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As Richard Mateosian said,
>>No amount of certification, however, will necessarily induce employers to
change their hiring practices. If they get a product they're happy with from
someone they're paying peanuts to, why should they pay more.
You can't legislate respect and demand for quality. If the end user doesn't
insist on it, if the client doesn't care about it, there's no way you can
charge a premium for it. ...RM<<
Maybe part of the problem is that tech writers are *usually* connected with
development -- analysts, programmers, engineers, etc, etc. My experience has
been that they view documentation as something unneccessary that keeps them
from getting things done, so they find it very easy to ignore the need for
documentation. After all, *they* know how to use the product, any idiot should
be able to figure out that you activate the autorouting feature by pressing
Control-Alt-Shift-R unless it's Wednesday (then you have to press Alt-Shift-L,
but make sure to select the start and end points before issuing the command or
your day's work will be erased) (Enough of that, David!) Since management in
these situations tends to be focussed on development, they often share the same
mindset. After all, you can create a software product without a tech writer,
but you can't create it without analysts and/or programmers.
Given that documentation is not often considered a necessity, neither is the
participation or presence of a tech writer. And if we're not considered a
necessity, why should they accord us respect or pay us real money?
Just a thought ... does anyone on the list report/work under marketing or sales
management instead of technical development? I would think marketing would
place more importance on good documentation, if nothing else as a sales tool.
Does anyone have any input that might prove/disprove that?
David Jones, Technical Writer
David_Jones/KSBEISD -dot- KSBEISD -at- Datahub -dot- com
Kamehameha Schools Bishop Estate
"I do not speak for my employer, my computer, or any other living thing."