Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Thinking in Barriers

The single most important KEY to ensuring success of a product or a successful switch to implement a new technology that will benefit your business is USER-LEVEL ADOPTION.

Whether you're a vendor to the industry or a customer (someone who's looking to deploy the product for their organization) it often helps to think in terms of BARRIERS.  For example:

  • Systems Pull (how many other internal systems rely on files being in that format or integrate with the old system)
  • Re-training Required (this might be drastically infuenced by the demographic make up of the organizations that you're targeting or deploying for - younger people are much more interested in embracing new technology)
  • Satisfaction (or Lack of) with the existing systems.  How much are current systems broken.. Obviously the more dissatisfaction, the easier it will be to instigate a switch.
  • Grass Roots possibility.  Does the new system require IT or an executive committee to sign of on it or can it be started grass roots and they catch on fire?
  • Level of Noise.  How much noise is there in the marketplace that pertains to this set of functionality?  Are there tons of competitors pitching this and incumbents assuring the customer that this will be delivered in the "next release"
  • New Solution Fatique.  Have a bunch of other solutions been tried recently to address this set of functionality?   If true, there will be a lot of resistance and distrust from the user base.
If you map out these barriers, it will help you figure out how to address them or serve as a filter for taking a solution to market or deploying it in your organization.

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