Hi and Welcome to this digital education in Vocean and its platform.
We have divided this education into several chapters in order for you to get a good overview of the platform and its different parts and capabilities. In each chapter you will get the information in text and pictures. And don’t worry, all this information can always be accessed again for you to go back to if you want to repeat some of the parts!
Vocean offers a platform for open innovation, idea generation, collaboration, and understanding among stakeholders.
This happens through maximum involvement of people and by creating opportunities to make more involved and informed decisions. This happens in our platform by collecting ideas, and working with and refining them as a group. Thereafter, a common understanding is built through overviewing the results together, and reports can be used as a basis for decision-making.
The result is empowered individuals who have the opportunity to face challenges and create new solutions together using collective intelligence. The effects for your organization are measurable, noticeable and competitive.
You can also watch this quick video before moving on, and once you feel done with a chapter, scroll to the bottom and click “Next chapter”.
Getting Around the Platform
This education assumes you already have access to your Vocean account. Which means you’ve gotten your invite from the admin of your company’s Vocean Space and you’ve logged in once. If you do not already have your account set up, it would be very beneficial if you would do that before continuing here. If you need help, please first check your inbox that you’ve gotten an invite. Otherwise contact your admin or email@example.com
Once you are logged in to your account, you will see your page “Activities”. To navigate in Vocean, you have a navigation bar to the left, where you can switch tabs. To gain access to more pages, like “Members” & “Settings”, you will need Leader or Administrator privileges. This can be gained from your current Administrator.
When in the “Activities” tab, you can create activities from scratch or by using a template. What the activities are and how you create them will be explained in future sections.
If you look at the bottom of the navigation bar to the left you will see “Reports”. This is where you will find all of your previously created reports from the Activities. Click the arrow to see the list of reports. However, unless you’ve already tested the report functionallity, it will currently be empty. But once you’ve really started to get going in the platform this will be populated by the reports that really lets you make informed decisions.
Get to Know the Workboard
Vocean is a place where you can build innovation processes that allows the involvement of many people, both from outside and inside the organization. This is a concept we like to refer to as co-creation!
The base for everything is the Workboard which is the space that contains the different activities which all have different functions. In this way, the processes can be built and customized to fit your specific needs, like using puzzle pieces.
What is powerful with the Workboard is the ability to keep activities that are related to each other organized. The creator of the workboard (Leaders) can structure the workboard in a logical way and give the participants access to several different questions using a single link or QR-code.
To create a Workboard, you can navigate to your “Activities”-tab as we discussed in the previous chapter and press “Create activity”.
Choose “Workboard” and click “Next”. In the next step you get to choose a title for your Workboard, a description and a picture if you want. The title should be something short and that captures the main purpose of the Workboard.
In this picture, we see an example of this with a Workboard that contains several activities with the purpose of making meetings better. All of this can be changed after as well, just click the “pen”-icon in the top right of the picture.
In the picture above you can see a picture of the Workboard. This is an example of a Workboard with the subject “Next Level Meetings”, and it has 3 questions which you can see in the navigation bar to the left, one prioritization and one evaluation. These are different activities, 3 Innovate activities, 1 Vote activity and 1 Explore activity. What these are will be explained in further chapters.
The only thing you need to know at this point is that you can build processes with how many activities you want and in which order you want.
If we look at the same picture again, you can see a pencil above the activities. With that you can delete activities and change the order of them. Under all the activities in the list you can see “Add”, which is where you create new activities directly from the Workboard.
Vocean fully works on your mobile phone as well as your computer. However, some things might look differently. One example is the Workboards navigation bar, used for switching between different activities. To access this menu on mobile you press the purple button with a triangle, square and circle on. This button can be seen in the picture below.
The Innovate Activity
Now, let’s take a closer look at one of Vocean’s activities. Innovate is the tool where you can collect ideas, let other people upvote each other’s ideas and co-create. You get the benefit of letting hundreds of (or more!) people participate in the activity and contribute with their thoughts and ideas. In this activity everyone is anonymous, which makes it easier to give honest answers and ideas which is essential in business development. The Innovate activity allows you to use the collective intelligence to create development and growth, while building on inclusion and commitment.
