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Embracing Workspace, the adoption guide

 

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From purchase to successful roll out

Anyone can start using a new digital workspace - that's easy. But making the workspace successful within a company and allowing everyone to get the most out of it requires more effort. Even with an adaptive workspace like Workspace 365, which adapts to a person's role, applications and device, employees may need an adjustment period. Because even if you make their job easier, they still have to deal with change. We are happy to help you manage this change so that your digital workspace is embraced by everyone within your organisation. 

With the Blueprint you can record the most important information for a successful adoption.

 

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The adoption process can also take place completely online. Whether it's necessary because of the new way of working due to the Corona virus or because the distance between you and the customer is too great to travel (more often). These yellow blocks in this article provide tips and directions to digitise the process.

 

 

Step 1: Management alignment

In this first phase, there are a number of factors that need to be determined: what are your goals, what do you want to achieve? What challenges do you (and the employees) face? Map out all the challenges you want to solve and opportunities you want to create and set a timeline for rolling out the new workspace.

Set priorities. What can wait and what can't? It's also important to unite as management team, to stay in touch with the employees and to keep them informed of organisation-wide decisions. This can be done through the Announcement Centre, for example.

 

Goals and timeline

Use the SMART model to set your goals.

Specific           Clear and unambiguous; answers the questions: "What, why, who, where?"

Measurable    Concrete; shows clear progress

Acceptable     Realistic, not extreme

Relevant         Answers the questions: “Is it worth it for me and stakeholders? Is it consistent with other or general goals? "

Time-bound   What is the deadline?

 

First communication to team

This is also the time to start communicating with the employees, who are ultimately the people who will be using the workspace. Before the workspace becomes available, you want employees to be excited about it coming, and to continue to be interested in using it after the launch. Therefore, all teams must be involved in the process.

These email templates can be used to communicate with the team about their new digital workspace.

Note: Everyone absorbs information in different ways. That’s why it is a good idea to think about other forms of communication, e.g. through goodies (cups, pens), QuickStart guide placemats, etc. to enthuse employees. Use a communication strategy that suits the organisation to generate awareness and excitement.

Determining key-roles

Building the right team and making sure you have a list of business goals is very important during the launch of your digital workspace. To achieve success with Workspace 365, it is important to involve IT and Communication managers and key users from all teams. Together these people form a group that can create shared goals for each persona group. They map out the problems they want to solve, as well as the new opportunities they want to create for their teams and organisation.

Executive sponsors
Executive sponsors are people with a senior level in the company, who have a high influence on the corporate culture. Although they are not very actively involved in the adoption process, they still have a very influential role. Their job is to lead by example and show people that it is not only a good, but also a necessary change that will positively influence the future of the organisation.

Success Owners
Success Owners have a leading role in the adoption process. They are usually (middle) management and are therefore both close to the employees and senior management, enabling them to act as a link between the two. The Success Owners are responsible for ensuring that the goals are achieved and that the training and communication with the employees is successfully managed. They will be involved in every step and are considered the project's leaders and supervisors.

Champions
The Champions take the lead in the transition among your employees, the so-called “influencers”. These are the employees who fully support the transition, are enthusiastic about it and learn quickly about new technology. They will spread excitement about the new digital workspace and bring the new way of working to life. They will also act as intermediaries between their teams and the Success Owners. They collect feedback from their teams and departments, identify challenges and potential solutions, and inform Success Owners so they can process this feedback to improve the workspace.

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Step 2: Inventory

In this step, a complete inventory is made of the organisation. Which applications, information, communication etc. are used? Which people use this? What are their methods, processes and challenges? With all this information you can start making basic layouts per persona group.

Drafting personas and test groups

Creating personas gives you a good idea of who works in your organisation and how they do it, so you can find out exactly what they need from a digital workspace. Use the persona presentation for more information and examples.

 

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Who to include in the test group:

  • Users from different departments (and preferably people who already collaborate on a project or business process).
  • Users who are likely Champions or leaders who advocate the journey.
  • Users who find IT more difficult. It is important that you include their needs in the process.
  • IT / helpdesk and communication staff who can offer their talents during the process.

Communication with the test group(s) is extremely important, especially in the case of a digital adoption process. Make concrete agreements for fixed contact moments, feedback sessions and training. Communicate as much as possible via video and phone and less via email, for example.

Early adopters
Find the people who support the change and are eager to change. They will quickly see the opportunities of the workspace and will be eager to test and improve it.

Lagards
Of course, your organisation is not exclusively made up of early adopters - there will always be people who find change more difficult. It is important to include these people in the test group as well. This will help you identify their challenges and difficulties, and how they respond to them, before problems arise, and improve the workspace for those who have more difficulty with new technology.

IT pros
On the other hand, your organisation may also have people who have more experience with IT. By adding them to the test group, their talents can be used. They will likely see the potential technical challenges and opportunities of the workspace.

 

For all types of people, early adopters as well as laggards and IT workers, being involved at this early stage gives them a voice during the transition. Not only does it give you an opportunity to gather feedback and improve the workspace for them, but it also gives them an opportunity to provide input on how they will work; the feeling that they are heard increases the chance that they embrace the workspace.

