Today I’m very proud to announce a trio of major feature releases to the Social HubSite platform that will transform how nonprofits work with their members and committees.
Over the past 6 months we have been working very closely with nonprofits to uncover some of the major challenges holding them back from achieving their mission.
Here are some of the major challenges we uncovered:
- Getting committee/group members to respond within the platforms they use for collaboration (mainstream tools required an implied knowledge of the system and therefore members, unlike teams within a company, don’t use it)
- Holding committee members accountable to their tasks
- Getting updates from various committees to report progress
- Notifying relevant committee members of document changes (most cloud-based solutions don’t offer this as a feature)
- Collaboration around specific documents (currently taking place by email which causes error and inefficiency in work flow
- Documents weren’t collaborative (too much reliance on a local copy of Word Docs, PDFs, etc.)
- Committees still require too many meetings to stay on track
These are just some of many that these types of organizations face. We decided to focus our attention on this particular list since it relates closer to collaboration.
Through careful focus and collaboration with nonprofits during the development process of these new features, we are proud to unveil the following new feature sets:
- Member Check-ins
- Collaborative Docs
- Weekly Report Cards
Member Check-ins help solve the problem of getting committee members to respond, holding them accountable and enabling them to stay organized. Simply put, a Member Check-in is an automated message that goes out on days of the week that you choose. The purpose of the message is to get updates from all members of your Social HubSite.
Below is a sample message using the custom editor for subject line and message. Take notice how the standard information necessary for members to login is built right into the email template for you.
- There is a default subject line and message setup for you if you decide not to change any options.
- If you don’t update any options, Member Check-ins will send on Thursday’s at a random time.
- Select and deselect days of the week to send your Member Check-in
- If only 1 day of the week is chosen and a custom message isn’t entered, the default message will reference what members got done over the past week instead of the past day
- Enter a custom subject line and message for your Member Check-in
- Members have the option to turn off Member Check-in’s and turn them back on at any time from their settings page
- You can turn Member Check-in’s off and on as you feel necessary (e.g. for holidays, etc.)
The goal of this feature is to get members to habitually use your Social HubSite to update their committees, manage projects, share documents, etc. A Member Check-in is nothing more than an external trigger that increases engagement by sending members through a loop of psychological rewards as described by Nir Eyal, Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author of “Hooked”.
This external trigger feeds contribution into the community which then sparks several other aspects of the community that keep members coming back. For example, instant notifications, daily, or weekly digests.
A major gap with mainstream document storage and collaboration solutions is how they integrate documents with notifications and member access permissions from a system (such as Social HubSite) that ties together the other pieces that support how an organization operates. For example, notifying a private committee group that a document has been added or edited without requiring committee members to have an account with whatever document tool you might be using, such as Dropbox or Google Drive.
Again, these third party tools are great to use and offer some really robust features, however alone they aren’t designed to support multiple groups of people (e.g. committees, boards, etc.) that each collaborate a little differently.
To solve this problem, we are starting to integrate collaborative document tools right into the Documents section of your Social HubSite. For example, sharing a document from your Dropbox account with a committee.
Another example is with a mind mapping tool built into the editor that allows you to build out diagrams such as strategic plans, organization charts, etc.
When you are done adding to or editing a collaborative document you can assigned to a group with a wide array of permission options so you can decide who has editing capabilities, who can view the document and so on.
Weekly Report Cards
As an administrator of any collaboration platform, it can be a challenge to keep up with member activity. To overcome this challenge, we developed the Social HubSite Weekly Report Card.
The Weekly Report Card will go out to the administrator of a Social HubSite and provide you with all relevant information within your community. For example, how many updates were posted in the past week from projects, documents, meetings and a number of other activities that take place within your Social HubSite. It’s a quick glimpse at what’s going on
The Weekly Report Card feature is brand new and will continue to evolve with information and statistics that are meaningful to you.
Below is a sample Weekly Report Card for a Social HubSite.
These 3 features will be slowly rolled out to all Social HubSite’s over the next week.
The release of these new features supports our continued effort to turn Social HubSite into a better platform to remove the headache and chaos of managing various committees and groups by keeping your members accountable and organized, all in one place.