SURVEY: Developer Response Rate (RE: responsibility)

Subject: SURVEY: Developer Response Rate (RE: responsibility)
From: "Darren Barefoot" <darren -at- darrenbarefoot -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 22 May 2003 22:39:58 -0700

> >In fact, for every document we send out
> > for review, I'd say 20%-30% of it is actually returned with
> comments.
> Those are horrible numbers. When I did tech writing there was
> always a 100% return. However, I also forged close working
> relationships with the developers and never once relied upon
> management to make my case for me.
> I would say that if you're getting a 20% to 30% review
> response, there is something wrong with your tech pubs group.

I agree those are lousy numbers, but that was the reality at my last
position. I've seen better at other positions (maybe, say, 60 or 70%,
but never 100%). What can I tell you? I fostered close relationships
with the developers too. Heck, I drank in the pub and played soccer with
them. Maybe it's because they were Irish. Just kidding there.

Ultimately, the problem lies with product development. When the
developers were forced to choose between finishing a feature or
reviewing documentation they (wisely) chose the former.

This calls for a survey.

Okay, folks, when you send out material for review, what percentage do
you get back fully reviewed? We're assuming a scenario where you send
material out to various SMEs? If you like, include comments about how
you've achieved that rate.

Thanks. DB.


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