XWiki

Category: XWiki (165 posts) [RSS]

Nov 02 2016

Halloween 2016 at XWiki

XWiki goblins, ghosts and witches were invited to spook-tacular activities at the XWiki offices for celebrating together the 2016 edition of the Halloween!

A part of the team was locked in two escape rooms. While some joined their efforts in identifing the solutions to the traps made up by the psycho painter in the “New colors room”, others tried to save the nuclear power station from the “ Nuclear control room”. Once again XWiki people proved that they make a good team together and succeed to escape the rooms!

Another part of the team searched enthusiastically the murderer of Mr. Jack through the Mysterium boardgame, carved pumpkins and entered in the HR team's game wearing orange and black at the office!

This is how the XWiki Halloween 2016 looked like!

If you want to recall what happened last year, we invite you to explore our previous blogpost!

XWiki HR & Admin Team

Oct 31 2016

Employee Development - Easier than ever!

Employee Development is still an area that needs more investments from companies to ensure higher ROI and better performances. Supporting the employees in discovering their career paths does not only impact the individual, but also the organisation. Often perceived as a bureaucratic action, the consequences of poor employee training results in lost revenue and inefficient talent acquisition.

Your competitive advantages, from a HR point of view, are strictly related to the type of rough talent you have in your team. You can always use the Myers–Briggs Type Indicator to get a few insights on the psychological preferences of your employees in terms of team roles, but the necessity of polishing that rough talent is absolute mandatory. Nobody can expect a newly employed individual to reach the corporate objectives if he has no idea how to or has no support to do so. Therefore, at XWiki, we are very supportive when it comes to Employee Development.

Here are a couple ideas that we use:

Mentoring

It doesn’t matter what size your company is, the only important thing is your will to provide support to those newly employed individuals. Mentoring or coaching sessions are one of the best ways to know what are the key strengths of a new employee. Furthermore, it’s easier to communicate the expectations and explain the level of quality you are looking for when you interact on a one-on-one basis. You can schedule these sessions using the meeting extension.

The application offers a calendar view helping you to overview the entire week and easily manage the upcoming meetings. If you want to see more details about a particular session, you simply click on it and find every piece of information there is about it. 

This is how we manage the meetings
Click on the image to enlarge

On-boarding

We use on-boarding sessions to provide the new employees, the knowledge, the skills and the general feeling perceived as necessary to smoothly integrate. The HR department makes the general introductions, followed by a meeting with the department leader and the other colleagues.

This is the time when a new employee gets a deeper insight on the company's organisation, the way of working, internal rules, practical information, as well as on the expectations we have. We use the calendar view to be able to avoid any conflicts.

We use the calendar view to have an overview of the day, week or even month.
Click on the image to enlarge

Technical training

As XWiki is a complex technical software, we need all of our employees to have a basic level of tech understanding. In order to understand the general activities each department performs, the employees are encouraged to participate to different training sessions (either training related to the tools that we use or the ones related to the XWiki solutions).

A detailed view of the meeting application is being use so that we can have a structured, time efficient meeting and check all the details concerning it.

Find out the structure of the meeting or any other details
Click on the image to enlarge

Coping with a high amount of data that comes from the employee development process becomes easy with XWiki. The best solution is to drop the conventional ways and use the versatile character of XWiki.

By adding applications from the store or create our own with App within Minutes, we are able to efficiently store candidates’ information, meanwhile analysing the progress of the current employees.  We are glad to be able to take decisions based on solid facts which improves the quality of the work and the overall morale in the organisation.

Since the beginning, XWiki has been designed to satisfy a wide range of needs. The question is how do you use or plan on using XWiki to meet your HR needs?

George Nikolic

Marketing Specialist @ XWiki


CLICK ON THE IMAGE

 We use the calendar view to have an overview of the day, week or even month

CLICK ON THE IMAGE

 We use the calendar view to have an overview of the day, week or even month

This is how we manage the meetings

Click on the image to enlarge

This is how we manage the meetings

Click on the image to enlarge

XWiki at PhD Talent 2016

2016 could not pass without XWiki participating to the PhD Talent event!

On Friday, October 21st, part of the XWiki team attended enthusiastically the 2016 edition of the event! 4 XWikiers: Caleb and Aaron from the Research team and Diana and Cristina were present at Le CENTQUATRE-Paris, met and discussed with the PhD students and graduates with different backgrounds. 

The discussions focused around the Open Source values and principles, around XWiki and the opportunities inside our Research team: R&D Engineer and Junior R&D Engineer, as well as around the PhD students and graduates background and professional paths.

