This is the second in a series of instructional posts for Confluence Hosted users, to be simultaneously published on the Atlassian News Blog and the Hosted wiki blogs. For more about Confluence Hosted, click here.
In the first post of this series, we discussed Getting Started with Seeding and Scaffolding as a way to get some content into your wiki and start creating interest within your organization. In this post, we’ll discuss how you invite other users to interact with the wiki, and further how to get them involved in using the wiki.
Wikipatterns has this to say about inviting users: Inviting people to use a wiki is a good way to guide their first interaction with it. Early adopters are by nature eager to try new tools, but most people don’t for a variety of reasons. Some are risk-averse, others prefer training at the start of using something new, and others are simply too busy. An invitation creates an opportunity to dedicate time to trying the wiki, and gives people reassurance that someone knowledgeable is there to help them get started.
In Confluence Hosted, the ability to send invitations is limited to account administrators. The reason for this is that each user counts towards the account total, and allowing all users to invite might mean that you reach your maximum far sooner than you expected.
Account administrators see an Account Administration button on their dashboard, which takes you to a console where users and groups can be managed. From there, click on ‘Invite’ and you will see a screen like the below.
Choose the invitation recipient, customize your welcome message, preview and send. You’ve now invited somebody to your wiki.
Now that you’ve invited some users, how do you get them involved? One approach is what WikiPatterns calls BarnRaising. A wiki BarnRaising is a planned event in which a community meets at a designated time to build content on the wiki together. One person alone can’t build all the content in a wiki, and a community of people needs to understand how to use the wiki, and feel a sense of buy-in for it to become successful. A BarnRaising achieves this because people come expecting to learn how to use the wiki, and they are able to interact with each other as they work, thus strengthening community bonds and creating a support network that keeps people using the wiki.
BarnRaising is a great way to jumpstart a wiki. It gets people used to using the wiki, and gets a critical mass of content on it so people keep coming back. Since everyone is working on it at the same time, it establishes a support network that’s essential to building peoples’ confidence and breaking down any misconceptions they may have about the wiki.
It’s a good idea to meet briefly before or at the beginning of the BarnRaising to plan what content will go on the wiki, establish a basic organization system (this can be as simple as making sure links to all pages appear in an organised list on the home page), and agree on general standards for the wiki.

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