Request for Feedback - Core Tooling Redesign

Authors: @Hammad1412 and @bradwmorris
Reviewers: @Pepperoni_Joe and @funkmasterflex


A key objective for the TOC Operations Vertical (now Operations Pod) was to enable Index Coop contributors to operate more effectively through improvements to the way we use our core tooling.

After gathering contributor feedback, auditing our current coordination tools (and the tools being used by other DAO’s) we’ve proposed a number of updates. The core tools identified were Notion, Discord and The Forum.

We believe these changes will have a significantly positive impact on the Coops ability to communicate, coordinate and get meaningful work done.

The aim of the restructuring is to improve coordination among Index Coop contributors while providing a consistent structure across the tools. This will make things easier to navigate and find relevant information, while increasing transparency and overall operational efficiency.

It’s important to acknowledge that enabling a rapidly growing DAO to effectively coordinate, communicate and get stuff done is a challenging endeavor. The goal here is not to limit autonomy or innovation. We’re looking to strike a balance between consistency and autonomy.

The changes will also work in alignment with the new structural transition to Nests and Pods, and support the IndexCouncil and Nests to set more effective strategic objectives, and ensure the objectives are able to be broken down into actionable, transparent and owned projects and tasks.

This post is intended to gather feedback from the wider contributing community to further understand any needs or requirements we may have overlooked. The post will be broken down as follows:

  1. Current challenges - why the need for change?
  2. Notion redesign
  3. Forum redesign
  4. Discord redesign

Current Challenges

The Ops team carried out an internal review of the different tools we use and shared a feedback form with contributors to gather wider organisational thoughts on our use of current tools.

Without too much surprise, three core tools were identified and highlighted as needing immediate attention:

(1) Notion (2) Discord (3) The Forum

Below, we’ve broken down the key challenges identified for each tool.

(1) Notion - Meetings, projects and task management

  • Fundamental lack of understanding how to use Notion efficiently. “I’ve got no idea what I’m doing in Notion” was a common thread
  • Lack of clarity on using Notion to Project manage teams and get work done
  • Lack of clarity on organising meeting notes and follow up actions
  • Inability to link higher level objectives with actionable projects, tasks and owners

(2) Discord - Main communication tool

  • Discord is overwhelming, there’s too much going on
  • There is good discord communication in pockets, but a lot of overlapping channels making it hard to keep track of.
  • No sustainable system for adding new channels and communication outlets for projects

(3) The Forum - Governance, proposals and formal communication

  • Disorganised structure to the parent categories/ sub categories and tags
  • No standard on what post should be tagged to which parent/sub category
  • Difficult to navigate and find forum posts due to inconsistencies with tagging
  • Too many forum posts - contributors and community members cannot keep up with all the reading
  • No standard of practice on how the forum should be used

Proposed Notion Redesign

Notion is a powerful tool, with a lot of flexibility. Currently, it’s being underutilised and misused by Index COOP. We assessed project management flows at a number of DAO’s including Bankless, GitCoin, ForeFront. We also engaged a professional Notion agency to provide strategic guidance and work with us to redesign the way we use Notion.

These are the fundamental Notion updates we’re proposing.

1. Create new shared databases for all Nests and Pods.

Shared databases will enable us to operate more efficiently as a team moving toward overarching goals and objectives. As an example, shared databases for all contributors filtered into each of the respective Nests and Pods will enable people to more effectively collaborate. Shared databases for projects, products and meetings will enable more effective cross-nest planning and execution.

2. Standardised dashboards for Nests, Pods and Individuals

Creating projects, tasks, meetings and assigning owners is essential if we’re going to get work done. Dashboards for Nests, Pods and all individual contributors will enable groups to effectively prioritise and see tasks and work through to completion. It will also help Pod leads and Nest coordinators oversee progression of projects and tasks and help remove any blockers. Individual dashboards will provide individual contributors the ability to manage their own tasks on a day to day basis. Standardised dashboards will also enable Nest coordinators to work with the Index council to ensure alignment between higher level objectives, project teams and tasks.

3. Templates for meetings, Pods, projects, contributors

Templates for new Pods, projects, tasks, contributors and meetings will increase operational efficiency, record keeping and transparency. Anytime a new project, meeting or task needs to be created, a one click template will load ready for the creator to fill in the blanks.

4. Rollups and Relations

Many projects require collaboration from a number of different stakeholders across multiple Nests and Pods, Rollups and Relations will help sync and organise databases between project teams, people, Pods and Nests.

5. Training, support and SOP

People Nest is intending to start running workshops with each of the Nests/Pods to further understand their requirements and help implement recommended changes. Find a diagram of the changes below.

We’ve almost finished rolling out the changes for the People Nest. Once we have the entire People team using the new databases and dashboards, we will connect with each of the Nests to further understand how they’re using Notion and look for opportunities to implement some of these recommended changes.

We understand different Nests/Pods are using Notion in a number of different ways. We’re interested in learning which things we can leverage to transition to the new system with the least amount of friction possible.

We won’t be making any changes to other Nests or Pods Notion setups without first consulting.

Proposed Forum Redesign

The new forum structure will reflect the Index Coop’s new organisational structure featuring Nests/Pods with well defined categories and providing a suitable ‘home’ for different types of posts. Furthermore, providing the primary users of the forum, the Governance Ops team with an improved layout for managing and organising proposals.

