... Techrepublic.com: You think you use SharePoint but you really don't
This post (above) by Scott Robinson seems to be pretty much spot-on in terms of it holding true to my experience of good and bad collaboration tool deployments/implementations.
And the above responses in this thread are quite informative:User experience, buy-in and productivity:
- Adoption of the tool or getting people to use the system was the major problem. (@Renegade)
- Lack of training in the use of the collaboration tool causes user frustration and low productivity. (@Renegade)
- Enforcing the use of a collaboration tool as the mandatory central filing system is effective in getting people to use the tool. (40hz)
- There are likely to be few technical problems to uptake. (@40hz: In the end, *every* technical problem comes down to a 'people problem.' And if it doesn't - check again. Gerry Weinberg.)
Good tools to use:
- Use of old/"wrong" technology as tool(s) for collaboration does not work well. (@Renegade - they used MS Outlook/Exchange as the de facto collaboration tool).
- The effectiveness of such tools is directly dependent on the extent to which people consistently use them. (Superboy via @40hz)
Use of old/"wrong" technology as tools for collaboration:
- Google apps. can provide "a fantastic solution". (@urlwolf)
- Continued use of old/"wrong" technology as tools for collaboration, despite having one or more "proper" collaboration tools implemented. (@capitalH - they used shared network folders and Outlook, though GroupWise and SharePoint were already deployed).
So far, not only has my experience matched what Scott Robinson commented, but also the comments by DC forum members above.
And the quote from Gerry Weinberg is entirely in line with process management theory/practice per WE Deming. (There's even a diagram that can be used to explain why
it is true.)
It looks as though, despite collaboration tools being fairly common, the state or success of the various implementations/deployments might leave a lot to be desired.
If there was some kind of common factor that worked to make it difficult for us to properly implement/deploy these systems, my guess
(from experience) is that it would probably be a lack of focus on the definition of the process which the collaboration tool was supporting
, brought about by too much focus on the tool/technology itself
For example, suppose you bought a rechargeable powered hand-drill for each employee in the organisation, to be used in their work, but did not actually define the circumstances (who, what, when, how, which and why) under which it was to be used. That should screw things up pretty well.