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With many of our ADAPT participants completing their program of study and becoming Core Certified in Alteryx, I have a question for all of our community members that I think would be beneficial for them (as well as beneficial for everyone else as well).
How have you promoted the usage, adoption, or expansion of Alteryx within your organization?
The reason I ask this is that many people now are finding themselves either furloughed, without work, or simply looking for a new job. I wonder how many of our community members have started a new role and had to advocate for Alteryx usage (or any other platform for that matter), either from adoption, or just adding more users to make their job (and their organization's job) easier and more efficient. Maybe you even created a resource or document to help get your point across.
I can't wait to hear what you have to say on the matter, as I think it will be eye-opening and helpful to many of us in the community. Even if a topic like this doesn't apply to you currently, you never know when you might need some of these tips.
Will Machin Community Management Team Lead Alteryx
This is a great question and one I have struggled with.
I work in the corporate Tax department of my company (actually an IT guy in Tax) and while it is not too hard to understand the pain points for Tax, I don't always have the same insight In other departments (like Treasury, or Human Resources for example.)
Today's manta always feels like 'Do more with less' and sometimes that is where Alteryx comes into play. This is where things get tricky, people need help, but get nervous if they are not the implementors. There is a fine line between being the technical resource and their psychologist as well. Many times you need to assure people that we just want to remove the mundane so you can do more interesting (value-added) work.
My goal is to proliferate the tool into other departments, but as I said earlier, I don't always know their pain points. Not having hallway discussions has made this even more challenging.
I try to talk about Alteryx wherever the opportunity presents itself in hopes of catching the person who struggles through a process and wants to know more. I want it to be organic, but it is very slow sometimes. Just keep talking! 😄
I would say we need to get good at understanding our own workflows and how we could do it many different ways. I have found that when I demo one 'path' or solution for a workflow and say something like "you could also do this or that" then users can learn to link what they are doing to what you are explaining. I've seen many workflows built for tax, supply chain, finance that are very close to applicable to operations, manufacturing, banking etc. The pain point that groups have are usually a group of smaller tasks (think doing lookups, formulas, pivoting data, etc) and those are very universal problems.
Thanks for introducing this post @WillM! I have tried different ways to promote Alteryx within an organization but looking back I can't say one works better than the other. The answer depends on who is the sponsor for the product is, and/or how is the organization culturally setup. Below are some immediate experiences that come to mind:
Organized regular show-and-tell sessions to demonstrate the art-of-the-possible with Alteryx to license holders and company Management.
Identified promising individuals with a mindset for Alteryx across multiple teams and spent quality 1:1 sessions to empower and enable them. They in-turn usually go on to share knowledge/learning to help the network grow organically.
Conducted weekly Alteryx sessions at a dedicated block of time to bring folks together in a forum. The intent of these sessions are to:
Share Alteryx tips & tricks with users
Create a platform to show & tell (i.e. the art of the possible)
Allow Alteryx license holders to show-off their work and gain exposure/mileage within the company
Provide regular hands-on trainings on the Alteryx Designer product
Find the balance between IT Controls and freedom required by business users to be creative in their Alteryx work.
Setup mechanisms to track and quantify benefits Alteryx solutions bring to an organization, always makes for a great story.
Did not work for me, but I have heard folks in other organizations solve the Community Weekly challenges together to bring about a culture of sharing and perhaps gamify the process..
Well, I guess you could say... "I wrote the book!" Literally!
I have led large-scale enterprise deployments and seen first hand the tremendous catalyst that Alteryx can be to elevate analytics and accelerate digital transformation. I was contacted by so many organizations as an Alteryx ACE for advice that I decided to capture my recipe for success in a book:
Good question and something of a hot topic. For me it was about finding the right "seed beds" in which to plant the idea.The right places are people who are willing to try something new, but who are also willing to share it themselves. This approach propagates itself for you, especially if you drop one licence into an area where there are a number of people doing things collaboratively. Secondly you need to celebrate and socialise the successes, so that the pockets of excellence you find become appealing and addictive to the rest of the enterprise. Because Alteryx is an incredibly flexible tool, find areas that have no common linkage within the business and enable them. Diverse groups using a common tool in different ways then gives the IT Dept interest because you're demonstrating a way to reduce the application stack overall. My third tip would be to emphasise the transformational nature of Alteryx and how it enables more people to do new things quicker. We live in a time when most organisations are trying to transform, but they aren't generally able to point to things that have genuinely changed much for the better. In my case, bringing analytics on leaps and bounds in a short space of time has become a significant part of not only our digital journey, but our cultural once as well.