First let’s look at how to create an Innovate-activity, and afterwards dive into the different components that it consists of.
Creating an Innovate
You can create activities in 2 different ways. The most common way is when you already have a Workboard that you want to add an activity to. But you can also choose to create a stand-alone Innovate-activity in the same place as when you created the Workboard. Start by either going to your Workboard and clicking “+” or by creating it from the activities page. Choose Innovate.
Here you can give your activity a heading and a description. The more specific you are in your description, the better ideas will come in from your participants. The hard part is not sending in ideas, the hard part is asking the right questions.
You can also limit the amount of ideas to be sent in by each person, we usually recommend no limitations.
Next up are the properties. When adding properties, people sending in ideas will rate them based on these properties, meaning they have taken their own stance on their idea. By doing this you can better participate in a discussion of the ideas later. It also makes it easier for the people looking at the results to differentiate between the ideas. Using properties will help you reach better results when collecting thoughts and ideas which leads to deeper discussions.
You can choose how many properties you want. There are three types of properties with different purposes:
– Slider: let your participant drag on a slider from low to high. Useful for properties like “how effective the solution is”.
– Text: let you participants add some additional text. This can be something that all activities should have in common, like “responsible person” or “area of impact”
– Rich text: A text editor with more possibilities. Let your participants add more thorough explanations using different font styles, add tables or images.
How many properties and what they are is dependent on you and the challenge you have. For example it could be the three slider properties we had above, or “Effectiveness”, “Uniqueness” and “Cost”. It’s all up to your needs!
Important to add here, is that properties can also be added after the activity has been created. An example is that you might want your participants to send in ideas without properties at first, and then in the next stage you add properties and let your participants grade their ideas. You as a leader might want to add properties during or after discussions, such as notes in the rich text property, which also can be done after the activity has been created.
Next you can choose to add categories, which are used to categorize the ideas that are being sent in by your participants. After enabling categories, you can create your own by clicking “Add” under Manage categories. You can also make it mandatory for your participants to choose a category for each idea, allow multiple categories or allow your participants to create new categories while sending in ideas.
When ideas have categories they can be filtered and more easily sorted when having a lot of ideas. This will be shown when we take a further look at the list widget.
What you see in the picture below is an Innovate-activity, with the title “Effective meetings”. This particular activity is included in a Workboard, which you can see by looking in the top left corner of the picture (It’s included in a Workboard called “Next Level Meetings”).
Once you have created an Innovate-activity, you can see that it consists of several cards like in the picture above. This is where you and your participants will interact with the activity and its results. The first one is called “Your Contributions”, which is where you and your participants will send in your ideas. “Everyone’s Contributions” is where you can see everyone else’s ideas, categorize and upvote them. The Matrix is where you can visualize where ideas lie in accordance to their properties. We also see “Key Phrases”, which are some key phrases gathered from the ideas already sent in to the activity. You can always add more widgets by pressing “Add card” next to the last widget.
Let’s take a look at the Everyone’s Contributions widget first. Get there by clicking “View” on the card.
Everyone’s Contributions Widget
Here we have a list of the ideas sent in to the activity. If we look to the right of the idea we can see a few columns. These are the properties of the idea that we mentioned before and can be used by the participants for sorting and gaining a better understanding of all contributions.
You can also choose which of these properties to display in the list as seen in the picture below. Perhaps you want to highlight a specific property or you have a lot of them so you want to hide some. All properties can still be accessed by clicking on an idea.
All the way to the right we have the amount of likes the idea has. You and your participants can like ideas by going to this widget and pressing the thumbs up button next to an idea. The reason this is important is because you as a group will already have given your opinions on what is most important before a discussion begins. You can sort by property or amount of likes simply by clicking on the text for the property or on “Likes”.Then after this step is done you can have a group discussion, perhaps only on the top ideas if you have very many, and then edit ideas if needed. Edit the ideas by clicking on them and pressing the pen icon (Edit).
