Five Tips to Help Speed Up Adoption of your Analytics Tool
New technologies are easier bought than adopted…
All too often, expensive “simple, click of a button” analytics tools are purchased with the best of intentions, but end up a niche solution used by a select few. If you think about this on a “cost per user” basis, or (better yet) a “cost per decision” basis, suddenly your return on investment doesn’t seem as good as the mass-adopted, enterprise-wide solution you were hoping for.
So what can you do to better disseminate information and encourage use of your analytics investments? Here are five quick tips to help adoption in your organisation.
1. Familiarity breeds content
I am the first to admit that I can be pedantic about data visualization and information presentation. However, where possible (aka, where it will adequately convey the point) I will intentionally use the available visualisations in the analytics “system of record” when sharing information with business users. While I could often generate better custom visuals, seeing charts, tables and visualisations from their analytics tool can help increase users’ comfort level with the system, and ultimately help adoption. When users later log in for themselves, things look “familiar” and they feel more equipped to explore the information in front of them.
2. Coax them in
Just as standard visualisations don’t always float my boat in many analytics tools, I am often underwhelmed by custom reporting and dashboarding capabilities. Yet despite limitations, they do have inherent value: they get users to log in.
So while it can be tempting to exclusively leverage Excel plugins or APIs or connections to Tableau to deliver information outside of the primary reporting tool, don’t overlook the value of building dashboards within your analytics solution. Making it clear that your analytics solution is the home of critical information can help with adoption, by getting users to log in to view results pertinent to them.
3. Measure your measurement
If you want to drive adoption, you need to be measuring adoption! A lot of analytics tools will give administrators visibility into who is using the tool, how recently and how often. Keep an eye on this, and be on the lookout for users who might benefit from a little extra attention and help. For example, users who never log in, yet always ask for basic information from your analytics team.
If your solution doesn’t offer this kind of insight, there are still things you can do to understand usage. Consider sending out a user survey to help you understand what people use and don’t use, and why. Do you have an intranet or other internal network for sharing analytics findings? Even though this won’t reflect tool usage, consider implementing web analytics tracking to understand engagement with analytics content more generally. (If you post all this information via intranet and no one ever views it, it’s likely they don’t log in to your analytics tool either!)
Want to take it a step further? Set an adoption rate goal for your team, and a reward if it’s met. (Perhaps a fun off-site activity, or happy hour or lunch as a team.)
4. Training, training, training
Holding (and repeating!) regular trainings is critical for adoption. Even very basic training can help users feel comfortable logging in to their analytics solution (where perhaps they would have been otherwise tempted to just “ask Analytics.”)
But don’t just make this a one-time thing. Repeat your trainings, and consider recording them for “on-demand” access. After all, new team members join all the time, and existing employees often need a “refresher.”
Don’t be afraid to get creative with your training delivery methods! “Learn in the Loo” signs in bathrooms can be a sneaky way to grab available attention.
5. Pique their interest
While as analysts we absolutely need to be focused on actionable data, sometimes “fun facts” can intrigue business users and get them to engage with your analytics tool. Consider sharing interesting tidbits, including links to more details in your analytics solution. Quick soundbytes (“Guess what, we saw a 15% lift in visits driven by this Tumblr post!”) can be shared via internal social networks, intranet, email, or even signs posted around the office.
What are some of your tips for helping grow adoption?