As those who have selected and implemented a new EHS&S management information system will attest, success often has as much to do with how the platform is marketed internally, as the technical capabilities it offers. To give us some ideas for how to do so effectively, we spoke this week to Selin Jassani, Learning and Development Manager at VelocityEHS, about how to measure and drive user engagement with a new software system.
NAEM: How important is ‘engagement’ to the success of any software implementation?
SJ: It’s absolutely critical to a successful implementation! Think about all the hard work and resources you and your implementation team put into a software solution that will deliver results. Fast forward to post implementation when you’re live and waiting for these results – without engagement, your people aren’t going to use the solution in the way you want them to. Poor engagement equals in poor results.
NAEM: What does ‘engagement’ look like? How do you measure it?
SJ: Great question! When someone uses software because they want to, not because they have to, you’ve got engagement. Measuring engagement is not a one size fits all equation. It really depends on what your goals are – this will help determine what success looks like so that you can define what your people’s interaction with the software solution needs to be. Once you know that, you can define the level of engagement necessary to achieve the desired interaction. If you want to take it one step further, consider this – you can never have too much engagement, it can always be improved in one way or another. So it’s best to think of engagement as an evolutionary process.
NAEM: When should companies start thinking about engagement strategies?
SJ: They should start immediately during the software selection process! The solution you buy plays a huge role in defining engagement. With Option A you need to spend a lot of time planning a robust training program to make sure everyone is comfortable using the new tool. Whereas with Option B you will have an easier time rolling it out because it requires a much simpler training program. Remember, it all comes down to the people who are going to interact with the solution in a way that delivers the results you need.
NAEM: Any tips or strategies that work in your experience?
SJ: Always think about the people who will be using the solution – they only care about one thing: what’s in it for me. If you can demonstrate how the new solution will make their jobs easier while considering the unique ways each person needs to interact with the software, I am 100 percent confident you will increase engagement.
On March 15-16 NAEM will host its ninth EHS and Sustainability software conference in Tampa, Fla., the premier showcase of solutions from a users perspective. To learn more about this event or to register, please visit: http://ehsmis.naem.org/index.php.