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We are working to help increase the awareness of, participation in, and adoption of OSLC, but how will we measure our outcomes? How, even, are we sure we're focussing on the right things?

Lets do a community survey (just like Eclipse (pdf))! But what questions should we ask?

Request for Comment

Given the work below, I've drafted up a set of questions. Please take the time to review - you can add any comments here.

Please consider:

  • Are there questions we don't need to ask?
  • Are there questions missing that we should ask?
  • Should some questions be worded differently?
  • Is there a set of people (stakeholders) we're not engaging?

Update, SeanKennedy - 22 Feb 2012: About the draft survey, here is the breakdown of questions (to give an idea of survey size):

  • Base question set (for everyone): 10 + 3 filter questions + 1 final comment question = 14 total
  • Additional questions for workgroup participants: 12
  • Additional questions for implementers: 13
  • Additional questions for users: 3

SeanKennedy - 15 Feb 2012: For me, I wonder if we should try to direct some questions towards the IT staff who have to implement/deploy/maintain the software systems and the integrations.

SeanKennedy - 16 Feb 2012: A comment I've recieved by email: some of the initial questions can move to the back (i.e. things like organization size, role in the organization etc.).

LeeReamsnyder - 16 Feb 2012: A few comments:

  • Question 2 - "None" or "Less than 2 years" could mean the same thing.
  • 3 - Suggest removing "I don't know" when we have an "Other" field.
  • 6 - Maybe clarify that "Other staff function" includes "IT support" if you're looking to capture that
  • 6 - Could there be any conflict b/w "Consultant" and "Individual not affiliated with an organization"?
  • 7 - there's the potential for confusion between "2011" and the "0-3 months ago" or "3-6 months ago" as all three of those could mean the same thing. Probably best to go entirely with years or entirely with "... ago" ranges. If you wanted to narrow it down to recent converts, you could add a question. Like, if they pick "2011" follow up with "first half of 2011" or "last half of 2011" or something like that.
  • 8 - Replace "Don't know" with "I can't remember". Or maybe remove that entirely since you're not asking how they first heard about OSLC
  • 11 - same date range issue as with Question 7
  • 12 - We don't need "Other" if we list all the workgroups.
  • 13 - Clearer phrasing: "Do you still participate in the workgroups that you selected above?"
  • 14 - Maybe change "elucidation" to "clarification". Better: change all of them to verb statements like "Clarifying scenarios", "Selecting scenarios", "Writing specifications" etc
  • 14 - Additional options: (Definitely) "Developing implementations" (Maybe) "Writing support documentation" ... Steve or Mike might have a few more ideas
  • 15 - This will have different options if you make any adjustments to 14
  • 18 - Better phrasing on the second half of the question (I think this is what we're asking for) ", do you have any additional thoughts on the tools that your workgroups used?"
  • 19 - "Real-time collaborative editor" is a little unclear. Maybe throw in "(like Google Docs)" to clarify with the biggest player in that space
  • 27 - Maybe an additional option: "To integrate two or more 3rd party products" (like Tasktop Sync)
  • 29 - Additional option: "Tutorials on"?
  • 30 - People can't easily (or very accurately) imagine what's good for other people. Rewrite along these lines for better responses: "Thinking of your experience implementing specifications, which of the following areas would you like to see improved to make it easier for you or others to implement specifications?"
  • 31 - Or maybe just use this question instead of 30

SeanKennedy - 22 Feb 2012: Some more input arrive by direct email:

Overall, I really liked the survey - All the questions seemed very relevant. Nearly all the q / a 's were concise and clear. The format and design of the survey from a UI perspective was very consistent and seems clean.

Just some of my thoughts... note that some of them really just are preferences - so disregard them or take anything useful.
Page 1
*(Just nitpick…. and just a preference if anything - you have 'OSLC 2012 Community Survey' 2x at the top - i know one is the master border and the inner border changes)

*Not sure i would put 'don't know' as an option.. only because I'd want them to make an effort to describe their industry by using other at the bottom

*(Just nitpick… and maybe just me) But the options.. 'Tool… something' . Tool can have many contexts and especially different from a 'Utilities' to a 'High-End tech Software' company.. and in fact probably someone with the usual common sense would probably understand the context of tool here - i see this as a very small potential point of ambiguity.. Not sure if 'software tool integrator' or a sentence each would help me identify better… If you feel everyone understands the context of 'tool' then i prefer the short and concise format you have in place.

