Support Implementation

Ensure the users are supported in the first few days of the new system
  • New system
  • Implementation Plan
    1. Provide support to the users
  • Users comfortable with the system.
  • Identified problems either resolved, or logged for resolution.

The attitude to the new system is going to be largely formed in the first few hours and days of use. If users have a positive experience, they will be supportive of the new system and happy to explore the new capability provided to them. If they have a bad experience, it may take months or even years to regain their support. This can result in poor attitude to their work, and problems being allowed to fester to the point where people leave, or develop an apathy towards their job.

The best solution is to have people on the ground watching and guiding users. If things go wrong, they can immediately identify the problem and refer it to someone to fix. A key point to remember is that if users bad habits are not addressed on day one, they may become entrenched. Training will only take people part of the way in learning the new system. For example it is easy to forget that F9 takes you to a new screen and carry out 10 keystrokes to get to that screen. If a support person can watch what people are doing, they can quickly correct errors. Use notepads to write down correct procedures for people. Leave it stuck to their PC or workstation to guide them through it next time. Some organisations print special Post It notepads which have numbered steps and the facility to write in each step.

Feedback is also important. As problems are taken away to be fixed, a mechanism should be put in place to let people know when the problem will be fixed, and how it is proceeding. Consider someone being assigned to call individuals on a daily basis to let them know progress on the problems they referred to support.

Support may extend beyond the company. If the change impacts suppliers or customers, you may need to consider supporting them. For example, if a new statement format is being introduced for customers, consider an insert with the name and phone number of a support person who can answer any questions on the new format.

There are three key things to communicate to users when discussing their response to problems they may have:

    1. Advise someone immediately they identify a problem
    2. Understand the impact and work out what you can do to lessen that impact
    3. Look for a workaround

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