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Tips to Investing in Tools That Teams Will Actually Use

Posted in: Sales and Marketing Management, Sales Enablement Strategy

With a plethora of enterprise technology solutions in a time of intense budget scrutiny, how do you know which tools your teams will love and adopt?

It turns out we might have been spoilt for choice.

New Tools, New Challenges

Together with the emergence of cloud and new ways of working digitally, the surge in numbers of enterprise tools over the last decade was meant to make our lives easier and more productive — but with more options comes added complexity and friction.

Employees are vulnerable to information overload and “platform fatigue” and grow tired of switching between different applications and sorting through vast amounts of information stored in various locations. Consider also that employees are often not involved in the tool selection process, and with little to no input they may feel forced to adopt something without being given a rationale.

During the current global crisis when teams are remote and budgets are tight, getting buy-in from the teams that will be using the tool, ensuring adoption, and demonstrating ROI are essential for any new investment. The solution needs to seamlessly integrate into daily workflows and make life easier, not harder, in an already challenging environment.

How to Choose Tools That “Stick”

One of the first goals when seeking out any new tool is to determine how it will enhance the user’s expertise and experience. And it shouldn’t be a one-time enhancement — when evaluating vendors, ask about product development. How does the company evolve its product based on user feedback? How quickly do they innovate to provide solutions for rapidly changing business landscapes? A vendor’s customer-centricity and ability to deliver capabilities that map to customer needs is paramount in a world where the nature of work is dramatically changing.

Secondly, the user experience needs to be seamless and complementary to current systems. Ideally, the tool should integrate with existing platforms and workflows so that less time and energy is needed to learn the system, and users have everything they need in one familiar place.The tool also needs to be considered from a people-first mindset rather than from an IT perspective. It should be intuitive and designed with the end-user in mind, similar to the approach that consumer applications take.

Lastly, while AI-driven technology is an important consideration factor, what’s more important is to assess what the potential outputs will be. These outputs must be actionable for teams and scalable across the business.

The Right Time to Act

Timing can be crucial when selecting a new tool that will be adopted, used, and loved. For example, as employees continue to work remotely, it is even more important for teams to have a single source of truth where all sales and marketing content is shared. Similarly, as mergers and acquisitions take place, ensuring there are shared tools can help teams learn together about newly combined products, services, and messaging.

When businesses are faced with a multitude of enterprise tools, a remote workforce, and conservative budgets, investing in tools that provide continuity across communications, content, and customer experience is more important than ever.

When choosing a new tool, think critically about continuity and how the solution will prepare users, customers, and the business to succeed today and tomorrow.