20 Replies Latest reply on Jan 20, 2014 8:47 AM by tony.stewart@nbcuni.com

    Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

      Hello community managers!


      After running some Usability sessions with our users, pulling out the research outcomes and actions, and referencing what works well in existing social platforms like Facebook... I have pulled together a draft wireframe for how we would like our instance of Jive to look here at NBC Universal International.


      Wave - initial design.png

      This design is structurally based on the new Jive 7 interface (that we’re yet to upgrade too), but much of the content layout tweaks are based on what our users and senior leaders have told us they want to see more of. That is:


      • Better overview of discussions, with more detail in initial discussion, comments and links etc.
      • Removal of the social updates (so and so liked this, so and so got 2 points...)
      • Integration of featured content in the main feed - featured groups, blogs, people and the like
      • Prominent search
      • Visibility of featured content on the right hand side panel - both sourced via Wave algorithms and also manually updated
      • Closer alignment to Facebook layout - notifications, feeds and content choice on left hand side.
      • Simple interface for notifications
      • Combined Overview and Activity page - no more 'two homepages'.


      The design presented here is one example of the layout. Like Facebook, you might go in one day and see recommended people on the right, the next time recommended groups or official spaces.


      I would love to know... what do my fellow community managers think? Have you run user sessions and invited feedback on the layout of your Jive networks, or tend to go with a more ‘out of the box’ approach? And has anyone else implemented these kinds of changes already in their networks? I understand from playing with the Jive 7 trial that some of these features, like combined Overview and Activity pages, are already a feature being used.


      I’d love to incorporate some feedback from other community experts in our final design, so please do chip in! And I hope it might encourage some ideas around how Jive is presented in other networks too.


      Note that this is a structural / wireframe layout - of course the lick-of-paint is another kettle of fish

        • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

          Katherine Jones, Katherine Carter, Del Green - would love to know what you think before our catch-up tomorrow. John Toker, a sneak peak into our thinking so far on this.

          • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

            As long as externally-facing communities can get the usual widgetised homepage, it looks like a sensible enhancement to the user's activity stream page. With multi-lingual sites, it'd be good if language preferences were built into the system so that I could prioritise content appearing in my stream by my preferred language.


            We weren't too keen on how Jive hid Bookmarks inside the search bar, so broke that out into a separate, more obvious link in our theme.


            Feel free to have a poke around; element14

              • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                *Very* useful, thanks Matt! The navigation at the bottom of the page is something I overlooked but of course should be included too - especially as we will have some key 'spaces' for resources like HR and IT - would work well here!

                • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared
                  John Schwiller

                  Agree with your comments about multi-lingual based on work this year. Cc Daniel Neumann   Languages


                  If I was designing this I'd consider something 'more than' just a binary choice so rather than just show my preferred language in streams I'd allow a user to choose either select the language(s) to include or select language(s) to exclude. For example, with recent experience almost all the English speakers cannot read Chinese but some Chinese can additionally read English whilst others can't.


                  This mechanism would ideally work by first auto-detecting the key language of a document or comment / reply and then using the language preferences to either dramatically shrink (it may still be useful to know there were n replies in a language the user cannot read) or totally hide documents / posts in a language other than the user's preferred languages. On a multi-lingual site seeing a stream 'clogged' with content a user cannot read is sub-optimal IMO.

                • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                  Hello Tony Stewart

                  Great that you put this together with the feedback of the users themselves.


                  Have you made all these changes in the parameters of the product or have you opted for minor customisations?

                  For example, removing the social updates is something I'd love to do, but the core widget doesn't let me do it.


                  Also the combined Overview and Activity page - would be interested to know how you did this.


                  Looking good overall mate.

                    • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                      Overview and Activity pages can't be combined per se. Within groups you can select to show one or the other. With our homepage (Jive 7 Cloud) it's an Overview page and that's it!


                      Removing social updates can be controlled on ours through the choice of widget and by then editing the widget to say which content types you want to show or not show.


                      I can demo more of this tomorrow.

                        • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                          Thanks Del! We haven't made any changes yet - we're still on Jive 6.02 and this is a wireframe of proposals at this stage. We'll certainly be talking to Jive about what we can realistically do with Jive 7 and minor customisation - but with the research we've done and based on the needs of our users, we'll be keen to implement as much as we can of course - would love to see your homepage refresh content too!


