Emphasizing User Adoption

You finally have your new software up and running. (Hopefully, it’s a fully functioning Salesforce implementation from DonorLynk!). You are ready to integrate the software into your workflow. It could change the whole ballgame for your nonprofit.

One problem though: What if everyone does not actually use it?

Organizational inertia can be a tough thing to overcome. People can get set in their ways, in their old systems. People who are comfortable using spreadsheets to track donors, for example, might be put off by a system like Salesforce, and just decide to “go with what they know.”

How do you make sure that everyone in your organization actually uses your new software?

You are not alone. Here is some advice on how to emphasize user adoption at your nonprofit.

Communicate the Value

In order to convince people to use new software, you need to convince them why it is important to do so. Communicate clearly the benefits and functionality of the software, focusing especially on how it will make employees’ work lives easier and more productive. Basically, treat this just like you would treat any other big event, because that’s what it is.

Train, Train, Train

That new software is great, but it’s just going to sit there on your network unless your people truly understand how to use it. Hold a series of hands-on training events, utilize developed manuals and other documentation, take advantage of software vendors’ online and video training materials, and above all, answer all the questions people may have about the software.

Support is Vital

Once the software is in use, make sure you support your users when they have problems or confusion. Be kind and patient, as some people pick up on new software more slowly than others. Do not let users stay in the dark about the software when it gives them difficulties, because they will just grow discouraged and go back to “the old ways.”

Have some questions about implementing new software? We’ve done it countless times for nonprofits all over the country. Contact us and we’ll give you some great advice!
Joe Paone is a content strategist at DonorLynk who loves informing nonprofits.