Do's, Don'ts and lessons learned with Confluence?

We are transitioning from a number of various knowledge bases to Confluence. Has anyone done this? Do you have any recommendations for do's, don'ts and lessons learned? 

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Hi Jennifer,

Yes, I've done this.  There are lots of lessons learned and gotchas (too many to put here), but they largely boiled down to things like:

  • If you're a technical person, get a content person in before you move anything.  They'll spot issues you won't.
  • If you're a content person, get a technical person in before you move anything.  They'll spot issues you won't.
  • Plan your space structure, if you can, because you move things in.  It's pretty annoying having a structure set up and working only to find it doesn't scale to accommodate what you're transferring and you have to move things around again.
  • Automate as much as you can (some wikis have export tools and Confluence has built in Word import functionality which is very good).
  • Bring as much metadata over as possible, especially who last edited [whatever you're importing] and when.
  • If multiple people are bringing stuff in, agree on common naming conventions, page structure, and labels.
  • On the subject of labels, use them to say where a Confluence page came from, e.g. wiki name, shared drive, SharePoint, or wherever.
  • Consider adding smaller documents as attachments rather than extracting the contents.  This will greatly reduce your import time and allow you to turn off [old system] much quicker.  You can then turn the attachments into actually pages over time if you want to.
  • Manually porting things over can be boring and a lot of people won't do it right because of this.  Only get people who really enjoy doing this sort of thing to copy things over.
  • Keep your old repositories for at least 6 months, just in case.  Transfer them to a portable hard drive that an admin locks in a secure cupboard if necessary, but don't "move and delete" because you'll regret it (even if no-one needs the back up you'll always be fretting that someone will need the back up).  If after 6 months (or whatever time frame you're comfortable with) you haven't needed the back-up, get rid of it.

There are 100 little things as well, most of which will be context dependent.  If you get stuck ask a question here; if you get really stuck try support.atlassian.com.  They're very, very good at answering, fixing, helping and generally supporting smile

Hi Rob,

Thank you so much! It sounds like I am on the right track!!! I just needed to hear that the items I was concerned about were legitimate which it sounds like they are! Now I can make the business case to address them!

 

Jenn

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