Superheros and a  leprechaun,  with Flare: A case study  in breaking  down silos
Key Pointes <ul><li>Moving documentation from RoboHelp to Flare </li></ul><ul><li>Key: Buy-in and cooperation from the tea...
Your questions   <ul><li>Please let me know if you have any questions.  </li></ul><ul><li>My contact info will be at the e...
Who I Am <ul><li>Usability Consultant </li></ul><ul><li>Self-employed </li></ul><ul><li>Company is Key Pointe Usability Co...
Who Is Meridian <ul><li>Software Company based in California with an office here in Vancouver </li></ul><ul><li>Makes Cons...
<ul><li>How I came upon the job  is a long story, but I’ll make it short. </li></ul>
Joe, Irish, Doc manager Theresa, consultant Marcy, writer Contract writer Brian, CTO Viktor,  Design Jay Support 3 Johns
Product 1: Proliance <ul><li>4 RH projects with 2000 help topics for Proliance with 400 duplicated topics </li></ul><ul><l...
Product 2: Prolog <ul><li>2500 help topics in Prolog with about 600 duplicated topics </li></ul><ul><li>8 online help syst...
Help Situation <ul><li>RH had problems with big projects </li></ul><ul><li>No Version Control </li></ul><ul><li>No technic...
Things They Wanted <ul><li>To fix things up, bring them up to date </li></ul><ul><li>To hire a writer </li></ul><ul><li>Co...
Coordinating with Support <ul><li>Too many resources meant customers couldn’t find information.  </li></ul><ul><li>Informa...
 
 
 
Helping Support <ul><li>Documentation was important to Support, so why not integrate with them more? </li></ul><ul><li>New...
Tool evaluation requirements   <ul><li>Technical documentation oriented </li></ul><ul><li>Import from RH and Word  </li></...
Choosing Flare   <ul><li>Offered the most options in terms of functionality  </li></ul><ul><li>Worked most easily with RH ...
Business case <ul><li>Reviewed why we should move from to Flare. </li></ul><ul><li>Written for the V.P of R&D  </li></ul>
 
Project plan <ul><li>Iteration 1 and 2 reviewed: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Purpose </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Objectives </li>...
 
 
Project estimate <ul><li>Gave an estimate for when the project could be accomplished with two writers vs three writers.  <...
Writer Writer Writer
Presentation to R&D   <ul><li>People were curious </li></ul><ul><li>Something fresh was happening for a stagnant departmen...
 
 
 
 
Implementing <ul><ul><li>Decided to change both products at the same time, but slightly delayed the second product so I co...
Information model <ul><li>The information model gave a high level overview of the deliverables we would create.  </li></ul...
 
Content audit <ul><li>The content audit was much more in depth and looked at all the documentation and where it was duplic...
Detailed reuse model <ul><li>The detailed reuse model showed on a topic-by-topic basis where the content would be reused a...
 
Keeping in Touch <ul><li>We were also in contact with: </li></ul><ul><li>Support Services </li></ul><ul><li>Marketing </li...
SupportLink mockups <ul><li>Done in Visio </li></ul><ul><li>We asked for CSS support and graphic design support </li></ul>...
 
Design Help with Flare skin <ul><li>The graphic designer made it look pretty </li></ul><ul><li>And was concerned about usa...
 
Importing KB Items <ul><li>Worked with Support to figure out the knowledge base process. </li></ul><ul><li>Items up to dat...
Technical Library <ul><li>CTO needs a Technical Library </li></ul><ul><li>“ I want the ‘MSDN look and feel’.” </li></ul><u...
<ul><li>It was clear:  </li></ul><ul><li>Documentation suffered from a lack of understanding in R&D.  </li></ul>
<ul><li>Support relied on the documentation to be accurate and concise, but it wasn’t. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Rarely do we measure technical support efficiency in terms of useful documentation because we’re not familiar with...
<ul><li>This transition was large for everyone: move from multiple sources, lots of browsing, to searching in one place fo...
<ul><ul><li>In early releases, some Support staff panicked when information was missing. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To suc...
<ul><li>By reaching out from documentation, we were able to start a team effort and build understanding. </li></ul><ul><li...
<ul><li>Without the enthusiasm and excitement, the project would not have gone as well. </li></ul><ul><li>(Link to WebSite...
Info <ul><li>Theresa Putkey </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>www.keypointe.ca </li></ul>
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Superheros and a Leprechaun, with Flare: A case study in breaking down silos

