Digital Adoption Challenges Everyone Should Address

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Digital adoption, which includes the use of new technology to improve a business, is a common term in today’s corporate world. Everyone knows that digital technology has become vital to streamlining processes, improving customer relations, creating additional revenue, and much more.

It is no wonder that business models are focusing more and more on technology in order to embrace change and get ahead of the competition. Changes in how businesses run are happening faster and faster. These range from how businesses interact with customers to how remote work is organized and managed. Central to these changes and new goals is technology and digital adoption.

With digital adoption comes training and new company goals. The traditional training methods of the past often don’t meet the needs of businesses today, as they don’t do a great job of helping employees retain knowledge or keep pace with the rate of change. New digital tools like digital adoption platforms are needed in order to train new workers and bring a company up to speed on process changes, which happen faster and faster all the time.

But all digital adoption has its challenges, as company leaders know. Some of these challenges are more obvious than others, but all of these pieces must be met together and align with a company’s goals for such transformation to succeed. Only then can digital adoption reach its full potential and bring an entire business planned benefits.

Many companies miss the hidden challenges while focusing on the more straightforward ones, but once they are all addressed with the right tools, success is within reach.

The reasons for digital adoption

Many companies, no matter which industry they serve, are now using technology to learn from their customers and improve customer service. Others have used a digital adoption strategy to move their workforces to remote work in order to save on travel and training costs even before the pandemic. Still, others have embraced goal-oriented tools such as Salesforce with the hope of supercharging sales and increasing profits.

No matter what a company’s goals are, technology and changes will be needed to achieve them. Digital adoption is needed whether a company has taken a customer-centric approach, switched to remote work, or both. It’s also often needed to comply with new policies and to make some processes more efficient. However, no technology investment comes without challenges, and the least of those is often the upfront cost.

Well-known hurdles to digital adoption

Company leaders know that the most common hurdles to true digital adoption—the act of using new technology to its full potential—are the need for frequent training, fast onboarding, and the time necessary for that training.

Training has always been the most obvious hurdle to full digital adoption of any new tool. Learning curves always come with tools for a variety of reasons, ranging from limited knowledge retention to the fear of change among most workers. This is true when it comes to onboarding new hires, closing skills gaps for current employees, or training a company in a new process or policy.

What makes the need for constant training one of the most common digital adoption challenges is the fact that it takes time, and often a lot of it. Because workers have difficulty retaining big chunks of information at once, training sessions often have to be spaced apart. This means that when using traditional training methods, company leaders will need to take more time than necessary to bring a company up to speed.

Because innovation and digital tech are always advancing, taking more time than necessary to train workers in new processes and policies can cause a company to lose its competitive edge. Switching away from legacy systems also can cause steep learning curves and worker discomfort, which can only add to the time needed for full digital adoption.

An often missed challenge

Almost everyone focuses on learning curves and training time when thinking about the challenges that come with digital adoption. But many trainers and managers miss another equally important challenge that must also be met: real-time reinforcement.

Reinforcement means that trainers and managers simply help instill the knowledge that employees have learned. This has often been through meetings, emails, answering questions, and help tickets.

Often, reinforcement also involves exiting a program or app to find a how-to answer elsewhere, such as in a wiki or help database. It may mean emailing a trainer or manager for an answer and waiting to hear back. Context switching such as this will mean lost time and employee frustration, as well as lost profits. It is this time component that makes reinforcement such a challenge.

Making this problem worse is the fact that many companies are switching to remote work. In fact, around 80% of company leaders say they’re going to let a good portion of their employees begin working from home at least some of the time.

On top of this, company leaders must also update processes and policies quite often, due to changing laws, technology, and the competitive landscape. This means that changes need to be communicated to an entire team and sometimes the company at once. Traditionally, this means meetings, webinars, and emails, which often aren’t seen right away.

How well trainers meet these challenges can determine whether digital transformation succeeds or fails. In order to succeed, learning and reinforcement must be effective and must align with a company’s goals. However, a key to success exists. And that key is making both learning and reinforcement happen in real-time.

All challenges must be met or the tower crumbles

When it comes to learning new digital tools and connecting to customers in new ways, time has always been part of the process. This is true whether a company has embraced a goal-oriented enablement tool such as Salesforce or switched to remote work. But change now occurs faster than it ever did before, and now company leaders must train and reinforce learning in real-time to beat the competition.

As a result, companies must train faster and faster in order to stay competitive. On top of this, leaders must also focus on meeting company goals and customer expectations as they meet the challenges that constant training brings. A long-term learning strategy is needed to do this, and this strategy will determine whether any new technology is worth the investment.

Companies can increase their value by up to 21% by embracing all challenges to digital adoption and meeting its goals. If some hurdles to full digital adoption are ignored, then digital transformation can fail, and companies will also fall short of their goals.

Aligning all the pieces

Lightweight, contextual learning platforms can meet the growing need for constant training and reinforcement. They can also help companies meet sales, customer service, and compliance goals.

Such learning software focuses on deeper learning and aids greatly in successful digital adoption and transformation. The good news is that this type of learning is also immediate, appearing directly in applications and programs that are often used for the work process. Trainers are able to insert training right into the flow of work so that employees don’t have to leave their workflow to seek answers to specific questions they may have. Eliminating this type of context switching saves time and boosts productivity.

Such a tool also provides the frequent training needed in today’s changing world and in real-time, eliminating the days, weeks, and months often wasted on the dreaded learning curve. Lightweight, contextual learning software also provides helpful information and specific training in small doses, so that all employees are more willing to embrace change.

This type of training can integrate with many different apps and programs, such as Salesforce, that normally have a steep learning curve. If a company’s digital transformation process involves changes to customer service or compliance, such software can help a business meet these goals.

Lightweight, contextual training software can meet the need for constant reinforcement of learned material. It can also handle frequent changes to work processes and policies if configured correctly. The good news is that this type of learning program can meet both of these often overlooked needs.

Instead of calling long meetings and sending emails, trainers and leaders can now use these tools to communicate process changes to an entire company at once. These messages, like the training, appear right in every employee’s workflow and get attention right away. Trainers can easily insert new and contextual training on the go as well. This allows for the rapid change needed to meet business goals in a digital world.

Despite so many changes happening so quickly, learning for workers is still instant. Reinforcement to the new learning material appears in-app, greatly reducing the learning curve.

With lightweight learning tools, it is possible to embrace change and meet company goals at the fast pace needed in today’s world.

Tackling your digital adoption challenges today

Meeting company goals in the age of digital transformation is much more likely to happen with the help of digital adoption platforms. To succeed, a company must have a plan to tackle all challenges to adoption as they relate to meeting company goals. Lightweight, contextual learning is an excellent way to align the learning process with new goals, and it can do so at the pace needed to compete in today’s modern competitive environments. If you’re ready to tackle the challenges of digital adoption, chat with us today.

About the author

Melanie Fellay
CEO & Co-founder
Mel is a Forbes 30 under 30 recipient, a Top 100 Female Entrepreneur to Watch, and has been featured across Forbes, Entrepreneur, Fast Company, and more.
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