Re: What department are you in?

Subject: Re: What department are you in?
From: "Nancy E. Kaminski" <nancykam -at- mediaone -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <TECHWR-L -at- LISTS -dot- RAYCOMM -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 1 Dec 1999 11:22:06 -0600

From: Dan Caldwell <writer -at- hscis -dot- net>

> Is there a particular department that tech writers get attached to when
> they're the only writer in a company? I recently joined a wireless
> telecom startup and found myself faced with the unexpected dilemma of
> "where do I belong?"

I'm not precisely a lone writer, since there are 3 of us, but my company
also didn't know where to put us. In the end, we became a part of Office
Administration, along with the office manager (our supervisor) and the
clerical support staff of the IMS division. This has positive and negative
results. The positive thing is that our supervisor simply assigns work to
us, and never interferes or micromanages. She doesn't know anything about
tech writing. All she needs to know is that projects are getting
accomplished and that our customers are happy with the product. We don't sit
together, but on various floors with the different teams of programmers we

The down side is we are still thought of as clerical by some of our
customers, although we are training them to the contrary. We also don't
really work as a team, since there's no oversight, really, and no editorial
help or guidance. Basically it's a free-for-all.

Nancy E. Kaminski , Technical Writer/Editor
Fairview Health Services, Minneapolis, MN USA
(612) 672-6882 phone, (612) 672-6083 fax
nkamins1 -at- fairview -dot- org | nancykam -at- mediaone -dot- net
"Time is an illusion, lunchtime doubly so." -- Douglas Adams

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