Oracle Tutor: Installing Is Not Implementing or Why CIO's should care about End User Adoption
By Emily Chorba on Jan 31, 2011
Eighteen months ago I showed Tutor and UPK Productive Day One overview to a CIO friend of mine. He works in a manufacturing business which had been recently purchased by a global conglomerate. He had a major implementation coming up, but said that the corporate team would be coming in to handle the project. I asked about their end user training approach, but it was unclear to him at the time.
We were in touch over the course of the implementation project. The major activities were data conversion, how-to workshops, General Ledger realignment, and report definition. The message was "Here's how we do it at corporate, and here's how you are going to do it." In short, it was an application software installation. The corporate team had experience and confidence and the effort through go-live was smooth.
Some weeks after cutover, problems with customer orders began to surface. Orders could not be fulfilled in a timely fashion. The problem got worse, and the corporate emergency team was called in. After many days of analysis, the issue was tracked down and resolved, but by then there were weeks of backorders, and their customer base was impacted in a significant way. It took three months of constant handholding of customers by the sales force for good will to be reestablished, and this itself diminished a new product sales push.
I learned of these results in a recent conversation with the CIO. I asked him what the solution to the problem was, and he replied that it was twofold. The first component was a lack of understanding by customer service reps about how a particular data item in order entry was to be filled in, resulting in discrepant order data. The second component was that product planners were using this data, along with data from other sources, to fill in a spreadsheet based on the abandoned system. This spreadsheet was the primary input for planning data. The result of these two inaccuracies was that key parts were not being ordered to effectively meet demand and the lead time for finished goods was pushed out by weeks.
I reminded him about the Productive Day One approach, and it's focus on methodology and tools for end user training. A more collaborative solution workshop would have identified proper applications use in the new environment. Using UPK to document correct transaction entry would have provided effective guidelines to the CSRs for data entry. Using Oracle Tutor to document the manual tasks would have eliminated the use of an out of date spreadsheet. As we talked this over, he said, "I wish I knew when I started what I know now."
Effective end user adoption is the most critical and most overlooked success factor in applications implementations. When the switch is thrown at go-live, employees need to know how to use the new systems to do their jobs. Their jobs are made up of manual steps and systems steps which must be performed in the right order for the implementing organization to operate smoothly. Use Tutor to document the manual policies and procedures, use UPK to document the systems tasks, and develop this documentation in conjunction with a solution workshop. This is the path to develop effective end user training material for a smooth implementation.
Product Manager, Oracle Tutor and BPM