Three Ways Digital Adoption Can Improve the Grantee Experience

As a grantmaker, you want to provide users with a seamless experience when working with your grants management system (GMS). You have invested in technology to alleviate burden and help streamline the application and reporting process, and you want to see this investment translate into a strong user experience for your applicants and grantees.

Yet many applicants are struggling with technology. It’s a growing trend that is expected to accelerate in scope and intensity, due to the pace of technology change and the complexity of how we work. Funders use different grants management systems that are setup in different ways, follow different processes, and have distinct grant applications and associated reports. All of this means the technology designed to make us more efficient and effective can also create hurdles for the stakeholders we want to support most.

“I have literally lost hundreds of hours to troubleshooting and navigating poorly designed grant applications and portals.”

– #FixTheForm Survey Respondent

So how do you know if your system is reducing pain points experienced by your users? What if you could guide them through a process to complete tasks in drastically less time? What if you were able to deliver a system so intuitive, users do not need to ask for help, thus reducing the long-term costs of managing your technology stack?

This is all possible through a digital adoption platform (DAP).

Never heard of a DAP before? Let’s review some digital adoption fundamentals.

Digital adoption occurs when individuals are able to use technology to its fullest potential. In the case of a grants management system, this is when users – both applicants and staff – can successfully engage in the application process and execute associated reporting tasks with ease, minimal interruption, and limited engagement with technical support.

A digital adoption platform (DAP) is a tool that can integrate with your GMS to accelerate users’ digital adoption. A DAP can significantly reduce the amount of time and effort to onboard and train your community of users, resulting in more effective and efficient users with less investment from your grants team, IT team, and training team.

reSolved’s Solution to Digital Adoption

The team at reSolved knows the importance of digital adoption: we have supported organizations of all types and sizes to adopt their grants management systems and have seen first-hand what works and what doesn’t. Grounded in our clients’ experience and our drive to provide the best service to our clients we partnered with WalkMe, a leading provider of digital adoption solutions. The WalkMe Digital Adoption Platform (DAP) provides the ability to guide users through any process, automate repetitive tasks, easily organize help resources, and so much more.

Discover Three Ways a Digital Adoption Platform Can Improve the Grantee Experience

1. Simplify Application and Reporting Processes

Making the application and reporting experience as streamlined as possible is easy with a digital adoption platform. These processes can be simplified with on-screen guidance, tailored in-application guidance, and through the provision of an interactive resource center.

On-screen guidance

Gone are the days of user manuals and tutorials; today’s technology users want information in real-time, they need access to help resources from where they are experiencing a problem or challenge. With a digital adoption platform, you can respond to this need, guiding users with step-by-step assistance through a new or difficult process and leading them to completion. On-screen guidance can be provided at any step during the application and reporting process, so users know exactly what is required and when. On-screen guidance reduces the number of questions raised by users and can effectively remove obstacles to support users in completing any process with ease.

Tailored in-application guidance

Traditional methods of training are almost always geared toward the common path – when creating these types of help materials, we make assumptions about the most likely path a user is to follow. In today’s ever-changing technology landscape, this assumption no longer works in practice. Business processes are almost never linear, and a user’s needs can often fall outside the scope of traditional training materials.

Within a GMS, we know that an application process is rarely accomplished in one stop: applicants often return multiple times to complete a process, seeking feedback and input from their colleagues and peers to gather the information needed to submit a successful proposal. When a user returns to complete a process, it can be difficult to remember the next action that needs to be carried out. Through tailored in-application guidance, WalkMe can proactively prompt users to remind them where they left off in the process, and quickly navigate the user there. Tailored guidance removes the guesswork, empowering users to work smarter, not harder.

Interactive resource center

As part of your goal as a grantmaker to support your applicants to be successful, you likely have existing help materials and policies. People learn in different ways, and it is important to offer a variety of different mediums. However, help resources are only as effective as people’s ability to efficiently access them.

With a digital adoption platform, easily incorporate resources and frequently asked questions into an interactive resource center that is always accessible; remove the need for users to leave the page they are on to access valuable help information. Applicants can easily search for what they’re looking for and quickly navigate through resources to gain quick access to important information.

On-screen guidance, tailored in-application guidance, and an interactive resource center are just some of the ways a DAP can support a smooth application and reporting process by providing assistance to users where and when they need it most, saving them time so they can focus efforts on their mission, and making their communities a better place.

2. Ease the Change of New Processes, Features, or Even a New GMS

Change can be scary. When a new process or feature is introduced, or even an entirely new GMS, it can be daunting for your community. With these changes, we ask users to learn new business processes and often new systems; this change can take time. However, the pace of change is increasing rapidly as it relates to technology investment:

  • On average, users are expected to learn 3+ new applications every year (Harvard Business Review)
  • $2.3 trillion dollars is expected to be spent on digital transformation initiatives in 2023 (IDC)


In the past, we trained through change by creating user guides, video tutorials, and delivering instructor-led sessions. However, the rapid pace of change has created a ‘pile on’ effect for users, and these traditional training methods can’t keep up. Why? The long ramp-up time to produce, inefficient means to access, and on-going maintenance considerations mean that these methods can no longer match the speed of change.

Rather than getting left behind, a DAP can help your organization and its users better manage through change. It can drastically reduce the amount of time it takes to create and maintain help materials, expediting your ability to support new technology implementations or feature and process updates. A digital adoption platform also enables you to change the way you think about training – and shift from static, lengthy user materials to dynamic, quick, relevant, and efficient guidance that supports users through change and proficiency, while increasing the potential of your technology investment.

3. Proactively Remove Roadblocks in the User Experience

Implementing a digital adoption platform is just the beginning of unlocking technology’s true potential. After implementing a DAP, you can continue to improve user experience by collecting analytics over time.

By understanding your users’ journey, you will be able to see where they may be getting stuck, spending more time, or pausing to come back later. This insight empowers you to identify areas for improvement to reduce friction points in critical workflows. Equipped with data analytics, you can proactively develop solutions that offer additional guidance and support to users where they need it most. This can also help you determine where to enhance your GMS down the road to improve the user experience.

Through DAP analytics, it is also possible to understand what users are searching for in your platform, to determine which information is most helpful and effective. This allows you to see what users are looking for, so you can get an idea of where they may be experiencing roadblocks. With this data you can ensure help resources are tagged based on actual user search phrases, increasing the effectiveness and relevancy of available materials for your community of users. This data can be used to identify opportunities to improve the grants management process and/or build additional guidance to support users’ success.

In Conclusion

Paired with your GMS, the added features of a DAP can break down barriers and enable applicants to seamlessly navigate your application and reporting processes. Applicants can be guided through complex processes and pick up where they left off, saving valuable time. When applicants have questions, they can easily access help resources without exiting the system or navigating away from the page they’re on. Being able to search for articles by phrases or keywords reduces the effort typically spent seeking guidance. Plus, users will feel comfortable with new features or processes through contextual on-screen guidance to highlight change, reducing stress and confusion. This streamlined, user-friendly platform will create more efficient and effective users so they can focus their time on their mission and creating more impact.

A digital adoption platform is a valuable investment that can enhance your GMS and improve the grantee experience. It’s also a great solution to support your organization’s successful digital transformation and can assist users in adopting other technologies as well.

You can learn more about digital adoption here.

Want to talk more about digital adoption? Drop us a line at info@re-solved.ca.

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