5 Replies Latest reply on Oct 9, 2014 9:18 AM by Megan Truett

    How did you train your advocates prior to an upgrade?

    lorilea

      When we launched our Jive instance in 2012, we used our pilot as a way to train our advocates on the tool.

       

      For our upgrade from 5 to 6 last year, our core team was able to play around in the pre-production environment that Jive gave us, but we were warned not to give access to too many people since it could be unstable. Some of our advocates were invited, but it was a small number. The changes to 6 were fairly minor, though, and we found that our company adapted quickly without a need for much support.

       

      With 7, though, we're more concerned that we have an advocate group that's prepared to offer training and support to their peers. We seem to be in the same situation with our pre-production environment again this time – warned to keep our numbers low due to the unpredictability of the environment.

       

      I know many of you have managed large groups of advocates to help with your upgrade activities. How have you handled their training? I plan to use a walk-through of our pre-production instance for demo purposes during in-person training sessions, but I worry that without any hands-on exploration between training and launch they might not be as accomplished with some of the features. I'm a "learn by doing" type. Reading about it doesn't always help things sink in.

       

      What have been your experiences? Can you offer any advice? Thank you!

        • Re: How did you train your advocates prior to an upgrade?
          tmaurer

          My experience has been that giving people advanced access doesn't tend to help much. Most people will not make the time to investigate the site, even if given both a script of things to look at as well as the blank check to do what they wish. I have come to the conclusion that unless I could do face-to-face reviews, or treat it like usability interviews, the chances that I'll get real engagement and understanding in advance of an upgrade are slim.

           

          The best thing we've done is use gamification to support learning about features in an upgrade. If you make reading the documentation and/or using the new features into a game, people will play and learn. The reality that the reward is the equivalent of Monopoly money, it still motivates people to interact. Even without reports from gamification, I can look at the CMRs for our Help space for the weeks before and immediately after the upgrade and see the increased numbers in all of the engagement stats.

           

          If, on the other had, you've cracked the code of getting people to actually engage (as opposed to only saying they will), I'd love to be able to recreate your magic wand!!

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            • Re: How did you train your advocates prior to an upgrade?
              lorilea

              Tracy Maurer, I have not cracked that code! The few people who logged in to our pre-production environment during the last upgrade really didn't interact much. So that fact has been brought up by others on our team as we've pondered the next steps – "do we really need to have them in there?" It's good to know that it's not a unique obstacle for us.

               

              I'm creating a group in our Jive 6 environment that I plan to use for regular updates/reminders leading up to the launch. I'm hoping that if they get information in their inbox/feed/email on a semi-regular basis, the training will stick a bit more and they'll be engaged.

               

              And oh how I wish we had gamification! Le sigh.

                • Re: How did you train your advocates prior to an upgrade?
                  mnevill

                  If a picture is worth a thousand words, how many is a video worth? If you have the resources, a very well scripted and produced video can do wonders for bridging the gap between a standard document of what's new and actually getting your hands dirty with the platform.  If they are truly advocates they will watch it and it should give them a good pulse on what to expect. The bonus is they can reference before and after your training, so it should lead to better questions during the training as well as reinforcing the concepts afterwards.

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