Understanding the importance of a launch plan
We all know how important first impressions are to the overall success of any project. One of the most common and most dangerous assumptions to make when launching your digital workplace is that "if you build it, they will come". Don't underestimate the time, effort and importance of your digital workplace launch plan. Think of your launch plan as the first phase of your engagement strategy. It sets the benchmark for employee engagement and adoption.
Getting started on your launch plan
The time it takes to put together a solid launch plan depends on the size and complexity of your digital workplace strategy. At a minimum, we recommend starting your launch plan at least 2 to 4 weeks prior to your launch date. This means creating a launch team (usually a cross-functional team), supported by your Marketing and Communications teams, with a clear project plan and budget.
For best results, our experts recommend starting to think about your launch plan right after your kick-off meeting. This will give you the time needed to properly build out the necessary communication plans, bring together your launch team, and schedule launch activities. This also means that launch planning and execution are happening at the same time as your digital workplace implementation process, so be prepared to manage both projects at the same time.
| ||Playbook Tip: Launch Pad Program|
Igloo created the Launch Pad Program to offer a simple, yet effective, three-step approach to a digital workplace launch strategy: Plan, Prep, and Launch! The program includes a collection of tips and best practices to plan and execute a successful digital workplace launch.
Key ingredients of a successful launch plan
The Launch Pad Program is covered in detail in Stage 5 of the Playbook, but here are 10 recommendations to get you started:
- Include a schedule, resources, timing, funding, outcomes, and risks.
- Determine if you're going to do a pilot, soft launch, or full launch.
- Set your goals, objectives and expected outcomes for pre and post-launch.
- Assemble your launch team including a project manager and experts from your marketing organization.
- Use a methodology like SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely) to ensure your launch plan is realistic and attainable.
- Align your goals with the objectives of your digital workplace strategy (e.g. employee engagement, productivity, communications, collaboration, culture).
- Interview key stakeholders for feedback on your plan, and ask for their participation at every stage of the launch.
- Identify risks early and propose resolutions and/or workarounds.
- Stay on budget.
- Be ready on launch day – that means be prepared for anything, respond to feedback and enjoy your success.