As a community management professional, I often think about inclusion. When I think about how to approach inclusive culture, I believe Diversity and Inclusion programs should closely integrate with Internal Communications, Learning & Development and be an integral part of digital transformation conversation. They all funnel up to employee experience and company culture.
I wrote this thought leadership article to consider these four steps to bridge the inevitable digital skills gaps across an organization, including:
What do you think? You can read the full article on CMSWire.
Let's say you're planning the Big Rock Trading Company Sales Kickoff and you want to create an online manifestation of your live event. This will allow all of your event attendees, including those who are attending virtually, to feel a part of the event and engage deeply with its activities. In our latest "Tips and Tricks" video, we walk you through the basics to engage your employees for your next big event.
Before the event:
Want to create a quest to encourage employees to further engage with your place?
During the event:
Tell us in the comments below!
Imagine you're a corporate communication professional for Big Rock Trading Company and you're looking to create a leadership and corporate communication place that allows you to communicate out important announcements while directly engaging with your employees. In your place, you want to host leadership blogs, executive "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) sessions, and the latest media coverage. In our latest "Tips and Tricks" video, we walk you through the basics to set up a thriving leadership and corporate communications place in Jive.
What are the main use cases for your Leadership and Corporate Communications place? Think about the content that you want to be distributed to all of your employees. This could include CEO blogs and regular AMAs where employees can ask questions to company executives.
After deciding on these use cases, you can develop an editorial calendar and start creating content. In the case of Big Rock Trading Company, we decided on these goals:
Before launching your place make sure:
When launching your place you can:
You can then discuss this data with your key stakeholders to discuss improvements to your place over time.
Tell us in the comments below!
Let's say you're on the IT Team for Big Rock Trading Company and you're looking for ways to improve case deflection for your company. You want to implement a Help Desk that will allow employees to ask questions, receive answers in a timely manner, and get technical guidance. In our latest "Tips and Tricks" video, we walk you through the basics to set up a thriving Help Desk with Jive.
What are the main use cases for your Help Desk? These could be anything from Q&A spaces with IT experts to a knowledge base of "How-to" documents for employees to find answers to technical questions.
After deciding on these use cases, you can develop a content calendar and start creating content. For Big Rock's needs, they may want to consider things like:
Keeping in mind the key calls to action that we decided on in Step 1, here's how that might play out in Big Rock's overall design for their Help Desk. Notice they included:
1. Ask a Question tile (main use case, featured at the top to ensure easy access)
2. Unanswered/Answered Questions
3. Key Dates (for upcoming Webinars)
4. Knowledge Base (For How-to documents)
5. Help Desk Experts (Featured IT Experts as main contacts for the place)
Before launching your new Help Desk, designate specific people to maintain the Q&A, making sure questions are answered in a timely manner and new resources are created based on the agreed editorial calendar. When you are ready to launch your Help Desk, spread awareness across several different channels in your community.
Maintaining and tracking the progress of your Help Desk is crucial for continuing its success. Make sure you:
Consider creating metrics from the topics in the video to measure your growth and plan improvements to your Help Desk over time.
Tell us in the comments below!
Imagine you're on the product team for Big Rock Trading Company, a company that produces hiking equipment. Your team is looking for a solution that would allow them to brainstorm features for your latest hiking bike, gather ideas from company employees for the latest line of hiking backpacks, and regularly communicate progress to stakeholders.
Not sure how to get started? In our latest Tips and Tricks video, we walk you through how Big Rock uses Jive to build both a company facing portal and a private work group—the perfect functional collaboration solution to fulfill their needs.
Plan. Figure out the intended purpose and main goals for your use case; this could result in one or several Jive places. Think about your intended audience and main stakeholders—what are their needs and what is important to them? A product collaboration place will have different priorities than say, an HR collaboration place.
You should also determine the structural requirements of your place(s) based on your goals. For Big Rock, they have decided on the goals stated above which would result in the following place structure:
For more information on the different types of places in Jive, visit Introduction to Places.
After determining your goals and structural requirements, you should start developing content. Before a place can be designed, it must be pre-populated with content.
Design. The design of each of your places will be driven by the calls-to-action.
As shown in the Big Rock's example below, here are some things you may want to include.
1. Buttons for your key calls to action (shown prominently)
2. Key Links/Place Navigation
3. Featured Products Team members
Launching your place, developing a communication plan.
Manage and grow, maintaining governance structure and roles.
If you're still reworking designs and want a private place for your Product team to collaborate without engaging the rest of the company, you should create a private work group. The video walks you through how to set one up!