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Reviews a company's move from RoboHelp to Flare and the buy-in that needed to happen across departments for the project to be successful.

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  • Superheros and a Leprechaun, with Flare: A case study in breaking down silos

    1. 1. Superheros and a leprechaun, with Flare: A case study in breaking down silos
    2. 2. Key Pointes <ul><li>Moving documentation from RoboHelp to Flare </li></ul><ul><li>Key: Buy-in and cooperation from the team </li></ul><ul><li>The process for how we made the transition </li></ul>
    3. 3. Your questions <ul><li>Please let me know if you have any questions. </li></ul><ul><li>My contact info will be at the end. </li></ul><ul><li>The slide info will be at the end. </li></ul>
    4. 4. Who I Am <ul><li>Usability Consultant </li></ul><ul><li>Self-employed </li></ul><ul><li>Company is Key Pointe Usability Consulting. </li></ul><ul><li>Started as tech writer and moved into usability </li></ul>
    5. 5. Who Is Meridian <ul><li>Software Company based in California with an office here in Vancouver </li></ul><ul><li>Makes Construction Project Management Software </li></ul>
    6. 6. <ul><li>How I came upon the job is a long story, but I’ll make it short. </li></ul>
    7. 7. Joe, Irish, Doc manager Theresa, consultant Marcy, writer Contract writer Brian, CTO Viktor, Design Jay Support 3 Johns
    8. 8. Product 1: Proliance <ul><li>4 RH projects with 2000 help topics for Proliance with 400 duplicated topics </li></ul><ul><li>10 bulletins, 10 white papers, installation manual, upgrade manual in Word </li></ul><ul><li>Readmes in FrontPage </li></ul><ul><li>Technical Library for Developers in Notepad </li></ul><ul><li>1000 kb items in Pivotal 1999 (no XML) </li></ul>
    9. 9. Product 2: Prolog <ul><li>2500 help topics in Prolog with about 600 duplicated topics </li></ul><ul><li>8 online help systems RoboHelp </li></ul><ul><li>50 technical bulletins in Word </li></ul><ul><li>Readmes, Installation guides, Upgrade guides in FrontPage </li></ul><ul><li>3000 knowledge base items in Pivotal database from 1999 (no XML capabilities) </li></ul>
    10. 10. Help Situation <ul><li>RH had problems with big projects </li></ul><ul><li>No Version Control </li></ul><ul><li>No technical writers on staff </li></ul><ul><li>Things had reached critical mass </li></ul>
    11. 11. Things They Wanted <ul><li>To fix things up, bring them up to date </li></ul><ul><li>To hire a writer </li></ul><ul><li>Coordinate with Support Services (in California) </li></ul>
    12. 12. Coordinating with Support <ul><li>Too many resources meant customers couldn’t find information. </li></ul><ul><li>Information was out of date. </li></ul><ul><li>Support needed to drive more people to the finding information on the website, away from emails and phone calls. </li></ul>
    13. 16. Helping Support <ul><li>Documentation was important to Support, so why not integrate with them more? </li></ul><ul><li>New SupportLink WebHelp proposed </li></ul><ul><li>Support Manager buys in! </li></ul>
    14. 17. Tool evaluation requirements <ul><li>Technical documentation oriented </li></ul><ul><li>Import from RH and Word </li></ul><ul><li>Something like RH, but have much better content reuse options </li></ul>
    15. 18. Choosing Flare <ul><li>Offered the most options in terms of functionality </li></ul><ul><li>Worked most easily with RH </li></ul><ul><li>Lower cost </li></ul><ul><li>Lower perceived learning curve </li></ul>
    16. 19. Business case <ul><li>Reviewed why we should move from to Flare. </li></ul><ul><li>Written for the V.P of R&D </li></ul>
