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FYI - Birds of a Feather Flock Together
by Lauren Klein and Cheryl Pagen

Communities at Novell

At Novell, we recognize that knowledge is most powerful when it is shared. Internal and external Novell Communities are gathering steam and becoming not only a forum for collaboration, but a way to bolster the knowledge, expertise and ultimately the value we provide to our customers.

According to the Gartner Group, a Community is "a group of individuals (people or organizations) with diverse viewpoints, experience, roles and other characteristics; engaged in real work (defined as having goals and stakeholders to please); over a significant period of time in which members build things, solve problems, learn, invent, create new knowledge and, generally, progress the purpose of the Community."

Communities come in all shapes and sizes— from informal gatherings based on personal relationships to communities established by an enterprise with significant company investment and thought leadership. Large or small, Communities provide organizations with learning experiences that yield new ideas and insights to be shared.

Building Communities at Novell
From Architecture to Secure Identity Management (SIM), Analytics to exteNd, Novell employees are putting their heads together in Communities of Practice. At Novell, Communities are more than just a group of like-minded individuals talking shop. They provide a primary information source for members, while promoting networking and fostering a culture that values and encourages knowledge sharing and collaboration.

Employees who participate in Communities at Novell take advantage of the combined expertise of their colleagues, and can then pass that expertise on to customers. For example, a member of the Analytics & Customer Management Community reaches out for ideas on how best to approach the topic of Data Quality Management. Other Community members respond by sharing their viewpoints, references and experiences. The employee uses this information and data from other sources to quickly develop an architecture scenario and business solution that address all the customer's challenges. The end product is then made available to the entire Community so that others can reap the benefits.

Technical questions about Novell and other technologies are also frequently raised. Those who participate have access to the knowledge and experience of all Community members. Whatever the question, chances are someone has had the same experience and can offer a useful tip.

Novell employees took their community spirit on the road to BrainShare Europe in Barcelona, where Secure Identity Management Community members attended one of BrainShare's well-known "Birds of a Feather" sessions. By joining in a real-world Requirements Analysis engagement, participants learned why a successful Requirements Analysis is critical when defining and scoping solutions across the Novell solution suites.

If You Have Questions, We Have Answers
While the Novell Communities of Practice are comprised of Novell employees, external communities give those scattered across the Novell universe a way to tap into a collective knowledge base of all— things Novell.

Novell Support Forums
Novell Support Forums ( are a collection of Novell-sponsored news groups to discuss') technical issues relating to Novell products. They are categorized by product or product group. The news groups are not officially monitored by Novell personnel, but by volunteer Technical Support SysOps (System Operators). The SysOps are experts in their field with years of real-world experience. 

The online forums are accessible 24x7x365 and are FREE. All you need to bring are your questions and a willingness to share your knowledge and experience with others. In addition, a searchable database ( is available for tracking down technical information and manuals. 

Cool Solution Communities
Another popular landing place on the Novell Web is the Cool Solutions site. This group of Communities boasts a huge collection of tips and tricks submitted by Novell users and cataloged by product and solution. They are designed to help you get the most out of your Novell products. Surveys, polls, user ratings and much more add to the experience. Join as many Cool Solutions Communities as you want. Subscribe to get free tips and tricks, for whatever products you use, sent straight to your inbox. Check out the latest and the coolest at 

Join a Community Today
At Novell, joining with each other and Novell users around the globe through Communities helps provide our customers with the very best Novell experience.

Your participation in the Forum and Community process is a key component of your professional learning and that's important to us. We know you have great ideas and innovations to contribute that will benefit the entire Novell Community. Communities at, and about Novell are cropping up as we speak. So what are you waiting for? Join a Community today!

For more information about the Novell Communities of Practice, contact Lauren Klein at To learn more about external communities and forums, contact Kim Groneman at

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