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How to Create & Run your Idea Management Hub in Confluence

Confluence idea management

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At the core of any successful organization is its ideas -the driving force behind innovation and growth. But, as organizations grow and employees  grow  in number, managing these ideas effectively becomes more challenging. You’ve got ideas buried in lengthy slack threads, and scattered across emails and different confluence spaces. You can see the frustration this may result in. This is where the concept of an idea management hub in Confluence comes into play!

In this article, we’ll explore why it’s important to dedicate a hub for idea management, and how you can create one to harness the full potential of your teams’ creativity. 

Why do you need an idea management hub in Confluence?

To centralize ideas

Ideas are often generated and discussed across various channels from casual conversation with team members to dedicated brainstorming sessions. But, the result is often the same, ideas are shared but not saved! Without a centralized hub for ideas, they can easily get lost and overlooked. Once we recognize this issue, we naturally start thinking of a way to establish a dedicated idea management hub in Confluence.  An idea hub in Confluence will serve as a centralized repository where all ideas are captured, organized, and easily accessible to your teams. With ideas in one place, teams can avoid the frustration of searching through their slack messages, their emails ,and across multiple other channels , and ensure that no valuable idea slips through the cracks. 

To encourage team collaboration

While capturing ideas is crucial, they are ultimately the product of robust team interaction. And, given that team collaboration is fundamental to effective idea management, many organizations invest significant time in sharing insights from their team members with lengthy brainstorming sessions. However, without a clear input platform, team collaboration and engagement is hindered with limiting visibility. An idea hub in Confluence streamlines collaboration by providing a collaborative workspace where team members can contribute, comment, and build upon each other’s ideas in real-time. With a shared environment to foster idea management, you can encourage active collaboration, sharing diverse perspectives, and facilitate feedback exchange with others.   

To share knowledge and expertise

Having grasped the significance of an idea hub to gather ideas and promote teamwork, it becomes easier to capture why an idea management space is essential for sharing knowledge among different teams in Confluence. Innovation -in any context- thrives on the exchange of knowledge and insights. Yet, valuable knowledge is often scattered across various documents, spreadsheets, and communication channels. By centralizing ideas in Confluence, organizations can also centralize knowledge sharing. With a well-structured idea hub, different teams can share their ideas and also document related research, best practices, and lessons learned. When team members  share their expertise and perspectives, they pave the way for transformative ideas to emerge. This knowledge repository not only accelerates the innovation process but it also ensures that valuable insights are saved and easily accessed by team members.

How to create your idea management hub in Confluence? 

In a typical Confluence workspace structure, each team operates within its dedicated space tailored to their respective roles – be it Software, Marketing, Finance, or Support teams. And, you’ve got ideas flowing from each source. However, this division often leads to separate idea management processes, with ideas confined in respective spaces. This limits the exchange between different teams with no clear shared platform to interact on.

So, how do we start building an idea management hub in Confluence? 

Start from within a Confluence space

The first step is to create a Confluence space and make it your dedicated idea management hub. You can use from a variety of templates or build one from scratch. Every template is a bit different and comes with a personalized hompage and a host of built-in page to help you get started on the right foot.

Confluence space

Leverage Confluence built-in ideation templates

Then, start animating your team space with native Confluence templates.

Start creating Confluence pages in a structured way from “Problem Framing” pages and “Brainstorming” pages  to  “Prioritization Matrix” pages, etc.  You can tailor your pages’ workflow to suit your goals and objectives and your organization’s needs. 

Confluence Idea template

Run ideation sessions with Confluence whiteboards

Another feature worth noting to include in your idea management process is Confluence Whiteboards. You can easily create a whiteboard to share ideas during brainstorming sessions or to add insights on existing ideas. 

To add whiteboards to your space: Click the “Create” button in the top menu, and select “Whiteboard”. 

Confluence also provides whiteboard templates to get you started. You can select the “Brainstorming” category to oversee whiteboard templates for brainstorming. 

Confluence whiteboard

Your team members can contribute in real-time to share ideas as sticky notes on your brainstorming whiteboard. And then, organize and structure shared ideas to evaluate and discuss valuable inputs in other idea management stages. 

👉Learn more about Confluence Whiteboards and how you can use it for idea management in Confluence in this Atlassian blog

Connect Confluence with Jira Product Discovery

Once ideas begin to take shape, you can transition them into the Jira Product Discovery board, where they can undergo evaluation and refinement.

Jira Product Discovery

Leverage dedicated idea management Apps (Discussion & Ideation for Confluence)

While confluence provides valuable features and tools to manage ideas in confluence. It can be empowered with third-party apps dedicated to idea and knowledge management such as Discussion for Confluence and Ideation for Confluence. 

Discussion for Confluence Cloud

Discussion for Confluence facilitates organized discussions among team members, serving as a platform for brainstorming and pre-ideation interactions. By centralizing non-structured ideas and inputs, this app ensures the seamless flow of discussions within your Confluence space. 

The discussion app comes with a dedicated template providing key information about a given discussion including the description, contributors, resolvers, votes, attachments, and more.

Discussion page

Once discussions are created, they are all grouped within a dedicated and customizable forum page. You can see all discussions from a given space and fully customize the view based on category, status, creation period, creators, and more. You can also  categorize discussions, track their status, and resolve or archive them as needed. 

Discussion forum page

👉You can learn more about how to engage communities and manage discussions with Discussion for Confluence in our article here. 

As discussions evolve, you can then add ideas discussed and add information with the ideation for confluence app. 

Ideation for Confluence Cloud

Complementing the Discussion app, Ideation for Confluence provides a structured framework for idea management within Confluence. Designed to streamline the creation, collection and evaluation of ideas, the app empowers teams to share ideas, manage ideation processes and participate in challenges.

The app, of course, is based on the notion of templates. You have a dedicated idea template providing key information including the description, status, votes, sponsors and attachments.

Idea page template

The ideas created are all visible within the ideation index page. As mentioned earlier, this page is a dashboard containing all the created ideas within your Confluence space. The page consists of multiple macros -similar in a way to the idea page- where users can visualize ideas per status, check the most active contributors, add ideas, and much more. You can also customize the ideation index page name. 

Ideation index page

The app’s primary purpose is to help teams and entire organizations effectively manage the ideation process from start to finish. And that involves mapping a clear workflow for one or a collection of ideas. 

Your ideation workflow can be customized by adding statuses or transitions or editing existing ones to align with your organization’s process and objectives. 

Ideation workflow

👉You can learn more about how to create and manage ideas with ideation for Confluence in our article here. 

The app works as an incentive to drive users to brainstorm ideas and participate in their organization’s ideation process with the Idea Challenges feature.

Ideation challenge

Once the challenge is created and users have been invited. They will instantly be notified and able to visualize the challenge in the ideation index homepage or left navigation menu. When they click on a given challenge, they will land on the challenge page. 

The challenge page is structured in a way similar to a standard idea page. Users can participate in a challenge, create and vote for ideas, leave comments, check idea statutes, top contributors and more. Additionally, the challenge creator(s) can both pause or stop a challenge before its end date. 

Ideation challenge index page

Establishing a robust idea management hub in Confluence is crucial for organizations aiming to foster innovation, create strategic initiatives, and navigate a path toward sustainable growth and success. And while Confluence offers a centralized platform to nurture ideas with native features, the journey doesn’t have to end there. By leveraging marketplace apps like Discussion and Ideation for Confluence, organizations can unlock the full potential of their teams’ creativity, further enhancing their idea management hub and accelerating their innovation journey.

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How to Create & Run your Idea Management Hub in Confluence