                          Thanks Katherine for the insight too! I guess an Overview Page with the ability to post content at the top of the screen is *essential* for us! And pleased to hear the social update types can be customised easily too - great stuff. Looking forward to seeing you guys tomorrow

                        • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                          Me too - Activity and Overview page!

                        • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                          Forgot to add..


                          We're currently in the middle of a homepage refresh and are also using the community to guide us on what this will look like.


                          As soon as I have something concrete to show, I'll post it here.

                          • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                            Hey Tony Stewart Tony Stewart


                            I think this looks good - nice and simple and clear. As you know we customized ours slightly but I think we'll be re-visiting our navigation and architecture in the new year ready for when we upgrade to 7. I put out a survey a couple of weeks ago and am in the process of analyzing the results and it is really evident that our navigation just isn't intuitive to a lot of our users and that they still find it difficult to filter out relevant content and are put off by the sea of information from the activity stream on the homepage. For us there's a combination of more training and education - but we will definitely re-visit our sign posting.


                            I would say that your users are probably a bit more used to social media than ours and probably more open to using it - this is where our challenges and resistance have come from.


                            I like Matt Collinge's suggestion about bookmarking - that's another thing that we've come up against a lot. People wanting to find it easier and also bookmark or favourite groups rather than just content.


                            • Customization we have is a default homepage with a global bespoke news widget
                            • We've changed the headers on the main navigation pane and also added in a couple of drop down options to explore the organisation a bit more (acting like shortcuts)
                            • We put an auto follow on our CEO and have her status updates streaming onto the homepage
                            • There is also a business specific (based on user profile) news section below the global one


                            Happy to show you anything tomorrow when together and chat through your plans but I've learnt that the more stripped back and simple the better



                            • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                              Awesome, thanks so much Katherine - I like the auto-follow the CEO idea; might help encourage more engagement and posting if he knows people are subscribed!

                              • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared
                                John Schwiller

                                An external site we recently built for a client has both a widgetised Overview page and the normal non-widgetised Activity page. Each has its own capabilities that cannot be munged without significant work which is probably nugatory at 6.0+ before you go to 7.0.


                                Depending on your users, internal I think you said?, you may want to segment new users who have one set of requirements to see what's generally going on from 'old hands' who want to get straight into their streams. It's possible that by collapsing everything onto one 'home page' layout you may not best serve both segments. Getting new and infrequent users to feel comfortable with the site and be able to get a 60,000 foot view may require an Overview page that addresses different use cases than an Activity page.


                                I'm not claiming that Jive always get it right but quite a bit of design work was done on the Activity page. See also https://community.jivesoftware.com/message/1258852

                                • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                                  I really like this discussion on what other companies have done to address their home/overview. Our's is an internal community and we have left it out-of-the-box on version 6 with the user deciding what they want as their home (best practice is to have Activity or Custom Stream as home). Our Overview page is an interactive 'magazine'-type homepage with blogs, constantly changing carousel of news, featured user, popular videos etc. We try to keep it simple but fresh. I would agree with comments about new users initially getting overwhelmed by activity and needing some sign-posting. We are prepping to move to V7 on prem very soon

                                  Keep sharing on this... it helps!

                                  • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                                    I like the layout and the idea of combining the activity and overview page.  We have utilized the overview page to showcase tips, tricks, training and blog postings highlighting how to use Jive, process of becoming a Community Manager, etc..  We built a custom widget that will "flip" through featured content within our Getting Started space, similar to what you see on the Yahoo homepage.  We are trying to make the "self serve" model of learning as easy as possible.


                                    Katherine Jones and Tony Stewart would you be willing to share the surveys you used to obtain the user feedback?

                                      • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                                        Hi Jen, thanks for your reply! 


                                        I hosted some 'in the room' sessions with a selection of employees from across our business, so the approach was less survey-based and more conversational. So while I can't offer the survey questions as such, hopefully the following insight will give you an idea of how we approached the project.


                                        Here was the pre-session task I assigned those attending (note that Wave is the name of our Jive community):


                                        Part of this session will be about us painting a picture on how our people are working every day, and how Wave can help. And I have just a few very quick questions (homework, I guess) before our session, that I hope you can answer before we get together:


                                        • What would you say are the main three tasks you complete on a regular basis?
                                        • What are the tasks/resources that you need to do to make these tasks happen?


                                        For example’ you may organise a lot meetings as part of your role. To make this happen, you could say that you need to know room availability, the names of who you need to invite, and agenda notes.


