* WGs marked with an * asterisk has had at least one new draft made available during the last 5 days

Every AD develops his or her own techniques for staying in touch with WGs and for monitoring their progress and his or her own progress. So this section is really hints and suggestions rather than a definitive guide.

It's essential to be very familiar with each WG's charter, deliverables and milestones, and to develop a good working relationship with the WG chairs. It's the WG chairs' job to monitor progress towards their deliverables and milestones in detail, but the AD should be aware of any significant glitches before a milestone is missed or an expected draft is overdue. The AD also needs to be aware of major debates in the WG where the chairs are having trouble forming a consensus - a clear intervention by the AD can help resolve such a situation. There's no general rule or tool for these monitoring activities. Many ADs set up regular conference calls with WG chairs; some WGs make use of issue trackers. Several IETF areas have set up area-specific web sites where current information about WG status beyond the basics on the main IETF site can be found. The ADs for an area are the drivers for such sites.

With at least 200 drafts coming in front of the IESG each year, some of them several times, it is beyond most AD's memory capacity to know which drafts are waiting for action by them. Since any AD can place a DISCUSS ballot on any draft, ADs must look wider than their own WGs to see if they are holding up progress in general. Here are some questions an AD may ask himself or herself regularly:

  • Have I followed up on the drafts I'm shepherding that were put into "AD Follow-up" in the last telechat? If not, why not? Should they actually be in "Revised ID Needed"? Did I tell the authors and WG Chairs what is needed? Does the WG itself need to be in the discussion loop?
  • Have I checked recently each draft that I have a DISCUSS against, to see if there has been an update or a Note to the RFC Editor that will resolve part or all of my concern?

Some area directors send a status report approximately monthly to their chairs and the IESG recapping the status of all drafts they are responsible for that have been submitted for publication, or for which they hold a DISCUSS position.

Some area directors find it helpful to prioritize their IESG responsibilities highest on weeks with formal telechats, and their area responsibilities highest on weeks with informal telechats.

There are tools to help with this self-monitoring, and which of them a particular AD uses is to some extent a personal choice. Here are the favorite tools of people who've contributed to this page:

  1. Just use the tracker to select all documents where you are the responsible AD and the state is (for example) AD Followup.
  1. Bill Fenner sends a DISCUSS summary to the IESG mail list each week.
  1. Look at your drafts in the data tracker which highlights drafts that have been in one state too long.

Other things where you need to track your own progress are BOF proposals, WG charter proposals and updates, and anything else that may come to you such as an IANA request for review. Systematic habits are needed, whether you prefer a PDA, calendar reminders, handwritten lists, or whatever.