Freitag, 26. April 2013

What the corporation infrastructure looked like

Yesterday I already mentioned I'll write an entry about my corporation management and the ways I used to build a healthy infrastructure. Though my corporation fail cascaded in the end, I'm still positive about it was a really successful way.

1. Directorate

It's important to find competent player at the beginning to get them into the directorate and manage the growing corporation. There were only a few roles I had to assign:
  • The diplomate; has to communicate with certain corporations and alliances (was very important later when we joined an alliance).
  • The recruitment manager; as you'll see in the recruitment section we did a lot of work to get more pilots into the corporation. So I picked 2 recruiter to help me with that.
  • The IT manager; to do the code work and server administration.
  • The logistic manager; helps a lot to have someone flying around a freighter and transport assets from and to Jita.
  • The junior fleet commander; a very interested PvP pilot in training to get full fleet commander.
  • Co-CEO; was needed because of my problems with internet.
2. Recruitment

2.1. Get pilots interested

Though most veterans in Eve Online don't know about the possibilities to add adverts in the recruitment section since it's a new feature, it's very successful at the beginning. I wanted to build a german only corporation and made the needed adjustments. It was very important for me to get the advertising text flawlessly and professional - because most people react positive to that - and put a little content into it: A few sentences about the corporation history, what we are about and finally what we are searching for. This worked pretty well as long as we had no critical mass (>15 in our case).

It's also important to get the advertisements into certain forums online bumping them daily, though there are a lot of trolls searching for a new corporation.

Recruitment Channels are also helpful, but there are a lot of trolls, too. We tried to get our advert bumped every 25 - 30 minutes if possible.

However the most successful way was to fly around in empire and put our advert into the local channel. Nearly 2/3 of my members were recruited that way at the end. But it's hard work and needs a lot of time.

2.2. The interviews

There are a lot of corporations out there never doing any interview with interested pilots. It was important for me to have pilots that are able to work together and talk with each other in teamspeak. You never know how well they fit into the corporation without an interview.

At the beginning I had just a few conditions which I checked in every interview. Though we had a lot of applications at the beginning, I had nearly 2 or 3 interviews every day, but only 3 or 4 pilots every week fitting into the corporation. That was a lot of lost work, so I invented a online-form (with google docs) activelly filtering which candidates fit and get an interview with the recruitment management. This worked pretty well and saved us a lot of time.

3. Meetings 

Never underestimate the value of meetings. They are very important and give your members a feeling to know everything happening in the corporation and are a important part in the decisions you make. As you would guess I made the corporation half democratic - I searched for different options, only took the best of them and gave them every member in the meetings to decide what they wanna have. This prevents the typical democratic mess up if you know what I mean.

To have a propper meeting I always did a little bit organization before. I gathered the topics I wanted to discuss and wrote them into a doc. Noted everything I wanted to say. This helped not only to get a common theme but also to not forget something important.

In the meetings I clarified that my members had to be quiet as long as I talked about the topic, but that they have the chance to ask and/or critize everything I said just after. This gave the meetings a little bit structure and prevented a pointless discussion about things I would possibly mention later in the topic. It also prevents everyone to talk across each other.
I tried to moderate their questions and critics wisely and took notes in my doc if there was anything constructive.

4. Content

Since I searched for pilots wanting to do and learn PvP, I needed to get a schedule with content. But first I had to search for a staging system that allowed us to get into Low- and Nullsec within a few jumps, to do missions between level 1 and 4 and wasn't far away from Jita.

After I found a staging system and most of the corporation members settled there I made a schedule that repeated every week:
  1. Monday: Nothing special planned
  2. Tuesday: PvP Roaming at 20:00
  3. Wednesday: PvE Action at 19:00
  4. Thursday: PvP Roaming at 20:00
  5. Friday: Nothing special planned
  6. Saturday: Maybe a little bit mining at 16:00, PvP Roaming at 20:00
  7. Sunday: PvE Action just after Downtime
This provided enough official PvP and PvE fun to let them stay motivated and train them in both doing PvP and run PvE to get some money. Monday and Friday were for the individuals to do what they want to. 

Because we had a professional website designer, we were able to insert a fleet manager that worked in the Ingame Browser like you would click an item link in the chat channels. I ensured that my members subscibe to announced fleets in the fleet manager and I was able to click and invite them into a fleet by the website. This also gave me the ability to see how many pilots were interested and who wanted to fly with the fleet (due to skills and statistics).

5. Doctines

Yeah, your first impression to this topic will be it looks exaggerated for a small corporation like mine. But for a PvP interested and orientated corporation with very new pilots it isn't. If you have doctrines, your pilots will always know what they should train for. And it makes it a lot easier to command a fleet because you always know what your pilots are able to with their ships.

As there were very young pilots in my corporation I did a lot of EFT worriering to get some fittings that were very cheap but accurately fitted, work as intended in a small fleet and don't need too much skilltime to fly them. Since we trained mostly in Lowsec, I picked some frigates (Rifter, Slasher and Condor) and got fittings for around 5 mio ISK each.

With further growing and better skilled pilots I made a few more doctrines the next month, mainly based on Caldari and Minmatar ships. There was a Thrasher doctrine, a missile doctrine with Caracal, Bellicose, Blackbird and Scythe and a Towerbash doctrine with Tier 3 battlecruisers longrange fitted and stealth bombers.

6. Reimbursement/Taxes

My goal was it to get the taxes as low as possible and to reimburse lost PvP ships as much as possible. First I went with 0,1% taxes to pay every corporation bill and reimbursement. Since we never lost that much ships at the beginning and were able to loot destroyed ships, it worked pretty well. We had a growing corporation wallet during that time.

Later we decided to raise the taxes to 1,0% to be able to buy some stuff like industrials, get an office, etc. When we went into Nullsec, we finally raised the taxes to 5,0% to pay the alliance fees and certain investments you need to do to settle in Nullsec. At this time we also decided to take the loot and salvage from Wednesday and Sunday PvE Actions to raise the reimbursement into what we called a free ship program. Our pilots only needed to buy a blueprint and the fittings; the ship hulls were for free.

So yeah, that were the six basics I cared about to ensure a healthy infrastructure. And it worked in most cases pretty well. But it always needs a lot of communication with the base members and the directorate to stabilise mentioned basics. And here's where I failed at the end because I wasn't able to talk without my DSL internet...

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