I'd love to have some kind of metrics that we can monitor to make sure that we're actually improving things through any changes that we manage to push through.
Can you help me work out what numbers we'd want to keep an eye on and then work out how we find out what they are currently so we can start measuring?
The kind of things I'm thinking of are:
- We want to see more people contributing. I figure a good measure of this might be the ratio of active contributors (say people who have added a comment to an issue or committed code to core/contrib in the past six months?) to overall Drupal.org members. More = better :) I guess active might also mean 'following' or 'voting' if we add those things into the mix.
- We want to see more people contributing more actively. A good measure might be the average contributions (where contribution = comment in issue queue or code committed) per active contributor per six months?
- We want to see more effective contribution - so perhaps we want to measure the average 'duration' of an issue opened in the past x months (duration being the time between the issue being opened and being closed - I figure this is better than measuring the number of comments etc. because, as long as the issue is resolved swiftly, having more people in the mix and more conversation may be a good thing, right?
(I'm working on a six month model here thinking that people get busy and that doesn't necessarily mean they're not 'active' they just might be working on the thing they're going to contribute shortly? Feel free to amend timescales if you think there's a better measure)
Are there other things that we could be measuring to see how we're doing and whether we're moving in the right direction?
I'm kind of tempted to do a qualitative survey too, a bit of a 'where are you at with contributing to Drupal' to take a broader 'temperature check' among the community and we could re-take that in six months or so to see if we've made anything better.