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A Successful Intranet Launch with Jive


We recently celebrated the one-year anniversary of our new intranet, which has been a tremendous asset to our state agency.


Our internal community continues to grow. A year ago, we had 3875 active users. That number is now hovering at around 4250!


There have been many recent changes to our organization over the past year:

  • We've developed and implemented new Protective Intake and Supervision policies, to better protect and serve children and their families
  • Our IT Department released a new build of our Statewide Automated Childcare Information System (SACWIS)
  • We support an increasing number of end users out in the field who access this system and our intranet from their iPads


Our new intranet makes it easy for staff to stay connected with their area offices. Even when they're on the go, they can quickly access information, obtain the forms they need, get answers to their questions, submit suggestions for technology enhancements, or request a new iPad app.



Engagement: Thinking Globally and Acting Locally


In terms of engagement, our target demographic is the social workers out in the field and scattered throughout various area offices. Daily activity has been steadily increasing. However, many staff here in our central office aren't yet leveraging this new technology.


So I embedded Google's Pac-Man in the Overview Page of our IT Group, a private group for people in our department. I did this using the HTML widget. Since then, we've seen a spike in engagement.


Below is a screenshot of our IT Group from a couple months ago. You can find the JavaScript embed code for the game here.


IT Group with PacMan Game.jpg

Despite the best communications campaign, leadership endorsements, strategic alignment and evidence of value, many people still don’t join or collaborate on enterprise social networks.


Exactly why can be difficult to understand and even more difficult to measure. If they’re not responding to invites, they’re not going to respond to a survey asking why they didn’t join. If they’re not seeing the value in joining, they’re not going to try it out until they see the evidence – which they won’t see, because they haven’t joined. It’s a vicious circle and for most businesses, a surprisingly high percentage of staff never even try it out.


In this series of posts I’m going to show you how I used email marketing to increase engagement from 1,000 people on Jive by 38% and learn their key objections to collaboration at the same time, revealing crucial insights into our culture and how to enable our staff to work better. I'm also going to share a toolkit and templates for how you can do it too - interested? Read on...


registration rate
Key insights into
drivers for collaboration



The norm


Users that have logged into collaboration software at least once are known as ‘registered’ and the benchmark across the software providers is around 70% – that’s almost one third of staff not taking part.


That 70% is actually quite a positive benchmark and it's often much lower depending on the type of business and those 30%+ missing staff are a major factor in why many collaboration initiatives fail. Gartner’s report on why ‘80% of social business efforts will not achieve intended benefits through 2015’ remains true and describes the real reason collaboration fails…


Social collaboration doesn't fail because of software - it fails because of culture.


So the big question is, what’s stopping these staff from joining?


  • What is it about the engagement with them that isn’t working?
  • What behaviours are they exhibiting that are preventing them from taking part? A
  • What’s preventing them from changing the way they work?
  • What are they resistant to?
  • What are they able to do?
  • What are their key drivers to change?


What’s clear in these examples is that it’s not just technology that’s important, it’s the behaviors that drive involvement.


Background to the study


At the time of this study we were 6 months into Jive and had around 20,000 accounts provided to our colleagues. They had all received a few emails discussing the importance of collaboration to our business, how Jive fit in and how it would it was our new way of working. They were all supported by community managers and many received additional engagement from our internal communications teams and their leaders.


…but 40% still hadn’t logged in. That’s 8,000 people who weren’t getting involved and we wanted to know why.


The study


It was clear that whatever was being said to these colleagues wasn’t working so I designed a study to find out why. From the 8,000 I chose a sample of 1,000 and used email marketing techniques to send them series of emails with different calls to action, messaging, objection handling and reasons for getting involved. The interactions with those emails would be tracked and by combining their responses with demographic data I’d build out profiles on what worked, what didn’t and what messaging was most effective in converting them to new ways of working.


How it worked


One of my favourite email marketers is Ryan Deiss of Digital Marketer who provides great insights into building effective email campaigns, funnels and conversions from proven experience of sending millions of emails every year.


In his amazing free tutorial How to stand out in the inbox he outlines a 7 day process to email marketing which really resonated with me because of its directness, simplicity and speed. This would the basis for my study.


In the study I’d send emails across a 5 day period. Each email would continue a story, told by me and designed to create trust, showcase benefits, handle objections and bring the reader with me on a journey to a new way of working.


Study principles


What I was trying to do with this campaign is change people’s behaviours – heavily embedded behaviours that have been a part of how they work for a long time.


Changing behaviours requires trust. Trust between you and the reader. Trust that your values are like their own and trust that those values are ones that they should strive for. In Harvard Business Review’s article ‘The one thing that makes collaboration work’, Larry Prusak discusses the importance of trust to collaboration and how “trust is the new gold.”


