The recent survey of reporters and researchers who contributed to the Global Integrity Report: 2010 contained plenty of positive feedback as well as insightful constructive criticism about the experience of working with Global Integrity. We summarized that feedback in a recent blog post.
As promised, we wanted to take some extra space to analyze our contributors’ feedback on using the Indaba fieldwork platform. We asked our reporters and journalists to tell us about problems they had using Indaba, as well as the features they liked and what they wanted to see in the future from the platform.
Overall, our contributors responded positively to Indaba. A large majority found the software “easy-to-use” (83%) with 75% saying they’d recommend it to colleagues. More importantly, 72% said that Indaba was better than using other tools for data gathering and reporting (like Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel). Our early decision to make Indaba useable in low bandwith environments was validated by users. One respondent remarked, “As indaba can work [with a] slow internet connection, I was able to log in every time even [with a] dialup connection.”
Other interesting comments:
I should also add that the [I]ndaba technology, though [it] seemed unreachable at the very beginning, later proved monumentally easy once [I] hit the keyboard.
At first it was difficult to use Indaba but when I mastered it I realized it is excellent for an organization working on one project with staff in different geographic locations. It also offers staff in various locations [the ability] to compare the progress of their work with those of [their] peers on the project.
As with any work in progress, there is room for improvement. One commenter noted how “[internet] connections can be pricey in some places so a chance to work offline is good,” which summarized a popular sentiment. Seventy-three percent of respondents identified an offline capability as the most useful future feature for Indaba. Among the various other comments and suggestions, implementing mobile access to the platform, through SMS or mobile Internet, emerged as another popular feature. The least preferred upgrade, integrating Twitter feeds and alerts into Indaba, confirmed that flashy social media capabilities are not always that important to useful software.
Look for another post in the coming weeks that takes a more in-depth dive into Indaba's capabilities.
– Mitul Bhat