RE: Documentation estimates

Subject: RE: Documentation estimates
From: "Dori Green" <dgreen -at- associatedbrands -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 13 Dec 2006 08:54:38 -0500

What I _do_ do when asked for an estimate is set up a project management
plan and a Gantt chart with clear divisions and milestones. At our weekly
QMS Team meetings, for instance, a standard agenda item is to ask if anybody
has questions about the schedule or suggestions for changes.

This way I can tell anybody who asks: "I'll be glad to take your <XYZ>
process information, thank you very much! It's scheduled to be written in
April. Is there any special reason you might need the finished documents
earlier -- a special audit or because you're reprinting some forms? If so,
I might be able to do some documents early, and the team might even be able
to change the schedule."

This way major decisions go to the appropriate authorities rather than being
left entirely in my lap, and all of us can be pro-active about adjustments
(and, yes, variables).

When a manager asks for a documentation estimate, it might be worth your
while to do a little digging and find out what they really want. In most
cases they're trying to figure a budget and manpower figures, which don't
count number of pages but percentages of total project completion.

Dori Green
Technical Writer, QMS Project
Associated Brands, Inc.
Medina, NY Facility


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RE: Documentation estimates: From: Robotti, Anne \(Carlin\)

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