Have other suggestions about best practices when collaborating around a function? Tell us in the comments below!
As many of you know, I'm the internal community for Jive's very own interactive intranet, Brewspace. My job is to design, implement, and operationalize strategic use cases for Brewspace, with a strong emphasis on enhancing employee communications and engagement. My day-to-day consists of tuning into and supporting our community, attending meetings to ensure business alignment, creating high-value content that teaches our community members or communicates a company-wide campaign/announcement, and pulling performance metrics and reports for executive summaries. To all my fellow internal community managers out there, this sounds familiar, right?
Then you're probably familiar with the following interaction with a certain type of community persona; the ones who are team managers, program owners, and department leaders. It starts off with a direct message, a 1:1 meeting request, or, god forbid, an email:
"Hey! How do I go about setting up a group? I want to create one for my team (or project, or whatever). And can you help me make it look good?"
*sigh* This is always a tough one. Because we all know that it's quite easy, almost too easy, to create a new place for team and project collaboration. It's certainly not hard to figure out, and once they do, they assume that launching a place is all about how it looks. In the beginning, not many people are considering beyond the look and feel... It's interesting how often I get the initial blank stares when they are asked about the audience, it's purpose, and how a place should be maintained and nurtured.
While I've offered 1:1 training's and consulting for anyone who owns large scale use cases and program, I also decided to create some self-help documentation and templates to help guide Jivers through the process of setting up a new place, and more importantly, setting their expectations regarding the ongoing commitment required once their places are created. Because after all, making it look good is only the icing on the cake.
I've decided to share this consulting process and these training assets with you, the Jive Community, in hopes that they might be relatable and valuable to your own interactive intranets.
When helping community members self-centralize and create places for team collaboration, it’s important to understand when to step in and offer 1:1 assistance. There’s a fine line between doing everything yourself and expecting your community to help themselves. The former ensures governance and consistency, but can easily consume all of your time. The latter could easily turn your community into the wild wild west, full of places that are unmanaged, ineffective, or unused entirely.
For Brewspace, I opt towards consultation for any major use cases like company onboarding, strategic alignment initiatives, department portals, ideation for company wide cost savings innovation etc. In those use cases, I typically sit down with a program owner and ask:
This first phase takes the longest because it forces people to think about the tactics of the program itself rather than thinking about how a place should look. Once I have answers to those, I'll recommend either to implement their program in an existing Place within the community, or create a new Place. I'll then create a wireframe, take a stab at the initial design, then request feedback until the stakeholders are happy. We'll then launch it and I'll create a data sheet for it for other Jivers to learn from for their initiatives. By investing 1:1 time in the marquee use cases and creating these data sheets, I can scale this training and support material to anyone else who is interested in creating their own place on Brewspace.
In reality, there’s no universal formula for knowing how much time to spend creating places yourself versus teaching your community to help themselves. Every community will be different. But in both 1:1 consulting and self-help, the key message that I keep reinforcing is: It's not only about launching a program but about the ongoing engagement.
To help provide you with a running start, I’ve shared all of the data sheets I’ve created for my own community members to help them create places with a purpose. You can use these as a starting point when creating places that support department communication and collaboration or simply guide people to see if this is something they are ready to sign up for.
Hello fellow community managers,
There's a lot of really great features that are rolling out with the 2016.2 release of Jive’s cloud-based Interactive Intranet and Customer Community solutions. One of the features I'm personally most excited about is the new peer to peer recognition capabilities. We recently implemented a peer recognition program here at Jive using this newest feature in order to encourage higher participation and activity on our own employee community. I decided to share how I launched that program and configure the Jive Rewards feature in 3 simple steps. Check it out:
Scrolling through a long list of comments that can continue for pages and pages just to find the right answer can be time consuming and frustrating for your users. Not to mention, many of us use Correct Answers as a key performance indicator for internal and external communities. It's important for your community members to understand why and how they should be marking answers to the questions they have asked because:
So here's a helpful video you can share with your communities on why and how to use the Mark Correct feature in Jive:
We all know that one of the key factors to success for an internal community is having active and engaged executives on the community. So it's no surprise there have been plenty of community conversations on how to get executives involved. In fact, there was an entire JiveWorld16 session dedicated to this topic, chock full of case studies and best practices:
(compliments of JiveWorld staff and presenter Daniel Martin Eckhart)
(compliments of Maren Beckman)
Aside from all the great best-practices shared in the resources listed above, one of the easiest use cases to describe to your executives in order to get them more involved is blogging. It helps them connect with employees, share important and valuable insights behind company strategies, and open a dialog for honest and transparent feedback. Yet, despite the head-nods we get from our execs, they can easily get overwhelmed with how to blog effectively for an internal employee community.
