As of 31 July 2019, all staff member accounts have "Staff" next to their name on their user profile.
It looks like this:
For reference, it used to look like this:
We took our cue from the existing design of the "top n% overall" label which we've actually inverted for everyone (not just staff) to stand out from the others. Additionally, we've updated the moderator label from "(moderator)" to an actual label, so it's easier to see and stands out. Staff with diamonds will have both of the indicators.
Clearing up confusion to improve interactions
We've noticed a shared point of friction for users and staff alike - staff often need to post answers on meta sites to explain how a tool or feature works or to respond to bugs. This is a great opportunity for them to interact with the people asking the questions but, sometimes, not having an indicator for every employee makes these interactions more challenging than they already are.
You might say "But what about diamonds, that's used for staff"... and you'd be right, in some cases. The primary purpose of the diamond is to indicate the moderators on a site. These are non-staff users who have extra tools at their disposal and special access to information. While we gave these to staff in the past, we now only grant them to specific types of staff members who need access to these tools - generally community managers and developers.
As such, for the rest of our cohort, we have relied on them mentioning their status in their "about me" sections. This simply isn't a sustainable option both because it's easy to forget but also because it's not actually proof. Anyone can edit their profile to state they're staff.
Adding an indicator like this isn't an original idea. Y'all have been asking for a way to recognize us for years and we're so excited to be able to deliver this change:
- Keep "Employee" on the profile of SE employees on meta
- Can we have a square or triangle or heart or *something* after employees' names?
- Split visualization of employee and moderator
Fortunately, we already indicate staff status at the account level, so we can use that information to add a marker to staff profile pages that anyone can see. So this update makes most of these requests status-completed!
We'll still encourage our staff to be more specific about their job title in their "about me" but this marker will let y'all quickly and easily know if the person supporting a feature or answering a bug report is staff.
I'm really excited about this change and I hope it helps smooth out interactions across the network a bit. Questions? Ask them in the answers.