RE: Why are companies now requiring technical writer candidates to be SMEs?

Subject: RE: Why are companies now requiring technical writer candidates to be SMEs?
From: "David Locke" <dlocke -at- texas -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 20 Apr 2003 02:57:29 -0500


Chuck Martin asked why a company would specify specific experience with
products in their category.

I can see two reasons for this:

1. They already have a candidate and they are just doing their EEO/HR thing,
which requires that jobs be posted outside the company for 30 days.

2. They worked with TWs that had to interview the SME and consumed too much
of that SME's time. I went through this with a TW last year. He insisted
that he had to interview and discuss. Ultimately, the SME got mad about the
process this writer put him through and how much time of his time the writer
wasted. Basically, the SME in the company posting the want ad learned that
he didn't want to work with TWs that were going to need a lot of
handholding, so now the SME over specifies the position.

I agree with you that a TW shouldn't need to know anything about it, but
only as long as the TW knows how to model the application and discover the
functionality. You probably could defend your position in a cover letter.
You have nothing to lose.

David W. Locke


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