Jul 19, 2018

How to Create a Wiki for Your Team in 4 Easy Steps

steps to create a wiki

McKinsey has recently found that employees spend almost 20% of their time searching for internal information, rather than focusing on their primary tasks. That's a full day each week! While FAQ sections and help centers for customers are commonplace, many companies neglect to create a wiki or a knowledge base for their own teams. Employee productivity is, however, no less important than customer satisfaction, and can potentially make or break your business.

Whether it's questions about an HR policy or setting up your company email account, if you feel like you're sending daily emails containing the same instructions or procedure checklists, chances are good that you could use a team wiki.

What is a wiki (and why you need one)

The term "wiki" originally came from the Hawaiian language where it means "quick". The first person to create a wiki site was Ward Cunningham, a computer programmer who aimed to build a space where software developers could document and share chunks of their code. He described his software, WikiWikiWeb, as "the simplest online database that could possibly work".

wikiwikiweb first wiki

Wikis have come a long way since then, and many modern solutions failed to retain the speed and simplicity that used to be at the core of the idea. Over time, commercial wiki tools have accumulated more and more features, cluttering the virtual workspace and distracting the users. Therefore, when choosing a wiki tool for your team it is important to keep in mind the purpose that it is meant to serve.

An ideal team wiki is an internal company site designed for people to quickly and easily capture and share their ideas, knowledge, and best practices. This information needs to be structured and clustered in a way that makes it easiest to navigate. Rather than simply storing company information, a team wiki should be searchable and intuitive enough for anyone to find what they are looking for. It can also serve as your team's online collaborative workspace for members to collectively contribute to projects and pool resources.

Your team can create a wiki for a variety of uses: engineering teams use wikis to collaborate on technical documents and plan sprints, HR teams can create onboarding guides and track applicants, customer support specialists can create and share canned responses to speed up handling of requests, and more.

How to create a wiki for your team

Step 1: Select the perfect team wiki tool

Finding a company wiki tool that is right for your team depends on what you want to accomplish with it.

Ask yourself the following questions before investing in a tool:

  • Why do you need a team wiki?

  • How many people on your team will be using it?

  • Will those people need different access rights?

  • Would you benefit from real-time collaboration?

  • How much file storage would you need?

  • How would you need to structure and/or visualize your data?

  • What other tools is your team using and would you need to integrate your wiki with them?

  • Is the wiki you chose easy-to-navigate and have a handy search function?

With a multitude of wiki tools out there, Nuclino was developed to be as flexible and lightweight as possible to accommodate any team regardless of size and industry. It aims to live up to the core values of the original concept and remain as fast and easy-to-use as possible, facilitating seamless team collaboration rather than hindering it. To learn more about its features and see if it's the right tool for you, visit our Product Page.

Step 2: Set up the team wiki

Once you have found the perfect tool for your team, it is time to create a wiki! People will only use a team wiki if it is set up and structured in a way that makes it easy to navigate and helps them find relevant up-to-date information. If things are chaotic, getting people on board will be hard and the wiki will eventually get abandoned.

To set up your team wiki on Nuclino:

  1. Create a team and a workspace

    A great team wiki starts with a team! A team in Nuclino is a shared place where you and your team members can collaborate. Teams can contain workspaces, items, and clusters. Create a free account and set up your first team.

    team wiki workspace
  2. Create items

    They are the smallest organizational elements in Nuclino. Items contain text, images, tasks, files, videos, and more, and can be edited in real-time with other team members. When a new item is created it is instantly shared with your team.

    Learn more about items here: Item.

    create a wiki in Nuclino
  3. Cluster and organize the items

    Making a decision on how to structure the information in your team wiki is one of the most important steps. In Nuclino, clusters help you group related items together. Depending on what type of information will be shared within your wiki, different ways to cluster the items might work better for you.

    Visit the Nuclino Help Center to learn more about clusters.

    knowledge graph

Step 3: Get your team on board

A team wiki can only serve its purpose when every member contributes, so invite people to collaborate! If your team is already familiar with company wiki tools, getting them on board should be easy. However, newcomers may be reluctant to use the wiki and start falling back on more familiar tools like email and chat to share information.

To prevent this from happening, make sure to communicate the purpose and the benefits of the wiki to your team and invest time in changing their habits. Choose a wiki tool that is easy-to-use and intuitive to reduce the learning curve and allow new team members to contribute from day one.

Step 4: Keep your team wiki up-to-date

A team wiki is an evolving knowledge base that needs to be maintained. No matter how well the wiki is set up, if users have no confidence in the information it contains, its purpose will be undermined.

To encourage people to contribute, Nuclino tracks the history of each edit, so nobody's work will be lost if someone changes or deletes it accidentally. Team members can easily interact and engage their colleagues by tagging each other within and leaving comments.

mentions inside comments

Ready to get started?

If you are ready to create a wiki for your team, go to https://app.nuclino.com/signup to sign up for a free Nuclino account and get the ball rolling.