It's a very exciting time for DPG as we start to use our online community to support our CIPD programmes from September. This network is a community of practice (CoP) for Learning & HR Professionals, but what exactly is a CoP?
A Community of Practice (CoP) is defined by Wikipedia as
"a group of people who share a craft and/or a profession. The group can evolve naturally because of the members' common interest in a particular domain or area, or it can be created specifically with the goal of gaining knowledge related to their field. It is through the process of sharing information and experiences with the group that the members learn from each other, and have an opportunity to develop themselves personally and professionally. CoPs can exist online, such as within discussion boards and, or in real life, such as in a lunch room at work, in a field setting, on a factory floor, or elsewhere in the environment."
The DPG Community is a community of people brought together through an interest in Learning & HR and consists of both face to face and online elements. Our online community includes all the features covered below and in the case of CIPD programmes is used to support face to face workshops designed around a CIPD qualification. It's primary aim to provide an online space for people to connect, share and network.
So how can you use the DPG Community?
Home Page > The 'hub', all activity can be seen by the forum latest activity stream. Community members can see new content being posted and people can see their activity and what others are posting and are up to. The web parts (or widgets) for each feature can edited, added or removed and feature all the current tabs seen at the top of the page
My Profile > You can add your own profile and tell other community members about yourself and your experiences. This page also lists groups that you belong to, any discussions or blogs you've added and also who you've connected with (friends).
Resources > There are some great resources on the DPG Community which you can find in the resources section and we also share a daily newspaper and an online magazine to share interested news articles and posts relating to Learning, HR and Leadership. Keep checking for new resources added on a weekly basis.
Network Tutorials > A number of short screen casts explaining what the features on the community do and how you can use them e.g. add a profile picture, change email notifications etc
Groups > There will be specific CIPD groups by location and a number of interest groups. Groups can be used to share experiences and knowledge and for facilitators to provide help and guidance on work.
Forum > The main community forum is split in to a number of categories so any discussions can be defined by content or question. These discussions are accessible to any community members who can respond and comment.
Chat > Another great feature of the community is that chat can be used to provide real time support to learners. The chat feature shows who's online and has a main chat room as well as private chat. We also run community chats where any community member is welcome to join and discuss a subject of interest
Blogs > Anyone can add a blog and latest blogs are added to the Home Page Blog Feature - you can identify blogs by popularity or search as you can tag all blogs.
Events > Add any event, conference or programme specific events such as a webinar or a community chat so the community know about them and can look forward to them or comment / wish people luck etc
Videos > Upload any video or embed a video from YouTube or any video site that provides the embed code. Comments can be added and all content can be rated or 'liked'. You can also feature videos / photos and blogs
Photos > You can create albums e.g. Group albums or event albums, you can tag them so they can found by search. Community members can add their own photos and add to their album.
Members > You can easily view or find community members across all groups
The community will continue to grow in membership as our CIPD programmes are delivered and also as we use the community to support our other products and services and provide a space for people to connect.
It's a community that we hope will support you throughout your career and become a valuable asset to your professional growth and development.
What do you think? Does this answer the so what?
Are there any other benefits you can see to being a member of the DPG Community?
Be great to hear your thoughts