Contrasting my suggestion in Q3, i would be in favor of keeping the Don't know here.. reason being.. i could see a user not remembering where they heard about OSLC and i would rather they say don't know than funnel it falsely into another bucket.

This isn't a bad comment, but one that made me think of something funny… regarding one of the choices "Scenario elucidation"… i imagined all these people going to to do queries on that word. My ignorance has been revealed!

I'm not sure if Q18 is intended specifically to capture the purpose I'm about to describe… but I think a good follow up question to Q17, is a comment box that allows people to explain why certain tools (Forum, direct email.. etc..) were not useful to them.. or to include thoughts on how a tool could be more useful…

I'm not sure how long you're going to keep the community survey up, nor for I know the frequency at which the different specs evolve into the next version etc.. but putting an 'Other' box here may provide a buffer for where the survey isn't updated.. Unless of course, there is no 'other' intentionally so that you can programmatically tally something in the database… or the reality is that the form will be updated before anyone has a chance to implement a new version of the spec…

I see the potential for an other box that let's user specify things like… the OSLC workshop, Friends that have implemented it, Webcasts.. .to kind of catchall and let us know if there's another resource or trend that we aren't considering - but has been impactful.

Another email:

The draft is a good start, and here are suggestions I have to improve it so that we gather more valid result (sorry I don't have the bandwidth to comb through every questions).

Page 1 - get rid of the text inside the parenthesis "and the survey won't take very long, your answers will disqualify..." This sounds bad and people easily get confused by it :-)
Q2 - I am not sure what you are going after with the phrase "professional experience". Are we talking about programming experience, or simply any type of work experience? and how does general work experience (e.g. someone has been a doctor for 10 years) help us in the survey? I think we should be more specific about the type of experience we want users to tell us.
Q7 - Mixing the scale for the answers could lead to poor results. I suggest we either use years (2008, 2009, ...) for all the answer choices, or use 0-3 months, 3-6 months, 6-12 months, etc.
Q8 - The "Don't know" choice doesn't seem to make sense here :-)
Q9 and all other rating questions - The 1 to 10 scale is a poor choice for rating questions. We should use a 5-point or 7-point Likert scale for all rating questions.
Q11 - Similar to Q7, we are mixing the scale for the answers.

SeanKennedy - 23 Feb 2012: More email responses today:


Here are some editorial comments:

Question 2

-You could change "None" to "not applicable"

-If it fits with the kind of analysis you want to do with the data, consider merging some of the year categories -- less than 2, 2-5, 6-15, more than 15 (because 15 years is a long time in software)

Question 6

Do you want to add a category for independent consultants/sole proprietor?

Question 11

Change the last selection to "I haven't participated in an OSLC workgroup."

New after Question 11

Consider adding a question about whether there is interest in participating in workgroups in the future.

Question 15

Consider rephrasing to use this format:

- Change question to:
, how well do you feel you were able to contribute in the following cases?

-Then, list on far left changes to read:

During scenario elucidation
During scenario selection


It's more readable.

If you do this, apply the same changes to Questions 20, 22, and 28.

For example for Question 22, change to say:
"Considering your experiences participating in workgroups, how likely are the following actions for you?"

Recommend to your peers that they join a work group.
Continue your participation in workgroups
Join a new workgroup covering a topic relevant to you.

Question 28

Replace : with ? in question.

Initial cap items in far left column

Question 29

Same comments as for Question 28

Question 30

Initial cap choices to be consistent with use elsewhere.

Question 31

Initial cap the choices

Question 35

Change to "how would you rank them with respect to the following software qualities?"

Common questions
Shown to all participants.
What are some of the biggest challenges you face with OSLC?

<Comment> we should also try to ask what they did when they ran into issues or faced challenges.
For example,
(internal customers) did they reach out to teams that have done this before?
(external customers) did they open a service request with their software provider?
did they
did they reach out to sale rep? their lab advocate? or
do they post questions some where ( forum? or OSLC community site)?
We want to identify gaps - either in documentation, in services team, in community, in support, etc.

What are some of the biggest successes you have with OSLC?