This step is also where you can let the participants “enrich” each others ideas. This means that they can edit each others ideas, and the properties. This is something you can change in the settings of an activity or during the creation of it. People being able to edit each others ideas might only be appropriate for certain activities. However, this step of upvoting ideas, discussing and modifying ideas is a very important part of the co-creation process.
Now let’s talk about the next step of what you should do when you’ve upvoted, discussed and edited the ideas. You can now select these ideas and take them further. If you direct your attention to the picture below, you can see the steps to activate “Selection mode”. This mode allows you to select the ideas you want and move or copy to another activity, or use them to create a new activity. A common way of doing this is bringing your top ideas to a prioritization activity after this step of the co-creation process. If you want to create a completely new activity with these selected ideas, then simply select them and click “Add” in the left navigation bar in the Workboard. Just as described in the previous chapter when creating new activities.
The Matrix Widget
The next widget we are going to talk about is the Matrix. The main purpose of the Matrix is to visualize the ideas in comparison to each other in terms of their properties.
In the picture above is a visualization of all the ideas sent in to this activity. Now we can see that on the x-axis we have the property “Improvement”, which means the more to the right an idea lies the higher in “Improvement” it has been rated as. On the y-axis we have “Difficulty”, and the size of the bubble represents the third property, which in this example is “Value for me”. If you hover your mouse on top of an idea you can see what it says. If you want to move an idea, simply drag and drop it somewhere else in the matrix. But this can only be done by the leader of the activity. Other participants cannot change other’s ideas, unless the setting for them to be able to do this is turned on. There needs to be “slider properties” on the ideas in order for the matrix widget to be useful.
We can also see a few ideas having an outline. These are ideas that have been selected in the “Selection mode”. Another useful thing about the Matrix is that you can zoom in on a cluster of ideas to more closely compare them to each other.
In the picture above we have zoomed in on a cluster of ideas by clicking and dragging. If we want to see the idea text above the circle you can press the settings icon, go to “Labels” and click “Enable labels”. This is shown in the next picture.
The Key Phrase Widget
The key phrase widget gives you an overview of the most common phrases among your participants’ ideas. You can also click a key phrase to see the connected ideas. For example, in the picture below, the word “Agenda” has been clicked.
The Prioritize Activity
The second activity we are going to look at is the Prioritize activity. To put it simply, Prioritize is used when you want to collect people’s input on a specific question by having your participants vote. How it works is that you, as the creator, ask a question to your participants, and then they get to vote or prioritize among a number of alternatives.
These alternatives can be set up by you in advance, or they could be ideas from another activity. This activity lets you see the results in real-time and allows many more people to give their input on a question. The results can be easily read and guide you in decision-making.
Creating a Prioritize
Let’s now talk about creating an activity like this. You create this activity in the same way as an Innovate-activity, by clicking “+” in the Workboard, or from the “Activities”-tab. Choose Prioritize this time.
Just like in Innovate, you can give the activity a heading and a description. Up next is the voting type, and Vocean offers three different types:
– Select: This is where you give your participants a number of selections they can make from all of the voting alternatives. For example, if there are 5 voting options and you give your participants 2 votes, they can choose 2 options of the 5.
– Dot Voting: Here your participants get a number of votes that they can distribute among the voting options. If you choose 10 as the number of votes, the participants can for example give 5 points to Option A, 3 points to Option B and 2 points to Option C.
– Prioritize: This is where your participants can rank the options in relation to each other. Let’s say you have 5 voting options and you set everyone to have 3 number of votes. Then the participants can make a “top three” of these voting options.
Choose the voting type that fits the best for your specific question, and then choose the number of votes each participant gets. Different voting types are suitable for different amounts of votes. Experiment with this!
