Easy, Efficient One-Stop Shop
June 11, 2014
Easy, Efficient One-Stop Shop
Score 8 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with Atlassian Confluence
It is our "one stop" collaboration tool - our internal website. Each main department has a Space, from execs to ops and IT. It helps us minimize email, especially email attachments, and creates a record/history. We're growing - new employees every week. If they miss info sent in an email, that's not good. The wiki lets everyone see "history". Comments encourage collaboration. Permissions are open - everyone has edit/create/delete permissions in every space.
- The basic editor interface is easy to use.
- The macros also make it easy to be a creator/contributor without having to be a "web developer".
- The ability to copy and especially move pages - and have the links all still work is also really useful.
- The way attachments are managed - that you can have attachments, and how you can see the list of attachments off of the Tools menu, and that you can manage the attachments from that Tools > Attachments page.
- The revision control! (page history) has been a huge plus for our employees who have never "wiki'd" before. It kind of helps them feel "safe" to dive in, knowing a page can be easily restored if they "mess up"
- Ability to import MS Word files. Sometimes we need to create drafts and get them approved by stakeholders before publishing to the entire company. We can author that kind of content in MS Word, and then easily load it to Confluence for company consumption.
- Don't add spaces. When we import an MS Word file, spaces often appear as the first character in a paragraph. Or, if we "hit return" in a page we've imported from MS Word, Confluence adds a leading space. A space is often "already there" in a table cell, and we have to go through and delete them.
- More control over tables would be nice - borders and width control, for example.
- Would be nice to be able to add a watcher to a page, like you can do in Jira. For example, if I create a page and I want my project manager to watch it, I'd like to be able to add her to a watch list.
- Increased efficiency - it's a "one stop shop"
- Saves so much in email storage - much less email traffic, and much less attachments in emails
- Much easier and better inter-team communication about project status, action items, theory of operations
- Much easier employee on boarding. We have a "welcome" page that links to all the top priority info, and a "quick links" section on the home page for the most used items. This results in people being able to help themselves - we "say it once, use it many" - great time saver.
I'm sorry but I don't know what other tools the IT department was considering when they decided to go with Confluence. I know that compared to where we were - lots of emails, lots of attachments, multiple network drives that are not easily searchable - Confluence has made life easier and more efficient.
If it were my decision, I would definitely renew. I'm in charge of giving the training/tutorial for how we use Confluence, and I can see that once people "get it", it is something we all use. If IT or Execs would ask, I would recommend renewing. We also use Jira for IT help desk and IT projects. All the teams have the ability to create Jira projects, so the interfacing with Jira is a big plus too.
This is a difficult question for me, as I was not part of the selection team but I am a user with a requirement to be a "power user" because I manage the Technical Communications team. I think one reason it is working is that the Execs and CEO are supportive of this collaboration tool and have said "this is our company tool". It may not be suited for a situation where there isn't a company-wide buy in to use it.
Using Atlassian Confluence
100 - Every business function: Execs, project management, developers, engineers, researchers, IT, HR, legal, finance, accounting, tech writers, testers, purchasing. Every one.
4 - Currently, the entire IT team is 4 people. Any of them can support users. One is a programmer and is especially helpful with finding the right macro or plug in. One of them is the IT manager, and he defines the configuration. The other 2 are our beloved "IT guys" who handle everything else.
- Project management details - product use cases, project status, action items
- Policies and procedures for all departments - HR, IT, legal, accounting, etc.
- Employee on boarding - required reading and training
- The employee on boarding pages have been a nice surprise at how well they are working
- The company org chart is constantly changing - it is so easy to keep up to date with Confluence
- The blog feature allows people to put a bit of their personalities into contributions - it feels less formal