Top 10 Ways to Boost Office 365 Adoption by Using the Power of Analytics

This post is a collaboration with CardioLog

Key business goals and objectives are achieved by increasing adoption of a company’s intranet portal, but adoption is not the end goal itself. Increased adoption leads to higher value of Office 365, which allows you to get the most out of your investment in it. Office 365 is only as powerful and capable as the number of people using and contributing to it. By following these ten tips, you’ll be able to increase your Office 365 adoption and make the most of your intranet.

Top 10 Ways to Boost Office 365 Adoption:

  1. Impact Business Objectives – It is important to define why you are implementing the technology and to set clear objectives. It can be difficult to measure success with abstract objectives, such as ‘centralize knowledge and resources’ or ‘automate and improve business processes.’ One way to be more specific is by setting SMART goals – specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. For example, you can break down ‘automate and improve business processes’ with the SMART acronym and create a goal like “We would like to automate and improve our paper-based legal contract management contract reviews processes by the end of the quarter”. You can break it down even further by creating shorter term goals underneath the main objective and having a timeframe for each subgoal.
  2. Complete the Transition – It is easier to adopt new technology when you have fully transitioned from your organization’s old systems. By removing alternate solutions and making it mandatory to use the modern ones, adoption of the product will happen faster and be more effective. Encourage employees to share ideas and documents in OneDrive, ask others questions via Teams, and look for items in Search and Delve to get users to embrace the full Office 365 suite.
  3. Provide Effective Support – Organizations often forget about crucial policies, guidance, and plans that should be in place to ensure there is sufficient support for end users. There are many components to keep in mind from the transitional efforts (such as content migration processes and questionnaires) to maintenance and management (such as site and review checklists). Being mindful of how your Office 365 support is managed and executed within your organization will increase adoption and engagement. 
  4. Plan for Adoption – Microsoft provides many resources to help you get the most out of Office 365. There are four main categories:
    • Scenarios – Inspire people to use technology in new ways
    • Methodology – Templates and best practices
    • Communities – Learn from peers and adoption experts
    • Resources – Get new ideas from other customers’ stories about how they use Office 365
  5. Measure Adoption – Value is assessed best by measuring usage and adoption. Once you have that information, you’ll be able to make changes accordingly. Analyzing usage reports, patterns, and search logs will show what features users like and which they still haven’t incorporated into their daily routines. Administrators can take this information and create new training plans to encourage users to integrate more Office 365 features into their workday.
Active users including average length and depth of each visit.
  1. Drive Awareness and Interest – Promoting the product to users will help them understand what Office 365 is and how it can be leveraged. This can be done before the launch through activities such as competitions or trivia contests. These activities can also occur after the launch to make users aware of the Office 365 tools available and to educate them on new ones.
  2. Guide Understanding – To increase adoption, users need to be shown the full capabilities of the Office 365 features and taught how to use these features effectively. Organizations should provide guidance on what users can do in Office 365 and explain which features to use in different scenarios to provide context for the users.
  3. Coach and Find Champions – The best way for people to learn is from each other. Identifying champions and influencers (often non-managers) and celebrating their successes should be done to encourage adoption. Once you’ve recognized what they did well and included a screenshot or two, it will not only validate the high achiever but also connect them to others who hope to do the same. It’s a technique that can be repeated continuously to show appreciation for the influencers and to engage employees.
  4. Elicit and Capture Feedback – Creating targeted polls and surveys to collect feedback will both engage users and provide helpful insights based on their experiences. The more specific the questions are, the more helpful your results will be. Having polls incorporates bidirectional communication in Office 365 to allow you to better understand your intranet and its users.
  5. Solve Business Problems – When there are examples of processes and scenarios where the tool is used to solve business problems, higher adoption is achieved. A showcase can also be utilized here to show what solutions are available to people in Office 365. Once users understand that it’s a platform that can solve business needs, they will be able to maximize the usefulness of Office 365.

Following these ten steps will increase adoption and lead to success within the portal. By adding analytics to these processes, you can understand your adoption rates and know exactly how to increase portal engagement. These measurements can allow you to track increases in adoption, measure changes in productivity, and analyze collaboration and engagement.

What to Measure to Improve Adoption:

  1. Content Analytics – Third-party analytics services elevate content analytics from simple page views to influential content. This is tracked by looking at comments, likes, ratings, and followers to show not only page clicks but what users are truly looking for and interested in.
  2. User Analytics – The data gathered from user analytics is beyond what they are viewing; it looks at how users are interacting with each other. Instead of looking at average user behavior, we can analyze evangelists to leverage their influence by promoting them as ideal users. We can find these evangelists by tracking their followers and how much content they are contributing.


Most influential Teams users as well as the most popular message and thread topics.

  1. Community Analytics – The shift here is from content usage to community engagement. Providing metrics on active discussions, whether or not questions are being answered and how quickly, and which groups are less active and need more training provides insight on the community as a whole. It also provides administrators with actionable next steps to take to improve community engagement.

Take action into your own hands and improve your portal by using these top ten ways to improve adoption. By adding analytics into these methods, you have a solid idea of which communities are most resistant to SharePoint adoption and you know to focus your efforts on them first. There a variety of analytics tools that you can use to help you increase Office 365 adoption, including CardioLog Analytics. CardioLog Analytics monitors a variety of metrics within the SharePoint portal, including search, to provide an in-depth view of the environment. It enables organizations to improve intranet usability, drive portal collaboration, boost user engagement, and enhance overall business productivity.


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