Adopting the right software can have a huge impact on a business. It can increase revenue, improve customer experience, and boost employee productivity. But identifying the perfect software is only the beginning; a thoughtful and comprehensive adoption plan is necessary to make your software implementation successful.
Common Pitfalls of Software Implementation
A poor software implementation plan can result in frustrated users, overwhelmed administrators, and lengthy scheduling delays. Here are some of the most common mistakes companies make when adopting new software.
Minimizing the work involved: Many companies make the mistake of expecting too much from the vendor in the software implementation process. Yes, they have a huge role to play, but a lot of work needs to be done within the organization, by the people who know it best. A good software implementation plan will be managed internally with the vendor in close partnership, rather than expecting the vendor to spearhead the project.
Failing to get buy-in from major stakeholders: Intentions may be good in implementing a fantastic technological solution, but failing to involve major stakeholders in selecting or adopting new software can prove to be a major mistake resulting in frustration, reduced morale, and push-back during the software implementation process. Companies both large and small need to ensure they’re involving users at all levels to ensure that administrators, employees, and customers will be satisfied with the end result.
Not managing expectations: It’s easy to inadvertently over-promise when trying to get everyone on board with the idea of new software. However, it’s important that all communication be clear, honest, and accurate to prevent frustration and push-back during and after the software implementation process.
A Successful Software Implementation Plan
A successful software implementation plan involves more than just the technology and training needs. It will also expect complications and make provisions for some of the most common barriers to a smooth adoption. Every software implementation plan should include the following components:
Identify needs and concerns from all user levels. To effectively select and adopt new software, it’s critical that major stakeholders be on board - particularly the day-to-day users. They should be included during all phases of the software implementation process.
Clearly communicate your needs to your vendor. Clear and effective communication with the vendor is key to achieving an end result that is useful for all parties involved, which will help reduce frustration and resistance during the adoption period.
Identify a project manager. A software implementation project is complicated - no matter how “small” it may seem. A project manager should be identified to oversee all aspects of the project to avoid confusion and problems that can arise from miscommunication.
Assign separate “point people” for IT support and user training. The project manager cannot be the contact person for every project-related issue. Assign specific “point people” for both IT-related issues and user training issues so individuals can contact an expert in their specific problem when issues arise.
Adopt best practices in change management. Humans are resistant to change, and push-back should be expected with any new system adoption. Plan for this resistance by researching and implementing best practices in change management.
Solicit user feedback for ongoing improvement. Full adoption of the new system is not the end of the project. To ensure long-term user satisfaction, solicit user feedback and make the adjustments necessary to improve their experience.
Product Adoption Made Easy
Eliminate the need for a lengthy adoption period with Apty. Apty helps your users adapt to new software quickly using real-time step-by-step prompts and customized on-screen guidance, regardless of the program you’re using. Request a demo today to see how Apty can help your business implement new software more smoothly than you ever imagined possible.