Before adding voting options, you get to choose if the participants should be able to see the results or not. We most often recommend it to be set to “Yes”, since it provides instant feedback to your participants.
Next up are the voting options. Here you can add your own voting options by clicking “Add”, or you can import selected ideas from other activities. If you want to import ideas as voting options, make sure they are selected in the selection mode in the other activity like we showed in the previous chapter. If you selected some ideas before creating the activity, they should automatically pop up as voting options as shown in the pictures below.
Once you are satisfied with the setup, click “Create activity”. If you want to change something after you have created the activity, scroll down to the “Settings” and click “Manage”. Keep in mind that this can only be done before anyone has participated.
Let’s take a look at the results of a Prioritize activity.
In the picture above we can see an example of ideas being imported from another activity. We brought 5 ideas from the Innovate activity and created a new activity that we named “Prioritize”.
In this new Prioritize-activity, the users are able to vote and we can see that some of the ideas have already gotten a few! By using the activities together like this, you get a better understanding of how you think as a group, and everyone is involved in the process. And if you want to bring these ideas to another activity, it also has a selection mode just like Innovate. Then you can export both results to a report for a more comprehensive result, but don’t worry, we’ll discuss the reports later.
The Explore Activity
The final activity we are going to take a look at is the Explore activity. This is an activity where you can collect opinions from people. There are several instances where you would want to do this, for example as gathering feedback from the participants after an ideation process or as an employee survey, or why not explore your ecosystem for feedback?
The activity lets you ask several questions consecutively and lets you customize the question types depending on what you want to ask. Let’s take a look at an overview of a result from an Explore activity!
In the picture above we can see that we have five questions, each with different answer types. These are the different answer types you can choose between when creating an Explore activity:
-Slider: Capture a feeling by letting your participants use a slider.
–Yes/No: Sometimes a simple Yes/No question is best suited.
-Scale: Use a scale to let your participants answer what best suits them in the question. Useful for surveys.
-Text: A free flowing text answer that let’s your participants elaborate on a question.
-Multiple choice: Choose a number of alternatives to a question.
-Numerical value: This one is not shown in the picture above, but it lets people answer between two numbers.
If you want to expand the answers to a specific question, you can press “View” on the card that shows the question. Here you can make additional analysis, for example, correlations between questions. You can then see, for example, what the people who answered “Yes” in question 2 answered in question 5.
If you want to see the correlation between two questions, you first need to go to “View” on the question you want to see. In this example we go to question 5. Click “Filter”, then go to “Question correlations”, and choose which question you want to see the answers to. In this example we want to see how the people that answered “Yes” in question 2 answered in question 5. So we choose question 2 in the list and the answer option “Yes”. Now we can do our analysis and see if there are any correlations between the two!
Creating an Explore
Now, we are going to create an Explore activity. Just like the other activities, you can create an Explore activity by going to “Add” in the Workboard or creating it from the Activities-tab. This time you choose Explore.
Start by providing a heading and a description. Next you can choose if you want the results to be visible for the participants. Depending on what types of questions you ask, this could be switched off or on. If there are a lot of personal questions, perhaps this should be switched off. However, if it’s more of a general feedback it could be switched on!
Here you can also choose if you want to display the results only when a number of responses have been sent in. This is done under “Privacy”. If you set this to 5, then the participants can only see the results after 5 responses have been sent in.
Under “Questions” is where you add the questions. In the picture above three questions have already been added. And if you look at the top question, you can see the different answer types you can create. These are found in the drop down list.
If you want to use the “Scale”-answer style, you can find that under “Multiple choices”.
If you look at the picture above, you can see we have chosen “Multiple choices”. To activate the “Scale” answer type, you can check the box that says “Use scale”. If you press “Use common” you can quickly set up some common scale answer types, for example “Strongly disagree” to “Strongly agree”.
However, you can also create your own by clicking “Add choice” (next to “Use common”). This is also how you add multiple choices, but then you do not check the box next to “Use scale”.
