UX Design | Leadership
Socl Lead Thumbnail1.jpg

MICROSOFT RESEARCH FUSE LABS - SOCL

 

Microsoft Research FUSE Labs - Socl

Program Management & Content Strategy

OVERVIEW

Socl (pronounced 'Social') was an online community that Microsoft Research FUSE Labs created. It required 24/7 moderation and connected people from around the world.  

 


A screenshot of the Socl feed. 

MY ROLE

I was initially hired to be a community manager on a three month contract. Those three months turned into four years where I moved into a Program Management role.

I became the point person between Socl's user base and FUSE's design, dev and research teams. I also led a global, remote team of community managers.


PROGRAM MANAGEMENT - RESULTS

• Drove $180K in savings due to the change management of Socl’s local community moderator team to global contractors

• Saved 50+ hours of training time by writing a new training manual for global employees

• Sat in on design reviews and helped the FUSE team make strategic choices about new features based on a deep understanding of Socl's user base.

• Developed, managed and drove communications for Socl’s community policy philosophy

 

A post I crafted on Socl using images from around the web.


COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT & VISUAL INTERACTION

When I began, many users were posting spam and they weren't interacting.

Once my team and I infused the community with highly visual, dynamic collage work our users got creative. 

In fact, our core users would stay on Socl for up to ten hours a day. Check out their work below!

               One of those spammy posts by a marketer on Socl.  

 
 

USER RESEARCH

I encouraged Socl's community to give regular feedback on the user experience, which created a super loyal community and provided FUSE Labs with a deep understanding of our user's needs. I brought this insight back to our design, dev and research teams every week as they continued to improve the user experience.

 

 

A collage I created on Socl using images from around the web. 

 

REFLECTION

In my time at FUSE Labs I learned how powerful it is to listen to your users. There were a few features that the FUSE team implemented without first consulting with our community, and we lost several of our core users as a result.

I now see the importance of first going to your users, listen to what they want, create it for them and ask for their feedback with each step. This way they feel they were part of the process and, in turn, you have created something highly relevant.


   A FEW OF THE COLLAGES I CREATED ON SOCL

Each collage was created with seperate images found around the web. I secretly dream of turning my Socl posts into a series of paintings.