I'll be using this thread to provide any updates as I make an assessment of what needs to change with Faction Management. With recent events, reading through forum posts and after a large discussion I held with ~26 community members (current and past illegal faction leaders, experienced individuals) — it is obvious that some changes need to be made with a complete reform of Faction Management.
I'll touch base on a few points flagged by the discussion that was held, and where focus will be placed as time progresses:
1. Faction Management leadership. The leadership of Faction Management will be re-assessed, and the current Head of Illegal Factions will no longer be involved in Faction Management. The current idea is to establish a small team or "council" of leaders over Faction Management and then have a Faction Management team consisting of both staff members and illegal faction leaders and any other key community members. There's a wealth of experience amongst the players, and perhaps it's time that these individuals are formally involved in actual Faction Management. Illegal faction leaders, especially, should be involved in more formal decisions and discussions given their role on the server with factions. It should no longer only be members of the staff team that have a voice when it comes to faction management's decision-making processes.
2. Official Faction Status. The formal process for achieving official status, who is involved in the decision-making process (see above) for official status and what the general requirements from factions are will be totally re-assessed. With the feedback received, it seems to be over-complicated and factions feel underappreciated or overlooked during selection processes. This'll be completely reformed to be a more simple and rewarding experience with a keen focus on serving to support factions that are contributing well to the server. Factions and their role-play and contributions should be able to speak for themselves, and the whole process needs to be scrapped and made anew.
3. Support to factions. This is a major concern after hearing back from a number of people who have been on the receiving end of faction management processes. Faction management, for the most part, should be here to simply offer support to factions, to help them with issues and to provide them the tools they need to let their role-play flourish. Handling their concerns and what they need help with should be punctual and wholesome for all parties involved, and factions should feel like they have the support of the server at all times. This can include prompt mapping updates (for turf areas, or for role-play purposes) and any implementations that are quick and serve as a benefit. Any micro-management of official factions and an unnecessary focus on statistics and menial numbers will be completely thrown out, too.
4. Communication issues. Transparency and general communication between faction management and the factions (both official and unofficial) they manage will be completely re-assessed. Some factions feel overlooked, some feel spoken down to, some don't feel they're getting the support they need. There's a plethora of issues in this regard, especially in regards to transparency in discussions and decisions. Communication in general and how (and when) faction management talk to factions and their leaders will be taken back to the drawing board.
5. Drug and weapon supply. This was another key issue brought up in discussions, along with other perks afforded to factions. Drugs are inconsistent and poorly distributed, and there needs to be a drug manufacturing process with the new drug script for factions to use independently. The current process is to be handed a bunch of drugs by faction management, because that's the only process we have at the moment. That's something that will be communicated through the development team as a pressing need for the drug scene to flourish. As for weapons, that and other perks will be assessed for factions — when and how they should receive these benefits and have access to them.
6. The processing of reports. Faction report handling, breaking rules of engagement and other concerns have been flagged, too. These processes will be looked at with more lasting disciplinary actions against the factions that disrupt the scene for everybody else or set bad examples.
7. Speed. The speed in which these changes are worked on. It can't be a long-term plan, it needs to happen in the short-term.
The discussions I'm having are still on-going, but they are productive and I thank those involved. In my recent staff update I said we were about to announce new official factions — that will be taken into consideration and we don't intend there to be any delays with that. We will still be looking at bringing new official factions into the server soon, but will be working on this reform as well.
If you're interested in this faction management reform, I will be updating this thread with any pertinent information as time goes on. I'll be making this my main focus on the server until we're back on track and the issues and concerns have been looked at.