5 Key Pillars to Successfully Deploy Microsoft Teams

By: Erin Eide | March 8, 2022

Implementing new technologies is hard but getting your employees to adopt and use the new tools and solutions is even harder. Therefore, a change management plan designed to connect your business goals with your employee’s needs is vital to increase technology usage within your organization. As a Microsoft Solutions Partner, we have helped many clients successfully deploy Microsoft Teams, and we have found that every effective Teams change management strategy includes these five pillars:

1. Build a Case for Change

The first step is to identify the specific business issues that will be resolved by implementing the change. Is data security an issue? Has productivity decreased as your remote workforce increased? Are you adding more locations through mergers? Is there a growing need to be connected with vendors and business partners? Documenting the specific drivers for change and defining what success looks like – including detailed KPIs like revenue goals or employee adoption metrics – is the essential foundation to your Teams adoption strategy.

2. Strengthen Stakeholders

Senior level stakeholder support is essential to unify the cultural, departmental, financial, and IT resources necessary to successfully deploy Teams within your organization. Developing targeted stakeholder coaching, awareness, and communication initiatives prepares them to effectively exercise their influence and lead by example. This creates and maintains critical momentum and alignment necessary for successful project completion. 

3. Develop Champions

One of the most effective and trusted ways of learning occurs peer to peer. Experienced consultants like Core BTS can design a Champions program roadmap to identify influential individuals across departments and roles, then provide those champions with guidance and resources so they can spread the word. Champions build excitement, reduce resistance to change, and help you achieve your goals. Microsoft offers a list of how Champions help the change management process.

4. Identify User Roles

Microsoft Teams enables employees to collaborate no matter their role, location, or device. Thorough mapping of user roles across your organization ensures critical workflows and processes are secure, supported and uninterrupted. Does your field team need access from a rural environment? Is your sales team constantly traveling both nationally and internationally? Do your customers need access to channels to collaborate with your product development team? By identifying user needs and tailoring communications and awareness you’ll pave the way for ready adoption of Teams and future success.

5. Start Small; Go Big

Piloting change with a focused group is a great way to accelerate the learning curve and tailor-fit your change strategy before deploying to the whole organization. Consider a pilot project in the sales department that focuses on a new Customer Service initiative to improve collaboration on customer issues. Would your Product Development team benefit by connecting with existing customers? Choose a pilot program that includes measurable targets to validate your successes so you can quickly and effectively scale Teams to a company-wide rollout.

Drive Employee Engagement with Microsoft Teams 

Whether you just deployed Microsoft Teams – or your organization has been using it for years – developing a formal change management program in parallel with your Teams deployment will help you increase user engagement and adoption.

If you would like assistance with Teams deployment and / or change management, we have advanced specializations in Adoption & Change Management and extensive knowledge, experience, and success with deploying Microsoft 365 workloads – including Microsoft Teams, Exchange Online, SharePoint, and OneDrive. We can help your end users adopt new solutions and embrace technologies across the Microsoft stack.

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Erin is an experienced project and people manager, skilled in organizational discovery and change management planning. She integrates over 20 years of tech industry experience along with a Master of Science in Education and Prosci Change Practitioner certification to help organizations build and implement holistic adoption and change management programs to support technology transformation.

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