-No Subject-

Subject: -No Subject-
From: Chet Ensign <Chet_Ensign%LDS -at- NOTES -dot- WORLDCOM -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 28 Jun 1996 09:37:28 -0500

Howdy all,

Just curious if any of you know of any formal studies that have been done on
task breakdowns in professional writing activities.

I was reminded of this by an email message that I sent off to someone the other
day. About three years ago, I did an informal study of some of the medium-sized
writing projects going on in my company. We already had a time tracking system
in place that measured hours spent on individual projects. For the study, we
devised a set of extensions to the project codes that further subdivided time
into 3 categories:

- actual content-producing work -- writing, editing, creating examples,
capturing screen shots, indexing, etc.
- work that prepared the writer do be able to create content -- meetings w/
product team members, time spent learning the product, etc.
- production-oriented work -- formatting, reformatting material from other
sources, printing out review drafts, etc.

The allocation by the end of the project was 20% of the hours were spent
creating content, 20% was spend on prep, and the remaining 60% on production

I've since talked to other technical writers who agreed with that breakdown.
But I don't know if any formal studies on this have ever been done. If anyone
else knows of any, I'd be interested in hearing about it.

Best regards,


Chet Ensign
Logical Design Solutions
465 South Street http://www.lds.com
Morristown, NJ 07960 censign -at- lds -dot- com [email]
201-971-0100 [Phone] 201-971-0103 [FAX]

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