The laid-back atmosphere of the Googleplex might seem light years away from the dark-suited City of London. But Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein, the investment bank, is also a believer in the brave new world of wikis and blogs.
“We recognised early on that these tools would allow us to collaborate more effectively than existing technologies,” says JP Rangaswami, chief information officer at DrKW.
More than 450 DrKW employees have internal blogs and the bank has built an internal wiki with more than 2,000 pages which is used by a quarter of its workforce. After just six months, the traffic on the wiki exceeds that on the entire DrKW intranet.
Mr Rangaswami says one of the most popular uses for the wiki is to create meeting agendas – a task fraught with political pitfalls: “Using wikis is much more participative and non-threatening, as people can see what other people have suggested,” he says.
The wiki is also used with video clips to substitute traditional manuals in training new recruits.
DrKW uses Really Simple Syndication (RSS) technology to inform employees when the contents of wikis or blogs are changed...
Mr Rangaswami recognises the problem but says DrKW has not suffered from blogger banality: “Is blogging a good use of company time? They are going to have these conversations anyway – in the lift, for example – and if the topic is boring, people lose interest. It is self-policing.”
Emphasis mine, good sense JP's.