There is a role for super users to provide just in time training and to serve as moderators of user groups. However, there is a tendency for folks to believe that the super user is the person that handles anything above the most routine use of the technology. Having super users cannot reduce the expectations of the rest of the work force. Every employee must be tech savvy and leverage the tolls provided in order for us to have any hope f achieving a return on our very expensive IT investments.
What do you think?
5 thoughts on “Super Users”
I couldn’t agree more. We had a project recently where it became apparent that out of about 15 users only 2 of them knew the correct way carry out an action. The others had learned less efficient work arounds because they weren’t using the technology correctly but didn’t really lean on the “super users” for help or training.
Typically user’s lack of acceptance or use of technology is attributed to something negative (relucant to change, unwilling to learn something different). In this case it was due to the them trying to be resourceful. But using workarounds when it a solution is already built and paid for is even worce than having to have the workaround in the first place.
Either way, proper understanding and use of the system is final action needed for realizing ROI.
Will, super users are a means to an end in that they should be making themselves available to educate others so that a more robust IT knowledge is spread through the department as well as the rest of the institution. One method that has been successful at other well organized institutions is to give validated super users shirts indicating who they are and that they are available to help educate personnel in their work areas and other departments. Another method of using super users is to have them attend train the trainer sessions so they can teach groups rather than one on ones.
The topic of this post caught my attention because I am trying to show the value to our organization in having officially recognized Super Users. Officially recognized would mean a modified job description so that the hiring manager is looking for general IT skills when reviewing candidates. The position would have hours every month dedicated to training as well as being the point person in that area to help their co-workers either address a technical problem or question, or is providing a initial triage for our help desk. Today we have to rely on already stretched thin departments (clinical and non-clinical alike) to volunteer staff time to help with major system upgrades. I believe that recognizing the role would lead to greater employee satisfaction and help our general population become less afraid of using the pc and be a great contact for internal IT departments.
Ambulatory Applications Manager
Cook Children’s Healthcare System
We are in the process of formalizing our super user porgram in our large 4 hospital system. Is anyone aware of anything published that can help me with this process. I agree with John about recongnizing the super users who go above and beyond their job to stand out. By having a formalized program, we in our Nursing Informatics department are hoping for some administration support. Any input on how your super users were trained, and maintained would be great.
Add me to the list (along with John and Nancy) who is trying to formalize this super user implementation in a healthcare environment.
Super users are used here but its “loose”. I like the idea to integrate it into the hiring requirements so that it is actually a part of the job description.