Ways you can help your community

Week notes 15 May 2020

Posted on 15 May, 2020

This week... 

  • Update in numbers 

  • Brand direction update 

  • Volunteer verification journey 

  • Online activities 

  • Content design on Co-operate 

Our vision 

For people that care about their community 

Who want to join forces to get things done  

Co-operate is a national community centre for co-operation  

That connects people in and across communities with one another to make things happen 

Unlike a physical community centre restricted by geography and funding, or a community digital platform distracted by monetisation  

Our product is created with communities, for communities, and is owned by communities 

The lockdown may mean communities cannot come together in person, but our mission - to help people make good things happen in communities - has never been more crucial.  

We want to start a new co-operation movement across each community in the UK. 

Read more on our updated About page. 

Update in numbers  

Total users are down slightly versus last week after a drive of traffic from Parkrun last week. However, returning users are up by 2% compared to last week. 

Overall the number of pageviews is also up by 2% compared to last week at 11,012 views. 

Average session durations have increased by +28.79% too. With the page receiving the highest number of views being: /offer-support/, and the number of offers to support up 32.42% compared to last week. 

The most popular how to guide is: ‘How to be a Co-op food delivery volunteer’. Followed by still ‘How to volunteer safely’ and ‘How to look after your mental wellbeing’. 

9 more online activities have been added, that’s a total 352. (We need a lot more!!) 

Design direction update  

Since getting the feedback from user testing last week, we’ve made a start on merging these two design routes into one:

We’re also having conversations with team members from across the business, to make sure the new designs fit within the overall Coop family while maintaining its own flavour. Stay tuned for new visuals soon. 

121 volunteer matching 

When working at the kind of pace we have been over of the past couple of weeks, it is normal to accumulate ‘technical debt’. Stuff that was done quickly to make it work that can be sorted out later. This week our developers have been working through that debt, they: 

  • changed the code to a language that's easier to iterate and test in the future 

  • made lots of security and stability improvements to better align with the our usual infrastructure standards 

  • updated the Yoti (identity check service) email failure messages so they're easier to understand 

  • improved the system stability  

  • fixed the small bugs found by users hitting the system for real  

  • added much more thorough testing to increase our confidence and cadence  

  • provided our first batch of data to the Co-op customer services team for matching 

Our developers will sleep better now, and they deserve to! 

Online activities 

We’ve had over 350 activities submitted from across the UK. Here’s the spread of the first 200 (I used a free tool with 200 limit!):

We have a high concentration in the areas we were active before lockdown (Leeds and Trafford), a good spread, but clearly not the density we need yet.    For many people a search in their local area will result in no results. So, this week we added two features to help ease that. 

1) Set your own radius 

We already know that people have different perceptions of what their local area is, so we should let them set this for themselves. This also gives them the chance to explore a little further afield if they get no results. We’ve also set the default to 10 miles for now, but we hope that we can move this 5 miles once we have greater coverage. Make it feel hyper-local.

2) Handpicked activities 

We have selected three online activities available to everyone across the UK for each category of activity type. So whenever you search you’ll get at least 3 things to do, even if there’s nothing being run in your local area.

You’ll see we’ve also added links to our How to guides, which also give you plenty of ideas on things to do. 

Content design on Co-operate

  Content design is at the centre of Co-operate's design process. We work closely with researchers, interaction and service designers to create designs and journeys that are: 

  • user focused 

  • action orientated 

  • give people the information they need, at the time they need it 

  • understandable 

  • intuitive 

We understand that people are busy and come to Co-operate with other tasks competing for their attention, so we get to the point, fast.  

We rely on research and evidence to understand users motivations and mental models. By understanding how a user approaches a task, and the language they use to describe it, we can create content that resonates with them.     We create content across all parts of the service: the Co-operate site, in forms, emails, text messages, edit activity listings and inspiring stories, communicate to internal and external stakeholders. We focus on what the audience needs to know and ensure consistency across channels and formats. This transparency of process and consistency means people will increasingly trust us, and keep returning to us. 

This week we've been: 

  • creating the content for a new form so people can add information on their local groups to Co-operate 

  • reviewing content across the full journey of a new initiative (top secret 😶!), including emails, forms and thank you pages  

  • creating a ‘How we talk about Co-operate guide’ 

  • creating a way to help organisers describe what they do more easily 

  • creating a follow up email for people who have added a coronavirus support scheme 

  • collaborating with the other designers for new pages that are on the way 

  • reviewing and updating the whole 121 matching journey 

...and much more. Most weeks we are designing content across many different areas and this week, as you can see, has been no exception.   

Hope you have nice weekend, I’m planning a trip across the hall to the lounge. 

The Co-operate team  

Posted by Ben on 15 May, 2020