TeamPhDTalent.png

We were happy to meet such great persons! Thanks to the ones that came and discussed with us and, of course, to the organisers for the event!

Oct 17 2016

This is why email chains are not productive!

You know those endless email threads that are constantly getting even longer and harder to follow? Or those times when you have a brilliant idea, but an email thread takes your inspiration? Well, I know those situations too. And I can’t say I like them very much.

We work in a business environment based on communication and collaboration like never before. It is mandatory for information to reach all corners of a company starting from suppliers and ending with the clients in order to have efficient processes. This takes time and every year gets harder and harder to keep track of all those documents that you talked about a few months back. Yes, those quarterly reports that you get pissed off looking for.

Don’t worry! It’s not just you. Did you know that the average employee is losing around 28% of his working week by responding and reading emails? Does it sound surprising that half of those emails barely deserves his attention? And how about the average 64 seconds that takes him to get back to work after each email?

If you think this is acceptable, let’s put it in context then.

Taking into consideration that the average working week has 40 hours and around 28% is spent on emails, that results in 11 hours of low-value , time consuming activities per week. Thinking that on a day, we exchange around 47 emails per person, we end up with a total of 205 billion emails worldwide.

Moreover, only 38% of the average inbox contains important information while the rest of 62% is pure distraction. These facts linked to the 64 seconds average recovery time results in an average of 8 hours of lost productivity per week. That’s an entire working day lost on low-value tasks!

Still not convinced?

Think what you can do with almost 8 extra hours per week: work one less hour per day; have more team building meetings; get to know your colleagues or even allow longer breaks. These are just some ideas that will definitely increase the motivation of your team.

Want to increase motivation? Then increase the productivity and the ROI will shortly follow. But how can you do that? What makes emails so special?

The first thing crossing my mind is the one-to-many communication capabilities, but other solutions offer it too, and even in a more efficient way. Sending documents and media? Try searching for an old thread without getting frustrated.

Work smart, not hard.

Remember those solutions that I was talking before? XWiki is one of them. It can be described as a centralised platform allowing anyone to keep track of a public discussion, comment, share documents or even vote. And the best thing is that you can customise it to exactly fit your needs.

Take a look on these simple ways to increase productivity while keeping your team motivated! For any questions that you might have, don't be shy and contact us! Or even better, you can give it a go and try out these functions yourself by creating a demo cloud instance!

Use comments instead of email replies. 

Click on the image to enlarge.

Use polls to find the overall opinion on a specific matter.

Click on the image to enlarge.

Attach easy to access documents instead of posting them in endless threads.

Click on the image to enlarge.

Everything is easier when you use a collaborative platform!

George Nikolic

Marketing Specialist @ XWiki

Oct 10 2016

Intranets: How they help your business?

organigram.jpg

Image by geralt

Once with the expansion of a company, a lot more variables come into the equation. Starting from needing extra funding to developing an adequate organigram, managers need to find ways to prevent organisational silos while keeping the productivity and efficiency on a high level.

One of the most reliable choices is to implement an intranet. You might ask yourself what is an intranet? So let me explain this concept.

An intranet is any closed network created using web platforms and accessed only by the employees of a company. It enables them to create content and manage documents while developing the organisational culture.

Ok, now that we’ve got that straight. Let see what an intranet is good for.

Concerning trends are slowly rising

An incredible 96% of the interviewed executives say that the lack of communication and collaboration is why businesses fail in the first place. Sure, we can always say that the global economy is shredded, the market is over-saturated and there is no competitive advantage to be found, but all those are just consequences of poor collaboration and communication.

Another rising trend is the fact that millennials are slowly becoming the majority of the working force. Known as the generation with the lowest level of brand loyalty and a reasonably high level of skepticism, they always keep an eye out for better opportunities. Keeping them motivated is one of the hardest tasks a manager might have.

A study conducted by the Institute of Internal Communication reveals that 39% of the interviewed employees said that their organisations have a low level of communication and this fact slowly reduces their motivation. Connecting the dots, I think we can all see where this is going. Let’s just make this clear: Managers need to ensure that companies are focusing on collaboration to avoid a high staff turnover and improve the ROI.

You are not alone!

It is crucial to develop an intranet developed by a company with years of experience and great customer support. Moreover, the Project Manager that will take great care of your project from the first time you contact the company until the implementation process ends, has to be a professional with broad technical experience and knowledge.

XWiki has them all: performant platform, long experience, knowledgeable project team and personalised methodologies. With more than 10 years of experience and numerous references, XWiki has been a trusted companion to many companies looking to invest in collaboration and communications software.

