WIKIS…. The company’s future!

According to Wikipedia Wiki is a website that allows users to edit, add or delete content through a browser.

Actually the name “Wiki” means quickly, and is also a synonym of collaboration, so  a Wiki is indeed used to create a collaborative environment where people can actively and quickly manipulate information.

Well, now we know due the lecture that Wikis can be used with different goals into companies like: Project management, tech support, research and development, event planning, collaboration and so on. I also think that could be used to save the know-how of the human resources of the company, to create a communication channel with suppliers and customers, and to execute remote work (from anywhere).

But I think that before developing an strategy to implement a Wiki, is probably better understand: why companies are implementing Wikis? or why they are not implementing Wikis?. Maybe some companies are trying to improve their efficiency, also according to a survey conducted by Forrester about impact of web 2.0 tools, some companies are implementing these tools because they are afraid of being behind the competitive enterprise world.

Wiki’s strategy

Ok, now that is everything clear let’s go with the strategy.

First of all I want to point out that that Wikis can be used successfully in project management for small projects, however in big projects could be also useful but not in the whole life-cycle of project management, that is why my strategy will be proposed in this sense.

I think that Wikis can be very important for a project management life-cycle of big projects but not precisely in the planning stage (main stage of the project) nor in the execution, because nowadays there are a lot of specific programs that can help in a better way to project management. Nevertheless I think that Wikis can be a strategic solution in other stages, for a better understanding I will explain this with a graphic:

Image

As we can see in the graph, I think that Wikis could be a predominant tool in the following stages:

Initiation stage.- Because the company can create a portfolio of projects (Brainstorming), every employee of the company can share ideas that can be converted into projects, then when a company decide that an idea will be developed as a project, the first stage can be developed also with a Wiki because different departments can share and allocate resources, constraints, tips, documents, and most important all departments (even other countries) can interact and help to define the scope of the project.

Controlling.- This stage can be managed completely with a Wiki, basically all departments can control the progress of the project and share preventive and corrective ideas, therefore if the project is going out of control, the company can quickly take the right route and perform actions in actual time.

Being said that, my strategy for the company chosen will be: Generation, design and control new projects in the company.

This strategy must be defined taking into account several factors that I will explain in the next steps:

  1. Must be confidential and private because the information that is managed is important, so maybe could be developed in the intranet of the company and used just by employees.
  2. Tracking and control of the content manipulation.
  3. Define the scope and objective of the strategy: will be a repository of ideas, a driver of projects and a control tool.
  4. Define the stakeholders that will interact and have access to the wiki and their roles.
  5. Establish rules about content manipulation, how will be managed and how to collaborate.
  6. Order
  7. Take into account that specific information of this Wiki can be shown to external entities, in this case the company should take into account reputation, reliability and image.

Tactics for implementing the strategy

Definitely the first tactic to the strategy implementation must be initiate with a collaboration culture. When a culture doesn’t exist and is not assumed by employees, any initiative will fail.

The second step could be to start creating the Wiki.

The third step to teach and explain how to use the Wiki, rules, constraints, stakeholders, roles, and how to collaborate.

Examples

Lots of organizations have started using Wikis, the most representative companies could be: Sony, Nokia, Motorola, Intel, Disney, Microsoft, Yahoo, Amazon.

Google nowadays has an internal wiki named “Goowiki” that has almost 100.000 pages

A good example of Wiki in United States is this

Wikipedia has his own Wiki

Amazon counts with a “ProductWiki” named “Amapedia” that started in 2007, basically consist in a free space where people can write reviews about Amazon’s products.

OpenWiking

Swiki

Group members Wiki Strategies for ProMOS

1. Collaboration and Enhancing Organizational Knowledge 

2.Internal and external wiki communication in corporation

3. Organization Integration Plan

4. Raise productivity

5. Generation, design and control new projects in the company

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10 thoughts on “WIKIS…. The company’s future!

  1. I like the way the strategy to implement focuses on the culture within the company. Your strategy is very structured but some case studies show that people used wikis in unexpected ways to get unpredicted benefits. Do you think this strategy will be able to foster these types of emergent outcomes?

    • Hi Amanda,

      Well, I think that these kind of tools (Web2.0) have obvious outcomes, so I strongly recommend that companies should focus in general benefits provided by Wikis. Certainly my strategy doesn’t cover this point but I think that “unpredictable” or “emergent” benefits should not be analyzed until general benefits are completely achieved.

      Thank you for your post.

      Danny

  2. Hi Danny.
    Reading your post I can see a lot of similar ideas between us about wiki strategy, specially when it comes to project management strategy.
    It’s a shame that some companies still start investing in E2.0 without a clear strategy, as you said “they are afraid of being behind the competitive enterprise world”, and that’s exactly what I meant by RoNI (Risk of Not investing) in my post about ROI.
    In my view some outcomes from wiki usage are very clear like centralized information, collaborative update, powerful document searchability and so on. Therefore, companies should always explore these well know benefits rather than “undercover outcomes” or “emergent outcomes” like Amanda mentioned before.

    Charles
    (https://charlestontelles.wordpress.com)

    • Hi Charleston:
      Yes definitely we are thinking in the same way about Wikis and project management despite the fact that you cover these points deeper. I completely agree with you, companies shouldn’t be looking for new benefits, they should focus in the obvious benefits first and take advantage of them.

      Tanks for your post

      Danny

  3. atang says:

    Hi Danny, good post, really impressed that a your strategy has flow, it has a start and an ending, each step must be completed in order to have the goal accomplished!

  4. […] 5. Generation, design and control new projects in the company […]

  5. […] #5 Generation, design and control new projects in the company (Danny) […]

  6. […] 2. Generation, design and control new projects in the company (Danny) […]

  7. Karen E says:

    Hi Danny,

    There are some tools that allow integration with other products/tools to provide the ability to display information in a single spot (wiki). I agree with you that access has to be restricted to only those who need to know the information. I think it’s great to use wiki for the controlling stage of project management. It reduces the number of emails, provides easy access to information in a single location and of course, the ability to easily search for information.

    • Hi Karen,
      Yes you are right, furthermore I think that in the control stage could be very useful to provide a “high level view” of how is being performed the project, maybe a CEO can look the progress of the project and some issues that occurred.

      Thanks for your comment.

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