Why am I going on about trust? Because trust is fundamental to changing behaviours and key to the success of this study. All the emails came from me, my outbox, my email address and were personalised for each recipient with their name at the top. I spoke to people as a person, not a mailbox and when people asked me questions I was there to support them. The emails were written by me and not corporate news. They were open and honest and described me and my values. It was all part of the story; for more on the power of storytelling see Dave Lieber’s Ted Talk.


And finally, all the emails included an unsubscribe link. This was a conversation, not a communications campaign. People were free to leave at any time, it wasn’t forced and receiving them wasn’t mandatory.


So how did it work?


Good question - find out later this week in part 2 of this series!


Michelle Gantt

Community managers are funny people. Full of passion, energy and a desire to help, they’re out there every day making peoples lives better and it’s an emotional roller coaster. They’re a bit of a mad bunch, but they’re my favourite people in the world.

Managing communities isn’t easy. They’ve got a lot of pressures – feedback coming in from every side, new initiatives that have to go right, networks to keep track of and unruly members to moderate and keep on track.

With all these pressures it’s not easy to keep it all together and they’ve got to balance those emotional states to be as effective as possible. So what are the emotions that community managers go through?

Super excited

Great community managers are excited a lot of the time. They’re passionate about what they preach and look for every opportunity to share it, often times annoyingly so. They use a ton of emoticons and multiple exclamation marks wherever possible. They’re wearing out the @ key on their keyboard from sharing too much. And – at times – are very annoying to sit next to! ;)


It’s hard being excited all the time and it’s a very high and low emotional environment. Despite constant likes, not being able to affect the change they want or receiving negative feedback can cut deeper that it looks and can bug community managers for a long time.

Dwelling on those can leave them feeling isolated, even though they’re continuing to talk to people at the same time. The problem is most of those conversations are online and remote working’s pretty common for community managers. They’ve got to be proactive and connect and share in the real world to feel better. 

That’s where networks come in; great community managers support each other and affect change together.


We love our communities and we wouldn’t replace them for the world. But sometimes, just sometimes, they can push you to the limit. 

Teaching people to collaborate isn’t easy and your going against heavily embedded behaviours.

 You’ve got to keep repeating yourself day in day out to get people to understand and that can be exasperating!

There are times when you just feel like why don’t these people get it? Can’t they see the value in working together? Why are they not working together in first place? How did that even happen? Isn’t working together something everyone wants to do?!

Then you get on social and say hey guys, why don’t people get it? They say:

“I know right, they should just do this, it’s obvious!”
And you’re going “Exactly! That’s what I’ve been trying to tell them!

It’s at that point when stepping away from the keyboard is the best thing to do. Grab a snack. Have a drink. Vent to the nearest colleague. And come back feeling happy and ready to educate again.


Helping someone share their first blog post and it blowing up with comments. Seeing someone share what they’re doing and the community saying how awesome it is. Being there for the great “Oh, I get it now, it makes so much sense!” moments are make for the best emotional state – pride. 

They’re made even better because they’re earned through consistency, empathy and a desire to share and help people. And the best thing about pride is it’s infectious. 

Your pride drives you to share peoples work so others can comment and share and tell them how much they love it. That makes them even prouder, more likely to share again and create more proud moments.


Seeing your guidance change people go from quiet insular people to collaboration advocates, demonstrating collaborative behaviours, educating others, creating valuable connections, getting new jobs and sharing their passions – now that makes community managers feel EPIC.

They’re those moments where you read a comment and punch the air with both hands. You go ‘yes!’ in your head (or even out loud!) or you race to show people how awesome something is. Epic. Moments. You can’t replace that.

Is it worth it?

Of course, no community manager would tell you otherwise! Share your epic stories below!

 Becky Leung 

I've had a few people ask how I create my whiteboard friday's and you'll be glad to know it's really easy


For these I've tried to focus on value and consistency first, that is not to invest so much time and money in production that the videos never happen or don't get posted to the schedule I promise. Also what I didn't want to do was over-engineer them before I had an audience, instead iterating through practice and experience rather than making too many assumptions up front. That's my working practice now, test, learn, iterate - it makes for a lot of time saved and better results!




So onto the videos, they're filmed with an iphone on a tripod ... that's it, no fancy cameras. As a pro photographer I do have the gear to use but as above it'd take too long on my own so I opted for my phone instead. The phone is held onto the tripod with the top section of a selfie stick I found at poundland, just unscrew from one to the other - easy!


I have a makeshift studio at home and you'll see I'm often in different locations when recording, generally due to where I am at the time.


