Proposal For Community & Contributor Onboarding Research and Development

Request for Funding: Community/Contributor/ Ambassador Onboarding Systems Research and Development

Proposal Summary

This is a request to the executive Sub DAO to fund $20,000 for Q1 2022 for the research and development of operational onboarding systems. We recognise a high operational need to onboard new contributors to increase retention and the reactivation of ambassadors. Currently, out of 90 onboarded Ambassadors, we have roughly 10 actively contributing to the DAO. The systems outlined in this proposal will help:

  • define what onboarding means for the Aragon Network DAO
  • streamline and automate the onboarding process
  • incentivise members to onboard others
  • identify tools and opportunities for ongoing process improvement
  • measure engagement and retention

Proposal description

We currently have people putting in Ambassador and Contributor applications but no solid foundation for onboarding these people. We are currently receiving ~100 Ambassador applications per month and have also implemented a contributor application in which we received 20 in a week. Without a proper onboarding process we are missing out on many talented individuals that can help grow the Aragon Network. The outcome of these proposed deliverables look to solve these issues and strengthen our community.


Develop strategy, design processes and implement tools to support/improve/adapt/measure performance for the AN DAO onboarding of new community members/ambassadors/ contributors. We intend to:

  1. Define what onboarding means at Aragon
  2. Create a transparent user journey that makes it easy for people to understand what the onboarding process is for Aragon
  3. Increase the number of community ambassadors/ contributors
  4. Increase the number of ambassadors/ contributors applicants retained
  5. Align contributors with high impact opportunities within the DAO
  6. Identify and connect teams (new and existing) to help grow the Aragon Network
  7. Implement Statbot to measure community engagement in the discord- Statbot is a discord bot used by over 200k servers to collect community participation analytics
  8. Track and share the following KPIs:
  • % Increase retention of Ambassadors and Contributors
  • % Active Contributors and Ambassadors
  • Number of Reactivated Ambassadors and Contributors
  1. Interview current Ambassadors and contributors to get feedback on their onboarding process and what they think we can do better.

Requested Resources:

We are requesting $20,000 from the ESD to fund this initiative from January 20 through March 31st. It will be used as follows:

  • $15000 ($5000/month split 50:50 ANT:USDC) to ShawnzyWonzie#4546 for time spent onboarding, planning, organizing, and implementing previously stated initiatives.
  • $5000 (~$1600/month ANT) for Bounties associated with Onboarding and training.

We would also need access to AA members for planning and discussion of current tools and initiatives surrounding the onboarding process.

Proposal Rationale:

In Q4 2021 Aragon received over 400 Applications for the Ambassador Program. The AA currently doesn’t have the bandwidth to review and interview all of the incoming applications and measure participation which means we are:

  1. Losing potential contributors that would add value to the DAO through their particular skill set
  2. Failing to create the community mindset that is necessary in the Web3 space
  3. Failing to capture feedback and metrics that would help us increase contributor participation

In short, we have a wealth of people who want to contribute to our cause and have the skills to help us achieve any goals that we set out to achieve. By creating systems for onboarding not only are we able to utilize the resources to their fullest extent but it can be an automated process that will be scalable as the DAO grows in size.

Limitations and risks:

  • Onboarding could be limited due to a lack of projects. Onboarding could help address this by aligning people skills and interests with existing working groups or connecting people in the DAO interested in similar projects.
  • Limitation of certain Admin Privileges in relation to Discord Initiatives
  • If the Mentors aren’t properly trained it could result in sub-par training for new members

Strategic Alignment

This initiative will work with each guild and project within the DAO to ensure we are onboarding people who will add value to their initiative and the DAO as a whole. Onboarding is the first step in creating a successful organization.

