We should all thank Corinne Schmid at CMSWire for reminding us of the central role that employees play in Enterprise Collaboration. Far too often articles on collaboration focus on business benefits derived from collaboration, rather than the efficiencies gained by individuals. But the fact remains that if:
Enterprise Collaboration is a journey, it is used to reach a destination by its drivers – Employees.”
As Corinne puts it succinctly:
Employees collaborate, not enterprises.”
It is important to remember who will be using the collaboration system. Every stakeholder will use the system differently and need the system for different reasons. Hence, it is important to understand why users will be using an Enterprise Collaboration solution, i.e. what pain points are they trying to ameliorate? And lastly, it’s important to ensure that employees have the right tools and receive the proper product training so that they don’t abandon using tools.
While this article may strike some as motherhood-and-apple pie, the fact remains that many solutions are created with minimal input from real users. So how do you create a great solution that meets the needs of actual users? You interact with your valued users on a daily basis to ensure that your solutions truly meet their needs. During the product development process you understand your users’ pain-points and how they want to use the system. You create personas to help sales understand the different usage scenarios. And finally, you work with customers to ensure a smooth deployment and usage.
At Accellion, we’ve been lucky enough to collaborate with our customers for the past year as we developed Accellion Secure Collaboration. That experience gave us some great insight into how our end-users work. I would like to think this is why our customers continue to stay with us year after year to give us a nearly 100% renewal rate. And why they can’t deploy Accellion Secure Collaboration fast enough.