Here’s an example of how graduates of a tech comm program put their skills to use in a high tech company.
Specifically, National Instruments at Austin contributes two guest posts to the Texas Tech STC Student Chapter blog. Yes, these are recruiting posts, but they do ring true. I think they reflect well how a company can take tech comm seriously and benefit from the formal training and academic skills of graduates. It may be an exception among the employers of tech writers, but it’s an encouraging example. So I recommend these two posts:
Tech Writing…It’s Not Just For Tina Anymore
… asks Texas Tech alumni who now work as tech writers and their managers how they can apply what they’ve learned and what advice they have to students and prospective employees:
- Rayo emphasize task analysis before tool skills – which I’m glad to hear.
- Robin gives SME interviews a reality check that strikes a balance between what’s desirable and what’s possible.
- Heather explains how she determines which documentation formats get produced.
Technical Writing Skills
… has Nathan Stokes list and explain 5 skills which every tech writer can benefit from – especially in this less than obvious combination:
- Editing, including yourself: If you can edit yourself, you’ll be a better writer.
- Productivity, i.e., project management skills to keep yourself organized.
- Curiosity, which can drive you and help you to grow.
- Computer Knowledge
– Previously in these pages, I’ve covered a how a (non-tech comm) degree can help a tech writer.
Are these skills useful in the tech writer workplace? Can you learn them – or at least expect to learn them – in a tech comm program? If you have any thoughts or experience, please leave a comment.