Resource Reps should display their office hours in their profiles

(Ranjith Raj) #1

All appreciation to the changes that are being made to Reps program and introduction of resource reps.

I would like to bring to the notice of some incidents happened in the recent past. I tried contacting few resource reps, as they are busy or not available online, it took more than a week and able to file the budget only in less than 21 days.

As the reps program is volunteer based program and everyone would be be busy with their daily life engagement, it is good if resource reps display their office hours and best modes of communication in their reps profile it would be easy to reach them and make things simple and the process smooth.

Opinions are welcome.

(Shashikanth Reddy Palvatla) #2

This idea is good. It can provide transparency for being more inclusive of new volunteers by lowering the barriers in reaching out to resource reps for support.

(Daniele Scasciafratte) #3

I have a section in my reps profile about office hours, so I can understand that but no one used that time to reach me.

Infact I reply when I have time, so I think that as volunteer have them as mandatory is not so easy. Think about it, I am volunteer so I can say that I reply in that office hours but I will be busy for an event in that week when you write to me so what I have to do?
After all we are not working for the program but giving our free time for that, maybe in this specific case is better to think to have not a 1:1 but a group alias so someone will reply.
Also for the council we have an alias and we write from that and not a specific person.

I think that with the instant messaging we forgot to have personal space on communications and also we are volunteering.

I remember that with Reps program when I started I was doing budget/swag request with 3 months of advice to have no problems, now this is issue is gone but I think personally that an event require a month to be sure that everything is planned rightly.

(Michael Kohler) #4

I’ve had office hours on my Reps profile as well. This was a recommendation for all mentors back in the days. I very quickly figured out that, as a volunteer, it’s impossible for me to hold a specific time of the week for office hours. As you can see on my profile now, I’ve basically listed how to contact me and in what time frame you can expect an answer. As we are all volunteers, I think it’s hard to expect a given time to be allotted to Mozilla tasks.

I don’t want to jump into solution space right now, but rather analyze the core problem you are mentioning. What you want is to know how to reach a Resource Rep and by when you will have an answer if they can do it or not, correct? Please correct me if I’m wrong. For the rest I’m gonna assume that is your main concern.

Given the assumption above, this poses several questions to me, which we probably need to answer first before we can think of a good way to address it:

  • What is the generally expected time of a Rep to plan ahead? In the past this has been at least 3 weeks, as budget requests need to be filed at least 3 weeks ahead. Including the planning of the activity and preparing for the budget request, this could easily be 4 weeks.
  • What is the generally expected time of a Resource Rep between contact and filing a budget? I have no answer for that, that is definitely something we can figure out all together.
  • What is a reasonable time frame of communication between contact and filing the budget request for getting the activity and budget “right”, so it has impact and makes sense? Again, as this ties in with the question above, I have no real answer from my side here.

Do you agree that this kind of questions would bring this discussion forward?


Edit: If we come to the conclusion here that Office Hours are the way to go and are the best solution, of course I’m happy to reopen the bug on Bugzilla for the Reps portal.

(Bhuvnesh Kumar (via Google Docs)) #5

I second michael here

(Md Shahbaz Alam) #6

I would like to start this conversation by saying I’m a Resource Rep and helped many Reps who contacted me for Swags/Budget.

To @ranjithraj experience, I would say to report it to the council.

Resource Reps in India is 14 and I agree not all are active in helping fellow reps, we need to filter that as well.

Coming back to Office Hours, I agree with @Mte90 we are here as a volunteer and making Office Hours mandatory to display is a thing which I personally don’t prefer. I love to reply in my own free time. Because if you display Office Hour, people would be waiting to hear from you in that time frame.

So let’s bring this discussion forward as @mkohler has proposed

Since I’m a Resource Rep, I have created two forms, one for the swag request and another for the Budget. If you contact me, I’ll forward the link to the forms, those forms contain all the information needed for me to file the request on behalf of you. So If you ask me what’s the expected time, I would say least 4 weeks before the event[in this current scenario]. I take a 1-week buffer to cross-question if I’m unsatisfied with the answers provided.

At this point, I would like to raise a question. Can the time required for a budget request be brought to 2 weeks if it is filed through a Resource Rep? because I go through all the details needed to make the event a successful one. And I guess that’s why Resource Reps role would be handy, a Resource Rep is not a person just to file swag/budget request on behalf of you, he/she goes through all the necessary checks needed to make it a valid request. Yes, for this we would be needing to filter our Resource Reps. But I leave this to everyone to decide.


(Md Shahbaz Alam) #7

Swag Request form:
Budget Request form:

Share among fellow reps who need help.


(Ruwan Ranganath) #8

@shahbaz17 that is helpful , I should create the same form when they asked , I usually ask to fill the therpad , but forms seems easy to manage .

As a resource rep , I also don’t think it’s easy to put office hours in the profile , but usually I’m online all the day and all my contact details in the profile if anyone need to connect.

(Md Shahbaz Alam) #9

By using form, I keep track of requests I file for others.

Glad you liked it.


(Ranjith Raj) #10

I liked your idea of forms. Every resource reps having their own form, not sure if all the forms would have same fields.

Rather than having separate forms for every rep, we can have a single form and any resource rep can pick some requests from queue when they are free.

(Ruwan Ranganath) #11

Based on @shahbaz17 s form I’ve created a etherpad template . .

please help updating it.

(Bhavabhuthi) #12

This idea is sounding good and according to the accounts of @Mte90, @mkohler and @shahbaz17, there are pretty good ideas coming up in the discussion.

I understand that all of us are doing voluntary work and It is also an important responsibility for the community leaders to plan their availability and organize their contribution to Mozilla. The Resource Reps can update their most probable office hours for a particular period of time. They can then refresh it based on their schedules.

Thanks for raising an important question. The expected time depends clearly on the activity planned. I would like to see more ideas on this question.

We cannot keep people in the dark who are, as @Shashikanth171 said, reaching out to reps for support. This most probable Office Hours in the profiles may help them plan accordingly.

I also support the idea of sending forms. The idea of queuing would further streamline it and reduces the waiting time for the volunteers who are trying to contact Resource Reps who are inactive. This also increases engagement in the community.