I caught part of the dev stream today and Paul did talk about implementing 'units' like spies, commanders, and administrators. I'd love to see things like a shipyard boss who could cut deals with locals to get them to help constructors move faster through my ZoC.
Could also be an experience system for ships, that's something they have talked about on occasion.
I really miss that subsystem. It made crazy-expensive upgrades almost 'required.' But I'd want it paired with fixes that made renamed fleets keep the custom name until they're destroyed or disbanded.
Heck, I'd like fleet names to stick even if we never get ship experience back. It really helps when your in a very large, late game and rooting through that Fleets list.