Communities have an immense cross-functional impact, but the State of Community Management 2018 also showed us how far that impact goes. Not only are community professionals responsible for the community and engagement, but individuals across organizations are increasingly responsible as well. What does that mean for community programs?
Community Responsibilities are Dispersed
According to this year’s data, 52% of respondents say that individuals outside of the community team have community engagement as a performance goal. That means that more than half of the community professionals who took the survey have individuals from their organizations that are required to be fully invested in the community program.
Additionally, 43% of respondents say that there are individuals outside of the community team who have community management responsibilities directly in their job descriptions. Not only are individuals from other functional groups responsible for community engagement as an internal goal, many are being told from the start that they are responsible for community management.
This is a sea change from a few short years ago when very few people in organizations were even aware of communities, never mind responsible for their success.
Community Responsibilities are Gaining Importance
If we look back at last year’s report, this year’s data, 52% and 43%, are far higher than the 20% of respondents who reported that community management was a part of their own performance reviews. That difference is significant.
That difference also shows how community responsibilities, and consequently, community programs, have gained visibility and importance in organizations – becoming integrated into core work processes rather than sitting adjacent to them.
We reported on how community positively affects strategic objectives across organizations, with a variety of functional groups seeing anywhere from 20% to 80% increases in such objectives as communications efficiency, case deflection, and revenue growth. While community teams have seen community’s positive influence for some time, functional groups across organizations are now more deeply involved and, in turn, also seeing that value. With this increase in visibility, community teams are showing their organizations how important the community program is to the success of the entire enterprise.
Community Programs Deserve Recognition and Resources
This visibility is all well and good, but if nothing comes from it, then what is the point? While understanding and the reach of community is growing, community team resources are relatively stagnant, even while they take on new responsibilities to support, coordinate, and train these emerging community members and leaders across their organizations.
We know that community teams are taking on “hidden” work and that they are burnt out, so how do we get them the recognition and resources that they need? As community management becomes everyone’s job, what are the strategies that can help those that support the discipline secure needed resources and support?
To read more about how we suggest community teams pair this community success and reach with gaining resources and recognition, download the State of Community Management 2018.