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At my company, we have information spread all across various systems - gdocs, email, Confluence, and slack conversations. Slack has become an indispensable tool for us but I've felt the pain of the rest of our non-realtime work happening in silos.

Few people are aware of what's going on across the company. Sometimes not even the execs. There is little room for giving my input on (or even being aware of) projects not my own. Post the completion of a project or deliverable, the google doc or wiki page seems to forever "get lost", i.e., no one remembers where it was and the context is gone, never to be known to future team members.

Do you use any tools/sw that makes non-chat information more transparent and accessible across your company?

NOTE: I originally posted this question on workplace SE but this seems like a more appropriate forum for it.

  • "There is little room for giving my input on (or even being aware of) projects not my own" - why should you be? Although, I take your point about the execs, but if they feel that there is a problem, then they should be asking. o offence, but every problem you mention seems not to be yours. It is commendable to be concerned, but if you asked on the workplace you would be told to do your own job, not other people's (perhaps it is that way on cost grounds, secrecy, other reasons). If I answered there, I would tell you that you can pass the question upwards - one time only - and then leave it. – Mawg Oct 21 '17 at 8:05
  • An interesting question, though +1 :-) – Mawg Oct 21 '17 at 8:06
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With a modern CMS (Content Management System) in place, you should be able to address many of your issues/requirements. Even nthough there are quite a few of them, and since this site is about "recommendations", my recommendation is to have a look at Drupal, a modern CMS, and written in PHP. It can be used to build virtually any kind of websites, so for sure also to support the kind of things/facilities you might be interesting in.

These days there are typically 2 releases of it being used:

  • Drupal 7, very mature, and zillions of contributed modules (plugins to add specific facilities to a site), release around 2011.
  • Drupal 8, pretty new, first beta release dates from late 2014. Major new facilities includes in its core version, but still missing lots of contributed modules (which haven't been upgraded from Drupal 7 yet).

Some specific facilities you could implement using Drupal (incomplete list):

  • Roles based Access management (who has access to what).
  • Workflow management (reviews, approvals, etc).
  • Notificiations about "things happening", e.g. by eMail.
  • Calendars and meeting invitations.
  • Revisioning of documents (web pages).
  • File management (files uploaded to the site).
  • Logging (who did what and when).
  • Reporting and charting.
  • Discussion forums, or even a Questions & Answers section.
  • ... (what else do you need ... "There's probably a module (plugin) for it!").
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At work we dokuwiki.

I like it a lot.

It takes some time until other employees realize how important it is.

One of the most important things for me is defining terms.

It is amazing: if you take a term in a company, let's call it "foo". Then ask several employees in your company. You will discover that everybody has a different definition of "foo".

It is a long journey, but it is worth it.

  • And what is your definition of foo? – Pierre.Vriens Nov 2 '17 at 14:26
  • @Pierre.Vriens I like your question. I guess you have humour - nice. I have no clue what "foo" is. I am searching for the answer since 41 years. – guettli Nov 2 '17 at 14:44
  • Really? Think about the possibilities you have to combine "foo" with -tball, -ter, -lish, -d, etc ... and maybe append "bar" to each of these combinations ... – Pierre.Vriens Nov 2 '17 at 14:52
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In your case, since you are already using Confluence, I would recommend using Bitbucket, also from Atlassian.

With Bitbucket you can easily create repositories of information. In this way, the documentation can be centralized. In addition, version control can be very useful, it also manages access by different levels and projects.

Interested people also receive alerts when changes occur in the projects they choose and you can see the evolution of the changes.

Another strong point to consider is the integration with other products. In this sense, Atlassian has connectors for Slack, from Bitbucket and Confluence.

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A bit late but have you ever considered looking into Slite? It's a modern alternative to a company wiki specifically to centralize non-realtime information.

It allows for wiki-like documents with links between docs + it's meant to help teams stay up to date on what's new, so you stop losing the info in silos/anywhere.

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