NEWS FLASH: Technical Communicator Saves World – Technology Business News

I had a boss several years ago who was amused by my earnest and relentless preaching about the importance of technical communication in today’s business world. He once introduced me to some colleagues as “the tech writer who is going to save the world!”Well, okay, perhaps I do go a little too far on occasion. People have kidded me that I am not just performing a technical writing job – I am on a technical communications “crusade”.But no matter how often people tease me about my overly-serious view of our profession, I remain convinced that we are on the cusp of an enormous change. Technical communication is poised for a breakthrough. We are about to take our place among the business disciplines that are viewed as critical to the success of technology projects.Am I overstating things? I don’t think so.Evolution of TechnologyConsider, for example, the recent evolution of the Information Technology business. In the eighties, we saw enormous changes in management and development methodologies. We began to apply new rigor to the process of transferring technology, from highly specialized technical teams to user communities with little or no technical expertise.To facilitate the transfer of technology, to allow us to perform estimates, assign resources and track progress, we have developed strategies, methodologies, tools, and disciplines. But has this rigor
Many studies have found that most Information Technology projects continue to fail at alarming rates. A study compiled by the Computer Research Institute of Montreal reports:· 47% of all developed software is delivered, but not used· 28% of software is paid for, but not delivered· 18% of software is not used in the way it was intended· 2% of software is delivered and used in the way it was intendedA report by the Canadian Auditor General’s Office quotes a study made by the “Standish Group” on the major causes of failure in Information Technology projects. This study showed that:· 31% of projects are canceled before completion· 53% of the projects cost 189% of the original estimate· Overall, 16% of software projects are completed on time, on budget· In large companies, only 9% of software projects are completed on time, on budgetIn the face of this dreadful record of failure, something significant is happening. People have started to realize that the development of a new computer system or software product is not just the transfer of technology, but is the transfer of knowledge.Transferring KnowledgeAnd that’s where we, as Technical Communicators, come in. Transferring knowledge is usually a communication task.Industry research supports this point. Many studies reveal that the leading cause of systems development failure is ineffective communication between technologists and end-users during the requirements-gathering phase of a project. The Canadian Auditor General’s report, for example, states that poorly defined and expressed requirements are a leading cause of project failure.Happily, the situation is changing. People are starting to pay more attention to the human side of technology. We have noticed a definite trend. Companies are placing more emphasis on training, on consultation, on communication, and especially on documentation.Customer Demands Our customers – the demand side of the equation – are putting pressure on the technocrats to improve communication processes and deliverables.This is our moment. It is our invitation to persuade managers and technical colleagues that our skills should be brought to bear at the start of a project, when communication is complex and critical. It is our chance to demonstrate that we have confidence, fortitude, and the ability to join our colleagues in the complicated early days of system design and development.True, we may not save the world. But I wouldn’t be surprised if we didn’t manage to bail out a few of the projects that are currently destined to become gloomy statistics in an Auditor General’s report.

Reading Business Tips Can Keep Your Business Fresh – Technology Business News

If you are a business owner who stays on top of news and trends you’re much more likely to be able to stay ahead of the curve. Staying ahead of the curve ensures you don’t miss the proverbial boat on any opportunities. There are a lot of resources available to business owners and a lot of free marketing tips available online that can help you:-learn to market
-find new ways of gaining market share
-be up to date on the latest trendsLearn About MarketingLearning to market is a skill that isn’t ever fully mastered. It’s a continuous evolution of your skills. A marketing campaign that worked last year might not work again this year. Staying up to date on the latest and greatest news and techniques in marketing can enable you to increase your chances of success with every campaign you do.Gain Market ShareYou might find there are new competitors coming out all the time. You need to stay on top of your game to be able to compete. Reading regular news and tips about business can help you do that and you can keep hold of your existing customers, create brand loyalty with them as well as capture new market share in your industry as well.Trend WatchingYou might consider reading something every day with your morning coffee that helps you maximise your business’s potential. Many business owners who are fairly new to their craft could find that by spending a bit of time reading on a regular basis they can quickly move from being novices to knowledgeable experts in their field.Avoiding Complacency In Your BusinessOne should never become complacent in their business otherwise you’ll eventually slip out of that cozy spot in your comfort zone and down into an area where you’ll eventually struggle because your competitors are staying more on top of things than you are.Whether you’re a one man or one woman show or own a small company with staff, reading business news and understanding the landscape in your industry can make you a stronger business person and the owner of a more profitable company.What Kinds of Tips Should You Read?Everything from marketing, technology, human resource skills and tax tips can help you in your business. Not all business experts are going to provide you with information you can always use but reading a little bit on a constant basis, such as a tip or article a day can help you assimilate information on an ongoing basis and this can help spark new ideas and innovations as well as help you find ways to continually improve your business.