As a software-developer company, naturally we have an ever-growing repository of documentation, which needs to be constantly updated by multiple people. Sometimes it can cause problems to always have the latest version at everyone who wants to collaborate on a document, and even then, it is not easy to keep track who modified which part of it. That is why we at BAXTER decided to move all our documentation to a Wiki site, so that everyone at the company can view and edit them.
We have already tried a few Wiki engines, but it was at the beginning of this year when we finally started to move all our documents to a MediaWiki site. We chose this engine because it is the best maintained (also used by Wikipedia itself), has a wide range of plugins, and is highly customizable. Thanks to the easy customization, we created a design, which is similar to our company website. Because of the various access control methods, we granted access to our customers for some parts of the Wiki. If we upload documents and information which are relevant to them, they can easily view and download it from the site.
During the migration of the content, we decided to create a tree-structure of pages. This way, it is much easier to maintain pages belonging to the same category. The engine visualizes all the parent pages, so you will always have a general idea which part of the hierarchy are you browsing.
Also, using this method, it is possible to restrict access to certain parts of the Wiki: for example, we have an internal section which is only available to our co-workers. From now on, we don’t need to have a separate place for our internal documentation, and those which are handed to our partners; we can store them in the same place. Though some files must be in a PDF or DOC format, it is no problem for MediaWiki: a wide variety of file formats can be uploaded and a link to them can be placed to any page.
Of course, a Wiki-based storage for documentation is not suitable for every company, but we encourage you to try what can be done in a Wiki. You may find that all your needs can be satisfied with the usage of some plugins and tweaks, and your overall experience will be even better.