Poor user adoption is a nightmare shared by most IT project managers. The idea of spending countless dollars and hours of labor only to go live with a new service or tool that lacks total end-user adoption is enough to keep anyone awake at night. Such a fear is prevalent even with the implementation of software as important to the integrity of a network as password managers. One common reason behind this lack of user adoption is not discovering the needs of the end-user early enough in the project lifecycle.
Across all industries, IT initiatives are often co-led by members of that industry such as medical or engineering staff, so that IT project managers can better tailor their solutions to the end-user needs. That actually is one of the characteristics that make password manager implementations so effective- if the value is properly communicated to the end-user around how this technology will make it easier for all end-users to conduct business, adoption becomes a foregone conclusion. In banking, or retail, the fact that password managers can open the end-user to systems that otherwise would require another level of authentication is enough of a “What’s in it for me” (WIFM) to virtually guarantee a level of partnership between the line of business and information technology departments.
Communicate the WIFM
All too often project managers spend too much time on building the business requirements document (BRD) or focusing on mitigating scope creep, while the understanding of the true value of the product gets lost in translation. Additionally, by integrating end users early and treating them like clients, you answer immediately the WIFM question, which helps drive the return on investment, as well as secure the future adoption of new versions of the tool or service.
According to the Center for Digital Education, performing these steps can also help usher in, if not drive, a culture change for your organization.
“Even though this cost-free resource is available to anyone that wants a technology-based education environment, it’s useless until the main source of resistance to making the digital leap is addressed – people”- Center for Digital Education
Within an organizational implementation, part of this WIFM communication plan is to focus on treating the end-user like a customer or client, even though they are often fellow employees. Most managers know that the strategic implementation of technology projects is critical to their organizations’ high-performance objectives. But they don’t have to struggle to bridge the gap between strategic IT formulation and its day-to-day deployment.
Start at the beginning
A clear scope, which must include visible executive sponsorship, is arguably more important than communication when dealing with the successful adoption of a new technology or service. This foundation includes the development of effective success criteria that aligns projects to organizational strategy and sound change-management practices.
The Project Management Institute (PMI) has studied the positive effects of these tips towards the success of projects across all industries:
“The Standish Group’s Chaos Report for 2014 presents astonishing facts on project performance, both for successful and impaired projects. One of the critical success factors in the report across all types is executive management support.”-PMI
By building a strong foundation and communicating the WIFM, organizations can ensure IT projects like Single Sign-On implementations can gain a better chance of successful completion and adoption, and can be delivered on-time and on-budget.
This Blog was brought to you by Hypersocket and its CEO, Lee David Painter. With over 20 years of industry experience as a pioneer in IT Security, Lee developed the world’s first OpenSource browser-based SSL VPN (SSL-Explorer). Today Lee runs Hypersocket, a leader in virtual private network technology.