The Technical Writing Process

Project Management plays a part in technical writing projects as well as well as custom learning solution developments.

The first thing we do is assess the need, through conversation and review of relevant resource material. For software application work, we would download and explore the software application itself.

We would then prepare a project description and estimate, detailing the scope of the project and nature of the deliverables to be produced.

For software application help files or user manuals, price drivers include:

  • The amount of domain or business knowledge on which the participants must be trained (e.g., a debit is … a credit is …)
  • The degree of complexity inherent in the software application
  • The size of the software application
  • The stability of the software application
  • The level of user ability

Upon acceptance, we would proceed with the work. And when we create help files and user manuals, especially for new software applications, you receive the extra added free bonus of having a separate set of eyes on every screen of your application. You would be surprised how many bugs an astute technical writer can find!

The Deliverables

Help files and user manuals always contain the same content, generated from a single source, and this content typically includes the following:

  • Table of contents
  • An explanation of any necessary domain or business knowledge
  • A high-level explanation of what the software application does
  • Platform requirements
  • Launching / Login / Logoff
  • An explanation of general software navigation and menu structure
  • Helpful tricks and tips
  • A quick-start tutorial
  • The body, organized either by application function, by menu structure, or both
  • Glossary
  • Technical help contact information
  • An index if desired

All documents receive our review to make sure they are accurate, complete, concise and usable, and are reviewed by you to insure that they meet your requirements before acceptance and sign-off.