Microsoft Teams represents a tremendous opportunity that improve how people and teams #worksmarter. It has been proven to be one of the biggest product releases for Microsoft, with over few hundred-thousand customers rolling it out within just a year and the fastest growing business app in Microsoft history.
Its widespread adoption is not a question of if but when. As a leading CSP, we clearly knew what it is, what it does and how it promises to benefit us. However, we also understand that it’s more than just a technical project. To make it successful, user change impact should be well understood, pilots and quick-wins are key, and most of all, focused efforts can drive initial and sustained results as well.
Today, we shall discuss how we can plan better to turn it on to drive adoption sooner with greater success. If your organization hasn’t yet rolled out Teams, or if you are in the middle of planning your deployment, be sure to check out the following guide for planning and preparing for higher user adoption.
#1 Gather Your Team
Assembling the correct team and ensuring that you have a list of business goals that you want to achieve with the help of Microsoft Teams is very important throughout your launch and roll-out planning. This is how you make Microsoft Teams relevant to your people and it will also help secure buy-in across your organization.
The first rule of a successful adoption is to create a dynamic team comprised of key stakeholders and the right people that can drive, and effect change in others. A successful adoption strategy starts with a team of committed individuals representing a cross-section of your organization, such as training lead, department leads, HR manager and IT representatives on cloud infrastructure, collaboration and security.
Gaining buy-in from every user across an organization is a challenge. Getting Executive Sponsors within the organization is pivotal. They have the greatest influence on company culture and actively communicate the value and benefits of a new technology and way of working throughout the organization. They can also provide a crucial understanding of the key business goals and common challenges to overcome – which is where Microsoft Teams comes in.
In addition, Champions should be dedicated to help alleviate this challenge and play an important role in the adoption of Microsoft Teams. Champions are not only passionate about what they do but are also excited to evangelize and help their peers to learn more effective solutions. They are knowledgeable, committed to furthering their expertise and are willing to provide peer coaching and assistance. They help translating Microsoft Teams into the reality of their department or team.
#2 Prioritize Business Scenarios
Identifying, defining and prioritizing your Business Scenarios is an important step in ensuring your organization both realizes full value from Microsoft teams and achieves a smooth adoption. Business Scenarios cover the ways your people will use Microsoft Teams to address business challenges or achieve defined goals. You’ll want to run a few workshops inviting the Champions and adoption leading team who can help brainstorm how Microsoft Teams can be used in your organization.
Business Scenarios could be varied in different perspectives, it could be using Microsoft Teams as platform hub for company-wise or department-wise collaboration, or for particular departmental sub-functional unit, or multi-disciplinary specific project.
#3 Set Governance Control
Once targeted Business Scenarios and priorities are set, it is also important to have a plan depicting any necessary governance policy related to Microsoft Teams. Since Microsoft 365 or Enterprise Mobility Security cloud products come with security, compliance and information protection functionalities, Microsoft Teams being adopted as central hub of teamwork within Microsoft Office 365, the same set of security and compliance policy configured shall be similarly applied to Microsoft Teams’ environment and safeguard company users and data from potential threats and attacks.
Some additional Microsoft Teams specific policies also need to be specified and configured such as
– Teams retention policy for how long Teams data could be kept and whether deletion would happen after specific duration;
– Team compliance features whether Teams activities and events are available through Audit Log Search, and whether compliance content search function and eDiscovery should be enabled;
– Owner, member and external guest access permission setting to conduct various administration actions such as creation, naming and deletion of teams, channels, users, tabs and application APIs, etc.
#4 Complete Pilot and Board On-boarding
Next, you should consider organizing an early adoption program with a key group of selected business users, as well as members of the IT team who will support users. Running this program allows you to gather feedback on the user experience and get early success stories that can be used when launching Office 365 across your organization. Those selected business users can be regarded as “Power Users”, to take lead in driving pilot adoptions in implementing some Business Scenarios. The aim of such pilot adoption is to create some Quick-wins and to build up the know-how, experience and confidence in furthering the advocacy of adoption journey. The early adoption also gives you an opportunity to test the service waters with a trusted group who will be more flexible if anything goes wrong.
Power Users should be those having strong desire to try out new technologies, enthusiastic about adopting new way to work smarter, have quick learning ability and be able to promote proven practices to replicate success to others.
Power Users need to be trained as pioneers with in-depth knowledge of various Microsoft Teams functionalities and how they can be adopted in modern approach as alternative to replace the legacy ways, such as
– centralizing their collaborative works in one place instead of via non-business casual chatroom and emails with internal and external parties;
– communicating via more instant chat, or channel conversation, or audio and video call or conferencing in own control, instead of heavily relying on internal IT to setup with long lag time;
– doing file sharing, document co-authoring and direct commenting in file attached in conversation, from anywhere and anytime, instead of only in office and over LAN connection to shared drive;
– sharing meeting records, exchanging business ideas, contributing best practices, conducting polls, organizing projects and managing tasks over OneNotes and related Apps in Teams, and no longer need to have so many documents over emails fore and back communication;
#5 Measure, Manage and Drive Adoption
Get real-time feedback from early adoption pilot program participants and adjust your adoption plan based on this feedback. Try creating a Yammer group for your program participants, that way others in the program will be able to see any feedback that is posted and feel encouraged to add on any of their own thoughts. It is also the moment to confirm the set of success criteria to measure against targets such as increased adoption, end-user survey, reduced operating costs, increased productivity, improved collaboration as well as employee satisfaction.
The initial launch of Microsoft Teams into your business will lead to people seeing immediate value. You can develop a communication strategy to generate awareness and excitement. Before the service becomes available, you want your people to be excited by the fact that it is coming, and then keep them interested in using it after you’ve launched. However, this is just the start. Depth and breadth of using Microsoft Teams will continue expand, and Microsoft will certainly have more new added features, people will want to do more with the service as their understanding of it improves. Setting your support team up to help your people take advantage of this will lead to long-term success.
Superhub Point of Views Associated with our Products/Services:
– Superhub is committed to help our customer to create real business value by adopting Microsoft cloud services.
– Superhub subscription-based “365+” value-added services represents a continuous commitment to support its customers to drive adoption, including but not limited to its customer success services, regular advisory review, online webinar, knowledge library and end-user support.
– Microsoft and Superhub is looking forward to bringing you these new ways to achieve more from unlocking creativity to advancing security for cloud transformation journey.