STC – Puget Sound Chapter President

While serving as President of our local society for technical writing professional development, I would often identify the need for blog topics. I submitted two topics over the last year on the our local STC site. You can click to review them below. I wrote them, there was minimal editing, and then they were posted on the site. The audience is made up of over 1000 technical writers, with a vast array of knowledge, skills, and experience.

  • Top Takeaways from the January 2018 LinkedIn Workshop – This piece took just a few minutes to write this up from I took notes during the class. I listed the highlights of the class in this article. This was one of the two most highly attended workshops I brought to STC last year and we will be having it again in 2018.

Amazon Technical Recruiter Academy

I worked as a Program Manager and Instructional Designer for Amazon’s Recruiter Academy Program. The Recruiter Academy was a 26-week program that taught 18 students the Event Recruiting Process Model as used at Amazon. I was able to meet the needs of current program and to productize the entire program for Global release. Now any recruiting team in the world can take the “productized” version on the sandbox and install it for any Amazon Technical Recruiting Team world-wide and ramp up to teach recruiters event model recruiting.

 

Accomplishments:

  • Developed a syllabus for a 26-week technical Recruiter Training Program’s event-recruiting process.
  • Created over 20 courses (Word, PPTs, Job Aids, and supporting materials) in under 4 mos.
  • Created Wiki and SharePoint infrastructure to deliver courses, separate published from review and student sandbox courses.

Here are links to several items I developed for Amazon:

  • Introduction to SharePoint training – The documentation set included a ReadMe.doc, PPT, and Word document but only the document is included.
  • Job Aides: I created these Core Requirement job aides for three roles. They are on 4×6″ laminated cards and helped recruiters who unfamiliar with specific skill sets of desired candidates to quickly look them up and find the right skill sets for the right roles. They turned out to be very popular and recruiters who didn’t graduate from the program were requesting them.

 

US Navy – San Diego

Introduction to Technical Writing Facilitator’s Guide

I created a custom course for the Navy with a budget of 40 hours. Because of the small budget, the original course was a hybrid document created in PowerPoint. It resembled a regular document in that it contained more information than a traditional PPT presentation so it would be usable as a stand-alone document. I didn’t want students focused on taking notes, but on having material to refer back to later.

After delivering the course, I decided to create a Facilitator’s Guide so I could package and sell the course to other facilitators. I’ve uploaded part of the course here as a sample. It contains the first two sections of PowerPoint slides broken down by objective. The PPT slides are embedded in the document so they are not included here.

Facilitor’s Guide (Partial Sample)

 

Intuit – IT, Service Delivery, Infrastructure, and Program Manager for Learning and Development

I’ve worked at Intuit five times over a 10-year period in permanent and contract positions in the following senior-level roles:

  • Technical Writer/Instructional Designer for Product Infrastructure;(most recently)
  • Program Manager for Technical Learning ServicesServiceNow Hosting Demand Management
  • Instructional Designer for IT

All of my examples are for internal use.

 

Genoptix Oncology Diagnostic Testing Services

While at Genoptix, I developed on online help system using RoboHelp as the delivery method for five software systems that together comprised their billing (hospital, insurance, and patient private pay), coding, accounts receivable, Medicare, and collections systems. This was my main responsibility and they expected that I would take approximately 5 years to develop the documentation to the point that it would be acceptable to Novartis, who acquired Genoptix in early 2011.

I completed the work and passed a rigorous post-acquisition audit after a little over two years and then worked on special projects like developing coding training and creating call center documentation.

Genoptix also liked my Visio diagram work so much that I became responsible for leading several process improvement initiatives outside the Revenue department. I reported directly to their VP of Revenue and performed in the following roles:

  • Technical Writer
  • Instructional Designer
  • Business Process Improvement Analyst

I was also personally acknowledged for my work by Tina Nova, the founder of Genoptix, and whose acquisition completion payments were made to her 2 years earlier than expected because of the speed with which I completed my work.

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.

I worked as a senior technical writer at Qualcomm and project manager. I designed several courses as well as the entire concept of QChat University (named for QChat, our push-to-talk technology) and the curriculum being taught. While this project is older, I am providing it as it is a Captivate course that I have permission to use and permission to display my courses is difficult to come by.

QChat Samples

Chat 3.0 OverviewQChat 3.0 Overview

Qualcomm had a need to provide documentation to internal customers (one side that was developing their own product) another side working on QChat, plus we had to provide external support for Sprint who was licensing the product from us, and also to companies that Sprint sold the license to.

This required tracking information and offering different levels of access depending on the access groups people were assigned to. Eventually we developed a certification program for Sprint’s support engineers that used the material and training we developed. I was responsible for developing the performance objectives and curriculum for the program.

I used DreamWeaver for the QChat University website, RoboHelp for an Acronyms and Terminology search tool, and Captivate to design the courses. I also led a team of 3 technical writers and two instructional designers to help develop the content.

QChat University

QChat University contained online courses, FAQs, and other supporting documentation for software engineers to learn and become certified on push-to-talk technology. The certifications were used for outside companies licensed by Sprint, to obtain and use in troubleshooting issues and call center escalation. This is a sample of the early prototype I did of the University. The final version was much more corporate looking but this was the only version I had permission to show.

I selected a DreamWeaver template as a starting point and we built it out from there.

QChat University (Word Sample Screenshots)

Microsoft Corporation

Microsoft Services Delivery Methodology Library

I was an online help developer for this project. It was a library containing templates, frameworks, reference material and more to help any external vendor propose solutions using the same materials from start to finish.

 

Microsoft Manual of StyleMicrosoft Manual of Style (Online Help)

I’ve worked for Microsoft over a number of years as a permanent employee and for approximately 15 contracts in roles ranging from project manager, technical writing manger, to online help developer. During that time, I worked on a lot of deliverables from audiences ranging from Office product end users to developers for the Windows SDK and for MSDN. One of the projects I really enjoyed was an early version of what became the Microsoft Manual of Style. I worked on the internal version 2.0 prior to its release as a product sold through Microsoft Press. I still use this tool today on projects that don’t have their own Manual of Style.

Microsoft Windows 3.1 Software Developer Kit (API)

One of my first projects was to work on the Microsoft Software Developer’s Kit (SDK). My main responsibility was the 587 page Application Programmer Interface (API). This happened right at the time that Microsoft discovered the true power of Windows. It was an exciting time and a great time to work with that particular team.

Prior to 2003

Prior to working for Microsoft, I ran my own free desktop publishing magazine that was advertiser supported. Before that, I spend ten years working as a software developer creating custom financial applications for companies like SF Chronical, Goodwill Industries, Apple Computers, Coca Cola, Monterey Vineyards, and others.