34 Replies Latest reply on Aug 29, 2012 5:22 PM by tmaurer

    Deliver us from email questions!

    tmaurer Jive SME

      Someone has GOT to have a better idea for how to improve the UX in regard to email notifications!


      Jive 5 has done a wonderful job of giving people a better way to deal with notifications/updates. What it has actually made marginally worse, and certainly done nothing to improve, is the ability of users to determine why they got an email and/or allow them to simply turn it off.


      What am I talking about? The single biggest complaint that I get is people trying to figure out why they got a specific email(s), and what they can do to turn it off. And there is no easy answer. For example, they could have received it because:

      • they are getting emails from a space
      • they elected to get emails from the blog for the space
      • they elected to get emails from the person who posted the content
      • they elected to get emails from content they are tracking

      And as an admin, I can't even look at their account/profile to help them figure it out.


      Seriously, this is something that is in need of addressing. It obviously mostly impacts people who have upgraded to Jive 5, but not entirely. I have new employees who started after we upgraded that also ask this question. They live in email, so elect to get things in email. Then they get overwhelmed and want to slow things down, and I'm simply not much help. Neither are the notifications they get from the system, which offer no form of assistance in terms of why the message was sent.


      Olivia Teich - do you guys have ideas on how you might address this, or can we crowd-source something to help? This is a HUGE time-suck, and a big point of frustration with the system.

        • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
          jemjanik Expert

          +1000  I REALLY miss the screen in 4.5 where you could see all the current notifications on at from what level.

            • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
              tmaurer Jive SME

              That page was really problematic for those of us with a lot of content, and actually never returned for me personally. So I understand why it is gone. But why not something as simple as:

              1. A way to turn off notification from within each email. Then, you don't really need to know why you got it, just click the link to turn it off.
              2. Alternatively, a line in the email that tells you why you got it so that you know how to turn it off: "You received this email because you are set to receive email notifications from Tracy Maurer Blog."


              As I write this, I'm realizing that maybe the really difficult part of this is that there could be multiple reasons for you to get an email. You could be set to get emails from a place, and the content, and the person. But there has GOT to be a way to get to the root of these things more easily. People can't be expected to go through a 4-step process for each and every email they get just to turn things off.

            • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
              cflanagan17 Expert

              This is something I continue to tell Jive is a big problem. I don't think they understand the scale of an enterprise where we have thousands of groups and collaboration areas.


              I did share my feedback extensively with Jive last summer about the loss of a subscription management page in Jive 5. I was hoping they would address this in Jive 6. An individual must simply be able to see, in one place, all of their subscriptions - and be able to fine tune or tailor it.


              Email is one of those double edged swords. It's a very important alert and signal. But for very busy, large volume communities (like ours, where we're over 7 M activities a month) it can be overwhelming. I wish I could set digests myself. I continue to get issues raised from our users even today about the issue of not being able to set "digests" preferences. I thought that would come in a future release and I realize it won't.


              Josh Richau any thoughts on improvements we should see in Jive 6 on this?

              • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
                tmaurer Jive SME

                Something I forgot to mention as a reason behind this:


                In the pre-5.0 world, when someone joins a group, they are by default signed up to get emails from the group. When you upgrade to 5.0, and people start going back to opt out of emails, they opt out at the group level. What we have discovered is that they ALSO need to opt out separately from the group BLOG. This is not obvious or intuitive. And typically, group blogs are not very active. So what happens is this:

                1. Today, I opt out of the group.
                2. Two weeks from now, someone posts a blog, and I get email from that blog post plus every comment that is made to it.
                3. I go back to the group overview page and see that I have opted out of emails.
                4. I go to the blog POST and see that I'm not signed up to receive emails there.
                5. I'm stumped.
                6. I send my site admin a confused or pissed off email in which I neglect to mention that it is a blog post in a group I'm a member of that is at issue.
                7. It takes way too long to diagnose, because sysadmins have no way to review a user's email prefs.
                8. As I user, I'm frustrated and fed up. I don't have the time or patience to deal with this.
                9. As a sysadmin I'm frustrated, because I also don't have the time or patience to deal with this.


                I hope that helps make it a little more clear. The big thing here is that something that was already a bit frustrating in the 4.0 world has become magnified upon upgrading to 5.0 because of the default group email setting and the fact that the group and group blog were set separately.

                  • Re: Deliver us from email questions!

                    If this had been designed to be an Easter Egg it could hardly have been trickier to figure this out...

                    • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
                      crossman Expert

                      Tracy Maurer wrote:

                      What we have discovered is that they ALSO need to opt out separately from the group BLOG. This is not obvious or intuitive.

                      That's got to be a bug... right, Jive? Olivia Teich

                        • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
                          AmandaS Intermediate

                          It seems like it could be a bug or an oversight because blogs are considered places.  It should be automatic that if you unsubscribe to the parent place container (the group) you should automatically also be unsubscribed from the blog place because it is associated to the group.

                            • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
                              tmaurer Jive SME

                              My guess is that what we are running into here is a conflict of interests. I can see that people might want to get emails JUST from the blog, but nothing else in a group/space/project. My thinking on the way this should work is that if you sign up for the group, you get everything. If you drop email from the group, you lose everything. You should never be automatically signed up specifically for the blog - if you personally select the blog, great, and that is a valid option. But don't add or subtract the blog automatically.

                                • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
                                  cflanagan17 Expert

                                  Flexibility and personalization here is key. Like Tracy mentions - don't do all or nothing.


                                  Let individuals override - and then let them manage their subscriptions in one place so they can see the "expected' behavior and change it in a way that delivers "expected" new results.

                                    • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
                                      tmaurer Jive SME

                                      And give admins the ability to see people's settings. Even if I can't edit them, at least let me see what they are so I can help. Yes, with some of them I could do a screenshare. But sometimes the person is in a timezone 12 hours off from you so screenshare isn't a great option. Or they are using their mobile device. Make it easy to support. Please.

                                        • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
                                          AmandaS Intermediate

                                          +1 to Admin being able to see user settings.  The other thing I would add to this thread about email is that people would also love to have an OOTO type feature so they can suspend email while they're out but maintain all their settings and just re-enable it when they return.  Right now we tell people to use Outlook features to put their community mail into folders (they don't like that).  If people are already feeling they're getting too much email and they don't understand why they're getting some of it, you can imagine how frustrated they are to go on PTO and come back to thousands of mail messages...  I'm mentioning this hear because I think all these email topics need to be considered collectively to improve the overall end user experience.

                              • Re: Deliver us from email questions!
                                england_k Jive SME

                                I am 100% behind this we've been baffled by which notifications trump others, we asked Jive for documentation but it appears there isn't any. We gave up since we move to 5 (in less than 2 days) but after the noise of the upgrade dies down I know the question will come up once again. Our power users are already asking where is the list of content I'm signed up to get notifications for.


                                Will this improve in 6? Is there documentation to explain the hierarchy and +1 for admins being able to see users set up to help troubleshoot.