How CIOs can drive adoption of Office 365

CIO Drive Adoption of Office 365 | Binary Tree

We all know the promise of Microsoft Office 365 — that it can lower costs, increase ROI, and help users work smarter. But it can do this only if your users adopt it.

Rolling out the software itself is often the easy part. Getting people to use it is the real challenge. If your users are being slow to embrace the full power of Office 365, you’re not alone. Many organizations are still working to fully adopt the Microsoft Cloud. As CIO, there are several key things you can do to accelerate this process.

Take the lead

The role of the CIO is changing. In the past, you might have focused more on operational tasks like rolling out new tools, controlling costs, and keeping everything available. Now, in the digital era, you can step up to become a strategic partner that drives digital transformation across the company.

A survey sponsored by SAP found that the most common person to lead digital transformation is the CIO (37%), followed by the CEO (25%). So Office 365 presents a great opportunity for you take the lead on the digital revolution across your company.

Focus 80% of your effort on people

You can start by taking a different approach than you might have for IT projects in the past. It’s no longer enough to focus your team on moving data and getting everything installed properly. With Office 365, your job doesn’t end when the last gigabyte of data is moved over. Instead, you’re just getting started.

In its adoption guide for Office 365, Microsoft says you should focus 80% of your effort on people and only 20% of your effort on the technology itself. That means you need to spend a large part of your time on an adoption campaign, both before, during, and after the migration. This could include everything from launch events to training, help desk, and self-help resources.

Rework your metrics and incentives

Gone are the days when IT teams could focus on operational metrics like cost, amount of data migrated, and uptime. In the digital era, the focus is more on how technology drives business outcomes. And that starts with making sure people are actually using new tools.

Here are some things you can do:

  • Revisit the metrics you use to measure how well your IT team is doing. Are you still mostly focused on operational numbers like cost, project delivery, and uptime?
  • Clarify with your IT team that part of their job is to encourage the business to use new tools. This could mean offering launch events, email tips, training, and more.
  • Emphasize metrics like how many people are using the tool, how many departments are using it, and whether usage is going up over time.
  • Share how well the business is adopting each Office 356 application. You could even make it into a friendly competition, where business teams get prizes when a certain % of their users have adopted each application.

Dedicate a team to adoption

Maybe your in-house IT team doesn’t have 80% of their time and effort available to focus on driving adoption of Office 365. Or they don’t have the skill set to drive an effective adoption campaign. So this is a great opportunity to partner with an expert like Binary Tree.

We’ve moved more than 12 million people to Office 365, so we’ve seen these challenges time and again. We can run an adoption campaign for you, including instructor-led training, dedicated on-demand advisors, and a portal of self-help resources like videos and how-to’s. Contact us and find out more.