The Devil in the Detail: Night Shift Success!

We’re up. We’re running. 24/ 7 moderation is live across all of our sites. Phew! Now it’s time to sit back and take stock of the first couple of weeks, making any adjustments we need as a result.

This kind of change in our business doesn’t happen very often, so for the first day of each of our moderator’s shifts I was there to hold their hands, answer any questions and generally offer them guidance. Let me tell you, whether you’re used to it or not, 4am is still 4am! It’s surprising just how many of our customers are still active at that time of the day!

All credit goes to Charlotte, Rosie and Jess for the excellent training they gave. A week long interactive session with all new team members was followed by a week long, hands on moderating day shift under the watchful eye of experienced moderators.

On an average day each moderator will review up to 4000 items ranging from pictures to profiles, from diary entries to ice breakers. Approving them quickly is obviously important, especially during the evening and late night spells but accuracy is still vital. One mistake can have significant implications to the reputation of the sites.

Spotting the odd scammer or inappropriate content out of everything that we screen requires constant attention to detail and over the years scammers and members with less than honourable intentions have gotten cleverer and more subversive on their attempts to outwit us. We are constantly developing techniques to keep one step ahead of them, and this will always be so. Subtle phrases and language tones can give them away. In addition, our moderators have developed a photographic memory, quite literally recognising members whose photographs don’t match their profile descriptions in quite minor ways.

This has had a big impact on members; they no longer have to wait for long periods of time to have their pictures and profiles approved. 24/7 moderation also helps us on identifying scammers and removing them from the site as quickly as possible. We now have more time to investigate suspicious behaviour; we can also turn support messages around faster than ever before, with many other new added services. These two charts are a before and after of our night moderators starting and show just how greater impact they’ve had.

Hiring all of these new moderation staff has also meant inducting them into the business. This involves ensuring that they have access to the building and the car park, showing them where the cooking facilities, the fire exits and first aid facilities are and answering any last minute questions that they would normally have the benefit of having the rest of company around to answer! We’ve also launched a new monitoring programme to ensure that our night moderators meet the standards that we expect and an advanced refresher session is arranged to top up their skills.

So far, so good. We’ll now reassess the full impact on business workloads and reassign tasks and resources accordingly, but either way, I think we can count on the implementation of round the clock moderation as a success.

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