  1. Align Ben AA Operations Steward
  2. Align with Taylor AN DAO COmmunity manager to implement a clearly defined system for people to become contributors
  3. Align with Gitbook Project to communicate the onboarding process
  4. Align with RayKanani#0819 and contribute to the development of a gamified learning system to encourage new members to learn the basics using Level1
  5. Align Daolicious team and contribute to the automation of the onboarding process
  6. Align with Teo to understand business development onboarding needs
  7. Align Tech Support guild to understand onboarding needs
  8. Align with Michael to include non violent communication training in the onboarding process

Q1 2022 Deliverables / Expected Outcomes:

  • Monthly forum updates for reporting, transparency and review
  • Monthly Community Call for Community Feedback
  • Implement StatBot in the Discord to measure member engagement
  • A mentorship program with current contributors that will incentivise them to mentor new members, teach them how to participate in their selected guilds and projects, and create a 24/7 discord greeting system.
  • Consolidate all current applications, currently 3 separate applications: Technical Support Guild , Ambassador, and Contributor
  • Integrated Onboarding Journey With Level1 & DAOlicious
  • A transparent user journey that makes it easy for people to understand what the onboarding process is for Aragon
  • Roadmap for Onboarding Implementation in Season 2

Potential Future / Replicability

The purpose of this proposal is laying the foundation for how onboarding will be handled in the AN DAO. With the role Aragon is playing in the web3 space these are things that could easily be translated into the DAOs that people are building using Aragon or other major DAOs and in turn become an industry standard. Things such as the DAOlicious project, level1, Gitbook, and Mentor Programs are tools being used in many DAOs currently to help streamline and automate the onboarding process. By using these tools to define standards and implement learning topics such as conflict resolution we are creating a solid foundation for which members can be successful on their DAO journey. With the recent surge in participation these things are crucial in ensuring that these processes are replicable between organizations and scalable within organizations to help facilitate long term adoption and fluidity within the DAO space.

Team Information & Value

  • Shawn Cubbedge / shawnzywonzie#4546 - PM - Onboarding project
  • b3n#2704 - AA Ops Steward

Funding Information

Funding Information (as stated above)

  • $15000 ($5000/month split 50:50 ANT:USDC) to ShawnzyWonzie#4546 for time spent strategic planning, coordination and communication and onboarding activity.
    Sent to Wallet Address: 0xF67825D3bdE95a0Bbb1a063e06D51b79e7061C05

  • $5000 (~$1600/month ANT) for Bounties or Coordinape and training.


@Tayy @mheuer @b3n @luizfernandosg @Sixto5 @Teo @brent @raykanani

1 Like

@Shawncubbedge, thank you for presenting this proposal. It is meticulously crafted and well refined. I am also happy to see the cross-team collaboration that is carefully baked into the process under Strategic Alignment. Its aims further the initiatives of the Aragon Network DAO; and importantly, is led by the AN DAO community and Onboarding Lead. I strongly support.


+1 to @Tayy feedback above. Onboarding deserves a major focus and we have the advantage of being able to learn from other DAO best practices, as you’ve indicated through strategic alignment and deliverables. Excited to see how mentoring can work to build community. You have my 100 % support Shawn.


I dig it.

Is there any possibility of establishing some jumping off point (JOP) metrics and desired KPIs post project.

For example, a JOP metric might be time to participate in a project or member attrition.

If it’s not possible because we don’t currently track any meaningful metrics, it could be worth having an outcome to establish an Onboarding health dashboard and some thoughts on what might go on that board.

Overall, I like the thoughtfulness but would like to see the onboarding dashboard either where we’re at now and where we want to be or the establishment of that mechanism and a glidepath to a sustainment plan. Once it’s established do you see a need for follow up funding to sustain the onboarding operations?


Excellent point Ray!
When I posted this I knew something was missing. The KPI’s!
During my versioning process of making the draft, they got deleted when I re-did some things.

So currently there are no metrics being taken that I am aware of. This is where Statbot comes in. Hopefully, either @Tayy or @AlexClay can help us implement this as soon as possible. Statbot can track both user and channel involvement, help up create a dashboard like you were describing, and also assign and remove roles based on that user’s engagement in the discord. My thought is to use this bot while we are doing this research to get a baseline for January and February. Then in March, once we have a better idea of where we are at and the needs of the DAO, we start thinking about our desired KPIs for the future.

