Tips for Successful Microsoft Project Adoption
The process of adopting a new business technology should be handled carefully, especially when it comes to one that will impact the project management strategies, as these are often critical to almost all aspects of any business. Below we explore our top tips for ensuring a successful Microsoft Project adoption.
Microsoft Project, a leader in the project management software space, has been helping project managers globally to better manage project planning and teams while safeguarding project profitability. With rich forecasting, collaboration, and data analysis abilities, many project managers rely on solutions like Microsoft Project to help support project management strategies in today's highly competitive business landscape.
While Microsoft Project offers many advantages to project management teams, any organisation considering investing in Microsoft Project products should approach implementation correctly and carefully to ensure maximum adoption.
Choose Your Solution
The Microsoft Project suite has two main players in the project management solution market, Microsoft Project Online and Microsoft Project for Web. Microsoft Project Online is the original project management software that meets the needs of professional project managers dealing with complex projects who require specific functionality. Microsoft Project for Web is a newer solution aimed to meet the needs of both the occasional and project manager with its simple yet powerful functionality. While there are two options available, some organisations find it beneficial to use both together. If you would like to explore this further, watch our on-demand webinar 'Choosing the Right Project Management Solution for Your Business' which covers this in more detail.
Pick a Partner
Choosing a trusted partner is critical to any successful business technology implementation. From choosing the correct solution to implementation, rollout and user adoption, your technology partner will be a key part of the project, so it is important to choose wisely. Looking for references in the solution area of interest can be a good place to start.
Build your Business Case
Once you have explored the project management solutions and business technology partners available to you, you must then make a business case for your preferred solution and partner. To do this you must assess the current situation and business processes in place and identify where the proposed solution can provide real business value, deliver a good return on investment and deliver benefits to all users. Once this has been thought out, it is important to engage with important stakeholders and executives to ensure you buy-in at all levels, as ultimately they will have to lead as an example to the rest of the company.
Create Roll-Out and Adoption Plan
Achieving a successful Microsoft Project deployment requires an approach where there is a focus on adoption and ensuring all user groups understand the benefits of working with the new solution. Involving all user groups from the beginning is essential to understanding what was missing from the previous solution and what worked well. This will ensure the final solution will deliver benefits to all working teams. A communication plan is also critical to help raise awareness about the impending change and to ensure employees can become involved and express views rather than resist the change. On the technology side of implementation, a phased approach is often best to help support and sustain the change internally. If your organisation struggles to lead change initiatives internally perhaps you could benefit from including a professional Change Manager in the process.
Sustain and Measure
Along with Change Management, another really important element in any technology deployment is training. You can successfully implement any technology but ensuring that all users can use it is the only way to see a return on investment. To help sustain this new technology and change in working habits, it is important to measure and set benchmarks for success for user adoption. User surveys and feedback can help gain insights as to where users might need additional training or support. Sustaining and reinforcing the adoption of the solution is something that needs to be monitored and supported after the project go-live to achieve the best results.
If you would like to learn more about Microsoft Project adoption, Storm is a Microsoft Project Gold partner and our specialists are on-hand to help you get started with your project management solution journey. If you would like to learn more about our services, register for our upcoming webinar 'Project Management Reimagined'.