Anyone can easily craft a written piece, but the demands of technical writing go beyond regular writing. It takes specific skills to explain complex concepts and procedures in more straightforward terms, and only a few writers can do it. You’ll learn who a technical writer is and how to become one in this article.
Who Is A Technical Writer?
A technical writer explains the design, function, use of a product or service to a consumer or a technician. The spotlight isn’t on the writer as in other cases, but on the product, system, or process of concern. The writer makes all intricate details, easily digestible for the readers. Technical writers often work on journals, articles, manuals of varying sizes, and other documents.
What Does A Technical Writer Do?
A technical writer creates different documents for different audiences and purposes. The following steps are essential to do so effectively.
- Audience Analysis
You review the audience of such materials and understand what they’ll like to know, the tone to use for them, and other special needs that the audience may require. This analysis helps you know specific steps to take on the project.
- Product Sample Reviews
Now that you’ve known what your audience needs, you’ll need to go online to check out information about the product and how it affects the users. You could also seek information from the product designers to help you.
- Start Working
Get to work based on the information gathered. Begin to compile the information in a way that’s simple enough for the users. You could also add charts or pictures, that’ll aid their understanding.
- Dissemination And Review
Decide what should reach the users. You could make it available in print or video, after which you receive feedback from the users. Review your input to determine if the material has served its purpose, or it needs to be revised or destroyed. If the last is the case, you’ll need to start over.
Technical Writer Certification
As a technical writer, you have to be skilled at what you do, and a minimum of a college degree is required for an entry-level technical writer. Writers with backgrounds in communication or related technical fields like computer and engineering are highly sought.
Technical Writer Pay
Technical writers get paid between the ranges of $50,000 – $120,000 based on the level of expertise. A strong resume will put you at an advantage, as the demand for technical writers projected to be on an 11% increase by 2026. The skills of a technical writer are highly sought in disciplines of IT, medicine, and engineering, amongst others.
Technical Writing Job Hunting and Interview Questions
Google is a great place to search for remote jobs near you, and you could also check out sites like Glassdoor and Indeed.com. Family and friends are also useful links to help you find jobs.
At an interview, you’ll probably answer questions about your knowledge of technical writing. These questions would include your understanding of specialized writing tools, your style of writing, your preference for teamwork, and your performance under pressure, amongst others.
You’ll do well as a technical writer if you have the right intentions, and you’re willing to learn. Go for it, once you believe you’ve got what it takes.