters
Another common problem in getting people to adopt a new collaboration solution is that there are too many of these things. In the video, when talking about the challenges of managing communication solutions, you’ll hear me state that: “…telephony was even harder because everyone had a different telephony solution so nothing was consistent.”
Javier followed my comment up with a bit about corporate culture and how companies would try to force adoption: “If your company was larger and very corporate-y, you know, there was a whole lot of ‘Thou Shalt’ culture. Obviously, it’s easier to drive adoption [with a big company], but that’s not our clientele. That’s not the majority of businesses in America. Most businesses are small to medium.”
For example, say that Jack is used to telephony system A, and Jill has only worked with system B, but their boss insists on system C. In a big, formal organization, the boss’ solution might get pushed through by simple force of it being the company’s solution—though that doesn’t guarantee adoption. Meanwhile, for collaborations between Jack and Jill, neither one will be able to agree on which solution to use since they’ll both want to insist on the system that they know.
Getting everyone to adopt a single solution and stick to it is crucial for ensuring the long-term success of any team. Otherwise, people will keep fumbling with different systems that they each have a personal preference for—making it harder to get people to work together and collaborate effectively.
What Feature of Microsoft Teams Drives Adoption?
So, which feature of Teams drives adoption? Well, as Javier puts it: “The key to adoption has always been get the chat piece to work. If you get them chatting, don’t worry about the file piece. ‘What about party integration, third party apps?’—stop. Get them to send funny pictures of cats.”
People are, for the most part, inherently social. We all like to be able to easily communicate with others and seek affirmation. Chat software features, like Teams’ communication channels, have always been incredibly effective as drivers for software adoption because of this. Even back in the ’90s, in the days of AOL and “You’ve Got Mail” message alerts, internet chatrooms helped drive the adoption of the world wide web by giving people a place to meet and chat online.
So, the claim that the chat feature of Teams being the biggest driver of adoption probably shouldn’t come as a surprise. Of course, that isn’t the only factor that drives adoption of Teams by employees—it just happens to be the biggest one.
Do you have a favorite feature that you think is the biggest driver for adopting Teams? Or, do you need help setting up your Teams software? Reach out to Protected Trust today and let us know!