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:RE: What department are you in? From:Lief Erickson <lerickson -at- mqsoftware -dot- com> To:"'Dan Caldwell'" <writer -at- hscis -dot- net>, TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com> Date:Wed, 1 Dec 1999 11:30:36 -0600
Dan Caldwell wants to know where lone writers fit into high-tech companies
<<In the past it was easy to fit into the engineering or development
departments, but the nature my current setting is a little different in
that "development" doesn't exist since our core product is wireless
bandwidth. I'll be working with our customer service, marketing, IT, and
sales departments to write and edit technical docs, publications,
newsletters, manuals, and training materials for both internal and
Until just recently I was a lone writer in a small software company (we just
added a second writer).
I think you already have a feeling where you belong. Get into the group with
the SMEs from whom you must get your information. Ensure that your desk is
within earshot of the lead developer(s). It's always nice to "overhear"
things. And invite yourself to the department meetings.
I personally would want to be as close to the SMEs as possible. From there I
would be friendly with Sales (future product and requirements info),
Marketing (the "spin" info), and Customer Service (the "what's wrong" info).
However, these three groups do not tell me the details that I need to write
my TECHNICAL material.
IBM Certified Specialist - MQSeries
Sr. Technical Writer
lerickson -at- mqsoftware -dot- com