I recently sat down with one of Jive's own executives , Robert Block, for this very reason. He shared some first hand tips for blogging on an employee community, from one exec to another. If you have any executive champions that are shy about jumping in, be sure to share this helpful and credible resource with them to help them get started:
What You Need
Create a document in a place (group or space) where all collaborators (including the person who will be publishing the blog) have access to the content.
Create engaging content in the document.
Once the document has engaging content and is ready to be published as a blog, blog author should:
Do you have other suggestions on how to effectively collaborate on a blog post? Share in the comments below.
Other blogs in this series:
Happy New Year Jive Community!
There are so many neat things you are able to do in the Cloud version of Jive and I love that these features are making my enterprise community management job at Jive so much more simple, engaging and fun. With Tiles & Pages and introduction of Call To Action Banner Tile in 2015, we are now able to create simple, beautiful and purposeful mobile friendly places within minutes. Does your place need a face lift? Check out my video blog for some new ideas.
Thanks for tuning in, until next time!
As the community manager for Jive's internal employee community, it is my charter to ensure that new features are setup for successful usage. Today, I'd like to share my tips and learnings for setting up the new Support Center feature in Jive's internal community.
Support Center allows our employees (Jivers) to come to a single place to get their questions answered. Functions like IT, HR, Sales and Products are constantly fielding questions by Jivers on a variety of topics. Being able to point people to a single source of truth is mutually beneficial for employees (they can find the right stuff) and for the support organization (via question deflection). Here is how we planned the Support Center roll out.
The Support Center feature gives communities an ability to point users to a single location to get their questions answered. Sure, users can post questions almost anywhere within our community but there are a set of questions that almost everyone asks to get their work done. It was really important for us to identify what those questions were, who owned the official answer and where these answers currently lived. We considered how-to content from these sources as "high demand" and must-haves for inclusion on the initial roll out of Support Center.
Examples of must-have content include:
We then trained the owners of these spaces around what Support Center could mean for their content:
Once all the functions were on board, we turned on Support Center within our community but did not make any announcements around it to the larger community right away. This gave us some time to really optimize the Support Center experience using real data with key place owners.
IT Support example:
People often visited the IT space to ask questions, submit a request, read how-to documents. But in the same space, there were also operational content like vendor information, asset list, environmental architecture and so on. The operational content is not equally relevant to all end users. So we created a subspace within IT called IT Support and moved all self-service / how-to content from the top level space. IT then re-launched their community experience with a clear purpose for the IT space (where you can learn about the organization and its operations) and its subspace for IT Support (where you get your self help). We then configured the IT Support subspace to the overall Support Center experience.
Community How-To example:
A similar exercise was done for the Community How-To space. In addition to various content on how to use the community, Community How-To contained content on configuration, metrics, and people making access requests. Similar with IT, we created a new Community Management space and moved Community How-To as a subspace of Community Management. We then moved all non how-to content from Community How-To into Community Management. We then configured Community How-To into the overall Support Center experience. We also implemented a new process for Community How-To where if questions were asked in this space which could benefit a large audience, we would create a How-To document as a formal response to a specific question. Our VP Roberto Lino also launched a crowd sourcing initiative around "How can we get more awesome How-To Brewspace content?" where all Jivers were encouraged to contribute into the Community How-To space and be rewarded through gamification and prizes. This process encourages the creation of fresh and accurate content for Community How-To.
Now that all the sources of help content were cleaned up and we had processes in place to generate new and accurate content in the right places, configuration was easy. The search results for support content were clean. We were ready to announce support to our community. The announcement was done via a blog by me. It included screenshots of various areas of Support and descriptions on what each feature did. The link to the Support Center was published on our News page (which also happens to be the landing page of our community) so that people had easy access to it.
For each click-able element on the Support Center experience, due diligence was necessary to examine the current content, information architecture and how the content was being managed and generated. The success of the Support Center is heavily dependent on this critical step which took time and energy. The effort was well worth it and our Support Center is awesome. If done right, it you will see a drastic rise in end user satisfaction and overall company efficiency.