    17. 21. Project plan <ul><li>Iteration 1 and 2 reviewed: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Purpose </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Objectives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Scope </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Resources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Timeline </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Effort Estimate </li></ul></ul>
    18. 24. Project estimate <ul><li>Gave an estimate for when the project could be accomplished with two writers vs three writers. </li></ul>
    19. 25. Writer Writer Writer
    20. 26. Presentation to R&D <ul><li>People were curious </li></ul><ul><li>Something fresh was happening for a stagnant department </li></ul>
    21. 31. Implementing <ul><ul><li>Decided to change both products at the same time, but slightly delayed the second product so I could train the technical writer to do: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Information model </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Content audit </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Detailed reuse model </li></ul></ul></ul>
    22. 32. Information model <ul><li>The information model gave a high level overview of the deliverables we would create. </li></ul><ul><li>This was more for people outside the department who wanted to know what we were doing, and easy way to see content reuse. </li></ul>
    23. 34. Content audit <ul><li>The content audit was much more in depth and looked at all the documentation and where it was duplicated. </li></ul>
    24. 35. Detailed reuse model <ul><li>The detailed reuse model showed on a topic-by-topic basis where the content would be reused and in which deliverables. </li></ul>
    25. 37. Keeping in Touch <ul><li>We were also in contact with: </li></ul><ul><li>Support Services </li></ul><ul><li>Marketing </li></ul><ul><li>R&D </li></ul>
    26. 38. SupportLink mockups <ul><li>Done in Visio </li></ul><ul><li>We asked for CSS support and graphic design support </li></ul><ul><li>Acted as a proof of concept </li></ul>
    27. 40. Design Help with Flare skin <ul><li>The graphic designer made it look pretty </li></ul><ul><li>And was concerned about usability and “Web 2.0” </li></ul><ul><li>Yay! </li></ul>
    28. 42. Importing KB Items <ul><li>Worked with Support to figure out the knowledge base process. </li></ul><ul><li>Items up to date </li></ul><ul><li>Not duplicated </li></ul>
    29. 43. Technical Library <ul><li>CTO needs a Technical Library </li></ul><ul><li>“ I want the ‘MSDN look and feel’.” </li></ul><ul><li>I’ve seen the MSDN and it’s not that attractive, so I asked him what he meant </li></ul>
    30. 44. <ul><li>It was clear: </li></ul><ul><li>Documentation suffered from a lack of understanding in R&D. </li></ul>
    31. 45. <ul><li>Support relied on the documentation to be accurate and concise, but it wasn’t. </li></ul>
    32. 46. <ul><li>Rarely do we measure technical support efficiency in terms of useful documentation because we’re not familiar with the connection. </li></ul>
    33. 47. <ul><li>This transition was large for everyone: move from multiple sources, lots of browsing, to searching in one place for the necessary information. </li></ul>
    34. 48. <ul><ul><li>In early releases, some Support staff panicked when information was missing. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To succeed, to show our flexibility and willingness, we had to be accommodating and understanding. </li></ul></ul>
    35. 49. <ul><li>By reaching out from documentation, we were able to start a team effort and build understanding. </li></ul><ul><li>90% of people bought in </li></ul>
    36. 50. <ul><li>Without the enthusiasm and excitement, the project would not have gone as well. </li></ul><ul><li>(Link to WebSite unavailable) </li></ul>
    37. 51. Info <ul><li>Theresa Putkey </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>www.keypointe.ca </li></ul>

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