Documentation is the backbone of business. Successful engineers, scientists, business managers,
programmers, and other SMEs (subject matter experts) have a common operational framework; clear and
concise reports, specifications, standards, instructions, manuals, execution plans and other documents.
When it comes to creating technical or business documentation in an effective method, pairing the SME
with an experienced technical writer can result in very high-quality, fit-for-purpose
documentation. Most business owners and technical managers I talk to prefer that
SMEs focus their core expertise on mission-critical activities. As the title of this
article suggests, your Doctor can mow your grass. However, I’m not sure you will
like the result or the cost. But really, wouldn’t you rather them focus on keeping
An experienced technical writer can interview SMEs, become familiar with the subject matter and help
develop content. Following effective document standards, they develop professional-class
documentation in an efficient timeframe. During this effort, the SME reviews technical content of the
documentation and remains the intellectual property developer.
Technical documentation is an integral part of any engineering or business effort. In many cases, the
documentation is a product deliverable in itself, with its own costs and benefits. Partnering experienced
technical writers with SMEs improves the overall work effort and prevents the problems and risks
associated with producing faulty or late documentation.
For more on this topic, read the Zaetric white paper: “Improving Engineering Workflow in Technical
Communications”. If you need experienced document development help, contact the author at