User adoption is critical to the success of any enterprise roll-out. Coupa's ease-of-use ensures high user adoption. To optimize user adoption, we recommend you follow a few easy steps both with your initial roll-out and to reinforce existing users.
Make Coupa your Spend Management Portal
One of the benefits of Coupa's platform is that you can make it the spend management portal for your organization. You may have a variety of means to communicate to employees about organizational policy changes, such as email, or internal web sites. Over time that information is difficult to search and find when it's actually needed.
With Coupa's "How to Buy Policies" and "Home Page Content" features you can publish relevant information to your users and create a central location to store all the disparate policies and knowledge.
For example, with the Coupa home page you can inform users of important news, links to key suppliers, or policies.
With the "How to Buy Policies" you can publish procurement policies in one central location. Corporate-wide policies on travel, cell phones, etc. are all available to be searched directly from Coupa and not scattered through your intranet and email system.
Anything you can do to help your organization find and act on information quicker, will be part of any successful adoption.
Drive Employee Adoption
The keys to increasing employee adoption are to deliver on-going training, consistently support users, and to recognize and respond to changing employee needs. Actively listen to your users, understanding what works and what does not, and what is truly critical to them, both immediately after going live and over the long term. Remain flexible and make changes in your business processes and Coupa configurations as soon as changes are identified. Reinforce adoption by “turning off” previous methods for placing new orders.
Here are some key steps you can take to increase adoption:
- Communicate to users
- Support users
- Measure adoption
- Encourage adoption
- Mandate reporting
- Turn off the legacy system
Communicate to Users
Communicate to your users about the new procurement process and the benefits and efficiencies that the organization will gain from using the system. Use email, brown bag lunch meetings, training videos, company newsletters, or any communication medium your organization uses to reach its employees. Communicate milestones in the Coupa implementation to all levels of your organization, including top executives. Everyone should be made aware of the successes with Coupa and the abilities the system offers. Obtaining the sponsorship of top management will support employee adoption.
Also make sure to link to your Coupa site from your company intranet pages for easy employee access.
Supporting users is an ongoing process. It involves soliciting user feedback, providing ongoing training, and identifying user champions who will help their co-workers day to day. Here are some ideas for providing user support:
Conduct a survey
There are several free survey tools (www.surveymonkey.com, www.zoomerang.com) that you can use to capture employee sentiment for the new processes and technology. Use surveys periodically to sample user opinions, and then act on them when warranted.
Encourage user champions
Identify users who are enthusiastic about Coupa and encourage them to help others. Leverage their success to help inspire others. Address problems quickly and publicly. Consider any problems an early warning. Fix problems and configure the application based on feedback immediately. Communicate to users how the problems were solved and how their feedback directly impacted the application.
Offer refresher training
Additional or "refresher" training doesn't have to be formal, just make sure it's appropriate for each user group. For example, buyers and accounts payable clerks will have different issues and will need different refresher sessions.
Before you can improve adoption, you need to establish a baseline against which to measure change. Then you can use incentives to actively encourage adoption. Develop simple metrics to measure the successes in your Coupa environment. These metrics should be measurable items, which you are able to take action on to improve. The metrics are also a good tool for communication with upper management.
Use the different reporting options available through Coupa to track usage by different users. The most common measurement of adoption is the # of requisitions created, but this should not be the only measure. For a more detailed analysis of usage and adoption, consider these measurements:
Percentage of spend through Coupa
How much of your organization spend is going through your Coupa system? If it's not 100% of what you were expecting, then reach out to those owners of spend to help them use Coupa.
How many of your PO's are sent automatically to your vendors without buyer intervention? Many vendors take orders in via email or cXML, so ensuring that you have automated ordering allows key people in your organization to manage exceptions, instead of having to place orders all day. That will help create more stickiness with Coupa.
Many customers find offering incentives to users can have a big payoff. Here are a few suggestions for encouraging employee adoption:
- Identify and reward the strongest adopters. For example, this measurement can be based on the number of useful tags created or the number of questions they've answered from other users. Business process compliance can also be measured through the system, an example is user with the lowest percentage of non-PO backed invoices. One company gave away gift cards to the strongest adopters.
- Communicate about new product features that will help users in their daily work.
- Take the approach, "If it isn't in Coupa, it doesn't exist."
- Tie adoption to compensation.
Some customers have been successful at rapid adoption by requiring management reporting to be done out of Coupa. Coupa offers many standard reports and custom reporting features through our custom views. By requiring the reporting to be done out of Coupa, it reinforces that management is behind the usage of the system and has adopted it as the real-time spend analysis tool for indirect spend.
Managing Coupa Releases
One of the biggest advantages of Coupa Cloud Spend Management are the dozens of new features that are introduced onto the Coupa platform four to fives times a year. These features represent what you, our important partners/customers, want us to build. This means more value and more success stories for you, our customers!
Unlike with traditional software, your configurations are never lost.
When new releases become available, consider this approach:
Get Up To Speed
All of these are posted on our Coupa Community, so be sure to sign up there and stay tuned for these announcements!
- The New Feature Forum has information for every new feature that we release.
- The New Release Webinar is released a few weeks before it's on your production environment. We hold new release webinars to outline the new exciting features and save plenty of time for questions and answers. This is also an opportunity to hear from our product team and other customers!
- We hold Weekly Office Hours for customers. This is a hour long open forum session where a highly skilled member from the Coupa Professional Services team will be available to discuss any topic, including overviews of new or planned features.
Identify Key Features
Identify the most important new features for your organization:
- Use the vision and goals you defined earlier to select the features you want to activate.
- Get input from your users to narrow your short list.
- Test out these features on your Coupa Sandbox environment to become more familiar with what's being offered.
- Talk to other customers through one of our many customer interaction opportunities.
Communicate With Employees
Communicate changes to your employees (your customers):
- Send an email and talk to your power users.
- Consider mini-training sessions to educate employees on the new functionality in the system.
- Consider using some of the adoption techniques discussed earlier to ensure employees leverage the functionality that supports their roles in the procurement process.