Re: Not Wanted--Technical Writers

Subject: Re: Not Wanted--Technical Writers
From: Nora Merhar <nmerhar -at- CHARLESINDUSTRIES -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 16 Dec 1997 11:12:03 -0600

Sean quoted the following paragraph, and expressed outrage that it was
allowed to creep in to documentation:

> EXAMPLE ONE

> How to log on at a product call center.

> BEFORE: Before a call arrives, a call center agent must be logged on
> and
> available to receive that call. In addition, a supervisor
> responsible for that
> agent's performance is typically logged on. When the supervisor and
> the agent
> sign on, their devices (telephones or PCs) establish a X.25 virtual
> circuit to
> the Call Distribution System. This connection will be in place for
> the
> duration of the time the agent/supervisor is logged on. When the >
> agent logs
> on, a data connection to the corporate host database may also be
> established.

> AFTER: A call center's supervisor and agent log on to the Call
> Distribution
> System, establishing a connection that can last throughout the
> workday.


Weeellll--having worked for a company that made Automatic Call
Distributors, I have to point out that the first paragraph DOES NOT
say the same thing as the second paragraph, and that what is said in
the first paragraph may not be what salespeople want to read, but may
well be information NEEDED by the person to whom they are trying to
sell the ACD. For instance:

Possible buyer, a Call Center Admin.: "Can your product make a
connection to the host database at the same time the agent signs in,
or will my agents have to log in to the database seperately?"

Salesperson: "Uhh. Let me get back to you on that."

Possible buyer (thinking): "He doesn't know a whole lot about this
product he's trying to sell."

This also causes a familiar problem in which a salesperson promises a
customer that the product does all sorts of things which in fact it
doesn't do.

I certainly agree that paragraph #1 is clunky and needs to be
rewritten, but it tells me a LOT more than the second paragraph does.

FWIW,

Nora
nmerhar -at- charlesindustries -dot- com

http://www.documentation.com/, or http://www.dejanews.com/



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