A Digital Adoption Platform (DAP) helps users adopt digital systems. It improves employee training, provides interactive learning by facilitating learning in the flow of work and helps with user on-boarding.
The true promise of the DAP and how it's different from traditional learning is that you provide a layer of learning and helpfulness for users on top of your existing software systems.
Let's think of a car analogy. Wouldn't it be easier if you knew how fast you were going and how much gas you had left in the tank without having to look away from the windshield? A DAP is similar to being able to see your speedometer and your fuel gauge when you are looking at your windshield instead of having to look down at the gauges in the dashboard. The rest of the information is still available on the dashboard, but the most critical information is available to you without looking away from your main viewpoint.
Similarly, with learning systems, for ages administrators have provided wonderful extensive training to their users, but all of that has been trapped in a learning management system which is away from where users are working. No matter how much good information is provided to users, there has to be motivation from the users perspective to want to go to the system and consume the information. This is the main difference between a DAP and LMS. You experience learning and get support information directly on top of where you are working as a user in DAP.
Also, in DAP, less is more. You don't need to provide a complete encyclopedia of information for the software to users. You only provide them what they need at the moment they need it.
Content with the proper context is far more useful than an abundant amount of content.
Let's finish up by considering a specific example of a software where users need help: Microsoft OneDrive.
When using Microsoft OneDrive, one of the things that all users want to do is to sync the documents that they see in OneDrive onto their laptop. When a user is thinking "How do I sync my documents?", she should not have to stop her work and search this information in a learning management system that she probably can't find readily anyway. This information should be available at her fingertips working within OneDrive.
The animated image below shows how an inline help icon placed right by the Sync button helps this user understand how she can sync files with the OneDrive Files on Demand feature. This way, she can get to all her files in OneDrive without having to use up storage space on her device.
How would she have known that this functionality exists without the in-context help offered by the inline help icon. Chances are that she would not have known. That's the power of how Digital Adoption Platforms work and how they can truly help people at their moment of need.
Check out VisualSP to see a DAP in action. You can then decide for yourself if this is an appropriate way to support your users.