What are our goals

We are here to help everyone make sense of data and see New Zealand clearly in a way that inspires us forward. This mission is really hard to measure because it’s difficult to track the myriad ways that benefits flow from more people using data.

We have two proxy measures for success based on the main things we do. We believe if we achieve these proxies, we are more likely to be successful in our core mission. We’ve picked 24 February 2022 for hitting our big goals for each of these, as it’ll be the 10th anniversary from Lillian first having the idea for Figure.NZ (you can read more about the origin story here.

High-Level Measurements

Functions High-level measurements Goals for 24 February 2022
Take New Zealand’s scattered, disparate, non-personal data, and standardise it to publish it in machine readable form in a centralised location How much data have we published? 80% of New Zealand’s public, non-personal, aggregated Government data to be published by Figure.NZ
Make it easy and compelling for people to find and use New Zealand’s data How many people are engaging with the data we have published? Two million people each month engage with the data we’ve published

These goals might not be the perfect yet. We’re going to give them our best shot, but we might alter them down (or up!) as we learn more about how fast we can run. We run a bunch of processes to help us know if we’re on track for the long-term goals which you can read about in more detail further down on this page.

Definitions

The definition of each high-level measurement will change over time as teams work together to define the best measures. We’ll update these definitions as we create them.

The purpose of these measurements is not to apply pressure or make us feel like we’ve failed. Rather, it’s to give us a foundation to make good decisions, and a goal to strive for.

There are some things that we don’t know our role in yet, like helping people to aggregate data. In time, these may be added to our measurements.

How do we measure success?

There is a lot of autonomy within the Figure.NZ team and we expect everyone to participate in coming up with ideas and helping decide our priorities. Our mission and goals and their related functions and measurements are our north star to keep us moving in the right direction. You can find our latest quarterly objectives and how we are going against them a little further down this page.

We have defined two main functions (what we do) and two supporting functions (how we do it) to achieve our mission, and the main activities they each involve.

What we do

This section explains our functions, goals, measures, and actions. It should be read as a part of our wider mission about why we’re here.

1. Take New Zealand’s scattered, disparate, non-personal data, and standardise it to publish it in machine-readable form in a centralised location.

How we achieve this:

  • Establish overview of the NZ data landscape
  • Build relationships with everyone who has the data
  • Define best-practice standards for processing and publishing data
  • Develop and evolve technology for processing and publishing data
  • Process and publish data

2. Make it easy and compelling for people to find and use New Zealand’s data

How we achieve this:

  • Create and evolve a delightful user experience for people to find and use data
  • Enable easy distribution of content to other channels/platforms
  • Promote the use of data
  • Educate people about how they can use data

How we do it

3. Enable the best team to deliver the main functions on an ongoing basis

How we achieve this:

  • Recruit and retain great people
  • Ensure that they are empowered to help Figure.NZ towards the mission, specifically that they have the environment and tools they need to bring their best
  • Give our people the freedom they want to create and execute on their ideas
  • Check regularly that our people feel they are doing the right things, doing them well, and working well with others
  • Ensure we have an internal planning system and processes that help us stay aligned and motivated with the minimum possible effort

4. Raise enough money to deliver the main functions on an ongoing basis

How we achieve this:

  • Build strong relationships with organisations that are interested in supporting our vision of a country where everyone uses data in their daily lives
  • Establish effective partnerships that increase our internal capability or give us new ways to get the data we collect out to users as well as generating revenue
  • Update the budget monthly with a clear view of the cash position and good visibility over future revenues

Reporting our progress

This structure is intended to be lightweight and not a burden. If it’s not working, we’ll adjust.

Quarterly reflection and planning session

At the end of each quarter (February, May, August and November), we’ll look at how we did. We’ll celebrate, or we’ll recalibrate. If we haven’t hit our objectives, we’ll talk about why, and use what we’ve learned to set a better objective for the next quarter. We will update Tohu to show our new objectives for the next quarter.

Monthly kōrero

On the last Friday of each month, anyone who’s in the office or who wants to join in remotely will have a short kōrero on how the month has gone. This is a chance for us to identify early if it looks like there’s a problem with any of our objectives, so we can adjust accordingly, either by changing the target or by changing our actions. This is a relaxed, informal session—think of it like a quick check-in over a glass of wine and maybe some cheese. We will update this page with a few words of progress update against each objective.

Weekly check-in

Each week, we share our progress on our measures by posting in #general. You’ll be reminded by Slackbot to do this for the objectives that have your name against them.

