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How Contextual Help Systems Are Becoming Essential to Digital Transformation

By Asif Rehmani
Updated October 15, 2023

Digital TransformationThe user base of contextual help systems keeps expanding, rapidly. From the immense pool of feedback that has been gathered, companies have highlighted a number of benefits:

  • Enabling ongoing user training effortlessly;
  • Freeing IT teams from the workloads of providing support to end users;
  • Increased usage of approved digital tools;
  • Easier onboarding of new employees;
  • Faster adoption of business workflows;
  • Improved regulatory compliance;
  • And, more importantly, successful digital adoption.

Recently, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has found that as digital innovation accelerates, the digital IQ of companies declines. Given the exponential rate at which technology improves, this is no surprise.

For digital workplaces, ongoing digital transformation is a business imperative. To stay competitive, it's more crucial than ever that a sound digital strategy be in place. And, contextual help systems have proven to be essential to the task.

Focusing on traditional user training is no longer a winning strategy

Times are changing and they are changing fast. There were times when companies had to make only one major change every few years. Today, technology is improving so fast that most companies aren't able to keep up with the rapid changes. And, the rate at which change happens, is not going to slow down. This is especially true when it comes to SharePoint and Office 365.

When the pace of change was slow enough, digital workplaces would easily find time to provide ongoing training to employees, despite the high cost. Today, training end users has become less effective than ever and, sometimes, simply futile. Relying on training programs is a sure way to slow down adaptive digital transformation.

Moreover, the common learning curve which results in a drop in productivity, which comes with learning new tools and new workflows means that most companies hesitate to innovate. And when they have stagnant and sometimes failed user adoption to begin with, keeping up with ever-changing environments is next to impossible. 

Having to continually learn new digital tools is not the only challenge; behavioral change is another. It's human nature to dislike change.

To ensure smooth and continual digital transformation, companies have to make sure that there are no barriers to digital adoption. Using contextual help systems has proven to be very effective toward that end.

What makes contextual help systems powerful is the fact that they help employees make use of new digital tools with little to no training.

Using digital adoption tools is the way forward

If you have to train employees every time there is a new tool or a new workflow, timely digital adoption may be improbable. Within a given timeframe, people can only retain so much. Also, users tend to forget most of what they learn during training, so they get stuck when it is time to complete their tasks.

Contextual help systems, like VisualSP, solve this problem: end users don't have to endure hours of classroom training, all they need is follow the walk-thru generated by the help system, and complete the task at hand. If they do this a few more times, they master the steps. All without help from instructors or IT team members.

Whichever page a user navigates to, whichever feature a user is using, an exact applicable help item is there; it can be a screen capture video, a pdf tip-sheet, an annotated screenshot, or a step-by-step walk-thru. All help items can be customized.

With the right help always following the user, it becomes easier and more intuitive to use any digital tool; no need to interrupt work in order to search for tutorials or request help. With the pleasant user experience brought by a contextual help system, digital adoption will improve, rapidly and organically.

Contextual help systems are the future

The times when training users was sufficient are over. In today's rapid pace of digital innovation, if competitive edge is desirable, leveraging the power of contextual help systems is the strategy forward. It is critical to provide employees with a way to use new digital tools intuitively and learn on the job.

As the number of users of these digital adoption tools keeps jumping ahead, they are becoming essential to successful ongoing digital transformation, an advantage that every business should seek.

Read about a specific use case for how contextual help systems can simplify the user experience and make digital transformation a reality. 

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