During S1 the ESD reviewed 19 funding requests along with monthly and end-of-season reporting. We approved the majority of funding requests. Only 4/19 were declined with one withdrawn. As per the EOS Report in March we focused this season on improving transparency, accountability and funding allocation, strategic alignment and contributor reward payments.
Transparency: transparency improved with increased visibility in Discord for our meeting agendas, minutes and recordings and documentation for the work of the executive sub-DAO members. Beyond fortnightly ESD General Meetings, we committed to providing Monthly Office Hours but have yet to see more than one or two people take the open opportunity to request support, build strategic alignment or seek clarification on proposals and reporting.
Financial transparency at the Main DAO, SubDAO and bounty holder level still eludes us. To mitigate a perceived lack of transparency - where transparency equates to clear, concise and easy access to information - we published a forum post to improve transparency on the distribution of discretionary funding where funds allocated are not subject to forum proposals.
Accountability: We established clear operational functions, roles and responsibilities to inform accountability. We reported on KPI’s as a team until recently, when we pivoted to report monthly on individual KPI performance.
Although requested via forum and personal messages we are yet to receive any report following the funding of the Hack for Inclusion.
Funding Allocation: We requested seven days’ notice for ESD proposals and reporting and to finalise decisions. We report 95% timeliness for S1. Talking with any member of the ESD prior to posting proposals or reports on the forum is our recommended way to seek support, alignment and clarity on ESD funding requirements.
It remains doubtful whether ESD proposal authors ever referenced our funding strategy document or where the best location for these documents is - being both the forum, linked via all S1 ESD proposals and the main page of the Wiki have been overlooked as sources of key governance information. We believe a review of information architecture across the AN DAO would be highly beneficial to all members.
Strategic Alignment: continues to improve, thanks to the ongoing commitment by all involved to share draft proposals via Proposals & Vote channel in Discord. This has provided an opportunity to discuss plans and strengthen strategic alignment in advance of forum proposals. Although the process has matured, we still see a number of challenges around the format and approach to developing proposals. This points to a potential service design and tooling issue with the following pain points:
- Proposals built in silos: lacking AA/AL & ESD alignment
- Lack of informal consultation with ESD members before submitting a proposal
- Wrongly assumed guidance provided by stewards
- Proposers not looking at the strategy document, not using templates, overlooking guidance on word counts and multiple requests for simple status reporting of funded deliverables.
- Confusion between end of month vs end of season reporting requirements
- Lack of clarity on the elements of Proposals:
- Objectives (qual/quant, what it does for AN DAO)
- KPIs (when relevant): Indicators (quant, how to evaluate success) & Targets (quant, expected value in the indicator)
- Deliverables (qual/quant, tangible outputs that serve to accomplish the objective)
- Milestones (qual/quant, key steps towards objectives i.e. your roadmap)
Contributor Rewards: We funded the finance team to solve concerns around the timely payment of contributor rewards. Although tech challenges persist, the DAO has significantly improved its ability to execute payments on time. We offered funding for strategic hires including HR expertise. We allocated strategic and governance funding and nominated sub DAO members and proposal authors for additional reward payments. The ESD now applies a performance reward for baseline compensation, and we thank the community for supporting this change.
We have concerns about weekly bounty payment cadence. The lack of equality and fairness around setting contributor rewards continues to create tension and lack of transparency within S2 proposals. There’s a clear need for an open standard for contributor rewards that we can all locate, reference and leverage.
In summary, although challenged by limited resourcing, financial transparency and strategic alignment the Executive Sub DAO has successfully supported the growth of AN DAO to date. We are committed to supporting the teams we’ve bootstrapped as you move to Main DAO proposals and will continue to seek opportunities we believe can advance the Aragon Network.