Technical Documentation Specialist Job Description and Responsibilities

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Technical documentation specialists write manuals, operating instructions, and other documents for computer hardware and software. These professionals are sometimes referred to as technical writers. They may also prepare copy for computer or software catalogs, sales promotion material, advertising, and marketing campaigns.

Technical documentation specialists have varied duties depending on the specific job. Their main function, however, is to take hard- to-understand jargon and turn it into everyday, understandable language.

They collaborate with programmers, engineers, and other technical people to learn everything there is to know about the software program. The individual might also do research to learn more about the specific subject of the program. Having extensive knowledge of the subject will make it easier to prepare documentation.

Next is the actual writing of the documentation or users' manual. Most manuals offer explanations about what the program can accomplish and then provide step-by-step instructions on how to use the program. Similar functions are required when writing users' manuals for printers, modems, scanners, and other peripheral equipment.

Computer software usage can be either extremely easy Or very difficult, depending on the skills of the technical documentation specialist. It is essential that the specialist writes so that the general public can not only read it but also understand and make use of the information.

EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES

Technical documentation specialists can work full or part time in a number of different employment situations including:

Hardware manufacturers, Software developers and manufacturers, Self-employment and

Book publishers

Expanding Opportunities for the 21st Century


The need for technical documentation specialists will increase as additional companies emerge with new software programs. Individuals who have writing skills as well as technical knowledge in both computer usage and other specialty subjects will be especially in demand.

EARNINGS

Annual earnings of technical documentation specialists can range between $24,000 and $65,000 plus. Factors affecting earnings include the specific employment setting and geographic location as well as the experience, education, technical knowledge, and responsibilities of the individual.

ADVANCEMENT OPPORTUNITIES

Technical documentation specialists can advance their careers in a number of ways. They can move into positions in other areas of the computer company such as advertising or marketing. Other documentation specialists search out companies that are larger or more prestigious and offer increased earnings and responsibilities. Some individuals become editors of technical documentation projects, or managers.

EDUCATION AND TRAINING

Most employers prefer or require a college degree. Good choices for majors include liberal arts, computer science, communications, or English.

EXPERIENCE AND QUALIFICATIONS

Technical documentation specialists usually need a degree of writing experience and technical knowledge. Sometimes individuals are writers who are familiar with computers and programs through personal use. In other situations, they have worked as programmers or technicians.

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Interested individuals can contact the Society for Technical Communications, Inc. (STC), the Association of Computer Programmers and Analysts (ACPA), the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), or the Microcomputer Software Association (MSA).

TIPS

Get as much writing experience as you can in all areas.

Jobs in this field are often advertised in trade journals as well as the newspaper classified section under headings including "Documentation Specialist," "Technical Documentation Specialist," "Technical Writer," "Software," "Hardware," "Writer," or "Freelance."

Send your resume and a short cover letter to software companies and hardware manufacturers.

Thomas Karanja is an Internet Marketer who enjoy offering Free Online Freelance Jobs . He also offers Free Computer maintainance Tips and Softwares  just visit these websites above.

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