For more information on Support Center
You can read the Support Center Onboarding guide published by our fabulous product team here: Support Center Onboarding Guide | Jive Community
Or you can watch the video: How to Enable and Configure the Jive Support Ce... | Jive Community
As the community manager for our internal employee instance of Jive at Jive, I am both empowered and challenged with pushing the boundaries of how our product gets used internally. From diving deep and exploiting the dark nooks of our features to embracing a completely unintended use case of our product, we try to be a dogfooding powerhouse. But even prior to features getting rolled out, it is my charter to ensure we are prepared for the roll out and that the feature is set up for successful usage. I am eager to share my processes, ideas, learnings, tips & tricks with you.
What better way than to start with our News feature! This 2015 Winter Cloud release feature has made consuming and engaging with key company and leadership announcements so simply effortless for our global Jiver (Jive employee) base. Here is how we planned the News roll out.
The News feature fuels and amplifies the reach of the content it carries. So you really want to make sure this content feed is what employees want and need to stay aligned and do their jobs effectively. 'News' content to us is a lot of things: First and foremost, Jivers want to know what our leadership team is talking about. We want to know what is happening within our own departments and within our offices. We want to make sure that all new Jivers are properly welcomed with memes and animated gifs when they write their first week blog post. We want to keep an eye on our product roadmap. And of course, we all want to know how our customers and the world are responding to everything that we create.
Identifying these top level news buckets was important for me to figure out what auto-subscription streams to set up.
Yes, auto-subscription. News lets us automatically subscribe the entire community (the entire employee-base in this case) or a subset to specific content feeds / streams. This feature has sometimes been called "auto-follow" or "subscription streams".
These selected content streams then show up on their News page, in addition to any custom streams that the employees have configured for themselves.
Here are the steps I took to set up the auto-subscription steams:
T-15: Company-wide news
The first step was identifying what new streams were needed across our entire Jiver community. We narrowed it down to:
So I created a company-wide leadership stream that was associated to the blog spaces of every member of our executive management team. I also created a company-wide 'Products' stream that was linked to our Products space and also to the blog of our Chief Product Officer.
T-12: Departmental or role-based news
Next, I needed to ensure Jivers were subscribed to key information relating to their job functions and departments. I met with the department leads and enablement experts - across all different functions from corporate communications to engineering - to find out how they have been trying to reach their target audience.
Were they blogging in a specific space or a group?
Did they provide updates in their own personal blogs?
How were these space and blog permissions set up?
Each function had their own unique way of capturing and publishing important communication so it was critical for me to take an inventory.
T-8: Location based news
Last but not the least, we had office location specific sub-spaces that Jivers needed to be subscribed to based on their location for information around local events, holidays, facilities updates etc.
The departmental news and location based news obviously needs to be mapped based on the Jiver's corporate profile information. I brought in our IT team to help choose those profile fields that were automatically synched with the enterprise directory. These fields are synchronized on a daily basis, so even when a Jiver transitions to a different department or office location, their streams will be automatically updated and I won't have to lift a finger.
Actually, this was the day our internal instance was upgraded to our 2015 Winter cloud release. Why day T-2 then? Because we toggled-on the News feature only 2 days later. Hurray for feature toggles! That said, we did start prepping Jivers for the toggle-on day:
'What's Where' End User Guide
Even though Jivers are pros at using our product, I always want to be sensitive to how large new features are introduced so as to make sure that the experience changeover is as seamless as possible. I took tons of screenshots and created an End User Guide where I visually highlighted all of the upcoming changes and addressed potential questions in an FAQ section:
'What am I auto-subscribed to?' list
I also put together a list of what streams one can expect to be auto-subscribed to.
Our product manager for the News feature, Nick Hill and his team wrote a cheery welcome blog on the morning of News go-live (i.e. feature toggled on) so that it was the first content people saw in the new News stream after logging in. Combining this blog with a system wide announcement re-mentioning the end user guide gave Jivers a well-defined, smooth experience when they logged in and noted all the changes.
There has been so much positive response from Jivers both on the new feature and around all the on-boarding efforts!
Our product philosophy here at Jive is that products and features should not just be functional, but also simply beautiful and deeply personal. Our newest News feature has definitely met that high standard. Within the Jive employee community, News has been nothing short of an incredible success at making us more connected, informed, and engaged. We also hope it will do the same for the millions of end users across our incredible customer network.
This whole initiative has also been personally rewarding for me because it has opened up new avenues for me to partner more with our executive staff and department leaders. I am seeing my role being elevated to that of a strategic employee/people champion.
As you gear up for this beautiful change, please reach out to me with any questions. I am also eager to learn from all you community managers - your best practices, tips & tricks, recommendations, ideas and more. Please share them via the comment section of this post or via creating your own posts/discussion threads.
Senior Enterprise Community Manager @ Jive