As a technical writer or author, you may be expected to establish contractual commitments, prepare synopses, and estimate project times and costs. You may also need to determine a programme of cost and production control, design and plan the publication, instruct illustrators, graphic designers and printers, and write the information so that the reader can understand it and assimilate it easily.
Despite the names “Writer” or “Author”, the writing element comprises only one facet of the work. As in most jobs, the bulk of your time is spent managing information, researching, discussing, liaising with other staff, sending and receiving e-mails and using your judgement to plan and make decisions relevant to the production of the subject document.
Although you may at times prepare sales brochures, leaflets and specifications, you are more often engaged in producing the technical or commercial publications on which customers rely for safe operating and installation practices, diagnostics, health and safety procedures, system descriptions and maintenance and repair information.
Safety and legislation
The growing concern for safety and the environment has led to the requirement for more documentation featuring prominently in consumer-protection legislation. This places the prime responsibility for safety on the originating company, and further dependence on the technical or commercial author’s specialised skills.
There can be few jobs more satisfying for a second career than that of a technical or commercial writer. As the work relates mainly to the description of new systems and products, technical and commercial writers are constantly confronted with new ideas, methods, situations and innovations.
Each job is a challenge that draws on your past experience, together with the specialist writing skills learnt during training. You delve into every facet and function of a system or product. Gathering and presenting information is a matter for your constant judgement and decision making.
There is a considerable sense of achievement in starting with a clean slate and ending with a completed and approved operating manual or sales brochure.
Contact us to begin your new career!
If you are thinking about undertaking technical author training then please get in touch to find out more about how we can help.