Employees scolded for not using app: Challenges and tips for adoption

When organizations invest in an application, whether it be for their own internal purposes or their customer base at large, a number of considerations, resources and expenditures go into the creation of the program. From the planning stage to selecting the right component suites and finally launching the app, a lot goes into creating mobile software.

However, slow adoption of the app is one of the main killers of new programs. If users don't take to the app and a following doesn't develop, the resources and money spent on developing it are wasted. For this reason, companies and app creators are working harder to identify the reasons why employees and consumers don't take to different apps and how these issues can be solved.

PayPal president: Use our app or leave the company
Recently, the president of the PayPal empire, David Marcus, took questionable measures to encourage the use of the company's application. VentureBeat reported that when Marcus found out that some workers didn't install the PayPal app and others forgot their passwords and couldn't use the program, he issued a company-wide email to vent his frustrations.

"That's unacceptable to me, and the rest of my team, everyone at PayPal should use our products where available," Marcus said in the email. "That's the only way we can make them better, and better."

While this announcement may seem extreme, many business leaders can understand Marcus' issue with his own staff members not using the app. If those directly related to the company refuse to download it, how can the organization expect it to take off with consumer-level users?

A PayPal spokesperson told the source that the business is working to bolster their technology and innovative efforts, aiming to provide the best end-user experience possible.

"And part of that is having every employee be the customer and utilize our services wherever you can, and if you see a problem, highlight it and tell people to get it fixed," the spokesperson said. "And that's something we do a lot."

Toward the end of his email, Marcus noted that those who refuse to take part in these efforts should "do yourself a favor, go find something that will connect with your heart and mind elsewhere."

Why don't employees use business applications?
Although Marcus' case seems to be one-of-a-kind, administrators in enterprises across the globe are struggling with nearly the same issue: They pour money and resources into the creation of HTML5- or native-based applications that go unused. In order to prevent this from happening, decision-makers should examine the top reasons why these programs are not adopted by users and work with developers to avoid them.

Oftentimes, individuals will forgo and app and leverage a shadow IT approach when the original program does not provide the functionality or features that the user is seeking. If the app is an internal file sharing platform, for example, but only allows for the transmission of certain types of documents, the employee may elect to use a different app that provides more flexibility.

Additionally, TechTarget contributor Christine Parizo noted that the inability to customize the app to the worker's liking can also hinder adoption rates. For instance, if the available custom options are only "fluffy" and do not provide real value, staff members may seek out an alternative.

What do employees look for in an app?
By ensuring that staff members' needs are met, administrators can encourage use of the app and prevent resources from being wasted on its creation. Good Community contributor Joranna Ng noted that there are several main characteristics that employees want in applications, including accessibility, a positive user experience, as well as the ability to boost production and collaborate.


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