Re: Senior Writer Job Requirements

Subject: Re: Senior Writer Job Requirements
From: "Wing, Michael J" <mjwing -at- INGR -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 10 Oct 1996 08:01:09 -0500

>Bob Handlin/US/3Com wrote:
>> It's been my experience that you rarely see an ad that asks for more than
>> years experience, regardless of the complexity of the task. It gives the
>> employer the possibility of picking up somebody smart on the cheap.
>Employers ask for all sorts of unrealistic qualifications. One of the
>better ones I saw recently was someone looking for a web designer with
>5+ years of HTML experience. <head whipping around> Excuse me? Does
>everyone else on this list understand why that's ridiculous?

>We're finding that an employer's expectations about what one has learned
>in 3+ years vs. 5+ years vary greatly, and that when they quote a figure
>like that it's because they're really after someone who isn't just a
>real beginner. Years and years of experience in technical writing don't
>necessarily make you a better writer - but the fact that you've been
>there does give you better war stories. <g>

>Elna Tymes

Here is some sample Senior Technical writing job requirements. These
were the first 5 descriptions retrieved through an on-line search of a
job bank for Senior Technical writer. What struck me was the variance
in years required (one wanted a minimum of 3; another a minimum of 8).
Some specified strong grammar/language skills and technical skills;
others didn't mention them at all. Interesting point - all descriptions
emphasized technical skills!

1) Required experience is 3 years technical publications/desktop
publishing experience on a MAC. Thorough knowledge of System 7.0 or
higher, DOS-MacLink utility programs, MAC desktop accessories and file
transfer programs. Interleaf and/or Frame software.

2) Bachelor's degree in Technical Communication, Electrical
Engineering, Computer Science, or related technical degree. Experience
producing customer documentation for electronic products (seven to ten
years desired). Experience and skill in development of on line help for
the Windows environment. Experience in using computer controlled test
>equipment. Experience using Interleaf, Word, and RoboHelp.

3) A relevant degree or equivalent and 5+ years of related experience
required. Background should include experience in database applications,
data integration, MRP systems and use of DTP tools.

4) BSCS or equivalent technical work experience with 8+ years' industry
experience writing publications to support complex software products.
Thorough knowledge of all aspects of publications a must, C programming,
FrameMaker, and on-line documentation experience a plus.

5) Position requirements include a Bachelor's degree or equivalent with
an emphasis in engineering and/or communications and 5+ years preparing
technical publications (user, operation, maintenance and troubleshooting
manuals for electronic and/or electromechanical equipment preferably
semiconductor CVD furnaces). Your background must also reflect at least
3 years presenting formal technical training courses and 2 years working
on semiconductor processing equipment in an engineering or service
capacity. Technical knowledge must include electronics, robotics,
computer science, chemistry and physics. Strong communication and
interpersonal skills along with an excellent command of English grammar
are a must. Proficiency in operating a dedicated word processor,
graphics program and desktop publisher is necessary.

Mike Wing

_/ Michael Wing
_/ Principal Technical Writer
_/ Infrastructure Technical Information Development
_/ Intergraph Corporation
_/ Huntsville, Alabama
_/ (205) 730-7250
_/ mjwing -at- ingr -dot- com

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