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Adoption in a Microsoft Accelerated Environment

Why are improvements in technology not providing the productivity gains we expect?

The future of work is being envisioned, created, and shaped right now. As we have shifted the way we work, we are setting new boundaries while recognizing the capabilities of today and the possibilities of tomorrow. With no surprise, Microsoft had to adjust along with the shifts by releasing critical capabilities earlier and quicker than expected.

In the last six months, Microsoft accelerated more than 100 new capabilities leading to massive growth. With these new releases, we are faced with many challenges including: understanding product capabilities, position and relevance in each organization as it relates to onboarding and growth adoption. Fundamentally, Microsoft has a vast number of products, but the products are not successful without knowing about them and how they can change the way they work. Any changes in this accelerated environment can be sustained by understanding the motivations and behaviors of the organization and its staff. With the pandemic, organizations are learning that the wellbeing of people needs to be at the forefront of change strategy.

We’ve seen two years' worth of digital transformation in two months. Satya Nadella CEO Microsoft

While the pandemic has shown us we can adjust and work remotely, we must question whether our team and enterprise are set up and ready for digital teamwork. How are we collaborating? Are we efficient? Are our staff members feeling connected? Are they able to contribute? Do they feel engaged? How has your company culture been impacted? How is the teams’ overall wellbeing?

Since the pandemic, Microsoft conducted a study worth visiting, Work Productivity Trends Report. Microsoft analyzed patterns and trends of productivity and engagement using calls, emails and meetings. For example, in a survey, they found 70% of people said meditation could decrease work-related stress. In another instance, they found that chats have extended past the nine to five workdays, meaning there is flexibility, but people are also working longer hours. While there are clear advantages and disadvantages to remote work, focusing on employees when driving the tools and process can only increase benefits.

Microsoft has adopted a #HumanFirst Approach that prioritizes employee health and wellness, pushing for the “what tool when?” while still delivering business outcomes. To be able to prioritize people first, I want to introduce you to some common toolsets you can include as part of your change strategy.

Microsoft Adoption Toolsets

Learn about the toolsets that can be made available to your organization to make better decisions for your employees’ productivity and well-being.

Staying up to date

To comb through the masses of updates, use these tools to monitor impacts on your launch and implementation efforts proactively. Make sure to create a monitoring schedule and create a mechanism for feedback from users to improve your efforts.

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Microsoft Roadmap

Get the latest updates on all things Microsoft through Microsoft Roadmap.

Microsoft Roadmap

Message Center

Message Center provides a high-level overview of planned changes in your Microsoft 365 environment and how it may affect your users and links out to more detailed information to help you prepare. With each message, Microsoft includes background on when this will happen, how this will affect your organization and what you need to do to prepare. This center should be reviewed daily, if not weekly, by your IT team and impacts should be communicated to business or change leaders.

Who can access: Administrators

How to access: Message Center

Training

Do your staff members understand how a new tool or process supplement changes their role? How does the training speak to their day-to-day work? Do you have self-service support so your staff can learn on their own? With some of these questions addressed as part of your training strategy, you can measure your adoption. Do not rely on e-mail announcements or a training session to gain buy-in from your staff. With the abundance of implementations, your team needs support even outside of IT.


Learning Pathways

You can supplement in-person or virtual training with self-learning. Microsoft offers an on-demand training site that is easy to configure and use, called Microsoft 365 Learning pathways, which you can use in your environment at no cost. The days where you had to write documentation manually are gone through Microsoft offering. If you choose to make Learning Pathways your own, you can tweak it to fit your organization.

You can access instructions on Learning Pathways at this link and installation instructions here.

Who can access: This can be made available to anyone within your organization.

How to access: Decision Owners would provide a designated SharePoint URL specific to your organization.

Microsoft Learning Resources

  1. Microsoft Learn: Self-service learning, certifications and watch live recordings
  2. Microsoft Support– Product training and support resources
  3. Office Quick Starts– Guides to get your started

Measure and Monitor Adoption

Monitoring adoption regularly can give you access to your adoption success. Based on what you learn from these tools, you can take on different strategies for continuous improvements. Fortunately, Microsoft provides an array of tools for you to leverage.


Productivity Score

The productivity score is a new capability that Microsoft introduced to monitor the usage of the platform and how well the organization leverages the capabilities of the platform to drive better productivity and efficiency. It measures insights about how people use Microsoft 365 and the technology experiences that support them. The score reflects performance against employees and technology experience measures and compares it with organizations like yours.

Who can access: Administrators or authorized users.

How to access: Productivity Score link.


Usage Reporting

While Productivity Score provides benchmark measures compared to other organizations or trends, usage reporting shows you how specific Microsoft 365 services are being used. This brings all the services in one view and can be drilled down to a specific activity of an individual user.

Microsoft 365 usage reporting

Who can access: Administrators or authorized users.

How to access: Usage reporting


Microsoft 365 Usage Analytics – Power BI

The Microsoft 365 Usage Analytics provides an executive summary of Microsoft 365 for Business adoption, usage, mobility, communication, collaboration and storage reports for decision-makers. It also provides summaries on Activation/Licensing, product usage and user activity.

Power BI dashboard

Who can access: Administrators or authorized users.

How to access: Follow the steps to activate and understand licensing needs.


Microsoft Workplace Analytics and MyAnalytics

Microsoft has built an advanced, intelligent platform called Workplace Analytics that provides views into employee and organizational trends, behaviors and patterns to provide a better employee experience and help drive positive business outcomes. It harnesses behavioral data and contextualizes it into how your organization spends its time, how people collaborate and gives insight on the effectiveness of your teams. You can even create a query from many templates options to choose from. MyAnalytics, on the other hand, is specific to each employee and how they spend their own time. These tools are part of the #humanfirst approach Microsoft is taking to improve the productivity and well-being of employees.

Workplace Analytics

MyAnalytics


Microsoft Adoption

To explore more on Microsoft Adoption journey and resources, visit adoption.microsoft.com.

Coming soon

In the next blog, I will share with you the common themes of adoption blockers and how to leverage critical metrics as part of your Microsoft 365 toolset to set benchmarks and adjust your strategy for long term success.

If you have any questions on how to leverage digital workplace technologies to their full advantage, contact us online.

Technology and Digital Transformation Services

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