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DAP Professional of the Year 2023

Christopher McManus

Owner and Lead Consultant

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1. What business problem(s) did your organization / project face, and why did you choose a digital adoption strategy to help you solve it?

The organization is undergoing a digital transformation. Productivity losses, burgeoning support tickets, and lost sales have leadership motivated to modernize an antiquated tech stack.

The transformation kicked off with a CRM conversion to Microsoft Dynamics 365. The legacy system was highly complex and customized, whereas D365 was being implemented largely out-of-the-box.

Key leaders and stakeholders expressed fears that the new platform would overwhelm the field. The implementation overlapped a busy season, so time-away-from-desk needed to be at a minimum. To complicate matters even further, users were being asked to “unlearn” the terms/processes that had previously defined their roles.

Thus, the organization sought a solution that could provide just-in-time training, translate the legacy system to D365 in real-time, and give IT leadership the oversight & analytics necessary to steer the implementation. The search ended when the organization discovered WalkMe.

WalkMe’s capabilities were a hand-in-glove fit. There was a solution for every need. It was clear that a digital adoption strategy centered on WalkMe would be required to drive the organization’s digital transformation.

2. How did you use WalkMe, in conjunction with other strategies and technologies, to address your challenges?

To achieve the critical components of our strategy, WalkMe served as the focal point for all user-facing implementation activities.

The digital adoption strategy was focused on error prevention, productivity preservation, the elimination of confusion, and support for the IT team.

WalkMe Insights was used to answer the question: “What data indicates that an error has occurred or is occurring?” That data was then used to bring guidance to the user at impactful moments.

Auto-Play SWTs were used to warn of potential errors & auto-triggered Invisible Launchers were used to prevent them entirely.

To eliminate confusion, SmartTips were used liberally to translate the legacy terminology (which they knew well) into “D365 speak” (which they did not).

Preserving productivity meant simplifying the ask. All traditional training materials, including job aids, were added to WalkMe as Resources —making it the one-stop shop for training. This allowed us to reduce user communications to two simple messages:      1) There has been a change; 2) Access WalkMe to be guided through the change.

In support of IT, WalkMe was used to close process gaps & to buy IT time to develop solutions the right way, through the SDLC. This ensured user trust was not impacted during critical early stages of the adoption experience.

Centering our implementation on WalkMe reduced the ability of the user to make errors, minimized time-away-from-desk, simplified messaging, and provided air cover to our IT teams.

3. How does your digital adoption strategy, especially with regard to WalkMe, impact or benefit your end-users (customers and/or employees), your team, and leadership?

We used WalkMe to create a 360-degree change cycle that allowed us to ensure users were never stranded, that leadership was always informed, and that the project team could affect actual change.

The cycle is simple:
1. Through Insights, user behavior is continuously monitored.
2. When an issue is observed, a WalkMe solution is deployed.
3. That solution is then observed and refined.
4. The process repeats until user behavior becomes satisfactory.

As a result, user issues are fixed faster than the user can report them. With this level of control, the project team can promise results and track them to delivery. This empowers accountable reporting, which enables leadership to escalate key wins/returns on investment to the C-Suite level.

Our project is now perfectly aligned with the needs of our field and our leadership, and we can comfortably make informed decisions to help steer the organization through its digital transformation.

4. How has your digital adoption strategy, especially with regard to WalkMe, helped your organization better achieve its mission, goals, or values?

Overall, in year one, WalkMe solutions have returned $1.5 MM back to the organization. This was achieved while simultaneously recovering over 21,000 hours of productivity in the same time period. It is fair to say that our digital adoption strategy performed the work of ten people this year, all while paying for itself multiple times over.

Customer service and sales both received an incredible boost when we closed a process gap that was preventing canceled product transactions from going back on sale. This solution alone returned $700k in lost sales opportunities to the company in year one, accounting for nearly half of overall ROI.

And a quarter of all published solutions have eliminated certain customer-facing user errors entirely: a 100% reduction. Several others are trending toward similar success in year two.

These results have empowered the organization to do right by their customers and their employees—which strikes at the very heart of the organization’s values.

5. What about your implementation or success makes you most proud? Why?

A single solution automated the users’ most confusing process and returned $700k annually in lost sales opportunities.

Through Insights, we observed that process confusion was preventing users from successfully putting seats back on sale when bookings were canceled. The process required updates to two separate Status fields. But, the 2nd Status field was on a different screen & behind a double-iFrame that took 9 seconds to load. For these extreme challenges, an advanced solution was required.

Our solution “listens” for changes to either Status field. If a change is made, when the user clicks Save, WalkMe will capture the 1st Status value and then auto-navigates to the other screen. While the iFrame loads, an animated launcher functions as a progress bar. Once loaded, WalkMe auto-evaluates the 2nd Status field and triggers a corrective SWT if necessary.

Every time that corrective SWT plays, we know the error was prevented. This made it easy to track our success – all $700k of it.

6. Please share any additional information about your role in the project, your results, and/or your vision for the future that supports your submission.

I am both the Builder and the Lead for this project as well as the WalkMe strategic lead for this organization.

The success of the onboarding project motivated senior leadership to expand their relationship with WalkMe into an Enterprise Level Agreement. With the move to ELA, the vision for the future is a “never stranded” user experience across the entire tech stack.

App by app, the desktop experience will be simplified and enhanced. Cross-app messaging and processes will be unified to create a consistent look/feel and offer instruction at a level that elevates our adoption strategy to the desktop level.

This work will be locked into continuous improvement by leveraging the same 360-degree change cycle created for D365.

7. OPTIONAL: If you're using WalkMe outside of the project described in this submission, please share additional examples.

To reduce onboarding time, I’m creating a site index for a PowerApps portal.

A mini menu has been added to the header bar. It lists ALL system capabilities alphabetically in both technical and colloquial terms. Each list item links to an SWT that leads the user to the right part of the application and offers them optional process guidance as well.

The point is simple: if a user knows the alphabet, then they are never stranded —even on day 1.

8. Company Blurb

I led this implementation as the owner & lead consultant for Walk Runners, an Experienced WalkMe Certified Implementation Partner. Walk Runners brings 10 years of experience to WalkMe implementations across multiple industries and applications.

This implementation was done on behalf of the National Outdoor Leadership School, a global, not-for-profit wilderness school whose mission is to be the leading source and teacher of wilderness skills and leadership that serve people and the environment.