Research

Akin to research conducted in software development, this stage primarily involves reading the source documents such as the design document, the system specifications and the functional specifications. Subject matter experts, usually developers, system engineers, or members of the quality assurance team, also play a significant role during this stage and you must gather information from them using various modes of communication such as interviews and emails. Analyze the information received from different sources such as source documents and SMEs during this stage in the context of the audience analysis that you performed during the earlier preparation phase.

Gathering information from the subject matter experts is easier said than done. There are different kinds of experts with different complexities. This book suggests various methods to gather information from all the different kinds of subject matter experts.

Then, you can take advantage of various secondary research activities – brainstorming, mind mapping, and information mapping – to assimilate the information that you gathered using the source documents and from the subject matter experts. These techniques also help you to gather additional information and establish logical relationships between the various snippets of data that you gathered using primary research methods. Depending on the audience analysis and audience profiling conducted during the preparation stage, you must conduct these secondary research activities to collect additional information. However, you must be able to define an outline of the document after involving in primary and secondary research. Such an outline lays the foundation of a technically accurate user-friendly document.

Recent Articles

The political SME

The political SME

November 9th, 2012

Due to many reasons, these experts have some reasons as to avoid giving the right information to you[...]

The clueless SME

The clueless SME

November 8th, 2012

Most experts, who are not sure of the information that they need to provide, fall into this category[...]

The not-so-good-at-writing SME

The not-so-good-at-writing SME

November 7th, 2012

A good amount of experts are not comfortable penning down their ideas. They have all the required te[...]

The starved-for-time SMEs

The starved-for-time SMEs

November 6th, 2012

More technical writers work with SMEs who began falling into this category than earlier. The dynamic[...]

The You-Know-Nothing SME

The You-Know-Nothing SME

November 5th, 2012

These technical experts consider technical writers as non-technical, ignorant people who focus only [...]

Dealing with different SMEs

Dealing with different SMEs

September 25th, 2012

Apparently, the most challenging task for any technical writer is to extract complete and accurate i[...]

Functional Requirements Specifications

Functional Requirements Specifications

September 25th, 2012

This document lists the features of the product and the various functionalities that must be availab[...]

Reading source documents

Reading source documents

September 1st, 2012

This section enumerates the different source documents and explains the ways to retrieve required [...]

Gathering SME inputs

Gathering SME inputs

September 1st, 2012

Interviewing subject matter experts (SMEs) is one of the most common and important methods for gat[...]

Design Documents

Design Documents

September 1st, 2012

The system architect or the software designer prepares the design document that describes the prod[...]

Log in with:

Subscribe to our Newsletter

To subscribe to Techitive newsletter simply add your email below. A confirmation email will be sent to you!

Tweets

Resources

Understanding Source Documents – E-Book

Understanding Source Documents - E-Book

July 24th, 2013

Techitive Press presents the second E-Book for ready reference - Understanding Source Documents. [...]

E-Book – Technical Writing Process – An Overview

E-Book - Technical Writing Process - An Overview

July 15th, 2013

Techitive Press presents small E-Books for ready reference. [...]

Understanding articles

Understanding articles

September 22nd, 2012

[...]

Self Review Checklist

Self Review Checklist

September 16th, 2012

Grammar Verify the text for spelling mistakes and typographical errors. Verify the text fo[...]

Search on Techitive

Subscribe on Facebook