Cost of Documentation

Subject: Cost of Documentation
From: Michael J Maloney <mmaloney -at- EPIC-ISTI -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 17 May 1996 12:57:40 -0400

>Documentation is a cost. Until we can change corporate attitudes that
documentation creates revenue, and that the better the document the greater
the revenue, we relying stricting on an emotional sale to the managers with
the purse strings. In today's competitive marketplace on-demand
documentation is becoming the norm and the fastest turnaround time wins the

The "return on investment" of technical documentation is nearly impossible
to measure (if it exists at all).

However, let's say you're producing technical documentation for chain saw
use (hardware documentation). Without clean, accurate instructions
(conforming to ANSI Standards) - combined with clean accurate illustrations,
the manufacturer (deep pockets) can lose a fortune in liability cases. How
much is this document worth? A million dollars? If it cost $15,000 - $20,000
to produce a manual that prevents a few million-dollar claims..... I'd say
that's a great return on investment. Wouldn't you?

Michael J. Maloney
President, EPIC Creative Services
2230 Lyndhurst Avenue
Charlotte, NC 28203 USA

President, ISTI (International Society for Technical Illustrators)
Business Phone: 1-704-523-6907
Business Fax: 1-704-522-7504
Home Phone: 1-803-366-6763

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