RE: SD Times: Tech Writers Should Be Pigs, Not Chickens

Subject: RE: SD Times: Tech Writers Should Be Pigs, Not Chickens
From: Janice Manwiller <jmanwiller05 -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 6 Sep 2013 05:31:37 -0700 (PDT)

I work in an Agile environment, and whether technical writers are considered Pigs or Chickens, I strongly believe that:

- Writers should be part of the development process from the beginning. For me, that means attending design meetings and design reviews as well as the daily scrums. Our writers also sit with their respective development teams.

- While you may not be able to complete some information until later in the cycle, you can at least have some working notes and draft content based on the design. You can then iterate as needed as the work is completed.

- Early involvement also, as someone mentioned, also allows you to contribute to items such as screen text, layout, and error messages.

In our case, the development sprints include a "Doc It" column to make sure all dev tasks get looked at to see if they have doc impact. I also post doc reviews as tasks on the development boards, and review changes to the screen text during both the design and development.

The documentation team maintains separate boards for the documentation tasks for a specific release. Our documentation is required to be released at the same time as the product, so we do as much as possible during the main development cycle, then finalize during the testing cycle.


>Dianne Siebold from offers the Agile "Pig and Chicken" story so often discussed here and argues for our side:

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