Part of what Myriad Technologies does is help train clients and their staff to use the information and knowledge management platforms that we implement for them.
Typically, this means providing both Site Owners and End Users with opportunities to gain in-depth knowledge of SharePoint. In addition to an education, training helps staff to feel comfortable using the system, and inspires them to engage with the platform moving forward.
Unfortunately, not all organisations believe in the importance of a comprehensive education, expecting their employees to accept the new and sometimes complex technologies that have landed in their laps.
All too often, this kind of approach results in gaps in understanding, unwillingness to use the new technology (and thus take advantage of it) and an overall lack of engagement. Worse, these issues lead to poor use of time, convoluted workflows and ultimately, money and time spent poorly.
In other words, the organisation has a shiny new platform, but without the knowledge to maximise their new tools' potential, they realistically have not progressed.
Salt Lake City-based Microsoft MVP and CollabTalk CEO Christian Buckley recently shared an article on this topic. He included some habits and practices worth taking the time to establish in the workplace post SharePoint implementation (or any other collaborative platform, for that matter).
As well as giving broad advice which businesses in all industries can benefit from – such as 'stay on schedule' and 'treat people like adults' – Buckley recommends focusing less on the technology, and more on business outcomes.
"I have seen more leaders guiding their organisations by metrics (management by spreadsheet) than by taking the time to really understand the issues their people are experiencing (and) working collaboratively to improve those experiences," he writes.
If the organisation's leader does not personally have the availability to have meaningful conversations with staff around new technology, then introducing structured training with experts might be the best alternative.
Buckley also emphasises the importance of workflow visibility in the workplace. "Take away transparency and people will go around you to try and solve their issues on their own … the more you involve people in the process, the more likely they are to support that process and stay engaged."
This is a relatively simple thing to carry out, but does involve keeping track of how new technologies are being used by staff and being open to hearing how they are progressing.
Another factor to consider is the rate at which technology is changing. It is constant, which means business leaders have to be aware of changing information needs, and new technologies that might (positively) disrupt collaboration platforms. Buckley writes, "There's a reason why agile development is becoming so pervasive – the rate at which our business needs change is increasing. A key to keeping people engaged is to ensure that the right data is available and in a timely manner".
"Be aware of improvements to information worker workloads and stay ahead of your end users by testing out new solutions."
If you are considering implementing a new collaboration platform, training your staff, or if you would just like to discuss SharePoint and the other technologies we leverage, contact us today.