Technology is evolving at a fast pace, and many businesses are having a hard time keeping up. It’s also transforming the way we work. Far from the restrictions of the 9-to-5 workday and the office desk, the workforce is now truly globalized and more connected than ever before. Or, at least that’s the way it should be.
Empowering productivity and becoming more adaptable to a rapidly changing market requires a scalable communications and collaboration infrastructure. Microsoft Teams was designed to help make that possible by bringing unified communications and web-based collaboration to businesses of every size in every industry.
Here’s how to get the most out of the platform:
#1. Assess your technical readiness
The first big question is whether your organization is ready for Microsoft Teams. Don’t adopt it just because it’s an industry standard for web-based communication and collaboration. You must also garner a closer understanding of how the platform will meet the demands of your end users.
Teams is a highly versatile solution that integrates with hundreds of apps straight out of the box. But it doesn’t always work well with legacy infrastructure, and certain niche environments have very specific requirements. Fortunately, you can develop custom applications for Teams and use it throughout your organization.
#2. Provide employee training
Although many among today’s employees would much rather use innovative new software than cumbersome legacy solutions, that doesn’t mean they’ll be ready to start using Microsoft Teams from day one. To ensure a high level of adoption, you’ll need to include a training program to help them get started.
Even though Microsoft Teams sports an excellent end-user experience, you can’t expect your employees to get the most out of it if they’re already used to a completely different platform. A structured training program that provides relevant sessions will help employees prepare for new functionality and reach maximum productivity in less time.
#3. Build a network of champions
Every technology project needs a network of experts to champion it and encourage others to use it. Of course, providing the necessary training is a key element of this process, but it’s far from the only one. To drive momentum and user adoption, your champions must be able to communicate the end-user benefits.
When it comes to driving adoption, one of the most common problems is when the initial excitement wanes and users revert to their old ways of doing things. That’s why enlisting peer champions throughout and beyond the initial adoption process is essential for helping people get the most out of your new Microsoft Teams deployment.
Another often-overlooked way to champion your Teams project is to incentivize activities and create a value proposition that drives adoption. After all, your employees are basically internal customers, so many of the same rules apply as they do in sales and marketing. It doesn’t have to be monetary, but creating a rewards scheme for specific levels of usage will help encourage employees to get involved.
#4. Prepare for new functionality
Microsoft Teams is a cloud platform, which means it’s always changing and evolving to help users keep pace with the latest trends and developments. While these changes might seem hard to keep up with on occasion, it’s important to understand the dynamic life cycles of today’s technology solutions.
By establishing a change management program in your organization, you’ll be better prepared for managing the continued adoption and use and derive maximum value. Remember, it’s not all about onboarding new users in the first place — it’s about maintaining the ones you have through ongoing monitoring, feedback, and interaction with end users.
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