Re: Informal Survey

Subject: Re: Informal Survey
From: "Susan W. Gallagher" <sgallagher -at- EXPERSOFT -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 19 Jul 1996 13:21:42 -0700

Dennis Hays/The Burden Lake Group, Ltd. wrote:
>I'd like to poll the members of this list regarding a problem I encountered
>this week. I was contracted to create a training course for some help desk
>people. It was supposed to be a one week workshop to teach those involved
>with a software company how to troubleshoot Windows problems (3.1/95/NT). I
>created a 135 page manual which included 4 pages of TOC and List of Tables.
>So, really a 131 page manual.

>The question: counting research time, writing, and editing; how many hours
>do you think this would take to have the final version ready for duplicating?

Sounds like you got yourself into a "What's taking you so long?"
situation. ;-) Little do they know.

Depending on your familiarity with the subject, whether or not the document
format was already developed or needed to be designed from scratch, and
whether or not there was any already-developed material from which you
could draw, the project could take an experienced technical writer with
tunnelvision and i.v. feedings anywhere from 8 to 10 weeks. An inexperienced
tech writer could probably spend twice that long.

My guesstimate comes from about 7 years as a curriculum developer and
trainer (back in the DOS days -- I installed my first mouse back then,
hadda move jumpers 'n' everything). I did, at one time, create a weeks
worth of OfficeWriter curriculum in 6 weeks. I did not move from
in front of the computer screen for any more than bathroom breaks for
the whole 6 weeks. Troubleshooting Windows is a little more complicated
than a straight-on wp class.

BTW, Dennis -- you didn't mention how large the index turned out to be. ;-)

Sue Gallagher
sgallagher -at- expersoft -dot- com
-- The _Guide_ is definitive.
Reality is frequently inaccurate.

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