                                        • What are your day to day communication challenges?
                                        • What are the three main reasons you could/would use a platform like Wave?


                                        I’m really just looking for very short sentences for the above – but this insight will *really* help to paint a picture of the wants and needs of our Wave audience, and how we can ensure these tasks are as easy to complete as possible.


                                        And during the session we spoke about a range of activities, people's current experience with Wave and what they'd like to see more of. I summarised the session and shared the following back into the community, where the conversation continued:




                                        As the objectives of Wave are set, and more of our colleagues are using the platform to connect, communicate and collaborate across our business, we’ve taken some time to look at the platform that underpins Wave. This is to ensure that it meets the needs of our growing community while being as accessible and user-friendly as possible.


                                        Through various conversations during roadshows and training sessions, the results of our October user survey, conversations via Wave itself and a usability session hosted in December, we’ve pulled together some key learnings about our users, the tasks they regularly complete, and how Wave can empower them to work more effectively at NBCUniversal International.


                                        Communications challenges

                                        When asked about the communications challenges they face on a day-to-day basis, there were a range of issues faced by our colleagues:

                                        • Content - Attachments and and large files slowing down inboxes, unavailable to view on mobile or even crashing devices
                                        • Over-communicating - ‘check out this great article’ x10, duplication of the same messages, being unnecessarily copied into emails, ‘yes’ or ‘thanks’ messaging
                                        • Impact - Did they see my email? Was it passed on? How effective were my communications?
                                        • Threads - managing threads with multiple messages and colleagues, summarising decisions and keeping them all organised
                                        • Loss - people leaving the organisation, and with that useful messaging, decisions and content being lost
                                        • Finding expertise - who can help me with this problem? Who’s an expert in this field? Who should I invite into this new project?

                                        Existing social platforms

                                        Given the social network roots of Wave, we made some observations as to how our colleagues are using communications platforms like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIN to help them with their personal needs, and to help address some of the communications issues they face above in their personal lives. Some examples include:

                                        • Keeping up to date - monitoring what’s going on in the world, both widely, but also specific subjects like design, technology etc.
                                        • Sharing - a place to exchange information, rich content live videos and images, and discuss topics of interest
                                        • Personal brand - ensuring positive representation, and Google results on my name are visible and accurate
                                        • Contacts - a place to store personal and professional contacts; friends, family and professionals
                                        • Personal newspaper - a place to 'open each morning' to read my news tailored to me, that I can ‘dip in and out of’.
                                        • Social obligation - a fear of missing out.
                                        • Speed - faster that email; instant sharing and responses that I can also access on the move.

                                        What we want from Wave

                                        When asked about what features users would like in Wave, many social uses from the list above where echoed, but in a professional capacity:

                                        • Understand what my colleagues are doing, locally within immediate teams and chosen peers across the business
                                        • Exchange content, ideas, discussions about my work at NBCUniversal
                                        • Being known as the expert in my field, and champion my own and my team’s success
                                        • Ability to find colleagues based on name, team, expertise and build a network of contacts
                                        • A place to get a quick overview of what is going on in the business at any given time
                                        • Keep up to date on latest developments and changes in the business
                                        • Participating in discussions that are easy to access, searchable, fast and don’t require micro-management

                                        Additional features also included a place to ask questions and source answers from a wider audience of professionals. There was also a greater focus on collaboration and a place to work together digitally when talking about social in the workplace. Sharing content is great, but being able to create content with colleagues in an online space was seen as a huge benefit. This is something we see some colleagues are already benefiting from, but it’s a feature yet to be adopted widely due to what seems to be a lack of understanding and education.

                                        Wave barriers

                                        Based on our colleagues existing use of Wave, some barriers to use were also uncovered:

                                        • Official areas - ‘Is this a proper space’, which teams have an official presence in Wave?
                                        • Duplication - similar threads / groups on similar topics. Which one do we use?
                                        • Reporting - who has seen what message? Why do my own page views count on a blog?
                                        • Storage - is Wave now a place to store all our data? What are the rules? Are we just meant to signpost to the Intranet?
                                        • Tagging - how can taxonomy help organise our data? Is there an official tagging practice?
                                        • Notifications - how do I manage the emails Wave sends me? Why are these so frequent and ugly?
                                        • Reach - Wave is still to reach adoption levels that mean all of our colleagues can interact. What about our commercial partners? Agencies?
                                        • Education - teams / users still confused as to what Wave can really help them do
                                        • Visibility - Difficult to get a flavour of discussions as preview so brief. 'See more' button a fiddly extra step. Only one comment also restricts understanding of conversation.
                                        • Homepage - this isn’t surfacing the really good stuff, is complex to use, too busy and unattractive

                                        While some of these areas are work in progress (such as the education piece), there’s opportunity to put some formal governance and guidance in place to ensure future users understand how to avoid some of the issues above, while also speaking to Jive about new features that can help enhance the user experience too.


