You've hit on one of the more important points in any type of internal collaboration solution - making the environment intuitive to the end user (regardless of the solution). I want to start of by stating that here at Clearstep we want to be able to talk about online communities and internal collaboration best practices in a technology agnostic mode. So, while this community is running Clearspace, and is hosted here at Jive Software, I want to ensure we are able to help everyone out and keep Clearstep from becoming a Clearspace support area (we already have that at www.jivesoftware.com/support).
With that said, explaining this new type of social technology (blogs, wikis, tags, bookmarks, RSS, etc.) to people who have not ever heard of it or used it is a key issue to adoption. If your user base is new to these types of technologies, I would recommend encorprorating the "________ in plain english" videos from Common Craft (www.commoncraft.com/blog). They explain blogs, social bookmarking, RSS, tagging, etc., and are available for download and use in your environment.
As you find material you like one thing I'd recommend is creating a space and putting the content in there. It could be as easy as making a "Getting Started" space and directing new users to that. One good benefit is that if that content exists in your community it'll be searchable later.
We have done just that - we have a high level community named "Getting Started" and sub-spaces focused on FAQs and Tutorials, Best Practices (for both end users and community managers), and feedback and questions.
We are continally revising it, and and as questions arise, we add/update the "library." We also encourage our community to contribute their own tips and tricks on how to do things on the site.
Hello Jamie and Everybody in this post.
Can I just have a look of your Getting Started Space structure. We are building now in my company our Getting Started Space and we don't really know (due to our experience in Jive) what are the most relevant informations to post in this page.
Here below an example of our Getting Started space. As you will note the widget on the right corner is not editable - No way to find How I can sort my document
Thank you for your help
Thanks very much, hopefully we can even contribute some things.
Ditto for us on creating a high-level spaces for beginners. We created two spaces: one called Builder's Corner for those with space, group, & user admin rights; and, one for populi called Getting Started with Clearspace. We felt that we wanted a uniquely provisioned space to converse directly with our dispersed community management team.
Here's an experiment around collaborating with fellow customers to create tutorials for a vendor's product (in this particular example, CS 2.5's new features)
Thought this might be of interest to you and everyone on this thread.
If it takes a maual or a tutorial to explain, it is already too complex for most users within a corporate community.
In order for a company to gain the maximum return on any investment in social networking, they have to get as many employees as possible using the system (and voluntarily using the system). Once you start using terms like wiki, blog and bookmarklet, you've lost most of your employees. if the solution you isn't intuitive, non-intimidating and fun to use, you are going to lose the battle.
I saw a demonstration last week at a corporate communications conference of a product called Cubeless that even I could understand how to use without a manual or tutorial. I think that is critical to driving adoption.