EMC {code} Powers Community Analytics with Keen

Dynamic dashboards help increase visibility and accountability in a global company.

EMC {code}, a team within global cloud computing leader EMC, was created in 2014 to contribute, support, and foster the open source development community. By creating new thought-leading open source applications, driving awareness, and contributing to projects, the {code} team focuses solely on open source and building a community and measuring its impact. In order to measure effectively, though, you need reliable analytics. After months of trying to build dashboards themselves, the {code} team turned to Keen—and has never looked back.

EMC {code} community dashboard EMC {code} community dashboard

I’ve been having so much fun creating this dashboard. And it worked so well for us, because it was that easy to set up. Keen is delivering everything we need. It’s a great product. I love it.

Measuring Community

“We’re a small team within a global powerhouse (EMC has around 70,000 employees worldwide) that focuses on one thing only: open source,” related Jonas Rosland, Developer Advocate at EMC.

Our goal from day one has been to build a community around open source and measure it, so we can better contribute to the sector. But what we discovered pretty quickly - and what many other community managers, developer evangelists, and advocates agreed with - is that measurement of a community is really, really hard to do.

Jonas and his team examined the viability of various metrics, specifically ones that could be used to convince managers that the {code} program was indeed important to internal goals at EMC. “We’re not responsible for many activities tied to major business metrics. So it’s doubly important that we show the value of our work and growth of EMC as a known brand in the open source space via correct metrics shown on an easy to understand and dynamic dashboard.”

Building better dashboards quickly and easily

By measuring Twitter followers, blog views and comments, YouTube views, and Slack conversations, Jonas built his own dashboard using another framework. But it required the team to spend hours every week collecting metrics and, more problematically, it wasn’t dynamic. “We pretty quickly realized that the static version of how things look right now is great, but we needed some way to actually see that we’re growing. Taking a speed shot of how it looks this week just wasn’t going to cut it. And that’s when I found out about Keen.”

We looked at a bunch of different databases, and then I stumbled upon Keen and found it so easy to work with.

“We looked at a bunch of different databases, and then I stumbled upon Keen and found it so easy to work with. It had everything we needed. Setup couldn’t be simpler: the examples of graphical dashboards were incredibly helpful, giving us the ability to start visualizing what we wanted to see. Take our blog stats, for example. We have several different topics with different focuses; some get a lot more views than others. There are stats available through our WordPress interface, but they aren’t always easily viewable and accessible. We have to go through a bunch of hoops to get the metrics that we want. But now that we have a proper dashboard that’s continuously available, it’s much easier to see which blogs are popular currently, and the topics we should focus our energy on, which is vitally important when you’re managing a community.”

Planning for the future

Jonas and his team have several new metrics slated to add to the dashboard, including the amount of talk in Slack chats, number of registered users, number of people online at a certain time, and more.

I’ve been having so much fun creating this dashboard. And it worked so well for us, because it was that easy to set up,” Jonas said. “Keen is delivering everything we need. It’s a great product. I love it.

How can Keen help you build better products, grow your business, and turn customers into fans? Only one way to find out.