Just like the other activities, you can change the questions, title, or description before any responses have been sent in. Even if you have already pressed “Create activity”. The only requirement is that no responses have been sent in.
One of Vocean’s best features is how easy it is for people to participate. This is accomplished through the Invite system that we are going to take a closer look at now.
Activities and whole Workboards can be accessed by your participants through QR-codes and links. If your participant has an account in the same space that you have, they can also have the activity saved to their account. However, the QR-codes and links are the quickest way for participants to access activities. These can, for example, be posted in chats, emails, presentations and even printed out.
Add members to activities and Co-lead
We briefly mentioned that you can add members of the same Vocean space to an activity directly without using links or QR-codes. This also saves the activity to their “Activities”-tab in their own Vocean account.
This also opens up a new possibility of being several leaders in activities or Workboards. Co-leading activities are extremely useful when conducting processes like digital workshops. This helps you stay structured and focused. Co-leading an activity, or several activities in a Workboard, makes it possible for one of the leaders to act as a Facilitator and lead the meeting, while the other leader can, for example, sort out the most liked ideas and create a prioritization activity during the meeting. This makes for a very seamless experience and efficient meetings.
Both adding participants this way and adding additional leaders to your activities can be done by clicking “Manage” on the Manage Participants card.
This leads you to the page as seen in the image below and works similarly to the links. You have the same drop-down list to choose which of the activities to give access to. This is encircled at the top of the image.
You then see two columns, “Leader” and “Participant”. And then you see a list of all the people in the space as you. Then you can add these people to this activity as either a participant or a leader (if you want them to co-lead with you).
Remember to add these people to all activities you want them to have access to in the drop-down list.
The Report Tool
We are now getting to the end of this education in the Vocean platform. However, we have one of the most important features left. Let’s take a look at a picture that showcases how Vocean’s model can be used for different processes.
This is essentially what the Vocean model boils down to. The first three steps of this process is covered by the Workboard and the three activities used together with effective meetings. Next up in this process is step 4, and that is to make a decision based on the results of all the activities. In order to be able to make smart decisions, Vocean has an automatically created report that compiles all of the data from the activities. And of course it’s fully editable!
Let’s take a closer look on this report.
After you’ve run all of the activities that you want with your participants, you can create a report by going to the card that says “Create Report” on the starting page of the Workboard OR on a single activity.
Now, when you’ve clicked “Create” you get this automatically generated report of the results of the activity. This might be fine for some purposes, but you might want to add different results or edit the text present. Then you can go in the top-right corner and click “Edit”.
In the picture below we are in the Edit-mode. We can give the report a new name by going to the top left encircled in the picture. To edit something in the report you can click any element to get an options bar to pop up. Depending on what type of element you’ve clicked on, different settings will become available.
What you will notice is that you can change all the text in the report, but you can’t edit the text from someone’s idea. You can also move elements of the report up and down in the report by clicking on the element and then pressing the up or down arrows in the options bar.
In the picture above we have the section from an Innovate activity. What we can see here is that all ideas have been listed as they are with no sorting. If we have a lot of ideas, this might not be reasonable for a report. So, what we can do is sort the ideas, by amount of likes for example, and choose to only display, say the top 15 ideas. If you still want to show all ideas, you could add the complete list at the end of the report like an appendix.
To do this, press the Innovate-part of the report to get the options bar to pop up. Then click the cogs to access the settings. When in the settings, you can change the “Max number of items to show” to 15, in order for only 15 ideas to be displayed. Then you go to “Sort by” and change that to likes. Once saved, the result will be the top 15 most liked ideas being displayed.
Now, you might want to add more things to your report than the automatically created text and results. This can be done by scrolling to the bottom of the report and clicking “Add section”. Then you can add more text and results from other activities.
An example of when you might want to do this is if you’ve done the same activity with two different groups. You can add both of these activities to the same report and then add text to write down your own analysis of the differences between the two groups’ responses.
