TechWhirl (TECHWR-L) is a resource for technical writing and technical communications professionals of all experience levels and in all industries to share their experiences and acquire information.
For two decades, technical communicators have turned to TechWhirl to ask and answer questions about the always-changing world of technical communications, such as tools, skills, career paths, methodologies, and emerging industries. The TechWhirl Archives and magazine, created for, by and about technical writers, offer a wealth of knowledge to everyone with an interest in any aspect of technical communications.
Subject:Washington DC area From:Joanne Greene <joanne -dot- greene -at- JACOBUS -dot- COM> Date:Mon, 28 Apr 1997 16:33:37 -0400
Washington DC area... I am a native Washingtonian, which as transient as the
area is, doesn't seem that common. The original big industry was government,
and even though the economy has diversified, government does have an impact.
Washington used to be considered recession proof.
All of my job searched have been in the DC area, and I'd say that there is a
significant percentage of contract work. Many companies and placement firms
have told me that most of what they have for technical writers is temporary
contract work. I've never done contract work; I've always found permanent
employment. I think much of the job market is still dominated by companies
doing contract work for the federal government, so there can be an impact
from budget negotiations.
There are more and more firms developing software products, though. If that
is the type of tech writing your friend wants to do, many of those
companies, including AOL, are in the Dulles Corridor, which is in Virginia
--Tysons Corner to DullesAirport.
(Vienna/Reston/Herndon/Sterling/Chantilly). There was a dramatic difference
between 1992 and 1996 in the number of jobs in Reston/Herndon.
If she is interested in association work, she should definately contact
Washington EDPRESS (301)279-6749. This is a local society of writers,
editors and public relations professionals whose membership is almost 50%
people who work in associations. EDPRESS membership is $45 a year. Their
annual conference is usually in late spring or early summer and membership
is included in the conference cost. I think in general their members have
less technical and computer savy and more literary and communications savy
but I found that refreshing after working exclusively with computer scientists.
If she does decide to come, unless she can get to work by Metro, she will be
happier if she lives on the same side of the Potomac river as her job is.