Technical writing is a collaborative and iterative process. Bárd International’s technical writing methodology involves working closely with subject matter experts within the client organization to create documentation that is clear, concise, and targeted to the appropriate audience.
If your organization uses a development methodology, such as Agile or CMMI, Bárd International’s writers can work with you within this methodology. For example, if you are using the Agile methodology, the Bárd International technical writer will work with your development team to create the stories, which can then be used to create task-oriented documentation topics.
By necessity, the technical writing process is fluid. Your project may require only one round of reviews. Or, if the product is greatly in flux, then the technical writer may have to add or revise substantial sections of documentation after the subject matter expert has reviewed them. In this case, the new sections will require a fresh review.
When working with Bárd International on a technical writing project, you can expect some or all of the following stages:
Using any existing documentation, design documents, technical specifications, and interviews with subject matter experts, the Bárd International technical writer gains the knowledge necessary to work on the project. During this phase, the Bárd International technical writer also learns about your company’s standards, templates, and style guide.
Develop a Documentation Plan
Using the information gleaned during the transfer phase and the statement of work for the project, the Bárd International technical writer performs a requirements and audience analysis, which leads to the development of a documentation plan. Working closely with the project manager, a documentation schedule is also developed.
Write First Draft
Using the information from the knowledge transfer and the documentation plan, the Bárd International technical writer creates a first draft of the required documentation. Depending on the stage in the development, the writer may need to leave placeholders for items that are not yet ready for documentation. The writer might also need to consult subject matter experts for answers to questions, additional guidance, or knowledge.
Subject Matter Expert Review
When the Bárd International technical writer has completed the first draft, the subject matter experts from the client organization review the document and provide feedback for improving the document and making any necessary corrections. Subject matter experts are concerned only with the content of the document. They do not have to worry about things like grammar, spelling, and typographical errors.
Write Second Draft
The Bárd International technical writer creates a second draft based on the feedback provided during the subject matter expert review. Depending on the extent of revisions required, this phase might require coordination with and feedback from the subject matter expert.
After the Bárd International technical writer has completed the second draft, another Bárd International writer performs a peer review in which the document is checked for proper usage of template, proper usage of the style guide, and proper organization. The peer review also checks for grammar, spelling, and typographical errors.
The Bárd International technical writer creates a final draft based on corrections provided during the peer review. Depending on the extent of changes required, the subject matter expert may have to review and sign-off on discrete sections of the document. For example, if the peer reviewer identifies a missing procedure, then the Bárd International technical writer will have to write that procedure and the subject matter expert will have to check it for technical accuracy.
Final Proofread and Production
Check After the final draft is completed, the Bárd International technical writer or a Bárd International editor performs a final proofread. Using the pre-production checklists, the writer or editor also ensures that the document is ready for final delivery to the client.