Quarterly objectives, owners and actions for Raumati | Summer 2017 🌳

Summary table

Num Objective
1 Produce full documentation for the data team
2 Update rate to 75% of Data collections and focus new content on Environment
3 Add 30 additional agencies to Grace
4 Add data content for comms
5 Complete Project Meerkat prototype
6 Development completion of Search and Enumeration phase 1
7 Product development: Digits design round two
8 Product development: Research and scoping phase of Charts 2.0 is underway
9 Adopt modern software deployment practice
10 Create a framework for test coverage of our codebase
11 Develop comms plans for one of our priority audiences
12 Develop a data literacy toolkit
13 Set the parameters of the behaviour change project
14 Decide how we’re going to track and monitor things
15 Kick-off Figurehead communications
16 Document the installation, configuration and use of the common software tools for our organisation
17 Establish risk register and update process
18 Establish Figure’s 20
19 Establish each partner
20 Begin process for booking CP

Function 1: Take New Zealand’s scattered, disparate, non-personal data, and standardise it to publish it in machine-readable form in a centralised location

Objective 1: Produce full documentation for the data team

Create and maintain a comprehensive guide of what we do, and how. This is going to be mostly focused on the Grace work, but will include all overarching principles and other data team activities that do not relate to Grace. Written documentation will benefit new staff and a guide for existing staff to refer to.

Owner: Data team

Output:

  • The first version of the data team documentation is released.

Notes:

  • For way too long, a lot of the accumulated knowledge and practice have been locked inside people’s brains.

Objective 2: Update rate to 75% of Data collections and focus new content on Environment

Lift update rate to 75% of data collections. Add new content focusing on (1) the environment theme and (2) priorities indicated by partner organisations.

Owner: Data team

Outputs:

  • New and updated content is published
  • The internal update timeline reflects our expectations
  • Partner organisations are satisfied with the data being produced and progress is tracked

Objective 3: Add 30 additional agencies to Grace

This is a continuation of our ongoing efforts to research all data made publicly available by New Zealand government agencies. In this quarter, we want to research at least 30 additional agencies. This will bring our total to over 150.

Owner: Data team

Output:

  • Internal and public-facing catalog is updated with new data collections

Function 2: Make it easy and compelling for people to find and use New Zealand’s data

Objective 4: Add data content for comms

Data4Comms II: This is the sequel to the objective that sees the data team serving the comms team. This will include at least 4 new blogs, ongoing updates on data progress, Stuff charticles etc. Unlike most sequels, this one won’t disappoint.

Owner: Data team (Comms team are executive producers)

Outputs:

  • At least four new public posts / blogs are published
  • Comms team is supported and kept up to date
  • We have ongoing media presence in the form of charticles and suchlike

Objective 5: Complete Project Meerkat prototype

Owner: Product team

Output:

  • a report of findings and a prototype

Objective 6: Development completion of Search and Enumeration phase 1.

This is to resume from being on hold while Chart interactivity was given priority. It will set us up for project meerkat and chart rebuild work.

Owner: Product and Development teams

Output:

  • completed infrastructure for search and enumeration improvements to allow us to continue iteration.

Objective 7: Product development: Digits design round two

Second design round completed + some people testing. To keep some momentum on this, and progress iteration and design.

Owner: Product team

Outputs:

  • Feedback taken onboard and new designs created
  • People testing documented and feedback resolved.

Objective 8: Product development - Research and scoping phase of Charts 2.0 is underway

Is high priority to benefit both the Data and Comms teams. Will document functionality for public use on website

Owner: Product

Outputs:

  • Clear documented process that steps out requirements and order of work

Objective 9: Adopt modern software deployment practice.

Operationally, we deploy software like they did in the 70s, because we’ve been doing things by hand since the beginning because we had no money and we were always in a hurry. It’s messy, risky and makes everything we do more expensive and more complicated. Modern operational practice is to automatically deploy software and the systems required to run it based on changes to the source code, and to minimise human inputs into this process to reduce errors and unexpected failures. It also improves developer productivity and greatly reduces the time required to recover from outages or failures, either internally or in the service provider platforms.

Owner: Operations team

Outputs:

  • An automated bare metal deployment process, from source, including a data restore.
  • Integration with a testing framework capable of blocking deployment.
  • Documentation of the deployment and restore processes.
  • Successful bare metal restore by a non-technical staff member.

