Dennis Howlett recently wrote about how NYK Shipping & Megacarrier is using Confluence and Lotus Domino together to power their intranet. NYK is a global shipping company (one of the world’s largest, in fact), and Alek Lotoczko, who runs the company’s intranet, was looking for a way to increase collaboration after seeing that only about 50 people regularly contributed to the Domino-based intranet. He first used the open source DominoWiki in January 2007, and by June, with just word-of-mouth, contributors had more than doubled to 117.
By that time he started talking with the corporate communication department, which was also looking for a wiki for its own use, and the two decided to switch from DominoWiki to Confluence. Alek was able to secure funding from this, and he points out that using a free, open source tool allowed him to get things started and demonstrate the value of a wiki before spending any money. Bear in mind that this isn’t to say all organizations should start with one wiki that’s free, and then switch to another, because that can create its own set of issues. In fact, with the low cost of wikis in general, and the fact that you can often get a 30 day free trial, it’s fairly easy to start directly with the tool of your choice.
So where does NYK’s wiki/intranet stand now? “The Domino system isn’t going away because that’s NYK’s corporate comms standard. Instead, it is being used to prime the wiki project which Alek hopes will eventually reach about 2,500 employees.” This is a great example of two enterprise software tools coexisting, and the wiki is being used for its strengths in attracting and building a consistent level of collaboration. This is an excellent example for organizations to learn from as they think about how a wiki can become a succesful part of their computing landscape.

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