How to Create a Virtuous Cycle by Prioritizing Documentation

By The Good Words Team

November 8, 2022

Businesses need documentation to scale. However, we typically see common themes that slow the prioritization and creation of technical documentation. These challenges can lead to a vicious cycle of delays and false starts. Here, we expose common obstacles businesses face and offer perspectives to alleviate them to, instead, create a virtuous cycle.

1. Priorities, Priorities, Priorities

Many organizations fail to prioritize documentation as part of key annual objectives. As a result, documentation needs are not specifically funded within the budget. If a budget is identified, it often underestimates the cost of technical writing. In both scenarios, leaders are left with a lack of capital resources commonly turn to internal resources and assign documentation tasks to engineers or product managers.

Documentation assignments are folded into high-priority positions as part of the expected output. Consider how your organization can benefit by separating product innovation and engineering roles as one key objective and the development and management of documentation as a completely separate key priority. These efforts have two different skill sets and two different impacts on the business. Invest accordingly.

2. Get Excited!

Good Words is self-admittedly documentation advocates and, dare we say, enthusiasts! We encourage you to embrace documentation as an absolute revenue-impacting tool, and to position someone with the skills and deep desire to execute well. Hire a full-time documentation manager, organize a team, bring on a technical writer or consultant. Set an expectation that the goal is to bring a singular and consistent focus to elevate documentation within the organization. Your customers expect good documentation. We agree.

3. Create a Virtuous Cycle

Imagine the level of impact great documentation can have on your organization, your team, and your customer. Break free of the idea that documentation is an after-thought buried into other deeply important work. Elevate the conversation about documentation within the organization by advocating for the funds needed, investing in skilled professionals to oversee documentation strategy and management, and ultimately smooth the innovation and development path for products and customer acquisition.

Create a virtuous cycle: happier customers, a better product, a more effective team, and an improved bottom line.

Have questions about your company’s documentation challenges? Reach out to us today.