Nathan Ruhiiga Technical writer
- Technical skills– Nathan depends greatly on the subject matter, product or service that requires documentation. Hardware and software documentation differ in the skills that the he needs to bring to the table. Additionally, pharmaceuticals and other manufacturing industries have specific requirements that translate into knowledge the Nathan must have. When he is asked to document a developer’s guide may need to have a pretty good handle on specific programming languages.
- Tools skills– Needless to say, Nathan needs to knows his way around computer systems, since they are used to produce documentation in a variety of formats. Specific tool knowledge, such as Adobe FrameMaker, MS Word, MadCap Flare, RoboHelp, and even PageMaker and Quark really depends on the tools ADP technology has come to rely on in order to produce its technical documentation. However, He is accustomed to learning – it’s really what he does, and is capable of learning a new tool quickly and efficiently.
- Interviewing and listening skills– Nathan knows how to ask questions. He plays a vital role in knowing who is the best person to approach and he has a feel for the varying personalities and preferences of the people – the subject matter experts, or SMEs – in order to know how best to approach them. Once the he has found the appropriate SME to approach, strong listening skills will be required to capture the information necessary and to know which follow-up questions need to be answered.
- Design skills– An appreciation for the visual can be an important part of the skill set that Nathan has. Even the earliest technical documents didn’t consist of just the written word. To a growing extent the Nathan needs an appreciation for graphics and formatting as well as illustration skills. Depending on the needs of ADP technology, his skills may only need to be rudimentary but also very advanced.
- Usability and testing skills– Nathan may also be asked to take an active role in usability and testing. Even if not asked to take a role, he knows that validation of the documentation is important – the confirmation that the product works the way it is documented to work.