If you are good in written communication, can work well in teams and want to work in a technical environment, probably Technical Writing is a good career option for you.
Indian IT sector has evolved from a provider of manpower to providing complete end-to-end solutions for entire project. Every project invariably comes with the requirement of technical documentation. Hence, the demand for professionals in Technical Writing has increased and will continue to exist in future.
Let us start by understanding what does a Technical Writing Professional do for a living. A Technical Writer is a person who will write instructions to help people use a product or service.
Listed below are some examples of the many interesting projects that technical writers are involved with.
- Writing online help documentation. When people need help using a software program they can click the Help button to get answers to their questions. (To see an example of help documentation, click on “Help” at the top of your Internet browser.)
- Writing user manuals that describe, step-by-step, how to use anything from computer software to appliances.
- Writing procedures manuals for businesses. For example, you might write a company’s human resources manual to explain procedures for employees to take time off, get reimbursed for expenses, etc.
- Writing for various services on the Internet. You could write web pages describing a company’s services or explaining how to use the web services.
- Writing training manuals.
Let us look at some critical traits for becoming a technical writer.
1. Technical writing is about learning
If you want to succeed in this field, you need an appetite for learning; a real hunger to know and understand how things work. You should have a keen interest in technology and should like learning about how things work. There is always something new to learn. It really isn’t enough to have to document an application. At some point, you have to want to help the reader genuinely understand how this works. To share what you’ve learnt and hope this makes their experience of the product that little bit better.
2. Technical writing is about organization
Most technical writers like to organize bits of information. Can you organize information so that logical pieces fit together and information flows in a coherent manner. Distilling random bits of information into a more organized format is a key skill in technical writing.
3. Technical writing is about teaching
One of the misconceptions about Technical Writing is that it’s a solitary profession. While there are phases when I need to close the door and write for the afternoon, an equal amount of my time is spend talking to developers and clients (i.e. understanding the application) and holding workshops and sessions where we discuss the results. So, the role of a tech writer is as much about sharing information as it is about writing.
What do you need to start your career in Technical Writing?
You need to be good in communication- that is a pre-requisite. While there are training organizations that can help you hone your written communication skills, you need to have a basic level of competence in written communication. Apart from that, you should have a good level of proficiency on Microsoft Word. There are some popular technical writing tools and it definitely helps if you have a working knowledge of some of these tools- Adobe Framemaker, Adobe RoboHelp, Microsoft Visio, Adobe Dreamweaver, Adobe Flash, and Microsoft Frontpage.
What kind of organizations hire technical writers?
Practically all IT Software Product and Services organizations recruit Technical Writers. This includes large organizations such as HP, IBM, Wipro etc. and mid-size organizations like Integra, NetApp, etc. You can start your career at an entry-level salary of 2-3 lacs and reach to a six figure salary in 6-7 years timeframe.
The career in Technical Writing is a promising one and will continue to grow in times to come. A little investment in yourself and get you an entry into this rewarding area.
Resource : education.in .msn