At this point, you might be realizing that a Wiki is the perfect solution for your organization and feeling ready to get started!

However, it can take some time for everyone to start using a Wiki at an organization that has never used one before. In that case, you will have to be the first Wiki user.

Here are the steps you should take after introducing a Wiki to your workplace for the first time.

Add information that's useful to you

The first stage of adopting a Wiki is to get into the habit of continually adding pages. You don't need to write formally or go into deeper details to start; so long as the information is easy to understand, it's fine.

While your motivation may be to communicate your knowledge to others, it will likely take awhile for people to catch on. We recommend starting out by thinking of it as something you're doing for yourself.

Write what you know

Start out by writing things you've learned in the course of your job that you're likely to forget. For example, try making the following pages:

Records of meetings

Record simple minutes of meetings you participated in. Link to any relevant materials and provide an overview of any conclusions reached, to the extent that they were relevant to you. You can then share your records with other participants.

Links to important resources

Gather together important links to things like the company's internal site, files on the file server, and external vendors.

Want more tips on pages to create? We'll provide a few Wiki page templates in the tutorial section.

Add things you've heard from others

When you learn things about your job from others, create a new page. Then send the page URL to the person you got the information from, and ask them to review it for accuracy.

If you're lucky, that person will edit the page themselves, resulting in a better understanding than you would've gotten through conversation alone.

Tell others how to search for information

Once you've accumulated a decent amount of information on your Wiki, it's time to tell people about it. Let them know what kind of info you've already added and how to search for it. When people know how to check for information on the Wiki, you won't have to stop what you're doing to answer as many questions. This will help familiarize others while making work easier for yourself.

While getting people to start contributing right away may be difficult, the barrier to getting people to start reading it is much lower. And the more they read it and find it useful, the more likely they are to one day contribute to it themselves.

Regularly reference the Wiki

Each Wiki page typically has its own permalink (i.e. a URL that doesn't change over time.) Whenever the opportunity arises, share the URL and summarize what can currently be found on your Wiki:

  • If you have meeting-related pages, include their URLs in your meeting materials.
  • Whenever you're asked a question, add the answer to the relevant page and share the URL to follow up.

Some Wikis include a feature to automatically notify people whenever a page is added or updated. If few people are checking the Wiki by themselves, try taking advantage of this feature.

Add a page on how to search pages

Create a page on how to search for other pages, and put it somewhere obvious (such as the top of the Wiki's front page).

It can also be useful to create pages that link out to all of the pages certain staff might need, like when onboarding a new staff member. Simply create a “Pages for new staff” page and link to all the relevant pages.
As the number of Wiki pages increases, you'll probably develop your own approach to searching for pages. For example, “This front page link leads here,” or “Type this keyword from the full page search.” It's fine to have your own way of searching; just make sure you teach it to others, too.