This week’s careers memes put technical writers – the professionals who explain technical information in layman’s terms – under the microscope.
In order to explain technical information to a non-technical audience, technical writers need to interpret technology or applications and produce material, such as user guides, training guides, reference manuals, and content for demonstrations. All this material can be provided for various media, as well, such as online, videos, graphics and illustrations.
The job involves more than writing and interpretation, however. A technical writer may also be required to attend planning/briefing meetings, collaborate with managers, developers, translators, printers, and/or experts on a subject.
Technical writers can work in a range of industries, from technology to government, to the medical and manufacturing industries.
A good technical writer will possess excellent analysis, organisational and communication skills, both in terms of writing, which includes editing/sub-editing, and listening, in order to fully understand a brief and input from experts and colleagues.
Technical writers may also be required to manage multiple projects, create schedules, adhere to deadlines, and commission material, such as illustrations, for certain publications.
In Ireland, a technical writer can expect to earn an average annual salary of €31,939, according to PayScale.com.