The communities team is happy to announce that the CA Communities platform is upgrading to a cloud based version of our current platform in early November, and with the move comes a whole slew of new features and functionality. This blog post will provide an overview of these new features and what to expect, all of the features listed here are also reviewed in the video Cloudy With A Chance of New Features by Chris_Stallone, and in this recording of a live cloud platform demo that was held on October 28: CA Communities Cloud Platform Demo. Also check out What's Different in Cloud for an overview of changes to existing functionality.
New look and feel:
With the move to cloud comes a whole new look and feel for the CA Communities. This change will include a redesigned homepage and minor changes to our general look and feel to give things a sleeker look. Not to worry, though, most things will remain the same despite the aesthetic changes.
The most noticeable change will be the path to navigate to your inbox/custom streams. Your inbox and custom streams have been moved off of the communities homepage, and into their own, individual pages. Custom streams are now located under the “News” tab on the top navigation bar, and inbox notifications have moved next to your global drop down on the top right of all communities pages. To get to your inbox, just click on the notifications icon.
Your View is a cool new tool located on the Inbox page. It is a customizable page that you can use to compile all the important or interesting content you want to see all on one page. You can get there by clicking on your inbox notifications (shown above), and selecting “Your View” from the left-hand navigation.
Your View is a customizable page that allows you to see all of the content/people/places that are most important to you on one page. To edit Your View click on the “Edit this page” prompt at the top right of the Your View page, and click the down arrow on one of the sections. This will open up space to allow you to add a tile of frequently viewed, viewed, or important content. To edit a tile, click on the gear icon at the top right of the tile – to delete it, click on the trashcan icon.
Follow a tag:
If you’ve ever felt like following an entire community provided you with too much information, you’re in luck! Now, users are able to follow tags via custom streams! This capability will allow users to follow product tags for updates on content created for specific products. You can also follow other tags such as “webcasts” or “CA World 15.” Tags can now be added to custom streams just like communities and people, and multiple tags can be added to the same stream. Adding a tag to your stream will automatically populate that stream with content that has been tagged recently, and the stream will update every time a new piece of content is created with that tag, as well as every time that tag is added to an existing piece of content. You can turn email notifications on for this stream from the edit stream page, or from within your preferences.
One of the biggest requests we’ve gotten since our move to Jive last year was to find a way to identify CA employees – well, with the new feature of role-based badges, we’re happy to say we’re now able to do that! Role-based badges are icons that appear next to a user’s username everywhere within the CA Communities (when they post content, comment, and even in their profile). Off the bat, these badges will be given to CA employees, but the communities team is looking out for more ways they can be used in the future as well. Check out the screenshot below for an example of a CA employee role-based badge.
Share across multiple spaces:
If you participate in several communities, and ever hoped for a way to post to multiple communities at once – you’re in luck! With the move to cloud comes the capability to share content across multiple communities. So how does it work? Now, after you’ve created a piece of content, you can click on the “Share” button, and select the communities you’d like to share this content with. Once you share the content with a community, that content will pop up on the communities’ homepage and content pages. However, when a user clicks on that content, they will be brought back to the original content (in the other community) that was shared. This allows the content to appear in several communities, while still compiling all comments/likes/views/etc. in one place.
Once you’ve shared that content to other communities, you can also easily remove any of the shares by heading to the original content and clicking on the “Appears in __ other places” prompt at the top of the content page. You can add more communities by simply clicking the “Share” button again.
New discussion options:
Now, users have the ability to click "I have the same question" to raise a question up in priority and indicate that multiple users are interested in finding an answer. Experts also now have the option to sort open questions by "most same questions" to see which questions have the most interest and prioritize accordingly. We hope this new feature will speed up the response time for questions, as marking "I have the same question" will raise the question up in priority and put more focus on it, and discourage the creation of duplicate questions which slow down response time.
"Helpful" comments are also brought to the forefront with the "helpful" button moved out from under the actions menu and placed next to the "like" button. Users now also have the ability to quickly see how many users have marked a response as helpful. This feature will allow users to find correct/helpful answers quickly by showing which response was helpful to the most people.
Document templates allow users to create several similar documents without having to create all of the content/formatting multiple times. A document template can be created by finding the document you’d like to copy and clicking on the title to be brought to the full content page. Once there, you’ll see the option to “Create a copy” under the “Actions” menu. Once you click on “Create a copy” you’ll get a pop up like the one below. Simply select the type of content you’d like to copy the formatting to and click “create a copy” to be brought to a “create” page with a pre-populated piece of content that mirrors the original document.
**Please note: document templates can only be applied to documents created directly within the Jive platform, and do not apply to uploaded documents.
New Community Filters:
With the new platform comes the ability to categorize communities, making it easier than ever for users to find new communities they’re interested in. You can filter through communities by category by heading to the “Communities” tab from the top banner of the site, and clicking on “+Add Filter” next to the “Filter by text” field. Once you do that, a drop down will appear that will allow you to switch between filtering by tags or filtering by category. Once you select “Filter By Category,” you will see the word “All” appear with a down arrow. Click on that down arrow to see a list of the available community categories, and click on any of these categories to filter the list to display only communities that fall within that category. Examples of categories we might use would be “Global Product Communities” to show all of our product-specific communities, or maybe product types, like “Mainframe” to make communities of similar products easier to find.
With this new platform comes improved mobile compatibility that will improve your experience when navigating to communities.ca.com from your mobile browser. All pages on the communities site are now designed to be more compatible with a mobile browser, so overall experience will improve.
That’s it for now! We hope that these new features will help to improve your experience on the site. For any questions, please feel free to leave a comment below, or create a new thread in the Water Cooler. As always, we’re standing by to help anyone who has questions, and will continue to answer questions through the launch of the new platform.