Strengthen performance and effectiveness
Evaluate, Iterate, and Adapt our processes for maximum impact with more limited resources.
Movement Strategy recommendation #10 encourages us all to "adapt to meet new and altered situations and challenges by adopting policies and procedures based upon evaluations of the changing Movement and the changing world." This commitment to evaluate, iterate, and adapt must be a clear and committed way of working across the Wikimedia Foundation.
Last year's annual plan identified the need to improve the performance and effectiveness of the Foundation itself. This included better coordination across our shared services/administrative functions (e.g. legal, finance, HR) as well as specific initiatives where it was believed that better coordination could both increase impact and reduce costs.
An example was last year's goal of creating a shared services approach to translations so that the Foundation could support more languages while not leaving each team to figure this out on their own.
Translation & Interpretation
Last year, we began a journey to improve translation and interpretation support for communicating with the Movement across the Foundation. Looking at resource allocations, we found that significant language support was provided by most teams across the Foundation. Yet, this happened through an array of external vendors, contractors, and volunteers. We worked to connect the dots to improve language support for Movement-facing communications from the Foundation.
By pooling people resources, harmonizing processes and using our existing tools better, we scaled support from 6 languages at the start of the year up to 25 languages currently. This growth did not involve additional investments. By improving efficiencies and working to a single framework, we actually reduced costs overall.
Next year, we will shift our focus to build on previous attempts at a shared glossary: a list of words commonly used within Wikimedia to help build consistency in how we translate. We will also look to improve quality control in translations and interpretation commissioned by the Foundation. Finally, we will continue to improve the use of tools by translators.
Financial & Administrative services
In 2022−2023, we advanced our efforts to provide improved services to the Foundation and meet our financial planning and compliance commitments. We rolled out the Supplier Diversity program, set up the financial infrastructure for Wikimedia Enterprise, deployed our project management tools to all of our major departmental initiatives, and completed key internal IT projects for greater automation and better user access.
In 2023−2024, we are planning to keep improving business workflows to increase the effectiveness of our operations to deliver faster financial results with appropriate controls. Our financial constraints and commitment to achieving the most impact with limited resources means a renewed focus on financial planning, internal technical support that meets the needs of a globally distributed workforce, and working environments that enable people to deliver their best work, in office and virtually. We will complete spinning out the Wikimedia Endowment from Tides, with independent banking and custody partners.
In 2022, the Foundation embarked on a number of conversations about how we work, particularly in relation to what we are trying to achieve for the mission. One of these conversations centered on the question of whether our existing organizational values were still serving us well. Values are fundamental to every organization and can create clarity and alignment to help guide everyday actions, behaviors, and expectations. Through a series of small-group workshops, a first value was refreshed ("We are in this mission together"), and its text made clearer and more actionable. We then continued this process for the remaining values, with refreshed versions emerging by July 2023.
The next phase of the project will include integrating our newly refreshed values into our core people processes and "bringing them to life" in everyday work at the Foundation. These will notably include:
- Performance and individual development: The values will be integrated into the Wikimedia Foundation performance framework through individual performance evaluation and career progression framework through the promotion processes.
- Learning: The values will be integrated into the learning curriculum for all staff, including the cultural orientation session for new hires.
- Recruiting: The values will be reflected in our branding and recruitment efforts/processes to help ensure cultural fit of new joiners.
Global Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Initiatives
A key area of focus for the Global Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) team has been to invest in strong employee networks based on shared identities. These Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) are voluntary, staff-led groups whose aim is to foster a welcoming, diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace. They serve as a resource for staff and are formally created and recognized by the Foundation. These groups work as trusted partners with the Talent & Culture department and the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion team. There are currently eight active groups: African ERG, South Asian ERG, LatinX ERG, Black ERG, Asian ERG, Women and Non-Binary ERG, Queer ERG, and Neurodivergent ERG.
In 2023−2024, we plan to help ERGs get more aligned to our annual plan and have them support regional priorities as well as regional planning. Some of our ERGs are also exploring partnerships with Wikimedia thematic user groups to share best practices and engage in joint celebrations of heritage month activities with Movement partners. Finally, ERGs are continuing to serve as a key driver for staff engagement, helping make a remote-first, globally-distributed workforce feel more familiar and welcoming to people from all backgrounds.
Another key development in 2022−2023 was the DEI leadership dashboard, a central place to track progress around DEI and ensure accountability. The DEI Leadership Dashboard will continue to help us track our commitments in 2023−2024. We will build on our strategic and programmatic commitments within other areas of this annual plan and also further create accountability checks and balances across every level of the organization.
This year, one of the initiatives for increasing the Foundation's performance and effectiveness will be the creation of an updated enterprise risk strategy, identifying the major risks we face as an organization and creating mitigation steps to reduce the impact of those risks. This process will involve identifying, prioritizing, and tracking our response to the highest priority risks. This will be led through a coordinated effort across our Legal and Finance teams.