Note: It may be tempting to include the CEO or senior management in your test group, however we would advise you to involve them at a later stage. In the first stage, they have different priorities and tasks to deal with, depending on the size of the organisation. By first improving the workspace with your test group, you can solve problems before they come to light during the rollout.

 

Inventory

With the personas at hand, you can determine which applications your employees or employee groups need, which technology is used and what needs to be replaced, which applications and functions you already have and which you still need. You can use the blueprint for this. With all this information you can start making basic layouts per persona group.

Communicate

There is one essential thing to remember at every step of the adoption process: Your workspace may be about technology, but embracing it is all about people. They are ultimately responsible for the success of the transformation. Your adoption process should start and end with that: people.
Make sure to consider employees when composing messages as you need to help them identify "What's in it for me?". Plan them along the timeline of your adoption plan.

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Step 3: Setting up & validation

Basic training & test group training

Based on the inventory, the workspace is set up per user group. Shared Spaces are a great tool for keeping your workspace organised and structured, especially if you're part of more than one team, have a wide variety of tasks, or are an admin. When someone regularly shares their screen, such as a teacher with their students, spaces are ideal for protecting sensitive information (such as emails in the live email tile).

Branding
Branding is the first thing people see and is therefore very important. If it is recognisable and well connected, people are more likely to be open to their digital workspace. As an administrator, you can easily provide Workspace 365 with branding. You can determine the colours, the logo of the workspace, the home logo and the product name.

Conditional access
Conditional access is a valuable tool for filtering any information someone has in their workspace and allows you to see only the relevant applications at the right time, based on location and device. It can make the workspace clear, create awareness, provide more security, improve the user experience and really simplify the work for people with an adaptive workspace.

Training

Then it’s time to let the test group test their future workspace. The test group can be trained through workshops. These sessions are interactive, so the employee clicks within their own workspace and there is room to ask questions and give feedback. During the workshops an extra person walk the floor to assist and to write down scenarios, questions (for the FAQ) and feedback. Based on this, the workspace can be optimised.

Get feedback and prepare FAQ

Get feedback from the test group and Champions through a feedback form. It is also valuable to hold a session with the Champions to discuss how the workspace can be optimised and enthuse the rest of the employees.

Based on the information collected from the Champions and test group, a FAQ can be drawn up. This can be placed online and used as a tool. Workspace optimisation is an ongoing process, so stay in touch with the Champions to continue to receive their feedback.

Increase your online availability by, for example, communicating with the team on multiple platforms, such as via Yammer and Teams. Read more about the difference between the two and when to use which.

Are you still on schedule? Are the goals going to be achieved? Does anything need to be refined?

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Step 4: Launching the new digital workspace

Launching Day! Have the goals been achieved?

After the feedback from the test groups has been processed, it is time for the launch of the workspace. Include the organisation’s values ​​for the launch of the new workspace. And explain the value for the organisation and employees.

The executive sponsors can inform employees about the goals and benefits, how it will help them solve challenges, simplify their work and make them more flexible. This can be communicated in e.g. a meeting or video. The sponsors give a good example and show that the change is a positive one.

When everyone starts using their new digital workspace, the Champions will take action again. In addition to collecting feedback, their job is to help their team or department make the most of their new workspace and answer questions.

Training on the basis of known scenarios.

Workshops to train employees in the use of the workspace. These sessions are interactive, so the employee clicks within their own workspace and there is room to ask questions and give feedback. During the workshops an extra person walk the floor to assist and to write down scenarios, questions (for the FAQ) and feedback. Based on this, the workspace can be optimised.

After the workshops, walk-the-floor days are also very useful. This is the presence of a Workspace 365 expert, who can personally give advice, answer individual questions and solve problems immediately.

Workshops can take place online. This can be done in classroom form or in webinar form. Increase your online presence and let the team feel this, for example by regularly posting video messages. This lowers the threshold for the team to ask questions, give feedback, etc. You can also make your own instructional videos. Read more about how to do that.

In addition to workshops and walk-the-floors, there are also other tools that can be used for the launch, such as:

 

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Step 5: Reinforcement 

Continuously improving the new workspace based on input from the user groups, in order to realise the reinforcement of the workspace amongst employees.

Evaluation and processing feedback FAQ

Making a change successful and maintaining it is an ongoing process. Champions play a key role in this by communicating the feedback they receive to the Success Owners so they can use it to further improve the workspace and see where additional support and training is needed. The FAQ can also be added to with this information. Workspace optimisation is an ongoing process, so stay in touch with the Champions to continue to receive their feedback.

Follow up days & extra workshops

It is also important to schedule follow up days in which it can be discovered whether and which user groups need extra training / workshops. These sessions give the opportunity to discover additional functionalities and benefits that can be added to the workspace. This will also increase the usage. In this way, the new workspace can be constantly improved and the most possible value can be obtained.

In addition to these sessions, it can also be very valuable to create work-groups, in which (different) user groups can come together to get to know the workspace better and to help each other.

In addition to the follow up days and work-group sessions taking place online, the workspace also has features that can contribute to the online adoption process. Such as the Announcement Center for communication within the organisation or a Shared Space with all the information about the roll-out of the digital workplace in the organisation. Read more about the best practices of these features.

Finally, it is important to reward employees for their efforts and participation in this entire process. This can be in the form of cake for example, but even a thank you can go a long way.

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