A powerful intranet

In all these years, XWiki has developed a platform able to support a wide range of necessities and help professionals better interact and share valuable knowledge. Being available in no less than 25 languages, makes XWiki the best choice for international companies as enables them to personalise the platform depending on the location of their offices. Moreover, it has proved in numerous occasions to be a highly flexible solution by allowing any user to connect to a centralised platform anywhere there is an internet connection.

Given the customisable nature of the platform, XWiki comes with all the applications that are important for your organisation. You can check our former custom projects by downloading Afcen’s business case or Aelia’s business case. If you need something even more personalised, feel free to contact us or see our methodologies.

George Nikolic

Marketing Specialist @XWiki

Sep 12 2016

CKEditor. From optional to default.

In February, we were announcing the availability of the CKEditor as an alternative to the basic WYSIWYG and Wiki Editor. Now we have more exciting news! After noticing how everybody loves this extension, we have decided to make it default , once with the release of the latest XWiki version, 8.2.

For those who don’t know exactly the difference between the 3 text editors available in the latest release, I will briefly explain them to you.

Wiki Editor

Let’s start with the most robust one. Wiki Editor is a text editor using elements more targeted to people who are somewhat technical and prefer full control over live preview. The current version available is 2.1 and compared to the previous releases it is better in homogenizing the links while the image syntax offers a better clarity and consistency.

Other interesting features are the ability to display icons; link files using the UNC notation and create links to relative URLs. You can learn more about this editor on XWiki.org.

syntax.png

WYSIWYG

The name of this class of editors comes from “What You See Is What You Get” and allows the user to visualise the changes made to a document in real time. Compared to Wiki Editor , WYSIWYG is easier to use as it does not require syntax knowledge and it has some similarities in terms of basic functions to Word.

On the other side, even if this class of editors offers the possibility to make simple changes, it has its limitations compared to the above mentioned one in terms of control. Compared to CKEditor, this one was developed in house based on Google Web Toolkit, while CKEditor is being used by a wide range of companies. 

wysiwyg.png

CKEditor

The CKEditor is a member of the WYSIWYG family. It is a ready-to-use HTML editor that brings together a number of functions which are specific for the word processors. This is better than the generic WYSIWYG in some key web development areas.  

It allows users to copy-paste the style of a paragraph directly from Word, it allows the creation of accessibility-compliant tables and uses advanced W3C DTD controls for a better HTML generation.

ck.png

Now that you have an overview of the difference between the 3 default editors, which one are you more inclined to use? If you are not sure enough, why not try them out with the latest version of XWiki Cloud 8.2.1. available on XWiki.com?


George Nikolic
Marketing Specialist @ XWiki

Sep 08 2016

You change. We change.

Source codeOriginal image created by Kuszapro

The software industry has developed tremendously in the last couple of years. Starting from a simple practice of ensuring better human efficiency and performance, it has increased so much and so fast, by both value and volume, that now has become a science. Today’s world is facing different issues than the past generations and new trends have forced the software industry to reorganize and find alternative ways to solve business and community related sensitive situations.

Level of interaction

Depending on the level of interaction with the user, Alan Cooper has structured the applications in four postures. The sovereign application is a software that is used the most. Usually it monopolizes the user’s attention for the greatest amount of time.

When an alternative solution is being used for a specific purpose on which the sovereign application is not performing as expected, a transient application is introduced. It attracts user’s interaction for a limited amount of time as it appears, gets the job done and exits the landscape immediately. If it is used for a longer period of time it becomes an auxiliary software to the sovereign one and it’s categorized as a parasitic application. The one interacting the least with the user is the daemonic application which is running in the background and doesn’t require direct human interaction.

Scale of implementation

On the other hand, considering the scale of implementation, there are two main categories: situational and enterprise applications. The difference between them consists solely on the target audience and the range of requirements.

Situational applications are usually considered fast to develop and implement, easy to use and flexible enough to be modified. They satisfy a specific, limited type of needs therefore are easier to implement and don’t require a considerable amount of planning and testing. Due to these characteristics are more preferable for small groups.

The enterprise application is the total opposite of the one mentioned above. It is usually more generic and satisfies a wide range of business purposes which are intended to be addressed by a large number of users. It requires meticulous planning, higher investments and have proved to be much more difficult to implement or change.


XWiki the best solution

Once with the strong focus on developing cloud technologies and deployment platforms, companies tend to implement situational applications on a wider scale, slowly over-passing the traditional enterprise applications. An example of platform supporting the development and use of situational wiki applications is XWiki. Using top-end technology, our wiki embraces change, therefore is considered to be one of the best solutions in terms of situational application for both big and small enterprises.

