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Creating the Services You Want

24 August 2016
By Chris Gift

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Ashwin Rangan, ICANN's Head of Engineering, and I have been talking for some time now about how to provide everyone with continuous visibility into our engineering work.

One means of increasing visibility is through the creation of community-led Technical Task Forces (TTFs). These TTFs engage with ICANN (specifically my team and me, as Product Managers, accompanied by an appropriate Engineering Delivery Manager) to proactively shape the engineering agenda for specific community segments. Some of ICANN's Supporting Organizations and Advisory Committees have operational TTFs today. Perhaps others will follow.

To reach beyond TTF members, another avenue we're exploring is to blog about the Product Management and Engineering work that we undertake, typically for the benefit of one or more community segments. This is the first in a series of blog posts intended to help you better understand what we're up to.

One important project were tackling right now is the Board Advice Registry. The straightforward explanation is that the registry is a means for ICANN to systemically log and track advice that the community sends to the Board. This service will enable community members to follow the status of each piece of advice as it moves through various steps in the process, from receipt to acceptance (should that be the case) to implementation. While ICANN has been processing community advice for years, we're looking to greatly improve internal efficiencies and our means of making everything public. We're currently beta testing both the internal tools and operational processes. The Board Advice Registry service will go public when it's fully operational.

If the Board Advice Registry is successful, we can also use registries to log and track review team recommendations, CEO correspondence and any other advice that comes into the organization. Registries have the potential to greatly enhance our transparency.

We are also collaborating with the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) on a new website with improved external communications regarding its activitities. And we're helping the GAC launch new internal collaboration services. We're on track to begin beta testing around ICANN57 with a possible targeted launch in March 2017.

Finally, we remain focused on the Centralized Zone Data Service (CZDS). The current system is not meeting our users' needs, and we're working to remedy this. Right now, our teams are integrating parts of the existing CZDS into the Salesforce application so that registries can do all of their work in one place. We're also working on improving the end-user experience with the service.

Ashwin and I have a lot more on our plates. We'll talk about other projects in future posts. In the meantime, we'll continue to seek new opportunities to collaborate with the community to ensure we're meeting your needs.


Chris Gift

Chris Gift