Community Relations/Onboarding New Developers

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Onboarding New Developers was a program of the Technical Collaboration team (since July 2018 Developer Advocacy team), part of the proposed Wikimedia Foundation Annual Plan FY2017-18. See the content of the program in their canonical location.

We are using this page to develop and document the program.

Program structure[edit]

Sort of. Work in progress.


  • Understanding newcomers motivations and needs
  • A learning environment
  • Growth paths
  • Partnerships
  • Local groups
  • Newcomer hub
  • Reports
  • Project showcases and evaluation
  • Level-up mentors


Thoughts to be processed[edit]

How to offer the best growth paths to volunteer developers with the best use of resources and partnerships that we can have.

Growth path vs travel budget[edit]

  1. Find your project: Introduction to Wikimedia Tech - Featured Projects. Result: project found.
  2. Get started: Workshop Get Started to (Featured Project). Online (text / video, real-time / self-paced). Result: certificate upon completion.
  3. First task: Clonable / Easy task. Self-paced, project support channel. Result: certificate upon completion.
  4. Get involved: More tasks via project discussions, meetings, sprints, peer programming. Result: contacts, mentors, your contributor metrics start growing.
  5. Get more involved: Meet developers and editors in local meetups, regional events, developer conferences, Wikimedia Hackathon, Wikimania. Result: travel support, high bandwidth collaboration, social contacts.

Steps 1-4 can provide satisfaction and don't require any travel budget. Scholarships and travel grants should focus on volunteers who make it through 1-4.


  • Introduction to Wikimedia Tech (Phab:T158791)
  • Featured Projects with documentation to get started, first tasks, support channel and mentors.
  • Certificates valuable for CV, level up, travel support.
  • My contributor metrics.
  • CRM to track all newcomers in a scalable way and support them according to merit and location (i.e. invitations to regional Wikimedia events).
  • Activities to assure that first-timers thrive in their first face to face events.

We can squeeze a lot more the possibilities of online collaboration, focusing our travel budget flying the right junior volunteers and mentors to the right events, to continue building their growth paths.