Almost a year on from starting the giffgaff Ideas Board we feel it is time to review what has happened, how it works, what we’ve done with it and what we’re going to do in the future.
When we first launched the Ideas Board we never expected it to take off as much as it has. The response has been truly overwhelming. So much so that in the last couple of months we’ve simply been unable to cope with the huge amount of ideas which are submitted by our members.
We’ve tried several ways of coping with this demand and our initial stance has always been to reply personally to each and every Idea submitted to us by our members. We felt it was the right thing to do as someone who submits an Idea to us, has put time and effort into sharing their thoughts with us in the hopes of improving our network and making it better suited to their needs, so we should at the very least give them the courtesy of spending some time to properly review the Idea and give some insight and feedback into why we would accept or reject it.
Although we still love the philosophy behind this, due to the sheer volume of Ideas submitted to giffgaff we are going to have to change things around slightly. We feel that it's better to cut down the ones we personally respond to than get further and further behind in dealing with each and every idea submitted.
We have looked at the Ideas that are being submitted and the popularity rating they are given by the community in the form of Kudos.
You might know that if someone likes an Idea, they can click the yellow star and this shows their appreciation of it. To deal with the sheer volume of Ideas being submitted we are now looking of setting an initial kudos threshold of 10 kudos to an Idea before we review it. As the community grows and Ideas get more and more kudos, we might have to increase that threshold, but initially we’re happy to set it at 10. We feel this is very reasonable and gives the community the initial voting power to raise an Idea to our attention.
We will when time permits still look at Ideas which have less kudos, but the personal responses will initially be made only to those Ideas which reach the threshold we set.
To give you an insight of how we judge the merits of an Idea, I can tell you we look at how well it fits with our Brand Values, if it has a very Minimal Appeal using our own judgement as well as the amount of kudos it has received and if it does not Replicate something we’ve either already got in place or if it is something we’re already working on.
Once it’s passed those initial hurdles, we then create a sort of scorecard whereby we look at the time it would take to implement, the cost of the whole project, the complexity as well as the possibility of integration into our existing system, how commercially viable it is, if it is a strategic fit for us as a company looking at what we’re currently doing and our current goals and lastly what the priority of the suggested Idea is in terms of impact and the roadmap we already have in place.
So as you can see there are a lot of factors we have to take into account when we look at these.
Of course we did not start the Ideas Board with this understanding but over the year these have been our learnings from the project. This means we now understand we have been too liberal with the acceptance of Ideas when we started it early last year.
With the small team and small budget we have it makes it very hard to actually implement all of the Accepted Ideas we currently have on the back-log. So we might have to revisit these in due course. However, we do feel we’ve achieved a lot in less than a year by implementing a total of 134 ideas and we will continue to do our best to implement as many Ideas as possible, even while working on our own Ideas and projects to move giffgaff on to the next stage.
I hope this has given everyone a good insight of what has been happening with your ideas, what we’ve learned from the process and how we’re going to move forward. Of course, as always, we value your feedback on this. I hope you have all enjoyed submitting your Ideas over the last year and will continue to do so. On top of this I hope you have found our judgement of Ideas to be fair and reasonable and that you’re happy with what we’ve been able to accomplish so far.