Re: Absence of FrameMaker from your skill set -- what does it say?

Subject: Re: Absence of FrameMaker from your skill set -- what does it say?
From: "Gene Kim-Eng" <techwr -at- genek -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 31 Jul 2009 07:06:47 -0700

You hve two separate issues to address:

Your possible "FrameMaker snobbery."
No, not knowing FM does not suggest a "lack of seriousness about the
profession." There are industries where FM is not a standard tool, and a
perfectly serious and outstandingly capable writer could have an entire career
in any of them without ever touching it. Not knowing FM *is* a disadvantage to
writers seeking employment in industries where FM use is common or in which FM
is the standard, however, and for someone seeking contract or other temporary
work in such a field, it is likely to be a major, if not fatal, one.

Whether to list FrameMaker skills as a requirement or a "plus."
You need to decide what you want from a new writer. Do you want someone who has
skills comparable to your current team (some FM users and some not) who either
knows FM or could learn it along with the rest of your current non-users, or do
you want someone who knows FM well enough to jump right in without a learning
curve and possibly assist your current non-users in making their own
transitions?

There is no such thing as "a reasonable skill set to expect from a seasoned tech
writer," except for whatever skill set reasonably serves your needs.

Gene Kim-Eng


----- Original Message -----
From: "Ava Cassidy" <ava -dot- m -dot- cassidy -at- gmail -dot- com>
> There's a strong sentiment among some of our managers in favor
> of standardizing on Frame. However, when we posted a job listing recently,
> there were some different opinions over what it should say, and whether
> FrameMaker should be listed as a requirement or as a plus. In the end, it
> was not mentioned in the posting at all.
>
> So, um, clearly many things are wrong with this picture, but my specific
> question has to do with what's a reasonable skill set to expect from a
> seasoned tech writer. I've been asked to help sort through the resumes, and
> none that I've seen so far list FrameMaker as a skill (nor anything as
> "fancy" as structured authoring). My question is: Does the lack of
> FrameMaker on your resume suggest a lack of seriousness about the
> profession? Or am I just being a total FrameMaker snob to even ask that?

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References:
Absence of FrameMaker from your skill set -- what does it say?: From: Ava Cassidy

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