I'm compiling a list of ideas on how to make a wiki "sticky" -- that is, how to encourage people to visit it, use it, refer to it. Some people call this "Wiki Adoption".
I'd love to hear stories about how you've encourage used of your wiki!
Each user group has a different sweet spot, for the business people, demonstrating efficiency savings can work wonders, eg:
One example I recall was the age old problem of progress reporting, we got users blogging in their own space, with a specific label, this was pulled into a timebound (last few weeks) aggregating page which was itself posted as a blog in the 'project' space (it seems blogs still cannot be templated, sigh). The great thing about this is even if someone was out, they could back post their blog and et-voila, it appeared with no intervention.
The technical groups are better placed to make the wiki the center of their world (less faff opening documents). If they work there primarily when collaborating, the effect is viral. Spend some time on showing templating, labelling, consider a project lifecycle and show how JIRA integration can make information available to a wider audience.
Above all, you need a champion/wiki-gnome fixer, some things can be simple if you already know how, to others, it can be a frustrating experience...
There are some key points by which users will come back to Wiki, that usually happens when the management crowd or the ones who influences decisions, makes a conscious attempt, not to send emails, remember not even emails saying that there is a wiki posting, and only put the information in Wiki. In the begining it may be needed by everyone to just tell the people around them by word of mouth about the new posting, and in a matter of days people will start looking at it automatically. And the adoption has to be made by identifying key players in each team, align them to the vision and make them understand and they will take it on in their group. It is easier said than done, but not unachievable.
By some strange quirk of fate I came across this query a few mins after I added the following idea to my task list:
The intention is to do the demo to management and anyone else who'll listen. But as you say, it's vey important to get those who have influence and should be dispalying leadership skills to take part.
Tap into Confluence's API and generate stats and reports in your wiki automatically. We have about 50 pages that are all generated hourly or daily detailing all kinds of interesting tables and charts which were previously available only to our DBAs. Management loves those pages.
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