Ways you can help your community

Week notes 1 November 2019

Posted on 1 November, 2019

This week...

  • 2020 Choices outcomes  

  • Scaling to Trafford and beyond 

  • Organiser challenge – pair writing  

  • Speaking to new organisers  

  • Volunteering event category filter  

Co-operate background 

Stronger communities are at the heart of the Co-op strategy, so we’re going to completely reinvent what commercial, community partnerships should be. 

Being a co-op, we believe that more co-operation will improve our local communities. 

Co-operation is harder than it needs to be, so we're going to make it easier. 

The idea is that we build an initial range of tools or features and learn which ones Trafford use and which they’re not interested in. These tools need to be as real as we can make them so we can really understand what users do, instead of what they might tell us. 

Find out more on our About page. 

Co-operate 2020 choices  

There’s huge potential for Co-operate and a great deal of enthusiasm and support for what we’re doing across Co-op and out in the community. Though with all the opportunities available it’s been important to align on our impact and focus for 2020.  

This week we ran a choices session with both with the digital delivery team and with our community shared value colleagues, plus our executive level sponsor Matt Atkinson. The good news is that we're all aligned on the impact we want to be having which is a great place to be. 

Top voted areas of impact  

  • More participation at local events  

  • More helping each other ( e.g. volunteering and skills - recognition that these are mutually reinforcing) 

  • More local events ran in the community  

Top voted choices 

  • Login 

  • Free meet up 

  • Skills matching service  

  • Promotional toolkit  

  • Spaces  

  • How do I content for community organisers  

  • Franchise kits 

We all recognised the importance of login as an enabler and this ties to the membership as a service work that's been a priority for a digital.  

We're now working on collating this into a playback around how we'd translate this into a high-level plan of where we focus in 2020 which will then enable conversations around ways of working across the digital and community shared value teams.  

Scaling to Trafford and beyond 

As we scale to our next location, Trafford, we wanted to explore the different design routes we could take with this and so we focused on two concepts. The first design concept was more traditional and followed the same patterns we had used when starting in other areas previously. The second design concept was supposed to be more aligned with how other event sites work and we decided to look at this angle because early on we felt it would be more scalable than if we kept going down the traditional route, you can see this design below. 

We stuck the two design paths on the wall and as a whole team we stuck up post-it notes to say what we liked and what we didn’t like, and any questions we had. It was clear that the new design, design concept two, was the favourite.  

With the feedback in mind we are now splitting out the various aspects of the new design into chunks so that we can release them iteratively with hopes to start building next week. 

The outcome of this will result in making it easier for us to scale Co-operate into 2020 across more locations.  

Organiser challenge – pair writing 

Anne and Rachel have been knuckling down this week to create a content structure for the ‘organiser advice’ sections. They’ve been knee deep in job stories. Both Anne and Natalie got the knack very quickly. Brilliant to see. They’ve gone proper granular! 

We’ve created a Trello board where we're grouping the job stories into sections to create our skeleton structure. It's a pain staking process and if you look into the cards you'll see how many job stories there are and all the content we need to design to meet those needs  

Next week the hard work starts. The actual writing of the content.  

Essentially this is the MVP version of ‘How do I for organisers’. 

Speaking to new organisers 

This week, as part of a new piece of work on providing content to upskill and help new organisers, Ryan and Rachel headed out to Stretford. We met Cathy, she’s a new organiser who runs cycling training and group cycles for women in Stretford. 

We discussed how she got started, why, and what she’d struggled with. We then showed her some “free prototypes” which are existing websites and resources available to new organisers.  

We gathered her feedback on these existing resources, the good, the bad and the ugly and we’ll be using that feedback to inform what we make. We will be heading out to meet more new organisers next week with, our Co-operate prototypes in hand.  

We can’t wait to help new organisers find their feet in the complex word of organising successful community events. 

Volunteering event category filter 

We’ve not been getting lots of traffic to our ‘Lend a hand’ events. That’s partly because we haven’t pushed out or promoted these kind of events on the site yet.  

We know that when people search through Google, they use the words ‘volunteer’ and ‘volunteering opportunities’.  

Our Lend a hand events / opportunities are mixed in with all the other ‘regular’ events (we meant to do it that way to lower barriers and make volunteering less about long term commitment and more accessible). This can mean people miss them. 

Thanks to the work Fred did on editable categories in Contentful, we were able to act fast and add a ‘Volunteering opportunities’ category to the search filter on the site. We’ll monitor this over the coming week to see how many users click on it. 

Where’s Natalie been? 

Usually in our week notes we include a ‘where’s Natalie been?’ update, though we’ve not made it clear who Natalie is and how her role supports Co-operate to make an impact.  

Natalie is a Co-op member pioneer, which means she helps to bring people together in her local community to increase co-operation. Natalie is on a secondment from running a food store in Leeds and is now supporting us in the Trafford area where we’re currently growing Co-operate. Usually Natalie is out in the community meeting local organisers and groups that are making a difference and sharing their insights back with the team to ensure we’re always representing the needs of our end users – organisers. 

Though this week she’s having a well-deserved holiday, so we’ll be back to our regular format as of next week. 

That’s a wrap – have a lovely weekend trick or treating. 

I’ll mainly be treating myself to a well-earned slice of pumpkin pie!  


Posted by Rachael on 1 November, 2019