How to ace adoption of new software

How To

We all know how it goes: you’ve sourced a new solution to do some of the heavy-lifting, so you and your team can focus on the good stuff - the value-added work.

You made a business case to secure the investment, and now you’re excited for everyone to start using the software to increase revenue and productivity, as well as reshaping how the business handles a process - for example, contract management.

You start your subscription, but there’s one problem - no-one’s using the software.

You know this is an issue; no adoption from users means no value delivered. But how do you convince people to change their routines and embrace new technology?

Luckily, through working with our amazing customers at Juro, we’ve developed three steps that are effective in driving adoption and value.

How to adopt new software successfully for your business

1. Set up for success

Preparation is key. The hard work doesn’t end after you agree to purchase the software; your efforts must now be directed towards the initial onboarding and adoption phase.

1. By setting up clear success metrics you can really identify pain points you are solving and what success will look like over the long-term. It can also help ease the onboarding process over time. These success metrics should be tangible - like having a fully-signed contract sent via your frictionless contract workflow, or having 80% of your users create a contract from scratch.

2. It’s also important to establish clear deadlines. Add more structure to the adoption stage; it’ll help pinpoint specific concerns and speedbumps the team might encounter in the future.

3. And finally, setting up a structured onboarding plan will ensure each software user feels comfortable taking the plunge into a new routine with new technology - especially legal users, who might not be accustomed to disruptive legal software, or sales users, who don’t have the time to learn about new platforms.

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2. Focus on enablement

Enablement refers to the process of getting your users up to speed with the software they will be using. The methods of enablement can include:

1. Internal wiki / confluence. This includes FAQs, video tutorials and sessions on how to get started with the new platform. If your approach to software adoption is a full-scale roll-out, having a strong, referenceable library of resources is essential. We love Notion, but other platforms are available too.

2. Train your core users so they can train others. Whether it’s face-to-face or online, training and walkthroughs with the people who will be using the software most often are important. If completed successfully, those people can go on to train others in the future, resulting in greater software adoption in the long term. It also builds a rapport between you and your end users.

3. Identify power users. With any luck, some of the most active users were involved in the decision to buy, so they’re already invested once you start to roll out your new system. Develop them into champions - additional voices to encourage adoption in the business.

3. Overcoming resistance

Everyone hates change. Colleagues who are reluctant to accept new technology into their routine, or perhaps struggle more than others at the software adoption stage, could cause problems for you. In cases like these, it’s important to:

1. Listen! Empathise with your colleagues and fully understand why the tool is preventing them from being as effective. It could be a lack of understanding, or techno-fear, or perhaps they don’t identify with the benefits of the software in the same way others do. Reinforce the value of these changes, and demonstrate why it’s beneficial for the business. Refer back to your business case for CLM.

2. Remove obstacles. If a manual system or a different tool is preventing the team from adopting new technology, then remove the older systems. This might seem brutal but sometimes change has to be forced through.

3. Get feedback. If there’s a genuine issue with how the tool affects end users, then it’s important to conduct a feedback session. This ensures your team feel appreciated, and can prevent discontent from snowballing.

Ultimately the most important factor in any tool being adopted is that it provides a great user experience; nail that, with great onboarding, and you’ve got a successful adoption that will deliver real ROI for the business.

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