RE: Integrating a new writer

Subject: RE: Integrating a new writer
From: "CB Casper" <knowone -at- surfy -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2005 14:31:23 -0800

I've been doing this for the past couple of weeks
for someone who just joined our team. Here's what
I've been doing.

Provide pointers & info to get up to speed with:
- product technology
- team meetings
- current documentation
- current process documentation
- writing tools
- style guides
- other tools

This is more-orless in order, with understanding the
technology first, tools later. Someone with experience
with various tools over the years can pick up a new
tool with ease. He is transition from hardware to
software, so the technology is the biggest change.

In my case I'm on the west coast and he is on the
east coast. Fortunately I start working early, so
our schedules overlap a lot.

I was just going through a release when he joined
our team, so I was able to use NetMeeting to have
him look over my virtual shoulder while I was going
through the various release processes.

In his case, the tools we use (FM + SGML) are
different than what he currently uses (Word),
but with NetMeeting and a phone, I'll be able to
walk him through any difficulties.

A previous change in our group brought someone
on board with similar tool experience, but his
product lends itself to our new writing tool, XML,
so he was able to bypass the FM learning cycle,
and go directly to our new tools.

This newest addition to our team has to learn FM,
use it for less than a year, then go on to a new
tool, Epic Arbortext for XML.

CB - now managing 4 writers and trying to get away
from actual writing once the new guy is up to speed,
but until then still writing

FWIW, we have a table identifying who on our team
can be called on as local experts on various tools,
processes, graphic, and writing skills to let the
new writers know who they can go to for assistance
-- for Free Email <br> for Low Prices on Hotels, Books, and more.

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