Technical writers produce information for audiences ranging from novices to technical experts. In general, they:
- research subjects by analyzing reference materials (for example, specifications, blueprints, diagrams, maintenance manuals, reports, studies), consulting experts and using products themselves
- gather information about target audience needs and analyze how to structure and format information to meet those needs
- prepare a documentation plan for each document for monitoring progress and reporting
- select appropriate technology and media to deliver technical information
- create, follow and enforce the use of consistent style and formatting by developing a house style guide
- write content for on-line help files, reference materials, educational materials, procedural and policy manuals, user guides, proposals, technical reports and instructional materials that explain the installation, operation and maintenance of mechanical, electronic and other equipment (for example, oil industry equipment or computer applications)
- engage subject matter experts for the duration of the project especially highly complex subject matter
- create auxiliary resources such as diagrams or interactive learning processes if required
- rewrite and edit drafts after they have been reviewed by technical experts for accuracy
- test products (especially software and hardware)
- manage documentation projects including translation and localization if required.
Technical writers also may define terms in glossary format, index or cross-reference information, or obtain copyright permissions to reprint material. They may work independently or as part of a team that includes scientists, engineers, computer specialists, management personnel, editors, other writers, illustrators or photographers.
Technical writers employed by medium-sized or large organizations generally work standard office hours.Overtime sometimes is required to meet deadlines. Contract writers working from home can set their own hours but must be prepared to work long hours when required to complete projects on time. However, many contract writers are required to work in offices during normal business hours. The pressure associated with having to meet deadlines can be stressful.
Technical writers need the following characteristics:
- the ability to communicate and work effectively with a variety of people (for example, engineers, educators, publishers, editors, art directors, film producers, readers of varying ability)
- adaptability and flexibility
- the ability to pay close attention to detail
- an interest in new communications technologies, particularly those involving multi-media and the Internet
- the ability to analyze and think critically
- the ability to deal with and learn from criticism
- the ability to handle multiple requests during high pressure periods
- strong organizational, time management and project management skills.
They should enjoy gathering and synthesizing information, taking a methodical approach to explaining procedures, and finding out how things are built and operate.
There are no standard education requirements for technical writers but they generally need:
- an ability to write well with an understanding of plain language, sentence structure, presentation formats and readability
- a good grasp of grammar and the ability to express ideas clearly in writing
- knowledge of technology (ranging from basic to expert depending on the project)
- research, interviewing and analytical skills
- editing and proofreading skills.
Technical writers are typically required to hold bachelor’s degrees. While some technical writers enter the occupation with degrees applicable to a technical specialty, most have a degree in English, journalism, communications or a related field. Some colleges and universities offer bachelor’s degree programs in English with concentrations in writing.
These programs consist of 4-year curricula that provide students with a solid grasp of English and communication skills so that they may write across a variety of genres and fields.
Courses may include:
- Technical writing
- Writing theory
- Web writing
Web content writer
- Develop content strategies : apply information architecture & design principles for social media content.
- Ability to write in a variety of styles and formats for multiple audiences.
- Moderate online communities: review submissions, create tags,track useful content.
- Online Content writing & development for websites, new features & social media (Blog creation & submission).
- Content writing / editing / Submitting for Case studies, Product Info, & testimonials, articles, newsletters.
- Candidate should be able to conduct online research, generate / develop original content for various websites and write creative unique content .
Technical Writer Qualifications
Along with strong writing and communication skills, technical writers must be proficient in online publishing software and programs. The ability to produce video and audio for the Web may be required for some positions. Technical writers often handle large amounts of complex data, so information management skills are necessary. A sharp eye for detail, research skills and the ability to work under strict deadlines are also important for a career in technical writing.
Sources about TW:
- Short outline essay about features of HCE-DC service. Up to three web pages with illustrative examples of some key technical or technological solutions. Aim – for IT market specialists and product managers.
- Short scientific article about some solution or technology that is new and modern for this area of applications that is implemented in one of three key products – hce-node, DTM or DC services. Up to five web pages with scientific or technical illustrations or graphs visualized some principal schema or measured statistical data. Aim – for scientific area in target technology specialists.
- Short observation article about one of three HCE’s project products: hce-node, DTM or DC service. Common description with set of key features review and general specifications with advantages and characteristics. Up to five web pages with schema or graphs of typical usage or configurations for different target project needs. Aim – for IT market specialists system integrators, architects and product managers promoters.
- Short observation article of some user’s experience about installation and any test usage of HCE products from package or source code. From three to ten web pages step-by-step shows some stages of products deployment, configuration, installation and test usage with screenshots. Aim – advertizement and information space filling.
* Just one or several test task can be done and represented in free form as single document (doc, pdf, etc…) or web page located on any public resource.