Doc process and product dev cycles

Subject: Doc process and product dev cycles
From: Kris Olberg <KJOlberg -at- AOL -dot- COM>
Date: Sun, 19 Nov 1995 14:06:49 -0500

Raymond Chenier and I would like to collect information on the documentation
development and product development cycles used by you and your company.
Specifically, we're looking for descriptions of processes you use--how well
do they work, how well do they fit together, etc.

I am outlining examples of these cycles below. Would you contribute by
briefly outlining the processes you use and then answer a few additional
questions? Please respond directly to both Raymond and me, and we'll work
together to summarize for the list.

Sample documentation cycle
* Attend project "kickoff" meeting
* Write project schedule/GANTT chart and a statement of work
* Obtain signoff on schedule and statement of work
* Gather source materials/do research
* Begin writing
* Send to production for graphics, keystroking, etc.
* Send to editing or peer review
* Enter edit/peer review comments
* Send for technical review
* Hold a technical review meeting to resolve conflicting comments
* Enter technical review comments
* Repeat the production/editing/technical review/production cycles as
* Obtain signoff on document(s)
* Send for reproduction
* Distribute

Sample product development cycle
* Gather business requirements and obtain signoff
* Initiate formal request for budget
* Hold project "kickoff" meeting
* Write a statement of impact and obtain signoff
* Write a product logical design and obtain signoff
* Write a product physical design and obtain signoff
* Develop product
* Unit test (if applicable)
* System test (if applicable)
* Integration test (if applicable)
* User acceptance test (if applicable)
* Obtain final signoffs
* Pilot or test market product
* Make final changes
* Rollout product

Questions for you
(1) What processes do you use for documentation and product development?

(2) In your opinion, does your documentation process work? Why?

(3) In your opinion, does your documentation process work together well with
your product development cycle? Why or why not? How would you change one or
the other?


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