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Remote working has accelerated the deployment of Microsoft 365 – this is foremost a cultural change

Woman and man laughing in front of a lap topFrom the cultural point of view, it is important to consider how to introduce new tools as smoothly as possible while causing as little disturbance as possible to users’ daily work.

Microsoft 365 is an ecosystem composed of different tools and services. Its popularity is growing constantly and many companies are currently considering deployment of Microsoft 365 services. It is a big system renewal whose effects should be considered deeper, getting to the heart of operations. Introduction of new technologies and tools is always a big investment, and unless the tools are utilized to their full potential, the investment can go to waste.

Tackle cultural shocks in advance in the deployment of new systems

In addition to costs and technological features, the effects of an M365 deployment also extend deep into the company culture and operating procedures. For example, sharing calendar entries with colleagues or a simultaneous, more open and agile, shared use of files may be a completely foreign concept to many people. With a new toolpack, the entire company culture may experience a great change when information is shared, stored and used in a different way and more openly than before. 

Openness may give rise to doubts and questions of various types. It may even cause resistance to change, particularly if people are not used to this kind of openness. Therefore, it is important to also ensure that different types of “cultural shocks” are tackled already before taking new tools into use, since resistance to change can at worst offset the benefits of the entire renewal project.

Conditions for successful deployment are found in good design and communication

From the cultural point of view, it is important to consider how to introduce new tools as smoothly as possible while causing as little disturbance as possible to users’ daily work. In addition, it is good to appoint a dedicated working group for communicating the process and analyzing the operating procedures before starting any concrete actions. 

It may also be worth considering the advantages of using a partner in deployment and user training: how much support is needed and desired for putting the tools into practice? How is putting into practice carried out building on as solid a foundation as possible? An example of this could be the digital mentor model where a few users that are more advanced train their less experienced colleagues. In many situations, this could also help overcome any potential resistance to change.

A system renewal always offers an opportunity to analyze and modify operating procedures

The actual transfer stage can also be a light and effortless process, if use of similar tools is already a reality in the organization and employees are used to applying versatile technologies. In any case, it is worth stopping to reflect on the operating procedures of the organization as a whole, since a system renewal is always a fruitful environment to also make changes to procedures and routines. Is there perhaps something to improve in the processes? Could some routines be rethought and carried out in a different way? Or could the use of a completely new tool bring a new type of competitive advantage? 

The Microsoft 365 toolpack offers almost unlimited possibilities for changing and improving efficiency of operations along with the introduction of new services and their adoption as part of daily activities. It is thus useful to think outside the box when planning the system renewal.

Instead of taking existing tools and services to the new ecosystem, the partner should be consulted on how to improve the efficiency or enhance operations as a whole. Thanks to its wide variety of services, the M365 ecosystem can offer a combination, suited to the needs of each organization, for improving operations, and a good expert partner can suggest suitable solution alternatives.

More information on the topic

We have recently published a guide for successful Microsoft 365 deployment and migration. Download your copy here!

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Tuomas Lassila

Tuomas Lassila

I am responsible for Pinja's ICT business. My free time is spent with family, friends and hobbies.

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