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Collaborating and Sharing in Confluence: The Basics

Nov 20

Many enterprises are now moving over to just one platform, and this is where Confluence can be useful. In this guide, we will tell you more about sharing and collaborating in Confluence.



What is Confluence?

Confluence is an online-based private "wiki" developed by Atlassian. Wiki is a generic term for websites such as Wikipedia, wikiHow, and others whose contents are collaboratively created, managed, and edited by their users. In the case of Confluence, it is usually the employees of a business that post articles, guides, reports, meeting notes, and other content to be shared with the rest of the team. Like any wiki, Confluence also allows you to connect related pages using internal links. This in turn makes it easier for the readers to explore more about a particular topic.

 

Confluence can be compared to these four things:

 

  1. Knowledge base. 

 

Confluence let you document processes, post guides, answer FAQs, broadcast your latest updates, publish the minutes of your meetings, and more. You can also use this platform to create a public knowledge base for your customers containing information such as troubleshooting guides, how-tos, and other information that could enhance your customer service. 

 

Moreover, support teams can also use Jira Service Management and link it to a Confluence knowledge base, allowing customers to view relevant articles in the help center.

 

  1. Workspace

 

As a workspace, you can use Confluence to create plans, schedules, and monthly progress on your projects. Collaborators can then discuss the content by leaving a comment.




  1. Intranet

 

A Confluence is a reliable platform for storing meeting notes, reports, articles, contracts and other important documents. You can use it as your single source of truth where all your up-to-date and relevant documents are saved. 

 

  1. Filing cabinet

 

If you have a huge amount of documents, you can use Confluence to organize and make them easily accessible to the readers. 





Confluence Basics

Confluence can be useful to different types of teams, from HR, marketing, legal, retail, and more. If you are new to Confluence, here are some basic things you need to know:

 

Hosting

Confluence is available in three different hosting forms: Cloud, Server, and Data Center. Cloud is straightforward as it works just like any cloud storage service. 

 

With the Confluence Server, a server is installed on your own hardware and the setup is customizable. Unfortunately, Atlassian plans to stop offering servers in 2024. 

 

Data Center, on the other hand, is a self-hosted server-based software. Compared to a Server that is hosted on a single server, a Data Center has multiple servers. The extra servers improve the security and performance of your infrastructure. If one server goes down, the rest are directed to whichever servers are still working. Furthermore, the way the Data Center is set up, it distributes Confluence users into multiple servers, reducing downtime. 

 

While we can easily assume that Data Center is the best option, it isn't because Confluence is heavily working on their Cloud. Cloud is hosted by Atlassian software. You don't have to do anything to manage and update your Confluence in Cloud. Cloud is a software as a service (aka SaaS) and it has a built-in security system that is more secure than on-premise systems. 

 

Key terms

Page - It is where all your content lives

Parent and child pages - A child page is what sits underneath a parent page. Both of these allow you to easily organize content based on the hierarchy

Page tree - A age tree shows the hierarchy of content

Space - A space is where your pages are stored in Confluence

Macros - Macros are bits of content that you can add to your Confluence pages such as an info panel, a table, a divider, and others



Confluence provides an avenue for easy collaboration and sharing. If you are currently using other proprietary tools that aren't supported, Atlassian also has some integrations that can help you with the transition to Confluence.