If i'm filming in a random location I'll look for:


  • A window light without direct sunlight, ideally in front or to the side. If it's light enough I'll turn off the room lights as they're a different colour. You can make up for the light by increasing the exposure on the camera, press and hold on the screen then drag up to increase it.
  • If there's no window or little light I'll turn on the room lights. If there's hard downlights (e.g. halogen bulbs rather than strip lights) i'll arch some paper over the one shining on me which will diffuse the light to make it softer


When filming at home I have a big whiteboard in my garage and large halogen work lights around it. They have opaque lighting filter paper over them to soften them up and are positioned with one in front and one at each opposite corner of the board.




It might sound like a small point (pun intended) but pens that actually show up on film are hard to come by as they need to be heavy ink, have a beveled end and be wipeable. The best I've found so far are these types - Whiteboard Markers . You'll need whiteboard spray and a cloth (not a whiteboard eraser) too to stop slow staining of your board.




Right now I'm not using a mic as iphones need an adapter to get one to work, which is fine if you're in quiet room. I will be using a tie clip mic at some point.


Ideas / shots


My ideas for whiteboard fridays generally come out of conversations I have with people which are often objections or challenges to collaboration. I prefer to address those through videos because they're conversations, not articles. They need a connection with the advisor to be incentivised to watch and be influenced by.


For shots, it's all one continuous recording chopped up. I've started putting a 5 second intro at the start to intice people before the credits which is working well, after that the session itself is one take. I aim for no more than 5 minutes for most material to keep attention and ensure I can keep them going. Those 5 minutes are done in one or max two takes. I'm not worried about mistakes unless they're total stops. If they're just re-pronunciations that's fine and if anything it makes it more authentic.




Production takes literally minutes through iMovie and I have a template where the new video just replaces the old, gets chopped and aligned with the intro and outro and finished. The somewhat budget titles are built into imovie (i do intended to jazz those up) and music is free from Bensound.


Cover photo


If you're using youtube then you'll need a cover photo for your video - a still that grabs peoples attention and gets them to watch (it's not shown on Hive). While you're filming the video take a few seconds at the end to put the phone on timer and grab a photo, trust me you won't get a good cover photo out of a still from the video, it'll either be boring, blurry or awkward looking.


For the cover photo I use the Typorama app, adding the text over the image and adding an overlay light leak to give the text some contrast.


Other videos


If you follow me on Twitter (@dtdotme) you'll have seen my other short vector videos that look great but are SUPER easy to make. [Dan Thomas on Twitter: "Discover the 5 top collaborative behaviours in today's video! #collaboration #cmgr https://t.c… ] They're made with, free if you want watermarks or only $99 a year otherwise. It's an awesome site and we use it to jazz up all kinds of training.


Delfin Juan hope this helps!

We have been experiencing difficulties setting up SAML in Jive using Google as the Identity Provider.


We successfully logged in with SAML enabled for Goggle however we experience an sso authentication error after a day being logged in


We raised a private case with Jive support, below is some feedback on the error message received


- Authentication statement is too old to be used with value 2017-03-06T22:35:29.000Z

- Validation of received assertion failed, assertion will be skipped Authentication statement is too old to be used





- Response doesn't have any valid assertion which would pass subject validation

- AuthNResponse;FAILURE; Error validating SAML response





- There was an error during SAML authentication Error validating SAML message





Caused by: org.opensaml.common.SAMLException: Error validating SAML response



        ... 119 more

The complaint is that your authentication statement is outside the required conditions. Parsing through the assertion included in the stacktrace, it's easy to see why.

<saml2:Conditions NotBefore="2017-03-07T22:31:54.483Z" NotOnOrAfter="2017-03-07T22:41:54.483Z">


<saml2:AuthnStatement AuthnInstant="2017-03-06T22:35:29.000Z" SessionIndex="_f1990db4724c1f3a93ceeec3043ec1af">

AuthnInstant (2017-03-06T22:35:29.000Z) is older than NotOnOrAfter (2017-03-07T22:41:54.483Z"). Usually, this means that your server time is out of sync. In order to verify this, I ran ntpstat on both of your web app servers.

[nathan.howard@envato-isthebest-enc-t-wa01 ~]$ ntpstat

synchronised to NTP server ( at stratum 3

   time correct to within 165 ms

   polling server every 1024 s


[nathan.howard@envato-isthebest-enc-t-wa02 ~]$ ntpstat

synchronised to NTP server ( at stratum 3

   time correct to within 158 ms

   polling server every 1024 s

However, Jive appears to be in sync with NTP (Network Time Protocol). So I would recommend checking ntpstat on your IDP's server. Another way this can also be solved is by increasing the "Response Skew" time under Admin Console: People > Settings > Single Sign-On > SAML > General. See General SAML Integration Settings:

Response Skew

Specifies the maximum permitted time between the timestamps in the SAML Response and the clock on the Jive instance. The default value is 120 seconds. If there is a significant amount of clock drift between the IdP and Jive, you can increase this value. The same value is also used for the skew in the NotBefore check in the response. If you see an error indicating a problem with the NotBefore check and you aren't able to fix the clock difference problem, you can try increasing this value. However, increasing the response skew value can increase your security risk.


