RE: Documentation and Bug Reports

Subject: RE: Documentation and Bug Reports
From: mlist -at- ca -dot- rainbow -dot- com
To: isaacr -at- mailsnare -dot- net, techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: Wed, 4 Feb 2004 16:28:49 -0500

> From: Isaac Rabinovitch [mailto:isaacr -at- mailsnare -dot- net] opined:

> Goldstein, Dan wrote:
> > Years ago, at a meeting with a company exec who hired our
> firm, he told us
> > that the goal for our documentation was to reduce the calls
> to their Help
> > desk by 20%. I don't know how they planned to measure that,
> if they really
> > measured it, or what the final number was.

> Reducing support costs should always be a documentation goal.
> In theory, if one does a
> perfect job, the other is totally unnecessary! But this sort
> of thing *is* hard to
> quantify. And few pubs managers seem to think about it. The
> only time it was ever an issue
> for me was when I working *for* the customer service
> department. And come to think of it,
> a lot of what I wrote should have been written by the regular
> tech pubs people.

Ya gotta be careful there. It depends on the service model.

If your company (like ours) sells yearly, flat-rate service
contracts, then every customer call that is prevented represents
a savings ... or at least, money not subtracted from that
service-contract payment. Getting to the end of a year with
NO calls on a service contract is a victory.

On the other hand, if your company uses the model that
Microsoft and others use, that every customer call is another
X dollars into the coffers, then excellent, complete documentation
actually repels Customer Support revenue, and you don't want that.
Or, your bosses don't.

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