What is Documentation Quality?
Yoel Strimling has been spinning straw into gold for over 20 years, and currently works as the Senior Technical Editor/Documentation Quality SME for CEVA Inc. in Herzelia Pituach, Israel. Over the course of his career, he has successfully improved the content, writing style, and look and feel of his employers’ most important and most used customer-facing documentation by researching and applying the principles of documentation quality and survey design. Yoel is an STC Associate Fellow, a member of tekom Israel, and the editor of Corrigo, the official publication of the STC Technical Editing SIG.
As technical communicators, we put a lot of time and effort into creating the highest-quality documentation we can. We write because we want to help our readers do the tasks they need to do or understand the concepts they need to know. But what do we mean when we talk about “documentation quality”? What do our readers mean when they talk about it? And is it the same thing we mean?
For the past seven years, Yoel has been researching these questions. As a practicing technical editor, he doesn’t always have time available to investigate what readers want. But as a “reader advocate”, he feels that it is critical that technical communicators have solid and empirical evidence to help them do their jobs better.
Yoel’s published research into how readers define documentation quality is being used by technical communication departments around the world to collect meaningful and actionable feedback, and provide reliable methods and metrics for measuring documentation quality.
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