Key Learnings When Developing an Office 365 Change Management Plan

In the “old days” IT had to worry about only a single access point on a company-issued computer or dumb terminal. In today’s business world, users can easily develop their own communication and collaboration channels with no IT involvement, using the different features of Office 365 Sites, Groups, Yammer, and OneDrive. There are more options than ever before to collaborate, but the manner in which people get to the information has changed. People need to access what they need, when they need it, on any device they want to use.

This type of “freedom” has created many different scenarios that need to be taken into consideration when developing an Office 365 change management plan. IT and the business units need to create a framework that allows freedom, but within a framework. I am not suggesting you limit collaboration, communication, and innovation, but rather just have some basic FAQs throughout in advance as you embark on your Office 365 adoption Journey.

  • A sample of some Office 365 Change Management framework questions that need to be answered are:
    • Where should I upload a document? With so many options between SharePoint, OneDrive for business, and Network Drives, guidance is needed. (Check out this blog to assist you what to put where)
    • Can I create my Office Group with Office 365? Thought must be given to this. In general we really find this to be a great tool and resource, and encourage end users to leverage groups and determine who is allowed to create groups, how many people can they invite etc.
    • Should every document I create and want to share be sent as a OneDrive link? Many clients would say yes to this right away because of the benefits of reducing storage costs and controlling data loss, but on the other hand, are the users ready for this? Do they know how to search OneDrive? Do they know how to upload and share information in OneDrive?
  • In order to improve Office 365 adoption, an Office 365 Change Management plan should be considered. This will also assist those that are resistant to change.
  • Steps include:
    • Create an Office 365 czar that serves as a cross-departmental leader to work with the Departmental Office 365 champions to identify quick business wins that Office 365 could address. Then develop policies on how to address them, then demonstrate and train.
    • Make sure that the policies that you create are simple. Do not over complicate. If your teenager can’t understand them, then change it.
    • Make sure you have a central location for learning, quick tips, FAQs, self-help, etc. Do not have this information in multiple locations haphazardly put together; needs to simple, appealing, and accessible quickly.
    • Create a corporate communication plan that reinforces the company’s Office 365 vision, and keeps information on how to leverage Office 365. Office 365 adoption is a journey; the communication plan needs to be the guiding light for a long time.
    • Ask for feedback and then reward that team member. What’s working, what’s not, and how do we improve? Reward those that are participating and are leveraging the Office 365 investment your company has made (ie. swag, small gift cards, etc.)
    • Rewards – For those that are embracing Office 365 give them some swag or small gift cards
    • Don’t do this alone. We have created and which include Office 365 Gamification to assist you along your journey.
  • This is just the beginning. Moving to Office 365 means that change will be never ending. With constant enhancements, you need to have a framework in place to stay ahead. If you don’t have an Office 365 Change Management strategy it could be detrimental to everything you are working so hard for.

7 Things to remember when developing a Office 365 adoption plan and or Office 365 Change Management plan

  • 1

    Planning and Sponsorship

  • 2

    Continuous Communication

  • 3

    Self-paced Learning

  • 4

    Readiness and Adoption

  • 5

    Self-Service help desk

  • 6

    Freedom with in a Framework

  • 7

    Centralized up-to-date Office 365 information

Overcome the resistance to change!

If you are interested in making sure your company is leveraging the power of Office 365 and living the
Office 365 lifestyle, fill out our contact form today to learn more about how Office 365 Adoption can help your organization!

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