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News > Club News > What is the OD Connectors Group

What is the OD Connectors Group

Welcome to the initial 'assigned' Members of OD Connectors. So why are you here, and what's it all about?
9 Apr 2021
Club News

"This post is long overdue, and I apologise for the delayed explanation. I'm aware you may have picked up on some incomplete information and I hope to provide clarity in this article (Brendan Jenman - 8 April 2021)."

The purpose of this group is to create an ODU knowledge base in a central online location for interested and affected ODs. We're seeking ODs who play any small role in creating engagement across the OD Community. This knowledge base (on information, tools or datasets) should ultimately assist those ODs in their pursuits; whether that be in a geographical region, by branch, interest area or by 'class of' (year) or other.

Q: So why have you been added to this group, without any communication?

A: We needed to start somewhere. Everyone that has been added, is by default, already involved in OD engagement activities and could provide content contributions in some way. Please stay with it for a little while, watch, ask questions and help to shape the group OR feel free to leave. We're in an initiation and consultation phase.

Q: What are the problems we are trying to solve?

A: In summary, we're trying to increase the connections between ODs, build awareness of the ODU amongst ODs, and increase OD engagement. Achieving this requires good information flows, to and from the ODU and shared objectives.

Some of the issues to overcome to achieve this and take advantage of technology include:

  • OD registration on odunion.com. We have around 9000 ODs, with 2700 registered on the website. We'd like to close this gap. We have the school leavers' base data (i.e. names and year etc.) but we need the remaining 6300 to verify & update their details. We know some will be deceased and we'd also like to improve accuracy on this information. Have a look at the engagement stats and registration rates in the resources section of this page (this will be developed and populated over time)
  • Acquiring Content & News: We'd like more news from around the world and from the branches, and to publish it to the ODU news & branch sections on the website. ODs can submit their OD news to the website (https://www.odunion.com/news) and members of this group can do the same. We know that OD Connectors have their ears to the ground in things like:
    • Passing of friends: The ODU would like to be informed when anyone becomes aware of ODs who have passed away. We'd like to build an archive of all ODs and have a respectful obituary for each.
    • Events: For any reunions, social events or ODs connecting, submit pictures and tell us stories.
    • News: submit any general ODs news (congratulations, OD publications, ODs in the news, etc.)
  • Content Distribution: We'd like to reach more ODs with relevant news & content, posted to the website, and then distributed through:
    • Newsletter emails. We send these out fortnightly to 5474 email addresses and on average around 1550 open these for each mailer. Over a period of 1 month, we had 46% of the mailing list open the newsletter (i.e. 2518 of the 5474) which demonstrates good reach. It's a great tool and we'd like to increase the open and click-through rates. We need news coming in and more OD registrations to do that.
    • Linkedin, Instagram, YouTube and Facebook. These platforms are growing in their reach. On Linkedin, we have confirmed that there are 3100 ODs on the platform, but only around 1300 follow us or have their school correctly named against their profiles. This is a simple awareness issue, and we'd like to close this gap as we know that another 1800 OD Linked profiles are active on that platform.
    • WhatsApp: We have a Whatsapp Updates group (click here to join ideally from your phone) with 37 members who help to distribute news and content, where from time to time we send out news, that can be forward through other OD WhatsApp groups. We'd like as many ODs who are admins of their own OD WhatsApp groups to join this. Please do so yourselves.
    • Magazine & Website.

Q: How does having a group area on OD Connect (the tool that powers www.odunion.com) help this happen?

A: The short answer, by having collaboration space with the members of the group, to agree on objectives and priorities, take suggestions and inform them of operational aspects of the ODU. This will create a long-lasting, easy to find knowledge base that can be used to help build engagement. This also helps to build continuity in methodology and effort into the organisation and its long-term operations.

Q: What's next?

A: From time to time we will publish information to the group. Every fortnight, on a Friday, the system will send out any new articles, resources or forum comments to members via email. The next series of articles will be detailed outlines of some of the outcomes of Project 20/20 e.g. the ODU Communication Strategy. Feel free to discuss any topics on the forum below the articles. OD Office Updates will also be published here to give insights into Office activity for those interested. You are welcome to submit articles to the group. Articles can be group specific, or be open to the main news page as well.

Website Group 'Resources':

Resources are files or articles that do not drop down the news feed in time. I have added 4 resource to date which can be found on the homepage of the group

  1. OD Connectors Members list - and their roles and areas of interest (click here)
  2. Engagement Stats. Social Media, Newsletter and Website clicks, opens and views (click here) - placeholder content to be completed in coming weeks
  3. Project 20/20 proposals and actions and the status of each (click here) - placeholder content to be completed in coming weeks
  4. The Toucan Tech Change Log (Toucan Tech are the company that manages the website software and functionality)

These will be updated regularly and allow you to review were we are with each of the above.

In closing, please feel free to comment below, or email Brendan Jenman at [email protected] Everything is open for debate (including the page name) and shaping to suit our needs. Please also feel free to send this article to others, nominate others, or request others to join the group - if they're ODs who run whatsapp groups or who are keen to get involved.

 

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