In part 1 of this 6-part Blogathlon, I discussed the goals of Social IT – i.e. what you can expect to achieve if you correctly implement Social IT within your organisation. In parts 2 – 6 I’ll outline and explain the 5 Social IT metrics: Contribution, Engagement, Influence, Efficiency, and Trend Analysis.
Within any content-based environment you have people who create content, people who consume content, and people who contribute to already existing content. These activities are made possible because of the interactions that can take place between people within any well designed Social environment. Without the ability to interact, exchange ideas and augment the information that already exists, we would have static content that doesn’t change and very quickly becomes irrelevant (hey – remind you of those out-dated Knowledge Base articles?!) The Contribution metric focuses on measuring the creation and contribution aspects of a content-based system (i.e. your Social IT environment).
There are 4 key measurements of contribution:
Content creation is the most basic and yet most essential element of Contribution. Without this initial creation step, we would not have any content in our environment and we would not be able to consume that content. This measurement looks at the type of content being created (e.g. a Word document or PDF, a screenshot of a problem, a “how to” video, links to other sources of information, logging an Incident, sharing some news etc.) and also the frequency with which it is created.
Knowledge is created when an Incident is resolved or when a Question is answered, for example. To understand knowledge creation better we measure the number of people answering Questions, resolving Incidents, commenting on Discussions or News stories etc. as well as measuring the frequency with which this happens.
In any social environment, groups form naturally whether they are formal, tightly-focussed groups or informal, loosely organised groups. Groups are a way of enabling people with similar interests to hang out and meet each other, creating some mutual benefit as a result. The Social IT environment is a perfect place for groups to form, and a great way to increase the contribution within your organisation. This measurement looks at the number of groups created, the type of groups created, and the size of those groups.
Interactions are the lifeline of any social environment. Without interaction there is no chance of building any form of relationship, and without a relationship there is no collaboration or knowledge creation. In Facebook the interactions are ‘like’, ‘poke’, ‘comment’, ‘add friend’, ‘delete friend’ etc. and similar interactions can exist within your Social IT environment. People can vote for a correct answer to a question, follow an item to receive an update, or comment on an Incident or Change. These are all forms of contribution and add to the existing content within your Social IT environment in some way. It is important therefore to measure the type and frequency of these interactions.
In the next leg of this epic journey I will discuss Engagement and how to measure it. Until then, please feel free to practise your contribution skills by leaving comments below or sharing this through your Social Networks.