[SPC09] Driving End User Adoption

October 22, 2009

This session was dear to my heart, as the end-user adoption is really a tough thing to achieve. The session was presented by Scott Jamison of Jornata.

Here are my notes on the session:

  • Users don't "have" to use SharePoint to get their job done
  • Cultural changes (such as a SharePoint solution) take 18-36 months to stick

It's essential to have an adoption plan

  • That increase perceived value for the users
  • That increase users' skills and confidence
  • Should have progression from clueless to skeptic to productive to advocate

Take the "What's in it for me?" factor into account

  • Connect SharePoint to business goals
  • Elegant solution: don't make them go through five screens

Must-have elements in the adoption strategy

  • Communication Plan

    • Leverage power users and champions
    • Send CEO/HR/VP Memos
    • Prepare "Town Hall" meetings
    • Put Break Room posters
      • On WC backdoors ;-)
    • Prepare Scavenger Hunt (the pieces to find are on SharePoint: a concrete document, a user's favorite color) with small rewards (20-50 $)
    • Put "birth" announcements cards of a new portal on the desk
    • Keep continuous communication
  • Training Plan

    • Not only for developers or IT staff
    • But also Power users, visitors, members, content contributors, workflow approvers
    • "just in time" and "just enough" training
  • Content Conversion Plan

    • Three approaches
      • Clean and migrate everything
      • Migrate nothing, index old content, new content in new system
      • Clean and migrate recent content only
    • Don't migrate without cleaning!!
  • User Support Plan

    • Contact person for every page (with pictures and contact info). There's no global webmaster.
    • Form internal site owner user groups to help each other
    • IT Help Desk should prepare for more questions
    • Capture end-user feedback: with metrics or anecdotes (find a user that likes the solution and show him to the others)
    • Have some end-user resources ready (guides, help...)
  • Incentives and Reward Plan

    • Answer "What's in it for me" factor showing the usefulness of something with real data
    • Make it fun (posters, scavenger hunt...)
    • Provide recognitions for the content contribution users
    • Invest in information architecture to ensure fantastic user experience

Must Have Resources (free)

SharePoint Buzz Kit from Microsoft (will be updated for SharePoint 2010)

SharePoint Training Kit (will be updated for SharePoint 2010)

Productivity Hub

Get the Point Blog


  • Adoption won't happen by chance
  • Have a plan (better, have many plans)
  • Use the resources, lot of them are free

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Written by Edin Kapić Insatiably curious code-writing tinkerer. Geek father. Aviation enthusiast. Cuisine journeyman. Follow me on Twitter