What do CEOs and CIOs of global enterprises have in common with small business leaders and entrepreneurs?
They’re all talking about digital adoption.
But what does digital adoption mean, really? Isn’t it just using digital tools?
No, it’s not. And it’s of paramount importance that you understand what does digital adoption mean for your enterprise (or small business), before it’s too late.
What does digital adoption mean? — A definition
WalkMe, leading provider of the Digital Adoption Platform (DAP), can give us an excellent answer to the question, “what does digital adoption mean?”
“Achieving a state in which digital tools are being used as intended, and to their fullest extent.”
It’s not simply about having and using digital systems. It’s about users being so comfortable with them that using them becomes second nature.
Take your smartphone, for instance. We can see from US penetration by age statistics, that the 18-44 age groups are using smartphones the most. But have they achieved true adoption, i.e. using smartphones to their fullest extent?
Unfortunately, these statistics can’t answer that for us. But they do provide a good illustration of the difference between usage and adoption.
The 65+ age group, for example, has the lowest smartphone penetration. This is to be expected. But in theory, those users could have achieved true adoption, even though they’re fewer in number than the 12-17 age group.
If there’s a 12-17 year old in your life, you’ll probably agree that this isn’t likely. But the point is that adoption is different to penetration and usage.
Imagine you’re at work. You’ve been landed with some additional workload due to the temporary absence of a colleague. To complete their tasks, you have to use a digital system with which you’re unfamiliar.
Everyone was onboarded to this system a while ago, but you haven’t had to use it on a daily basis. So now you stare blankly at the dashboard trying to remember where to go from here.
Guess what; this isn’t digital adoption.
Digital adoption is using a tool as effortlessly as you use your legs to walk.
What does digital adoption mean for your customers?
So, what does digital adoption mean for businesses that provide digital products or services to their customers? Well, it could mean the difference between retaining them and losing them to competitors.
If you launch a new website, you develop an app, or you sell digital equipment or platforms, it’s absolutely critical that customers get to grips with your tools as quickly as possible.
Successful adoption means customers can experience all the benefits of what you’re providing to them. It means they’re able to do what they need to do easier, better, or faster.
It means they’ll have a good user experience (UX) of your digital tools and they’ll be happy and loyal customers. Poor adoption means frustration and churn.
What does digital adoption mean for your employees?
When rolling out new platforms or software within your business, do you remember to focus on your users?
When employees don’t like or don’t understand a new tool, a number of things can happen:
- They continue to use legacy systems
- They get frustrated
- Their motivation, productivity, and creativity suffers
- Their overall performance suffers
- They disengage with the business
- They leave the company
So it’s essential that employees successfully adopt digital tools at work. But it’s easier said than done.
“Convincing the leadership at your organization that you need to ‘go digital’ is one thing. Actually getting everyone to use the platforms, tools and services you select is another.”
Philip Kushmaro, CIO.com
So what’s the solution? Nailing digital adoption
“Effective digital adoption needs a solid foundation, so by using a tech-forward training system, employees will be more empowered and prepared for future changes.”Manish Dudharejia, business.com
A Digital Adoption Platform (DAP) makes digital adoption easy. An algorithmic guidance layer, the DAP can be overlaid onto apps, websites, systems, and software. It’s platform agnostic so as long as it’s online, the DAP can help.
The DAP is like a personal assistant and digital trainer for each user. It uses AI and machine learning to understand user behavior and provide contextual guidance actually at the time of need.
Whether your users are employees or customers, the DAP can transform their adoption experience. At the end of the day, what does digital adoption mean? It means digital transformation success, maybe even business survival.