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In the U.S. - Part 3: Technical Writer's Checklist

Posted by Jingtian , 18 April 2008 · 133 views

* Microsoft Office:
Word
Excel
Powerpoint
Visio
Sharepoint Site

* Adobe:
Acrobat Pro
Photoshop
Illustrator
FrameMaker
Indesign
RoboHelp
Premiere
Captivate

* SnagIt

* Database:
SQL Server
Access
Oracle
SAP

This is a list of the most important applications that a technical writer must learn to use. Some skills are essential, like the mastery of Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint, which are all Microsoft software. The good use of Acrobat Pro, FrameMaker and other Adobe products will make you have an edge over others. Actually, Adobe FrameMaker is so powerful that it is also one of the important skills for a qualified technical writer for large companies. The reason that I did not put it in the essential skills list is that it is not so widely used as Microsoft Office.

Some of them have alternatives. For example, if you do not work on Microsoft Word, you can work on OpenOffice.Org Writer. Corel Draw achieves the same function that Adobe Illustrator does. Although SnagIt is the most powerful screen capture software, it has substitutes, too. The challenges that a technical writer might have is that the employer does not have licenses for a product that he/she is most proficient at.

How many of them can you use, if you happen to be a technical writer? It will take me another year, or perhaps two, to master them.




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