While most Community Professionals may think that coming up with what KPIs should be measured is a difficult task, I’ve actually seen more failure in how the KPI measurement is executed and how the data is reported.
When a community fails, more often than not, it’s because there’s no perceived value to the company. Your boss may one day ask you “what’s the value that this community brings to the organization—why do we even have a community?” Unfortunately, if you aren’t prepared and don’t have quantifiable results that clearly reflect the value of your community, you may soon end up forced to close the community or worse, without a job.
Recently I’ve become obsessed with knowledge bases. More specifically, I’ve been fascinated with how they get constructed, what knowledge gets included, how they are structured and where the source of the knowledge comes from.
Many of us here are huge fans of a particular gaming studio who recently perpetrated, in my view, one of the worst forum migrations in recent memory. They went from one vendor to another, not Vanilla (unfortunately), and we just watched with horror. They broke all the fundamental rules of migration best practices, so I felt I had to share what happened and how they could have avoided it.
Great communities exist because of the amazing people involved. I don’t think anyone would dispute that. Nonetheless, as departments and companies plan communities or they make decisions related to their online spaces, they tend to forget it's about people. I think part of the problem is we replace the word people when we talk about community, and use terms like members, users, or even super users. By using this terminology, it can be easy to forget the people factor. It’s very similar how in some corners project managers talk about “a resource”, when they really mean a person.