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I'm not a hardware writer, but a friend of mine is. You might also want to
ask about images. Is there a graphics person available? Will you be
taking photos of the machinery? Expected to draw your own diagrams?
Definitely ask about production schedules and access to the things that
you'll be documenting. My friend often does not have access to prototypes,
or they've been shipped off to customers before he's finished writing his
Will you be expected to update legacy docs? How are those updates managed
What format are you expected to output? How do the service technicians
access the manuals? My ex was a service tech, and it was a big deal for
his team when they moved from lugging around paper manuals to accessing
them online and he occasionally wasn't allowed to bring his phone into
secured sites (and thus couldn't see his manuals).
On Wed, May 3, 2017 at 9:50 PM, Monica Cellio <cellio -at- pobox -dot- com> wrote:
> My experience is in software, which might be different from hardware, but I
> always want to know:
> - How early and in what way are writers involved in development? Do
> writers participate in functional and design reviews? Do we have input
> into the user interface? Are we part of the team, or do we come in later,
> take what they've built, and document it?
> - Can I use the product? As much as I want?
> - What processes do both the dev and doc teams follow? (If they say
> "agile" there are more questions.) How is doc reviewed and by whom?
> - (How) do we make doc improvements that aren't directly tied to new
> features or bugs? (For example: larger reorganizations, improving
> indexing, adding runnable examples, tools improvements.)
> - (How) do you use source control for documentation?
> That's off the top of my head, without digging out my notes from my last
> round of interviews.
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