RE: Techwriters quota in an R&D department

Subject: RE: Techwriters quota in an R&D department
From: <ext-Juho -dot- Tunkelo -at- nokia -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 2003 16:59:13 +0300

Well, it all depends on the development cycle and the nature of the information to be documented. I once handled some 30 documents, covering a system constantly developed by an R&D dept of ~60 ppl. It was intense, but good specifications, good working relationships and fairly long development cycles made it possible.

There is no simple answer to your question though, I don't think it is wise to think in terms of writer per developer ratios to begin with. You don't write about the developers, do you? ;) Having said that, it is not unheard of that a writer must be able to manage hundreds, even thousands of pages of content. Only if the writing burden is inhuman is it advisable to raise concerns..

Juho Tunkelo

-----Original Message-----
From: ext Violaine TRUCK
[mailto:Violaine -dot- TRUCK -at- esterel-technologies -dot- com]
Sent: 14. April 2003 12:04
Subject: Techwriters quota in an R&D department

I would like to know if there were any research done or any quota available
on how many techwriters "per developper" there are supposed to be?
I heard it is close to be 1 techwriter per 5 or 10 developers. What do you

Based on this "quota" or "research", any consultant or any new hired
techwriter inside a Research & Development department could easily
demonstrate that it is rather hard if not impossible for him/her to
accomplish a good quality job if he/her has to deal ALONE with 30
developpers and hundreds of a dozen of manuals.
In my case, I am supposed to update and manage more than a dozen of manuals
and implement dozen of pages of Word based contents coming from over 20
How is that supposed to work? I need facts and arguments.
Thank you very much for your precious feedbacks


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