<Comment> This sounds a little vague - but I am not sure how to make it clearer.
For example, did they write their own application against the Rational products that provide OSLC service? (If you need, I can send you a customer presentation on the value realized with CQ OSLC CM services). Did they implement an OSLC provider for their own products?
What were the things (read documentation, follow on tutorial, buy services? etc.) they did that contributed to their success?

SeanKennedy - 23 Feb 2012: Notes from Comms WG meeting:

  • shorter is better
    • limit the number of required questions
    • provide a way to skip to the end if they've had enough
  • put the most important questions first so they are most likely to be answered
  • prizes? legal problems about collecting personal information during the survey ...
    • can we give a prize for people retweeting certain tweets that promote the survey? Sean to look into
    • prizes: buttons? ipod shuffle?
  • can do more surveys later to fill in any gaps in this survey (don't add more questions for IT people now, for example)
  • Sean and Parham will meet Monday to review (Sean will update survey based on all comments first)
    • after, will provide another package for final comment to the WG mailing list
  • goal is to start the survey March 1 - run it throughout the month

General demographic questions

  • What country do you reside in?
  • How many years of professional experience do you have?
  • Which of the following most closely describes your industry?
  • What is your best estimate of how many employees work at your organization?
  • Which of these titles best fits your role in the organization?
^-- enums for these will be pulled from those used in the Eclipse survey (SeanKennedy - 10 Feb 2012)

SteveSpeicher - suggested question:

  • What is your organization's primary role?
    1. Tool provider
    2. Tool user
    3. Tool integrator
yes, lets add that -- SeanKennedy - 10 Feb 2012

OSLC demographic questions

  • When did you first hear about OSLC?
    • How did you first hear about OSLC?
  • When did you start participating in OSLC? (one answer is "I don't participate")
    • How have you participated? (scenario developement, spec developement, asking implementation questions, ... - check all that apply)
  • Have you implemented any OSLC specifications?
    • Which ones? (list each spec, provider and consumer - check all that apply)
  • Do you use a software solution that is integrated using OSLC? (provide OSLC "implementations" list if people are not sure)

SteveSpeicher - suggested question (perhaps belong in other sections)

  • What integration alternatives have you used in the past?
    • what alternatives should we list? CORBA, OSGi, custom/proprietary API, ... (SeanKennedy - 10 Feb 2012)
  • What integration alternatives do you prefer? (none should be a choice)
  • What are some of the biggest challenging you face with OSLC?
  • What are some of the biggest successes you have with OSLC?
^-- I could see all of these going in the "implementers" section, but since the last two are more open ended, why don't we put them in the general section (SeanKennedy - 10 Feb 2012)

Participant questions

Only shown to those who indicated some participation.

Implementer questions

Only shown to those who indicated some implementation experience.

  • What integration alternatives have you used in the past?
    • what alternatives should we list? CORBA, OSGi, custom/proprietary API, ... (SeanKennedy - 10 Feb 2012)
  • What integration alternatives do you prefer? (none should be a choice)

User questions

Only shown to those who indicated that their company uses software integrated via OSLC.

Common questions

Shown to all participants.

  • What are some of the biggest challenges you face with OSLC?
  • What are some of the biggest successes you have with OSLC?
Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
pdfpdf DraftSurvey_20120227.pdf manage 487.2 K 27 Feb 2012 - 14:26 SeanKennedy Survey with comments recieved applied
zipzip manage 266.7 K 15 Feb 2012 - 21:32 SeanKennedy Contained: a PDF with an illustration of how the survey will look on, and the spreadsheet used to populate that survey.
zipzip manage 301.1 K 27 Feb 2012 - 21:35 SeanKennedy Contents: PDF of survey from; TXT with stats on no. questions asks based on user choices; PNG showing the survey flow
xlsxls SurveyDetails.xls manage 96.0 K 16 Apr 2012 - 19:59 SeanKennedy Details of survey results
pdfpdf SurveySummary.pdf manage 228.2 K 16 Apr 2012 - 19:59 SeanKennedy Summary of survey results
xlsxls SurveySummary_05292012.xls manage 186.5 K 29 May 2012 - 18:21 SeanKennedy Summary of survey results - as excel
Topic revision: r16 - 29 May 2012 - 18:21:23 - SeanKennedy
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