Too Much Too Soon: Incremental Release Of SharePoint Functionality

By Nick Inglis posted 11-17-2011 14:56

  

That's Not A Coffee Cup HolderI’ve had a lot of offhand conversation about user adoption of SharePoint lately and what I’ve found is that when companies give all of the functionality of SharePoint at launch they struggle more with user adoption (this is conjecture as I know of no full studies of this). The companies that I’ve talked to that have put together a functionality release schedule seem to be the ones that have an easier time with user adoption.

I think user adoption issue is primarily because SharePoint has the propensity to overwhelm new users. Since SharePoint can theoretically do anything, giving your users a baseline functionality and then building upon that gives them a chance to get to know the system a bit before they have the broad range of functionality.

One company that I’ve talked with treated their initial launch as a pre-release and allowed users to utilize the new system while the old system was still in place with limited functionality and their user adoption seemed to be the best. Allowing those who can champion your new system to self select and then incrementally bringing forward additional functionality seems to me to be a future best practice.



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