A Successful Support Model- Part 1: A Phased Approach

November 11, 2015

Written by: Julia Hatton

When implementing a new talent acquisition system, or any HR technology, as part of your planning, you’ll need to establish a support model. User adoption is key to the project’s overall success, so defining a clear method for users to obtain assistance, report issues, and suggest improvements will help their experience be a more positive one.

When creating your support model, it helps to think of it in terms of two phases: Initial Support and Ongoing Support.

Initial Support

The first weeks, right after Go Live, are a critical time to ensure your users have the support they need to do their jobs with minimal disruption, while adjusting to the new tool. You need to provide a way for them to get quick assistance and minimize frustrations. Be prepared for more questions and some unexpected scenarios. The support available during this time will play a big role in how users perceive the tool and their adoption of the system.

During this phase, monitor the types of issues received and update FAQs accordingly. Use this time to continue to educate. Do not simply “fix” things, but take the opportunity to help users understand how to avoid an issue in the future, by reminding them of new processes, self-service avenues, etc. You know the old adage: teach a man to fish…

Ongoing Support

After a period of stabilization, your support model should transition into an ongoing mode. As users become more comfortable and issues have slowed significantly, your focus will shift from a reactionary model to a more forward-thinking, strategic model. You will likely notice a few areas that continue to cause issues and begin to identify system or process changes to improve things further. Perhaps there are other functionalities available you’d like to explore. The ongoing support phase allows time for such enhancements while continuing to provide the necessary support.

You should determine when to transition to on-going support based on how your users are adapting and the number of help requests received each week. A rough estimate for this transition is two to four weeks. Keep in mind that this will vary depending on the complexity of your system design, processes and number of users. Ultimately, you should transition to an ongoing support model as soon as it makes sense to do so.

In my next post, I will explain what your support model should include, as well as provide examples of successful methods for support.

Julia Hatton

About Julia Hatton

Julia has over 16 years of experience in Human Resources. As a Senior Consultant with HRchitect, her strengths include process optimization, requirements analysis, testing, change management, training and system administration. Julia has helped companies of all sizes achieve success on both domestic and global implementations.