In Rational Asset Manager, we currently have forums for users at both the individual asset level and the community level. After looking at current deployed instances for Rational Asset Manager, the forums have been very rarely used.

The development and usability teams are trying to understand if the way the UI is designed prevents people from easily creating forums and having discussions in them. We wanted to create a blog entry about this topic in hopes of eliciting feedback through the comments about this lack of use. What stops you from using the forums? Are there specific parts of the UI that prevent you from creating forums and posts?

Screen shot of a forum page

In the current implementation above, the main page for a forum has a lot going on. What are your thoughts on this page? Do you think everything on this page should go here or is there a better location?

Another idea shown on the above page is the idea of sharing the same forum with multiple assets. Do you like this ability or do you find it confusing?

Please leave any thoughts on the questions above or other thoughts on the forums in general in the comments section. Your input will help us make future design decisions about the UI.