Who is a Technical Writer?
May 31, 2010 Leave a comment
In general the role of the technical writer is to organize complex and difficult pieces of information into user guides that are easy to understand and use by every single person. Technical writing requires various skills. Apart from the ability to write correctly, a technical writer must also be able to organize the knowledge and put it down on paper in a comprehensible and concise form. The person must know how to convert technical knowledge into easily understood terms. A technical writing job is not only about style and clarity of writing, but also about engaging with people and extracting the necessary knowledge as well as ability to describe various processes. The topics covered may include: work methods and procedures; installation, operation, and maintenance of machinery, equipment and software applications; general troubleshooting or engineering specifications for construction projects.
A technical writer can be asked to develop, write and edit material for: reports, manuals, briefs, proposals, instruction books, catalogs, customer and internal bulletins, training materials as well as related technical and administrative publications. Additionally, the person might be responsible for selecting photographs, diagrams and charts to illustrate the written material and control the process of preparing the text for publication and distribution. A technical writer may be also asked to write speeches, articles and press releases for the company. To be able to do this, she/he might have to:
• observe production or experimental activities to describe an operating procedure and detail;
• interview production, engineering and service personnel;
• get acquainted with engineering documentation;
• study reports, blueprints and specifications to become familiar with product technologies and production methods in the specific industry.
If you are looking for employment opportunities as a technical writer, apart from possessing the skills mentioned above, you need to know various related software applications, such as MS Office Suite, MS Visio, MS SharePoint and Adobe FrameMaker that are used for document management. When it comes to work environment, as a technical writer you may be a part of a writing team, but you can also work as an independent employee or decide on freelancing and work mostly at home.
This guest post was written the team of PennySaverUSA.com. Visit them online to find technical writing jobs and other employment opportunities in the USA.