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Hi, Angela. We have been working to move our community, Neo, away from widgets since 2015. The Widget and Tile Comparison Grid for Cloud (2016.3) is a great resource. I actually took the information there and made it into a spreadsheet with two tabs (Tiles Only and a Tile and Widget Comparison chart) to help our community move from widgets to tiles (see attached*). We also created a toolkit to help people "convert" their Overview pages into Activity + Pages. The response to adopting Tiles and Activity + Pages in our community has varied, but people prefer Tiles once they make the switch. We've provided a lot of help documentation and the option for 30-minute #AskNeo one-on-one sessions to help people make the change, which has been well received.
These are the main talking points we focus on:
1. Tiles are accessible and dynamic, so you can access them on any device (widgets are not).
2. Tiles use content that already exists, so if a Page is deleted, you aren't losing actual content. (We had instances when the Formatted Text Widget was used a lot and someone deleted an Overview page and all of the content within those widgets was lost.)
3. Jive is not developing new widgets, nor is it focusing on fixing bugs in curent widgets. (We are encouraging our community to focus on the latest and best tech available.)
The tiles we are waiting on include an RSS feed tile. We are also waiting on improvements to some of the existing tiles, like the Super List tile, which should be coming in 2017.1. Social Edge Consulting has developed some great tiles to help fill some of the gaps, including a Blog tile that we use (and love!).
We have found work arounds for nearly every widget that doesn't have a one-to-one tile match by using the Document Viewer or Super List tiles. Personally, I prefer using tiles over widgets because you are working with already created content and the risk of having to start from scratch is much lower. I also think that the tiles look better and the out-of-the-box features serve our community well.
I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any other questions.
*Please note that I changed the Tile Categories names in our community. So the standard "Lists - Custom" is "Lists created by you" in our community. To change these names, go to Admin Console > Add-Ons > Tile Categories.
Thank you, Maren. This is fantastic. I appreciate this info very much.
Congratulations on making the transition. It sounds like it's going well.
I noticed one change that will affect my group is the lack of a recent content widget. Looks like folks would need to get that info by clicking on the activity page rather than embedding something on the overview page.
Thanks again, Maren. You saved the day.:)
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You're right that there is no way to add the Recent Activity to a full landing page, but there is a way to address this for some groups: encourage them to use the Activity page as the landing page. That forces you to be selective in the content that you present on the landing page, since you only get the skinny right column to place tiles, plus one tile above the activity stream.
It's not the solution for every group, but I like the "less is more" concept and I always try to present it as one of the options to consider.
I am also encouraging groups that are created for communication and engagement to use the activity page - also it gives a lot of people that 'Facebook feed' feel they are after when working with teams.
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Hi, Angela. You're welcome!
The lack of a Recent Content Tile is one of the areas where we've used the Super List Tile as a workaround. If you go to the place's content page, you can use that feed, or customize for the activity you are looking for, and pull that into a Super List Tile. We have also used Ted's recommendation of steering people to the Activity page.
thanks for sharing
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Hello Angela Watson. I would suggest reading this: Re: Have you transitioned your community to tiles from widgets? Why or why not?
We recently transitioned from widgets to tiles and it was a worthwhile experience in a number of ways. See my post in the discussion above.