Professional technical writers write manuals, handbooks and other documentation faster, better and cheaper than your engineers or developers
Don’t force your technical experts to write technical documents … and do it painfully, poorly, slowly and expensively. Hire a technical writer: they will painlessly extract the information from your experts and use it to create documents that are easy to read and easy to maintain. Any business that needs technical documents, either for external users or internal, will save time and money by using a professional writer. Call us to speak to a specialist about providing a technical writer to work in your team anywhere in Australia or NZ.
What can technical writers do for me?
Software user documentation
Technical writers start with a focus on the end user, and make sure that the language and concepts build on what those users already know. Technical experts, on the other hand, tend to assume knowledge on behalf of the reader that the reader doesn’t have, making their documentation hard to read.
Technical writers often have expertise in specific subject matter areas like engineering or mining that helps them both understand and explain complex concepts where the reader already has some knowledge. They can also create simple photographs or diagrams to illustrate hardware documentation where this is necessary during document writing.
White papers help you sell your technology, and so using a professional writer to develop them will help you sell more (or raise funding, if that’s what you need). It’s important to use someone with an understanding of technical issues to do this: but also someone who can write.
We provide specialist procedure writers, but sometimes it’s better to get a technical writer to develop procedures where the subject matter is particularly complex.
Technical writers can work with your engineers or other technical experts to quickly develop clear, unambiguous design documents. Clearer design documents mean less rework later.
Even very technical documents work better if they’re readable – having them developed by a professional writer makes sense. After all, you wouldn’t ask anyone but a programmer to produce your code, so why have documents developed by anyone but a professional writer?
Internal documentation of things like APIs and even internal function calls can make your software more maintainable, and a technical writer can do that for you without tying up your developers. And you can justify the expense using this research.
Editing and formatting
Sometimes you have most of what you need, but it just requires editing and formatting to make it accessible. We have writers who are experts in everything from Word to Confluence.
Technical writers are experts in ordering and structuring information. If your staff can’t find what they want in your intranet or library, maybe it’s because the structure is wrong? Hiring someone to provide business writing services can provide a better structure.
Why use a technical writer?
Imagine how long your marketing people would take to develop engineering designs, or software. The same thing happens when you ask someone other than a technical writer to develop documentation. It takes them forever. Using a professional writer, even if they have to get all of the information they need from one of your technical experts, can reduce your costs dramatically.
Get documents sorted
Technical people hate writing documentation, and so new documents and updates tend to get pushed to the back of the queue. Eventually this can make your product or processes unusable. Bring in a professional writer, even just for a short time, to bring everything up to date.
Speed things up
Adding a writer to your team makes the whole project go faster if there are any documents on your critical path.
More usable software and equipment
If your users (or external API users) can’t figure out how to use your product, then your product is … unusable.
What our clients say
Group Financial Controller
I am writing in my capacity as the Group Financial Controller of Australand Holdings Limited to thank HCi Consulting for a job well done in successfully documenting financial processes within Australand’s financial environment.
General Manager Human Resources
I would like to thank HCi … for your significant contribution to ‘Connect’, our intranet site within Boral Clay and Concrete
General Manager Human Resources
I am pleased to endorse the services provided by HCi in designing and developing the structure and content for Canon’s Human Resources intranet.
Product Supply Director
I would like to take this opportunity to thank HCi for your support in successfully concluding our recent project.
Senior Product Manager
I am writing to provide an endorsement for the work undertaken by HCi on behalf of the Commonwealth Bank for the Diammond Services produce, a software system used by our institutional banking clients.
I write to thank you for successfully completing the documentation projects undertaken for the NSW Fire Brigades.
As I have come to expect from other dealings with HCi at the Office of State Revenue, they provide an excellent level of service, and their specialist knowledge in documentation was of great value.
Information Technology Manager
As Information Technology Manager for Parramatta City Council, I would like to thank HCi for your work in developing our policies and procedures for the Records Management Section.
Sales Support Manager
I am writing to provide an endorsement for the work undertaken by HCi on behalf of Pfizer.
Project Manager Design
As the training Project Manager for this important Westpac project, I am writing to thank you for the outstanding job your people to delivered to me.
Frequently asked questions
A technical writer is a professional who provide business writing services:
- researches and writes user and reference documentation for computer systems
- writes hardware manuals and technical descriptions
- writes policy and procedure documents
- edits and formats documents
- writes technical and functional specification documents
- can help develop your information architecture
Technical writers spend part of their time either reading existing technical material (even reading code when necessary) or talking to your experts. They spend the rest of their time document writing. Both sets of skills (listening, and writing) are essential, as well as a good technical background.
Technical writers can develop a wide range of technical documentation including:
- Manuals and handbooks
- User documentation
- White papers
- Procedures and policies on technical subjects
- Functional specifications
- Design documents
- Code or hardware maintenance documents
A good technical writer has two essential skills:
- The ability to talk to technical people and get information from them without annoying them
- The ability to structure documentation so that it’s accessible by a target readership
The cost of document writing will depend on a number of factors including the length of the engagement, the location (often all of the work can be done remotely), the particular expertise you require, and who’s available at the time. Typical rates from HCi are $100-200/hr plus GST.
These days, content writers focus on developing text that’s optimised for search engines, not for humans.
You do. We provide the writer, but you as the client are totally in charge of what they do.
You can hire the same writer from us if they’re available, or a different one. Technical writers are used to developing documentation that’s maintainable by other writers.
We have an article that will help you decide, here: Estimating professional writing projects. Or just ask to talk to one of our writers and get their ideas on how long your project might take, then make your own assessment and let us know how long you need the writer for.
Call us. We currently have over 3000 on our database, and we can often have perfectly-matched resumes to you within the hour.
We provide Technical Writers in: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra (ACT), Adelaide, Perth, Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.
Rates for Technical Writers vary according to experience and capability. Specialists (eg writers who need experience in particular types of document) are often more expensive per hour than non-specialists.
Our clients normally need one or more writers for periods between a week to six months. A longer engagement usually means a lower hourly rate. The rate that we give you for a particular person will be inclusive of all taxes, superannuation, insurance, except GST.
Generally, more experienced writers cost more per hour, but tend to be more productive, so may reduce your budget overall.