As for follow-up funding, I do believe that will be necessary. As the DAO continues to grow and evolve so will our onboarding needs. Things such as the Mentor Program I mentioned will need funding for either a bounty system or a coordinape circle, talent scouts, and check-ins with the guilds will be necessary as well. Eventually, the DAO will get to a point where onboarding won’t be so crucial. However, with where Aragon is at now I think it’s important we work to make this system as easy as possible for the people trying to contribute to our cause.

I may be getting ahead of myself here but I would like for there to eventually be an onboarding guild. In which we focused on the community/ contributor/ ambassador journey and continuously refine our onboarding process to best fit the time. Web3 moves so fast and with it so do the tools and processes that are available. However, until we get there we can focus on where we are at right now and get things going. :slight_smile:


I appreciate the detailed and thoughtful response Shawn :blush:


Overall I love this proposal and think it’s a worthwhile problem worth funding and trying to solve! Great job! 2 ideas for consideration… The first one is for you, the second one is more for the community as a whole.

  1. Unsure if this needs to be specified in the proposal above, but I’d highly recommend interviewing existing AN DAO contributors to understand our experience “onboarding”. I think we have a wealth of internal knowledge you could lean on to design solutions that make onboarding easier for the next cohort.

  2. Strategic Alignment, in my understanding, is meant to tie any given proposal to the “Strategic Priorities” of the Aragon Ecosystem. The Tech Support Guild, BD Guild, etc. are initiatives that will help us make progress towards our “Strategic Priorities” - but they are not “Strategic Priorities” themselves.

@Shawncubbedge You did as good of a job as you possibly could have given the information we have to work with. This is more an example of why IMO we need to build a closer relationship between the AA and the AN DAO. After all, it’s impossible to align a proposal to strategic priorities if we largely don’t know what they are.

To clarify, I don’t think anyone has done anything wrong. This is just a growing pain that I think we could learn from :slight_smile:


@Teo interviewing existing community/ambassadors is a great idea! To strategic alignment: believe Shawn has based his understanding on the clarification @fartunov provided on the gitbook proposal here my understanding is that the time required to connect and align on strategic priorities is part of the work proposed for Q1 2022.


Nice proposal @Shawncubbedge

Since this is a substantial amount, and you have defined nice KPIs to be tracked to validate the success of the proposal, would be nice to have part of the payment linked to those KPIs. You can even include a bonus for over-achievement.

Another point - You talk about ambassador retention and activation - But what does that mean exactly? How are we measuring the ROI of an ambassador or contributor?


I’m a fan of performance rewards but I would not support them at this early stage of the DAO. I suspect baselines will move up from the current ~11% as soon as we introduce Q1 bounties. I’d prefer we reward time required to establish /test performance measurement tools (statbot) and confirm KPIs and baselines once we have the data to inform these. Excluding bounties, the rewards here are inline with the recent BD proposal and seem more than reasonable given @Shawncubbedge proven level of commitment.

1 Like

@Teo Interviewing existing contributors is a fantastic idea. Can’t believe I didn’t think about that. Adding it to the proposal now. :slight_smile:
For your second point, I think @lee0007 hit the nail on the head with my thoughts making that section.
I think any initiatives that the DAO is working on, whether that be guilds or initiatives such as the proposals that we have been putting forth are going to naturally open up the need for communication between the DAO and the AA. As hard as it is for us to align with strategic priorities I’m sure it’s just as hard for them to do the same if there are no initiatives to align with on the DAO side. It’s like we both standing on two sides of a river building a bridge to the other side. It’s hard to know where to build if the other side hasn’t started yet. We don’t know what obstacles they have to build around or the resources they may need. But as we continue along this path we will slowly align and build natural communication channels and trust along the way. I’m excited to help build this bridge with everyone. :slight_smile:

@ramon These are all great points. I would be happy to work out what these success metrics would be. Although with the amount of information we have, which is simply an estimate on contributor retention, I believe this would be hard to achieve. We have no real baseline and no real process to build on to actually onboard people. That is the purpose of this proposal it will be setting in place a process to measure KPIs, establishing a baseline for us to measure by, and creating a process for onboarding people in a way that encourages participation and retention.