My colleague did some further investigations into this issue and here is his findings:


Let me clarify first a few misconceptions we have about the SAML response. The `saml2:Conditions` is sent by the IdP (i.e. Google) in the response to indicate simply the conditions under which the whole response should be accepted by the consumer (i.e. Jive). In other words, the `NotBefore` and `NotOnOrAfter` values are only telling Jive to accept the assertion in that given timeframe, but it has nothing to do with the authentication itself.



Now, going into the authentication bit. The `saml2:AuthnStatement` contains the last time the user was authenticated by the IdP in the `AuthnInstant`. For Google, that only happens when the user is forced to re-authenticate due to session expiration, MFA token expiration (remember this is 30 days), or user forcing a logout-login cycle. Google does not consider reusing an existing authentication token as a re-authentication, hence why we see what we see in the responses.



The following article mentions that, once the response is deemed valid through `saml2:Conditions`, Jive checks if the `AuthnInstant` is within a given maximum authentication age, and if not, it will simply throw the error we see:



*Solution:* Modify the Maximum Authentication Age parameter to be a reasonable amount of time (maybe 30 days because that's when the MFA token expires?). This can be done through the administration console in Jive, or most probably asking them to do it if we don't have access to such console in Jive Cloud:


I hope this blog post helps you.




Even though we've only had Jive for 18 months, I do find it difficult to remember what life was like before it. Did I really send emails for every comment I had? Were the only connections I made distant voices on phone calls? And why did I hold onto work so closely before ever letting anyone see it?


For me, seeing the change in the way people work and the connections our business is making is just incredible, and that we can do it in an open way, connecting not just on work but on social too, is so valuable. So it made me think - how does Jive make my life and work better?


The secret to a fulfilled life


For over 75 years Harvard's Grant and Glueck study tracked the physical and emotional well-being of two populations: 456 poor men growing up in Boston from 1939 to 2014 (the Grant Study), and 268 male graduates from Harvard's classes of 1939-1944 (the Glueck study).


Being such a long study it  required multiple generations of researchers, analyzing blood samples, conducting brain scans and conducting surveys plus actual interactions to compile the findings. The conclusion according to Robert Waldinger, director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development was:

"Good relationships keep us happier and healthier. Period."


The study demonstrates that having someone to rely on helps your nervous system relax, helps your brain stay healthier for longer, and reduces both emotional as well as physical pain. He goes on to add:


"It's not just the number of friends you have, and it's not whether or not you're in a committed relationship," says Waldinger. "It's the quality of your close relationships that matters."


How does Jive come in?


So can Jive help you have a more fulfilled life? If I think back to before Jive, my working relationships were based around who I spoke to, worked with and who I met in person, most of which were through existing connections. If I was lucky enough to catch up with them outside of meetings I could get to know them even better, but there was always a limit to how involved I could be with them in a work environment outside of where our work crossed over.


Jive's given me the opportunity to reach those people in a completely different way, learn about them, understand them better and create better working relationships. I've also had the opportunity to meet new people I never would have met through shared interests, collaborations and an overwhelming sense of goodwill from a community that really gives back to itself.


A better working life


Being part of Jive has really been a high point in my career and made me feel happier and healthier at work. I look forward to seeing what's going on in the community and the value I can add and even find myself checking my inbox via the app in the evenings, not through a sense of work, but through wanting to be connected to the community. It allows me to be myself more and that ultimately makes work more fulfilling for me :)


A huge thanks to those involved


Jive wouldn't have happened without collaboration and while I'm here I'd like to thank the people that made my journey fun, supported Jive, our community or were just downright awesome. Here's to you all!


  • Michelle Gantt for your expert help in getting us going - and putting up with me!
  • Becky Leung for being super fun and always 100% positive! Ps - becky can you get me a personal blog on the community?
  • Delfin Juan - for... well, what happens in Vegas stays in vegas
  • Alex Gallina for getting Jive and us to our business, not an easy task
  • Martin Finlay for supporting our community and representing us
  • Miriam Smith for being epic ;)


There's loads more and I'll update this doc as and when I think of you but thanks to everyone for making Jive - and work - so great


Who makes your Jive better?


@ mention someone who makes your Jive and work better!


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