After a months-long procurement process for a new SaaS product, several weeks of set-up, roll-out and getting teams hyped about the software, you finally managed to inspire the majority of your workforce to adopt a software solution. But six months later, more than half the licenses you’re paying to secure are going unused.
As an IT leader, this scenario is both frustrating and familiar.
While you know the software in question is capable of producing powerful results for your organization when properly implemented, you won’t be able to continue justifying the cost if the SaaS application usage continues to plummet.
But don’t throw in the towel just yet.
While boosting utilization of your SaaS products can feel like fighting a losing battle, it’s far from impossible. Here are three ways to increase SaaS application usage fast:
1. Remove or Update Former Employees
One of the quickest and easiest ways to improve a product’s utilization rate is to remove inactive users. Often when employees leave an organization, HR and IT work together to delete and deactivate their accounts — but it’s not uncommon to miss a few.
Not only can failing to block a former employee’s access to your SaaS products pose a security threat and hurt software utilization rates, but it can also push you closer to hitting the allocated user threshold defined in the provider’s contract.
What to do: Take a few moments to review the list of users and remove anyone who no longer works with the company. Also, be sure to add all SaaS applications to your company’s employee offboarding checklist.
2. Hold a Thorough Training Session
People are creatures of habit and unless they experience positive benefits from a SaaS product immediately, they aren’t likely to continue using it long-term. In some cases, employees may purposefully reject a software they consider time-consuming or complex. In other cases, users simply forget about the product altogether.
If you’re looking to boost usage, it’s time to remind your workforce how the software will improve their daily experience, increase efficiency or help achieve company-wide objectives. Give employees the opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback. The more transparency and hands-on training you provide, the more likely teams will be to use the product.
What to do: Hold a mandatory training session that exposes the SaaS product’s features and benefits, and find ways to relate it back to each department’s individual goals. Make sure each new employee has appropriate training during the onboarding process.
3. Earn Buy-In from Team Leaders
No matter how much you rave about the product, increasing the usage of a SaaS product is unlikely if team leaders aren’t on board. Managers set an example for their teams, and if they’re not using the software regularly it’s almost guaranteed their team members aren’t either.
That’s why one of the best and most effective ways to boost utilization is by turning team leaders into product advocates. But, like with any other user, you’ll first need to prove how the product will improve their work experience and help achieve their goals.
What to do: Schedule one-on-one time with each team leader and share examples of how the SaaS solution will help achieve their objectives. If available, provide case studies and real success stories. Shed a spotlight on the features that are most meaningful to leadership, such as pulling reports and reviewing relevant data.
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Next Steps: Tracking SaaS Application Usage Data
After clearing out inactive users, retraining the workforce and turning team leaders into champions for your cause, be sure to keep a close eye on SaaS utilization data and make adjustments where necessary. For example, if you find that one user group only logs into the software to access a single report, it may make more sense for only one member to have a login to the SaaS product to pull the report and share with the rest of the team.
SaaS licenses often make up a significant portion of an organization’s tech budget, and poor utilization represents a tremendous waste of money. By making an effort to increase SaaS application usage and identify areas of opportunity, you can optimize spend and make sure you’re getting the most from your software investments.
Are you able to manage the cost and security risks associated with your SaaS applications?
Download the Essential SaaS Management Toolkit to learn about SaaS usage trends, understand the importance of SaaS management tools and discover how to take control of your SaaS applications.