Hey there all, it's time for another HR blog!
I've been wondering about what to write, because for the most part my position includes a lot of work that I'm either not able to talk about at all, or stuff that I'm not able to talk about too much but I figured I can talk about a change that we made a little while ago in how our moderation team works - mentorship and trial periods. Hopefully by the end of this blog post, you'll learn why we implemented these two systems, what the key problems were and learn a thing or two about how progression is handled internally amongst the team. Here goes! Let's start off with...
Identifying the problem.
Back before the change, we were severely restricted in our ability to take in new members of staff because there was a lot of risk attached. The way that the "stage one" role was designed gave a lot of powers, which made it difficult for us to hand out to an array of people and if there was any hint of risk being attached to that person, it would most likely result in us denying that candidate. We risked potentially exposing sensitive staff tools and internal information to someone who may have ended up being a poor fit for the role. This meant that we needed to be extremely careful when it came to voting a candidate into moderator, because we needed to be fairly certain as to how they'd behave on trial. This could lead to significantly long periods of time where promotion threads weren't touched or a poor voting outcome for the candidate. All of this whilst our server desperately needed more moderators to help manage the player count when other members of staff weren't able to. We needed to think of a solution, and fast.
And so became the trial moderator system we have today! The idea of the trial moderator system was to allow us to take more of a risk with those we let on to the team whilst still maintaining a high quality of staffing that you see on the server. Trial moderators do not have much access internally and have limited access to the more advanced tools, but are still able to handle a lot of the common problems that happen on the server. Trial moderators are quite limited in the amount of time they're able to punish someone for, however are able to ask for extensions first or feedback into cases if they're ever unsure about a case. This is where the mentorship system ties in, as it greatly helps our trial moderators with understanding how to handle situations where they may not be entirely sure on how to do so.
The mentorship system is our way of ensuring that trial moderators didn't feel like they were just abandoned and left on their own to fight off whatever may come their way. When a promotion is approved amongst the admin team, we also decide who is going to work alongside the trial moderator and make sure that they feel comfortable and are assisted to do the best that they can and (hopefully) progress further up the chain! A mentor is someone who a trial moderator could turn to if they have questions of any sort, and they would also act as a way for administrators to communicate their feedback (both positive and negative) to the trial moderator so that they're able to improve. After all, how can you be expected to improve if you aren't told what you're doing well and what needs a bit of work? We highlighted this recently amongst the entire team with the wave of staff feedback that we gathered, which we aim to conduct on a regular basis.
The introduction of both these systems really helped us introduce a lot more staff members to the team and we hope that it continues to do so. I personally feel like the addition of both of these systems has really come to help us in regards to staffing the server, and after seeing (and even myself, having mentored a few of the staff members on the team today) the effects of the mentorship and trial moderator programs alike, I really believe that it's a success and I hope our player base sees it that way too.
I hope this blog post has provided a decent insight into our progression system and how it's handled, with some luck you'll now see how things were from our perspective and why the change needed to be made. As always though, if you've got further questions then you're welcome to ask myself or Overlewd and we'll do our best.
Till next time!