Training and workshops on technical documentation, software documentation, and online documentation

Do you create your technical documentation in-house? I am happy to share my expertise with you and your team in the form of in-house trainings and workshops.

In-house training: Technical documentation best practices

Studying technical communication at university takes several years. It would be unrealistic to promise that we can cover this full spectrum in a short training. However, we don’t have to. Even what you can learn in a day or two will dramatically improve the quality of your documents.

Your needs

Do you or your staff need to write some technical documentation, but you are not trained technical writers?

Training that I can provide

Adapted to your individual requirements, my in-house training on technical documentation / on-site training on technical documentation teaches you exactly those techniques from which you benefit the most.

The questions covered by the internal training can include, for example:

  • What content should go into the technical documentation? What can you drop?
  • What documents should you provide?
  • How should you structure each document?
  • How can you make sure that readers will find what they are looking for?
  • How can you make sure that readers can fully understand your texts and that they can follow your instructions without making mistakes?
  • What do you need to pay attention to when adding pictures?
  • How can you design a professionally looking, appealing layout?
  • Which tools can make creating technical documentation easier and more productive?
  • How should you best organize the work – both your own work but also the whole workflow including reviews, translations, and production?

Duration: 1 or 2 days

In-house training: Jumpstart software documentation

Software documentation is becoming increasingly important – not only in the software industry but also with many other products. Today, hardly any machine or other technical device can be controlled without software. However, in many ways, software documentation is different from classical technical documentation.

Your needs

Are you or your staff challenged with having to write some software documentation, but you don’t have much experience in this field? Or do you already have some experience in writing software documentation and want to augment your knowledge?

Training that I can provide

Adapted to your individual projects and prior experience, my in-house training on software documentation / on-site training on software documentation teaches you proven methods of how to create high-quality software documentation.

Typical questions answered by the internal training are:

  • What are the best formats for your software documentation: Online help (online documentation, help site)? Classical user manual? Screencasts? Embedded help? Should it be context-sensitive or context-free?
  • What content should go into your documents? What can you drop?
  • How should your software documentation be structured – both on top level and in detail?
  • How can you quickly guide the readers to the information they need in a specific situation?
  • How can you make sure that readers can fully understand your texts and that they can follow your instructions without making mistakes?
  • What do you need to pay attention to when adding screen captures?
  • How can you create a professionally looking, appealing layout?
  • How can you create both online help and printed documentation (PDF manual) from the same source?
  • Which tools can make creating software documentation easier and more productive?

Duration: 1 or 2 days

In-house training: Jumpstart online documentation

In the software industry, thick printed manuals were largely replaced by online documentation many years ago. With the widespread availability of mobile, web-enabled reading devices (smartphones, tablets), the legal requirements for the documentation of machines and consumer products are also changing. Here, too, there is a growing trend toward online documentation: either as a supplement to printed documentation or as a substitute for most of it.

Your needs

Have you mainly created printed documents or PDF manuals so far, but would you like to offer HTML-based online documentation in the future as well or switch to online documentation altogether? Do you have little experience with online documentation and would you like to expand or update your expertise in this field?

Training that I can provide

Tailored to your individual goals, documents, and constraints, my in-house training on online documentation shows you:

  • What added value can well-made online documentation provide compared to printed documentation, and how can you exploit this potential in your individual case?
  • What should be different in the online documentation than in the printed documentation? What do you need to reconsider?
  • What things, both large and small, make online documentation particularly user-friendly?
  • How should online documentation be structured – both as a whole and in detail?
  • What's the best way to modularize your content?
  • Which access, search, and navigation options should your online documentation provide?
  • What makes a professional, appealing, and user-friendly layout?
  • What tools do you need to create your online documentation?
  • How can you create online documentation from the same source as your printed documentation?
  • How do you best organize the transition from the printed world to the online world?

Duration: 1 day

In-house training: Rich Documentation Design Concept®

The Rich Documentation Design Concept with its Impulse Method and Minimal Brainwork Principles is a method I developed for streamlining technical documentation that is becoming too extensive and to give it more value for its users.

Your needs

Is your documentation growing too large? Do you have the feeling that you might be describing more than necessary? Does your documentation contain “everything”, but do users still prefer to contact support?

Training that I can provide

This training will teach you first-hand the principles of the Rich Documentation Design Concept.

With the help of the concept:

  • You can take into account the fact that most people are much more capable of using technology today than they were in the past.
  • You can only describe what your customers actually need based on their prior knowledge and skills, rather than describing “everything”.
  • You can create documentation that has a high “nutrient density” and is rich in immediately usable content.
  • You can save unnecessarily high creation, maintenance, and translation costs for your technical documentation.
  • You can save your customers unnecessary time searching and separating valuable information from useless clutter.

The training consists of 2 parts:

  • Morning: Presentation and discussion of the concept and its principles.
  • Afternoon: Workshop on the specific application of the principles to your own documents.

This training is aimed at technical writers as well as anyone who already has experience in creating technical documentation. Also, the training is ideal to complement the training on technical documentation best practices.

Duration: 1 day