As for retention and activation:
For retention, this is referring to whether or not the person onboarded actually sticks around and meaningfully participates in the DAO. As I said in the proposal out of the 90 ambassadors that have been onboarding we have ~10 that have stayed and contributed to the DAO. That’s an ~11% percent retention rate.
As for activation, That leaves ~80 Ambassadors that we could possibly reeactivate. So say through systems and initiatives we put in place we reactivate 20 Ambassadors that would be a 25% reactivate rate. (These numbers are simply examples btw) This is something that can easily be measured using StatBot.

When we talk about the ROI of an Ambassador or Contributor I think the proof is in the pudding. The success of the DAO is a direct result of the people involved. We can measure involvement using the StatBot. But just being involved isn’t all there is to it. That’s where things such as the Mentor Program come in. This way we are not just having people hanging out in the Discord propping up stats. These people have gone through an actual onboarding process and had someone after the initial process to show them how to participate in and add value to the DAO. These are the people they will be working with in the Guild or project they choose to be in so the Mentor who is essentially training the new contributor has a reason to ensure they have all the tools they need to be an asset to the community.


Great proposal Shawn. +1

1 Like

Thank you @daniel-ospina. I think we are just waiting on @fartunov now correct? :slight_smile:

I will support the proposal. Similar to the Gitbook proposal, I am not an expert on the topic so seeing Tayy and Ben backing the proposal is a good enough signal for me. Two comments:

  • strategic alignment should be done before a proposal is approved, not be part of the scope
  • I agree with Ramon that the requested budget is very high (not only here but also on other proposals that have been approved) and exceed the compensation of a lot of full-time contributors to the project…this is akin to early mining rewards. I expect both the expertise census and the budget justification bar to increase substantially in the following seasons

With that being said, I personally have really high expectations for the output, and before approving any follow-up proposals will want the unanimous sign-off of both @Tayy and @b3n that objectives have been met and deliverables are of exceptional quality


I appreciate your support Ivan. I intend to deliver nothing but exceptional quality keeping in mind that the work I’m doing will help shape how the future of onboarding for the AN DAO will be handled. I’m passionate about the future of web3 and helping others on their journey in DAOs and crypto. I’ve taken the initiative to use my spare time to join multiple other DAOs and use the things I learn in those DAOs to help inform this process for Aragon. So rather than starting off fresh, we can build on other DAOs’ lessons to help us stay up to date with the ever-changing space and the tools and ideas available that can assist with directing the contributor journey.


3/3 ESD Support. Congratulations Shawn.

Funding for this project begins 20th January 2022 and payment for month one will reflect this shorter time frame. Can you please ensure to have your Sourcecred role changed to a team member role before the 20th so that your activity in Discord is accounted for but no longer paid via Sourcred. I look forward to monthly reporting & updates here in the comments section to provide consolidated public transparency for the work you are undertaking.

Awesome will do! Thank you all so much. :slight_smile:

January Monthly Reporting

Since starting 20 January 2022, the following items were delivered

  • Statbot implemented
    – Still waiting on the premium version to begin measuring proper data

The following deliverables were progressed

  • Integrated Onboarding Journey With Level1 & DAOlicious
    – estimated completion: Middle/ End of March

  • Transparent user Journey
    – estimated completion: First Week of February

  • Monthly Community Call Scheduled for the 31st @ 9 am CST

The remaining deliverables are yet to begin

  • Roadmap for Onboarding Implementation Season 2
    – estimated completion: Middle of March

  • Mentorship Program
    – Waiting on a few other initiatives to align to help move this forward

  • Consolidation of Current Applications
    – Need to align further with owners of the current applications and integrate those with the onboarding process.


Have been reading up the old posts and looking forward to improving onboarding process.