EVE Online: Making a Successful Corporation, Part Two
MMORPG.com EVE Online Correspondent Sam Guss writes this guide to starting a successful corporation in CCP's EVE Online.
When we left off last time, we were putting together a Business Plan in order to plan for our success with a mega EVE Corporation. In this chapter we are going to take a closer look at how departments work, leadership structure, and start looking into the financial needs of your Corporation. I will be using a fictional corporation called Plasma Creations to give you an example to follow.
Departments and Divisions
Just like any business, your EVE Corporation is going to be made up of different departments or divisions. To go further with this idea, you would or could do the same thing with an Alliance. How does this equate into an EVE Corporation though? Let's take a look at our example that we've been working with on: Plasma Creations:
Plasma Creations has the following divisions in which our members fall into. A full listing of which members belong to which departments can be found on our forums and departmental ops. are tracked through the calendar on our web site.
Mining Division of Plasma Creations
Leader: Mining Director Igot Orr
Responsibilities: The Mining Division is responsible for bringing in Ore and minerals for all of the Corporation’s manufacturing needs. These ore and minerals are bought by the Corporation at just below average regional price. This allows the corporation to attain its manufacturing needs and allow the members of the mining division to make ISK. Mining ops. happen throughout the week and a full schedule can be found on the corporate web site. It is not uncommon for members of the Mining Division to be members of other departments – this is true of most of the divisions in Plasma Creations.
Security Division of Plasma Creations
Leader: Security Director Iown Yew
The Security Division is Plasma Creations’ formal Navy. As such, they provide protection on mining ops, especially on those scheduled in low-sec space; logistics runs when we are transporting goods to seed throughout the region; and also provide the offensive and defensive support in times of conflict with rival corporations.
Members of the Security Division routinely fly patrol through our home systems in order to keep in practice for fleet formation and tactics and also routinely run missions, which helps our corporations faction with various other EVE corporations, with the goal of providing safe refuges for jump cloning.
As you can see from the partial example above (in the case of a real business plan, the other two divisions of manufacturing and logistics for Plasma Creations would also be covered), this part of your business plan focuses even more closely on how your business is run, by outlining the various departments in even more detail.
At this point in our Business Plan, it is time to take a look at our leadership structure. In the Division section of our Business Plan, we listed their names to introduce but we didn't go into any detail about them. In a Business Plan, you want to go into detail though and a separate section for your Leadership is where you put this detail. There are a couple of different ways you can go about this when organizing your EVE Business Plan though:
You can either already have in place it is that will be going to be the leadership in your corporation and therefore you only have to give out a brief bio, outlining their qualifications, or you can input what traits and qualities you are looking for in that position and keep your eyes open until you find that person.
Director of Security: Iown Yew
Iown Yew has been playing EVE for a year and half now, with a focus on PvP aspects of the game. His qualifications include more than 300 kills on the corporation kill board, half of which have been made as the Fleet Commander of several different squads. His skills don't just stop there however. Heavily trained in Leadership Skills and Ship Command Skills, he has experience in a wide variety of ships of both Minmatar and Gallante design.
His PvE skills should be of note as well, having attained the ability to jump clone through four different corporations in all sections of space: high, low and null sec space. Iown Yew is very helpful to new recruits who wish a life as a PvP'er. Most important though, is his tactics that he shows in fleet to fleet combat.
A review such as this is useful so that new members of a division can see for themselves the type of leader they have and his or her experience. It also helps in attracting members, to see that those in leadership positions have the experience, the knowledge and the ability to lead in their current roles.
This is probably the single most useful bit of your entire business plan: the financial section. It is here where you show how it is that financially you will be able to succeed. Even more, it serves as a guide post so that you can see when you are on, below or above your target for success – financially speaking of course. The first thing you need to figure out what your overhead fixed costs are. These are the costs that aren't going to go away without causing major change to your corporation. Station office costs, POS fuel, and alliance costs make up a majority of these kinds of costs and no matter what happens, you will need to bring in this much ISK to cover those costs (though granted, the POS fuel can be farmed by your corporation, you should still have an understanding of how much the fuel will cost, as you may need to buy some at some point in the corporations life).
Let’s say that between POS fuel costs, an alliance fee and office space, you need to bring into your corporation 3 billion ISK to maintain a certain level of expectancy in your corporation (the idea of being in an alliance, maintain POS's, and your offices). The next step should be the obvious one: where does the ISK come from?
One sure-fire way of insuring some flow of ISK into your corporation's wallet is by taxing your members. How much ISK taxes bring in can vary month to month and will depend on several factors. The most common use of taxing is to set a tax limit of somewhere between 2%-10% - some corporations tax higher or lower. In any case, remember this tax rate can be lowered or raised and as such can be a big boon to corporations, especially starting out. Let's look at an example of taxation with our fictional corporation:
Plasma Creations Taxation Plan
Taxation comes in two flavors at Plasma Creations. The first is a standard 10% tax on members. This accounts for a varying degree of income, with tracking for the past quarter averaging 1.9 billion ISK per month. The second flavor is known as W2 or Work Weekend. One weekend a month is declared W2 (usually 2-3 weeks notice) and the weekend starting on Friday at Midnight to Sunday at Midnight, the tax is increased to 75%. Several various ops are run on this weekend, for all of the divisions and while not mandatory, members are strongly encouraged to participate in these ops. With good attendance, these W2's have brought in 1-1.2 billion ISK per month over the last quarter, with an average of 1.1 billion ISK per month.
Bearing in mind, that the above taxation is purely theoretical, I do believe that taxation should at the very least cover the overhead expenses of a corporation. This means that the more members you have, the further you can expand in regards to offices and POS's and potential alliance corporations.
Next time, we will continue our building a financial model for our corporation to be included in our Business Plan, as well as taking a look at planning for your first corporation expansion and goal planning.