Notes:

  • Due to a shortage of development resource, we will probably engage a contractor to do some of this work.

Objective 10: Create a framework for test coverage of our codebase.

At present, we have no way to identify defects introduced by code changes, and this causes public outages and unnecessary development costs to remedy. It will also hinder our ability to add new developers in the future. Best practice is to integrate automated testing into the deployment pipeline so destructive changes are identified and can be used to prevent deployment of faulty code. This requires us to add software to perform this testing, and to modify our coding practices to accommodate them.

Owner: Development team

Outputs:

  • Other teams consulted on critical test targets.
  • Suitable testing frameworks identified.
  • Modified code deployment pipeline, including testing frameworks.
  • A single representative test fully integrated.
  • Integration with new ops process, including automatic deployment blocking.
  • Plan to add wider test coverage (contractors, volunteers, etc.).

Objective 11: Develop comms plans for one of our priority audiences

As the comms team, we want to understand who our potential audiences are and make sure we’re getting our content to them in the most effective way. This quarter we’ll be looking at our education audience.

Owner: Comms team

The outputs are:

  • A review of the education audience: who they are, where they are, what they are doing, and what information they would find useful from us.
  • Exploration with product on what is upcoming and what else is possible to better meet their needs.
  • A documented communications plan for our education friends.

Objective 12: Develop a data literacy toolkit

As the comms team, and following on from Kōanga’s media-as-audience objective, we want to be proactive with our media friends around data literacy and helping them to use Figure.NZ.

Owner: Comms team

The outputs are:

  • A set of resources to share with media focused on data literacy and how to use Figure.NZ.

Objective 13: Set the parameters of the behaviour change project

As a member of the comms team I want to form a plan for how to approach the behaviour change project.

Owner: Comms team

The outputs are:

  • Engage the people that need to be engaged.
  • Write a project plan.
  • Figure out the reasons why we want people to change their behaviour.

Objective 14: Decide how we’re going to track and monitor things

As the comms team, and following on from our engagement objective, we want to make sure we’re being efficient with the way we track and monitor things.

Owner: Comms team

The outputs are:

  • Investigate and decide on what tools we might need.
  • Design a clear and efficent model for tracking our metrics.

Objective 15: Kick-off Figurehead communications

We want Lillian to become the face of knowing and using figures in New Zealand as part of our behaviour change efforts, so that people get lots of examples for how figures can actually be used.

Owners: Lillian and Kimberley

Outputs:

  • 3 Figurehead videos shot, edited and shared publicly

Function 3: Enable the best team to deliver the main functions on an ongoing basis

Objective 16: Document the installation, configuration and use of the common software tools for our organisation.

This is a prescriptive guide and covers aspects of accessibility and security. It is a distinct, self-paced resource, not a replacement for the cultural documentation already within Tohu, and is intended for both onboarding of new staff and as reference material for new staff.

Owner: Organisation team

Outputs

  • A self-paced training guide that describes the correct way to install, configure and access all of the common software tools we use.
  • All staff at a consistent level of access to common tools.

Notes

  • This is separate to Tohu because (a) it may contain sensitive information and (b) it requires its own structure and hierarchy to serve as a reference tool for existing staff (vs. a training tool for new staff).

Objective 17: Establish risk register and update process

As an organisation it is important that we are aware of the risks we face and have an active ongoing plan to mitigate these risks, and to identify more as they arise.

Owners: Strategy Team

Outputs:

  • Comprehensive risk register including mitigation plans for each risk identified
  • Defined process for addressing and updating the risk register

Function 4: Raise enough money to deliver the main functions on an ongoing basis

Objective 18: Establish Figure’s 20

The Figure’s 20 partnership needs to be fully formed and executed, then launched publicly.

Owners: Revenue Team and Communications Team

Outputs:

  • Execute all 20 partner contracts
  • Plan the public launch of Figure’s 20

Objective 19: Establish each partner

We have 20 new partners and it is very important that we manage our relationship with them well and deliver value for them.

Owners: Revenue Team

Outputs:

  • Documented activity plans for all 20 partners
  • System and processes for managing partners and stakeholders defined, including their contact details, reporting cycle and activities
  • Communication plan with partners established, including opportunities for them to engage, summary of things we are learning and activities we are doing, how they can work with other partners and our lens of the world

Objective 20: Begin process for booking CP

Owners: Revenue Team

Outputs:

  • Define short-list of CPs
  • Define offering for CP
  • Book meetings with all on short-list