RE: Information gathering.....

Subject: RE: Information gathering.....
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: "Al Geist" <al -dot- geist -at- geistassociates -dot- com>, "Lin Sims" <ljsims -dot- ml -at- gmail -dot- com>, <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 2008 11:23:05 -0400

Al Geist added:
> The first thing I did was to generate an email to the engineering
> and engineers who would be affected by the video idea and ask for
> input...pros/cons and any thing else they could think of. Only two
> been
> positive about the video taping. One is an engineer who would not be
> affected and the other helped write the old manuals (in two weeks)
> were
> so bad nobody (especially Field Service and training) is able to use
> The remaining individuals are 100% against the idea because it would
> increase their already unbelievable workload.

Have you tried to get support from Field Service and Training? Or do
they look at bad docs from your group as job insurance for their people?

As for the videoing, I would make ONE suggestion (incorporating what
some other people have said on the list), and arrange for that e-mail to
land in the in-box of your boss' boss. Don't bypass hierarchy yourself.
Get a sympathetic engineer or Tech Support manager or Training manager
or somebody else to forward it, saying they thought it an interesting
approach that addresses the problem.

"The instruction was to video engineers performing the complex setup
procedures, and to use the tapes as the basis for documentation. My
proposal, to the video useful for documentation, and for our training
and support people, and for our customers, is that two engineers will
take part in each video-taping.
One will have no familiarity with the system/subsystem being configured.
He will be the hands that perform the tasks as though he were a customer
technician/engineer. He will be coached, before starting, to ask all the
questions that occur to him about all parts of the procedure, especially
any areas that are ambiguous or that involve recovering from a mistake
or omission or non-standard sequence of actions.
The other engineer will be source of knowledge. His hands will be tied
and he will be allowed to speak only when asked a question by the
hands-on engineer who is acting as a customer."

Ok, some variant of the above. :-)

- Kevin
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Information gathering.....: From: Al Geist
Re: Information gathering.....: From: Lin Sims
RE: Information gathering.....: From: Al Geist

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