                                        Based on this research, we’ve been able to build 4 key Personas of those colleagues who could potentially see the most benefit from Wave, based on their typical at-work behaviours:

                                        • Business Support - colleagues in HR, IT, Pas and other similar roles that keep our business operating
                                        • Leaders - senior members of staff that lead strategy, consultations and large teams
                                        • New Joiners - new to the business, keen to build networks and understand our company
                                        • Creatives - building and championing our products; our creative minds and sales teams

                                        While there will be colleagues outside the scope of these personas, ensuring that these key categories are well serviced by Wave will help us achieve the greatest return from the platform. These Personas will be explored in more detail as the project moves forward. Opportunities During these discussions, may opportunities for Wave were shared; some as a reaction to things that aren’t quite right about Wave yet, and others that include new directions for the platform:

                                        • Recommended content - If you like this, then you’ll like this… type suggestions, potentially based on personal word-clouds
                                        • New users - Jive’s built-in guide to be customised for NBCUniversal International audience
                                        • Featured content - exciting groups, official spaces, interesting users to be given more prominence
                                        • Rich content visibility - photos, videos to be displayed more prominently in feeds. Larger preview of discussions and more comments visible.
                                        • Wave success - wavewins to be highlighted, help to lead good Wave behaviours by example
                                        • Gamification - encourage positive Wave behaviours through points, badges and recognition
                                        • Filters - make it easier to view content by divisions, regions, themes
                                        • Watercooler - create and promote ‘off topic’ social groups so users have more control over what they see, and don’t see
                                        • Advanced search - make advanced searching (content only, people only…) easier to access. Educate on advanced search terms
                                        • Officials - mark official groups and people with badges (‘verified’), so users can identify the real-deals


                                        Many of these opportunities tie in with the way the homepage is represented; a special focus will be made for this area of Wave in the next few weeks. This list of ideas will also grow as we explore the needs of our personas too.


                                        Next steps

                                        This research is just the beginning, and I’d invite anyone who had ideas for Wave features or changes to share them in the Wave - Usability research group - they can act as an action list to ensure the platform is in the best possible position for Launch in 2014!


                                        This led to the creation of our Personas (Happy to share these if of interest!) and the Wireframe you see above, which was informed through our research.


                                        Sorry for the lengthy post - but hope it's useful to you folks! Feedback on the approach and your thoughts much appreciated

                                          • Re: Our Homepage design - wireframe draft shared

                                            Hi Jen Mistretta


                                            The survey I conducted was more of a standard one (unlike Tony Stewart's focus based groups). I sent it out to all our users 5000+ and had 529 responses - not too bad given I didn't push heavily for responses. I wanted to send out a survey to capture insight since our launch back in April to find out what our users thought of their new workspace, materials for launch and the on-going support they get. I also wanted to open up the opportunity for them to make suggestions for enhancements so that we can work towards tailoring it for our users.


                                            Below are the questions I sent out. I could share some top level responses with you too.




                                            1. Did you find the prelaunch Campus digital video helpful?

                                            2. Did you find the little introduction guide book helpful?

                                            3. How often do you visit Campus digital?

                                            4. What would encourage you to use Campus digital more?

                                            5. Do you feel part of the Campus digital online community?

                                            6. Do you know who the community manager is in your department/business?or 2014

                                            7. From the list below, please tell us which features you use the most? Pick your top 3.

                                            8. What one thing frustrates you most about Campus digital?

                                            9. If you could add one additional feature what would it be and why?

                                            10. Give us one example of how you currently use Campus digital in your role.

                                            11. How would you rate the navigation on Campus digital?

                                            12. How would you rate the reaction of Campus digital Support to your questions?

                                            13. Does Campus digital Support provide useful answers to your questions? s improve

                                            14. Are there any other collaboration/social platforms or systems at work that you use?

                                            15. If you’re a fan of Campus digital and would be interested in becoming part of our

                                            Advocate Programme in 2014, please leave us your name below: