Working with Widgets: Forum Topics
The Forum Topics widget is the heart of a lot of team Spaces, especially HR and Q&A areas where members can consult with subject matter experts. It offers easy access to ongoing conversations, and uses the categorization options to great effect. Often compared with Microblogs, Forums are better suited to longer form and more formal communication, things that need to be easy to consult later for archival purposes. They can be useful for having project coordination discussions, answering questions, or addressing issues.
The Forum Topic widget offers a simple display of Forum Channels across your digital workplace, and can be placed on any Page or Space. The customizable layout options let you streamline the appearance to fit your Igloo's look and feel, and the widget includes different sorting options to ensure that the most active discussions are at the top. Today we'll walk through some other ways the Forum Topic widget can address your business challenges.
The most important feature of the Forum Topic widget, as with any content widget, is its ability to offer a unified feed of any or all Forum Channels from across your digital workplace. This means your members can see discussions from anywhere they have access to in a single view, and address them directly rather than spending time navigating to Spaces or the Channels themselves. It can highlight ongoing topics in your Igloo, and pull in a selection to create an easy place to reach your experts. As with other widgets, a member's view is filtered by your digital workplace's access, letting you use access rules to ensure that only content that's relevant to them is displayed there.
The Add Content option lets members select a Channel and ask questions directly from the widget, without the need for additional widgets on the Page. This is where topic categories matter as well. A Forum Channel can support up to four types: Issues, Discussions, Ideas, and Questions. When set to a single topic, such as issues, new topics will automatically be sorted into that topic and can be easily filtered for in the widget. In support channels, this makes it straightforward to filter for all of the issues logged in a digital workplace, and members can avoid duplicating work by adding to ongoing threads.
Forum Channels offer resolution options as well, so when a thread is finished, the answer can be elevated to the top. Using the filter options in the widget to filter for unresolved topics means finding questions that need addressing is easy. Set the filter as a default on an expert page, and provide a view into exactly what needs doing without any fuss. The widget pulls in questions from anywhere in your digital workplace, and your experts can address them. This can be great for people managing multiple projects, or engaging with several clients daily.
The Forum topic widget is essential to making life easier for your members and experts, and to boosting engagement through relevant views and quick responses.
If you have questions about the Igloo platform, workflows, or best practices, you can leave a comment here, or ask a question in the Community area.