RE: "Surviving the Dying Career of Technical Writing"

Subject: RE: "Surviving the Dying Career of Technical Writing"
From: Jen <jennee -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 22 Mar 2016 23:02:23 +0200

An opinion from, well, Romania :) The situation at the moment is similar to
the 90s in the US, from what I can tell - the technical writing industry is
only now starting to develop and we can not afford to be picky. (I
personally prefer to hire people who have some writing experience rather
than people who know the industry, because I've found it's easier to teach
about the field than teach writing skills. Some companies focus more on
technical knowledge.) My company hires junior writers 99% of time and
basically trains them on the job (which is how I got into technical writing
as well).

As for the size of the industry, I searched LinkedIn a couple of months ago
and I found less than 100 technical writers in Romania in about 50
companies, with the bulk of them in Bucharest. Obviously not everyone is on
LinkedIn, but this can give you an idea. 6 years ago, I think we were just
a couple dozen. A Romanian technical writer with more than 1 year of
experience *will* get headhunted on LinkedIn on a regular basis, so it's a
very good time to get into this profession. Even the mediocre ones are able
to make an above-average living.

And India is not outsourcing here, we are basically competitors. Though I
do have to say that I've seen several teams dissolved in the US/Western
Europe and moved to Romania...


> Message: 15
> Date: Mon, 21 Mar 2016 15:57:12 -0700
> From: Gene Kim-Eng <techwr -at- genek -dot- com>
> To: Lauren <lauren -at- writeco -dot- net>, techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> Subject: Re: "Surviving the Dying Career of Technical Writing"
> Message-ID: <56F07C48 -dot- 7070406 -at- genek -dot- com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=windows-1252; format=flowed
> Remember the 90s, when it was really easy for anyone who could string
> words together into a halfway coherent paragraph to get a job as a tech
> writer and have developers throw stuff over a wall to be formatted and
> edited? We often called them "glorified secretaries," before we stopped
> using "secretary" altogether.
> Most of those non-technical writer jobs went away at the end of the
> decade, but they didn't go extinct; they were offshored to India. Those
> who remained in the field in the US found themselves called upon to have
> more domain knowledge in order to stay marketable.
> In the past decade or so a lot of design and development has been
> offshored as well, and this has led to those non-technical writing jobs
> being squeezed out there as well. Not sure if they're finally biting
> the dust, or if the Indians have offshored them to someplace like Romania.
> Gene Kim-Eng
> On 3/21/2016 12:33 PM, Lauren wrote:
> > That was my first impression. More job postings are looking for local
> > candidates with strong English skills. I think that the Indian
> > dominance that has been present in IT for a few years may start to wane.
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