The diagram below provides a holistic view of the new proposed forum layout.

The structure is built using parent categories, sub-categories and tags. We will now provide some more clarification around the use of the three in our new layout.

Parent Category

Parent categories are kept to a minimum to make navigation and presentation simple on the homepage - as the co-founder of discourse Jeff Attwood says " Categories are like walls. Build 4 and you have a nice house; build 24 and you have a maze."

The parent categories proposed will be broken down into Nests and a leadership & governance category.

The new proposed parent categories:

  • Leadership & Governance
  • Technical
  • Finance
  • People
  • Growth & BD
  • Other

Sub Category

Sit under the parent categories, in our proposed forum structure, the Pods will all be sub categories under the parent category. Functionality will be added to make it mandatory to select a sub category when posting a topic under a parent category. For example If I was posting to People nest requesting feedback on a new DAO tool, you would select the parent category as ‘People’ - then have to choose ‘Operations’ as a sub category.


Tags, unlike the heavy walls of categories, are nimble, flexible and lightweight. You can create an infinite amount of tags and you can apply multiple to the same topic, even across categories. The tag functionality allows you to search forum posts by different tags (tag: xxx in the search bar).

It will be mandatory for a tag to be selected for a certain parent or sub category. Tags will in particular play a vital role in the Governance process. As an example, if I wanted to post a potential proposal to go through the IIP process. I would post under the parent category ‘Leadership & Governance’ and then choose the sub category as ‘proposals’ - I would then be prompted to choose a tag for the governance process, ‘Proposed’, ‘ IIP’ and for product proposals ‘DG1’ or ‘DG2’.

Please note that changes and new additions can be implemented as an ongoing process this is by no means the final form for our forum. We will especially be working with the Governance ops team (@sixtykeys @mel.eth) to create the most suitable structure to help their use of the forum. The data within the forum currently will be backed up before the changes take place.

Proposed Discord Structure & Next Steps

The Discord structure aims to cater for ; core contributors, non-contributing community members, investors, retail, and ecosystem partners. The contributor section will similarly be structured around the Nest/Pod organisational redesign. As our main form of communication, Discord is currently working well to keep our many owls connected. However, we have many overlapping channels leading to jumbled conversation and difficulty in finding important information.

The new structure aims to provide a clear distinction between channels which will be visible for non-contributors (i.e non-contributing community members, investors, retail, and ecosystem partners ) and channels which will be visible and used by contributors only. The diagram below provides a holistic view of the new proposed discord layout.

Community & Investors Section

This section will aim to cater for all non contributors without providing them access to the contributing section of the discord which can be overwhelming. It will provide channels for askinging questions, keeping up to date with products and also an area for Index Coop to share our external communications.

Contributors Section

This area will be for the contributors of IndexCoop those that are onboarding and current owls. As you can see from the above diagram this will be broken down into the nest/pod structure, following the consistent layout of the forum and notion. A new addition will be the use of

threads, we will be recommending these to be used for any projects or cross collaboration chats that need to be created between Nests/Pods. Rather than having these conversations on DM’s, threads will provide a better platform for temporary projects. The onboarding pathway is being worked on currently and the onboarding channels for new contributors will reflect this, prompting them to complete the new cooper owl quest first and then using role select to choose which WGs they would be interested in participating in. A Governance bot and channel will be created to allow for immediate communication on open proposals and reminding contributors to vote.

Next Steps


  • Transition the entire People team to the New Notion OS - Over Christmas break (27th December - 30th December)
  • Notion workshops - (commencing the week of January 3, 2022)
  • Create Notion operational SOP’s
  • Transition finance nest to the new Notion OS (commencing the week of - (January 3, 2022)
  • Engage with Growth and Technical Nests to discuss transition to new Notion OS - (Mid to late January 2022)


  • Undertake Discord revamp - Over Christmas break (27th December - 30th December)
  • Creating a SOP for using discord as a contributor


  • Undertake Forum revamp, creating new parent categories, sub categories and tags and then relabelling current posts - Over Christmas break (27th December - 30th December)
  • Create SOP - Breaking down structure with descriptions of each area and how to use the new categories and tags

We’re happy to take feedback and questions here as replies to the forum post.

You can find the diagrams for a more clearer view here - Miro | Online Whiteboard for Visual Collaboration


@Hammad1412 great work here. A revamp of the forum and discord is long overdue and is needed to ensure it remains an effective way for us all to communicate. Notion is an excellent platform to enable us to work collaboratively avoiding silo thinking and working habits which should lead to higher-level big picture decision making, beneficial for the DAO as an organization.

Excited to see the changes :owl: :rocket:


Great stuff, @Hammad1412! I think anyone who wants to “standardize” work at a DAO needs to make a compelling case for why decentralized teams can’t just figure this stuff out on their own. To me, you’ve made the case. Can’t wait to start operating in a DAO that invests heavily in its core communication tools. :metal:


Very important topic. It seems a solid plan for me.

Any discussion about files repository?
Usually tasks have deliverables that have to be saved and shared.

We often create files in Google Drive and just share with others involved.

Are there already some guidelines for this? Or should it also be discussed?

With the new structure a permission logic might also be created. Based on owl level some information might be accessible or not.

1 Like

Google suite and file storage is on the Q1 2022 roadmap for the ops team :ok_hand:

It came in at #4 on the priority list for uplift after Notion, Discord, Forum.