Building a Personalized Community User Experience

The Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET) needed a community platform that allowed users to personalize their experience and find content that matters to them.

The Results

  • 23,000

    online community members

  • 150+


  • 115,000+

    page views per month

  • 80%

    of technical queries answered on the same day

The Need for a More Feature-Rich Community Platform

The Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET) is one of the world’s leading professional societies for the engineering and technology community, with more than 168,000 members in 150 countries and offices in Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. 

With a rich history dating back to 1871, the IET has always been champions of engineering and technology, inspiring, informing and influencing the global engineering and technology community to solve the challenges that matter and engineer a better world. 

The IET’s online community has been in place since 2012 and had grown to a membership of over 23,000 users, attracting on average 26,000 monthly unique visitors and 115,000 page views.

However, after extensive user research, they realized their community had grown beyond the capabilities of their platform and needed a new solution to continue scaling and providing what engineers want from an IET community. 

The fundamental challenges revolved around the lack of control and functionality. Poor site structure meant content was hidden away in silos, making it hard for users to find and engage with content that’s of interest. 

Meanwhile, poor user functionality severely restricted how members navigated the site.

Key functionality like search, filtering, tagging, flagging, groups, archiving, integrations, Q&A and webinars was needed to continue providing for the needs of a growing membership. 

The IET also understood the necessity of building trust between members and the importance of creating a safe, credible space where engineers can ask questions, share information and demonstrate their industry knowledge. However, without additional functionality, this wouldn’t be possible. 

Because of these challenges they struggled to maintain a sense of community. 

Key challenges: 

  • The IET had outgrown its community platform
  • It had a lack of functionality
  • Poor user experience 
  • Lack of personalization
  • Lack of credibility
  • Siloed communities

Building a Community with a Personalized User Experience

After extensive research, The IET selected 4 Roads to build their new community using Verint Community

The platform, along with its robust features and its history of innovation and continuous improvement, best matched The IET functionality wishlist. 

However, unlike other vendors, a key perk in selecting Verint Community is having all features and functionality available out-of-the-box, cutting down development time and enabling The IET to launch with a strong arsenal of community tools.

To create a better member experience, The IET wanted each user to have a personalized experience. To achieve this, 4 Roads extended the community to allow users to select their areas of interest and specialism. Now The IET can expose relevant content within the new activity feed, general discussion forum and digest emails. 

This extends into a custom explore page where users can see site-wide content filtered by area of interest, including questions, blog posts and events. For example, a robotics engineer doesn’t have to see content relating to railways unless they want to. 

IET can now also automatically promote unanswered questions to users with corresponding expertise to show discussions to a wider audience and improve the likelihood of finding/giving an answer in an acceptable time frame.

This improved level of control encourages engagement, networking and the exchange of ideas between disciplines, borders and generations. 

But as a professional membership organization trying to advance the exchange of ideas and promote the positive role of science, engineering and technology in the world, validating engagement as credible and professional was also critical. 

To facilitate this, IET added badges to identify community members whose contributions have been helpful, giving members a quick way to validate the advice or feedback they receive. 

This also challenges and motivates users to accumulate reputation and recognition, opening the door to collaboration opportunities. 

Learn More About Verint Community

A Community That Fosters Interactions and Engagement

This project aimed to create a safe online space for engineers to share knowledge, foster an ethos of sharing and collaboration, and encourage the positive behaviors and interactions expected on the site.

By migrating The IET community to Verint Community, we have built the foundations for a central hub generating content, questions and answers, putting the IET in a strong position to connect with busy engineers who need support from knowledgeable peers. 

With the range of community tools now available, the IET has built a sense of community between its members and the institution. They have forged a personalized user experience that encourages knowledge sharing, archiving and collaboration. And, they can raise awareness of the wider IET products and services by highlighting relevant content.

A full breakdown of what members are now able to do: 

  • See content/discussions related to user-chosen interests
  • Bookmark content
  • Tag contributions with taxonomy tags
  • Quickly see unanswered questions related to chosen interests
  • See related content from other IET sites (IET Events, E&T magazine, IET.Tv, E&T Jobs, Books)
  • Initiate conversations with members who share interests
  • Initiate private networking groups or discussions
  • Search by name, interests, expertise or location
  • Search for speakers and collaboration opportunities
  • Make individual posts anonymous if required
  • Add professional accreditations to their profile
  • Archive ‘helpful’ answers into an archive or wiki
  • Sign in using their IET’s single sign-on (SSO)
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