Our teams can perform on both the Waterfall methodology which is more preferred by clients who know exactly what needs they have, while the AGILE methodology allows us to start working with a limited amount of information and define requirements during the development process.


Top 3 reasons why XWiki is the perfect solution for your situational application:

  1. Easy to develop and implement means saved time, fewer costs and more money for your company.
  2. Being user friendly it allows your employees to focus on the most important tasks and increase their productivity which eventually increases their motivation and the company’s revenue.
  3. Flexible to meet your dynamic requirements. The development process can be resumed whenever you feel like it. To satisfy your latest needs without starting from square one, XWiki is adaptable and cost effective.

If you want to see examples of what situational applications we have developed please visit our references page.

George Nikolic
Marketing Specialist @ XWiki

Sep 02 2016

Educational Wikis: The what and why

3.jpg

Image by IICD

Technology has always been linked to education, either as a tool of reaching better understandings or by itself as a subject. The first documented event since when technology started being perceived as an integrated part of what we know nowadays as a library, both in physical or virtual state, has happened in the 1450’s. In a time when only the more privileged could have access to education, Johann Gutenberg has empowered others to dream to new horizons. By inventing the printing press he has accelerated the diffusion of knowledge on the European continent and made the first steps in the spread of written information as we know it today.

Based on the same concept as a library, a wiki is a database managing in a structured way, a large number of documents, the equivalent of books, containing information worth sharing. As the data is collaboratively developed by multiple users and archived in a central location, it allows to be accessed, shared and consumed, on the go and often free of charge. Being such an adaptable and flexible technology, wikis are able to satisfy many purposes as long as there is an objective behind.

From the educational standpoint, wikis can be used to structure a huge amount of educational materials, ranging from academic papers, workbooks, teaching slide to official documents, grades and notes. The core idea behind such a platform is the philosophy it was built upon. A wiki represents the accumulation of knowledge, know-how and experience that all class members have to offer, on a reciprocal basis and not the results of one's expertise. It promotes the collective creativity and ownership without removing the sense of responsibility and personal satisfaction. Educational wikis allow their users to create custom apps especially for learning purposes such as dictionary, assignment management, task planning, calendar, event manager, achievement database and so on.

Two open education projects that are changing the way teachers educate and students learn, are Curriki and Sankore. They are both implemented on top of the XWiki Open Source Platform , which is developed by XWiki SAS, as this solution was considered the most suitable for the above mentioned purpose.

Curriki is a community whose mission is to reduce the educational gap between people having access to high-quality learning resources and the others who don’t enjoy the same privilege. Following the vision, they have created an open license website to support the collaborative development and the free distribution of learning materials by allowing teachers to share any material relevant to their work. On the other hand, students are able to search for new lessons and give feedback by rating the available resources. In the situation where something is missing, both parties can fix the problem by simply updating the content.

The Sankoré project, launched in 2009 with the support of the French government, aims to enable the digital side of education to be accessible to developing countries, especially from the African continent. To reach this objective, an interactive whiteboard application and an open licence platform were developed, both allowing the creation and dissemination of free educational resources. Based on the same platform as Curriki, the Planète Sankoré website allows teachers and students to use a range of educational materials, collaboratively managed and developed by the platform's members.

Using an open source wiki supported by a worldwide community, not only offers free access to years of development and expertise, but also gives unlimited, free of charge community support for further improvements and bug fixes in a short time. Both Curriki and Sankore, are the living proof that by developing a platform on open source wiki technology along with allowing access to free resources, the humanity is able to offer educational support to those in need.

Jul 27 2016

The XWiki Seminar 2016

All the XWiki team was involved last week in the 8th edition of the company seminar. 

The XWiki Seminar 2016 was built around the Task Force - Commando theme and challenged the team members with several missions to successfully fulfil within a week!

After an active participation at the morning status sessions, demos and hackathons, all the forces were called together for several team missions: creating an unique symbol, identification sign for the team (the XWiki Coat of Arms), getting to know more about the personality, strengths and weaknesses through a test, building and flying paper aircrafts and creating quick, simple and tasty desserts to celebrate the accomplishments and the 12-year existence of the company. ...

Apr 08 2016

A successful Learn PAd review for year 2

The Learn PAd project started over 2 years ago and early April was the occasion to do a status with the European Union institutions. This second year review was especially important since it was the last step before the final one. On this occasion the consortium decided to take a risk: a live demonstration of the distributed Learn PAd platform (4 servers and one router). ...