Finally, you can save this report in your Vocean account. It will be saved under “Report” in your navigation bar to the left, mentioned briefly in the first chapter. You might want to export this report. You can also download it as a .pdf or print it. After you’ve pressed “Save” in the top right corner, you can find “Print”. Click that button and another screen will pop up. Here you can choose to download it as a .pdf or print it directly.
To summarize the entire education and to freshen up your memory before the quiz, we will take you through an example of what a process can look like in Vocean.
Vocean can be used to involve many people in changes in the organization.
Example Company has been using an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system for a long time and are now looking at opportunities to switch to another one. This type of system covers all different departments and changing it therefore affects the organization as a whole. The management is worried that they have not thought about all possible consequences of this change and they therefore want to involve the entire organization in the decision.
First of all, we will create a Workboard to store all activities related to this particular challenge. We will call this Workboard “Switch of ERP system”.
When we involve people, it is of interest to see how their answers differ from department to department. To get this information, we create unique links to send out to the different groups, the HR-department has one link, the IT-team has one and so on. The value of this will be more clear later on.
We create participant links by pressing the “+” at the participant link section in the side menu.
Thereafter, we will create an Innovate-activity that lets all people we want to involve send in their ideas. We will ask them what challenges they believe that this switch can infer.
For this Innovate-activity, we will use two slider properties. One for the severity of the challenge and one for the urgency. This will let the participants value their idea when they submit it.
It is interesting for Example Company to know if the challenges sent in concerns the participant personally, affects a specific department, or the organization as a whole. To achieve this, categories can be used.
Afterwards, it is time to add the Workboard and the activities to the links so that the participants can access them.
Then it is time to send out the links and let everyone send in their thoughts! The participants were encouraged to send in as many submissions as they wanted. Afterwards, they were asked to read the other submissions and like the ones they deemed most important. Rating others ideas is normally the first step in the co-creation process and will give an overview of what the group believes is important.
In the picture above, you see the Everyone’s Contributions widget with all ideas sent in and sorted by likes. After the likes have been placed, you can have a group discussion about the most liked ideas and discuss them and make edits if necessary which is also an important part of co-creating.
We can also visualize the ideas in the Matrix widget. This can help us determine where to start because challenges that are rated highly in both severity and urgency should be worth acknowledging as soon as possible. The Matrix widget can be used in group discussions to add a visual attribute. The leaders can also move around the contributions in the matrix, thereby changing their properties.
Next up, in order to determine the order to tackle the most important challenges, the 10 most likes submissions will be brought to a Prioritize-activity. In order to do this, activate the selection mode (1), select the 10 most liked contributions (2), and finally press the “+” in the activities tab to create a new activity (3).
We will now create a Prioritize-activity that lets the participants rank the challenges from most important to least. You can see that by selecting the submissions before creating the new activity, they immediately exist in the new activity without having to add them manually. We give select “Prioritize” as voting type and give each user 10 votes, meaning that they will create a top 10 ranking.
After we have created our Prioritize-activity, it is time to give everyone access to it. We do this by editing the links and ticking the box for our new activity.
We let the participants vote and the result is a ranking of the most important challenges the organization faces.
In the picture below you can see a result of the collective intelligence. Here is a top 10 list of what the organization deems as the most important challenges that a shift of the ERP system could cause.
Using Vocean’s Explore-activity, it is also possible to evaluate the process and the result of it. Let’s create an Explore. This way, we can collect everyone’s thought regarding the process using a quick survey. With results from this, we can continuously improve our processes based on the opinions of our participants.
As with our previous activities, we yet again have to give the links access to the new activity.
As with our previous activities, we yet again have to give the links access to the new activity.
Because we have used different links for different teams, it is possible to sort the results according to these. Perhaps the development team is much less open to the change than the sales team. Such a thing would need to be investigated further and could be a crucial insight for the management. The picture below shows how you filter the responses.
When you are done with the process, Voceans report tool allows you to create a report with just one click. This report utilizes AI and provides the leaders with basis for decision, based on the collective intelligence.