Rachel Sunderland

Head of Community (Maternity Cover)

Rachel Sunderland (@sundyclan) is an experienced community manager who's work focusses on creating inclusive spaces for folk to learn and mainly, be themselves. Aspiring to be the "Queen of Fun", s...

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A Week in the Life of a DevRel Community Manager

Last updated on Oct 28, 2021

There has been a recent phenomenon by marketing managers across the world where they have adopted the “Community Manager'' title to mean, essentially, Social Media Manager. Now, this isn’t to say that social media managers don’t manage communities (they do), but a Community Manager in Developer Relations is way more than that (and also, isn’t a social media manager at all!) 

Here at Vonage, we have a team of excited Community Managers who work behind the scenes to make sure of the smooth operations for developer advocates and ensure we are connecting with our community in-person and online. But, I hear you ask, if we’re not just online, social media managers, what do we actually do? 

Event and Developer Program Sponsorships 

One of our main objectives is to support developer communities through sponsoring events, hackathons and meetups. Instead of asking developers to come to us, we want to make sure we’re meeting you where you already are - and that is usually at events!

The Community Manager’s role is to help Developer Advocates find exciting events to attend where Vonage APIs may be of interest to attendees. We also help with their travel/accommodation & expenses and ensure we can deliver all of the commitments of our sponsorship contracts. Sometimes we get the opportunity to go along to some events, to help with booths or set-up, so it’s a really exciting part of our role!

If you organise any developer events, workshops or hackathons and you're interested in a partnership or sponsorship, please email community@vonage.com

Organise Events

Alongside the events and programs that we sponsor, we also run events. This can be anything from internal hackathons to meet-ups with the community or online talks and workshops.

We make sure all of the logistics associated with the event are sorted, so our developer advocates get more time to network and help attendees. 

Talks, Workshops & Hackathons

Whether we are sponsoring an event or not, our Developer Advocates give talks and hands-on workshops on our Communications APIs. Their goal is to support and enable developers to build powerful applications with our products. 

The Community Team hosts weekly Talk Prep sessions where we can help with the flow and structure of the talk, whilst other Developer Advocates can help with the technical content. 

I personally love this, as it allows us to learn something new and connect with developer advocates!

Social Impact Initiatives 

Our team is passionate about supporting initiatives that provide social impact, we are especially interested in working towards environmentalism and diversity and inclusion. 

We work with non-profits and underrepresented groups in technology, to help people learn how to code, build apps using our APIs or simply share experience and career advice as a tech developer. 

Please do get in touch if you'd like to work with us on an initiative - we have a great catalogue of talks that we can deliver to your organisation, ready to go. 

Marketing, Strategy & Research 

When we're not working on the operational side of being a community manager, we also spend a chunk of time researching new community initiatives and tracking our success. 

Community Managers also have the fun job of reviewing what swag we give out at events (FREE T-SHIRTS!) and ensuring our booth & materials are up-to-date and in good condition. 

Managing our Online Community

Ok, so I know I said that we're not Social Media Managers, but we do manage our online community too. This includes moderating our Community Slack, Twitter, Twitch and other social media accounts. We do build some content but this is only about an eighth of the whole team's weekly efforts.

In the future we hope to have an active Community Hub online, so keep your eyes peeled for this... 

I hope this gives you a bit of a snapshot into what we do at the moment. As our community and activity grow, we will be able to introduce more initiatives. 

** If this article has sparked your interest, and you want to join us, we're currently hiring a Community Manager (EMEA). Interested in the role? Drop me an email and let's talk! rachel.sunderland@vonage.com**