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Christopher Ward
Bernard Aschwanden
www.webworks.com
www.publishingsmarter.com
christopher@webworks.com
bernard@publishing...
Slides?
15:30@aschwanden4stc
2
http://www.slideshare.n
et/PublishingSmarter/
metrics-that-matter-
making-the-business-
cas...
Overall Objectives
15:30
3
 Tell the story around content as a business asset.
We agree there is value in documentation b...
We will not…
15:30
4
 Discuss HOW to collect the numbers
 Detail complex spreadsheets, charts, graphs
@aschwanden4stc @w...
Let’s ensure that when we talk metrics we…
15:30@aschwanden4stc
5
 Remember they are used to influence a discussion
 It’...
Defining “business case”
15:30
6
 Formal, written content created to convince decision
makers to approve a specific actio...
The story
15:30
7
 WebWorks was launching a new product
(CloudDrafts) and had a development plan
 Needed docs, and looke...
What we knew going into the
discussions around this project
15:30
8
The business value of content
@aschwanden4stc @webwork...
Content effects the whole business
 Content is not a problem to be addressed by:
 Sales
 IT
 Marketing
 Development
...
How we wanted to position the
conversation with key players
15:30
10
Promoting the value
@aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
Talk to Sales
15:30
11
 Metrics they care about: Qualified leads who read
online docs, ask better questions, informed
con...
Talk to Support/Service
15:30
12
 Metrics they care about: Testing the products, and
that is what writers do in creating ...
Talk to QA/Testing
15:30
13
 Metrics they care about: Usability tested during
content creation (if it doesn’t work as pla...
Manufacturing? HR/Training/Finance/Marketing?
15:30
14
 Every business unit in your organization is similar
 They are of...
Some of the names should be on the
list, and some are not what you
expect
Backup the idea that content matters
@aschwanden...
Content is a business asset
15:30
16
 Apple: Empowers people with breakthrough
services including the App Store, Apple
Mu...
More companies, more content
15:30
17
 Adobe: Help you create content
 Microsoft: Create and manage content
 IBM: Manag...
January, 1996 essay: Content is king
15:30
 “Content is where I expect
much of the real money
will be made on the
Interne...
Without them you have no baseline
and no hope to have a business
discussion
15:30
19
Get your metrics started
@aschwanden4...
General ideas
15:30
 Metrics are calculated
 You can’t make this up
 Track what matters, start
now
 ID what you want t...
Measure and have metrics about
15:30
21
 Things your business values
 Customer satisfaction
 Efficiency
 Resources
 Q...
Benefits and uses
15:30
22
 Create accurate project estimates
 Talk clearly/numerically about scope (why more/less)
 Sp...
Benefits and uses (continued)
15:30
23
 Justify saying “no” to increased project scope or to
insist on “yes” to your need...
Discovery of a need for content, and
how metrics helped form the
discussion
15:30
24
The WebWorks story
@aschwanden4stc @w...
WebWorks: Key Players / Celebrities
15:30
25
@aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
Tony McDow, CEO/Founder
(may double as “The Ho...
The Vision: CloudDrafts
15:30
26
@aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
Development
15:30
27
 No documentation existed for CloudDrafts
 Knowing content is a key business asset, helps drive
sal...
Writing expertise
15:30
28
 Chris to Tony: “Ben can’t do all the writing…”
 Common reasons include:
 He’s an engineer, ...
Initial steps
15:30
29
 Discussed budget numbers (metrics)
 Asked vendors for a few quotes/bids,
reviewed them
 Didn’t ...
Initial onboarding of writers
15:30
30
 Demo to show functions and ask
questions
 Writers and developers asked questions...
Once content was published…
15:30
31
 Finished product seen by CEO/sponsor
 Positive impression, understood the benefits...
Moving forward
15:30
32
 Metrics help with future product development
 Pinpoints where people have trouble
 Identify th...
Net results of metric driven decisions
15:30
33
 Metrics via Google Analytics
 24/7 responses to customer inquiries
 Fe...
Proof that this where you
make the business profitable
15:30
34
Which metrics show
the value of docs?
@aschwanden4stc @web...
Top 10 lists are awesome
15:30
35
 Ask support for the top 10 questions
 Document how often they are asked, and how long...
Top 10 your sales reps
15:30
36
 What do they demo the most
 Create videos so that the world can see it
 Add tutorials ...
Top 10 your content
15:30
37
 Not only the 10 things MOST read/reviewed
 Also the 10 things LEAST read/reviewed
 Is it ...
Tools, tips, processes
15:30
38
What you can do to improve
@aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
Stop doing “the same thing”
15:30
39
 Just rewriting content doesn’t help
 If you repackage bad content into good conten...
15:30
40
Comparing two sets of text
15:30
 Your browser is not one of our
officially supported varieties and
therefore the flow th...
Add metrics
15:30
44
 You can start to see how to build a story
 Make it something they relate to
 Talk about what othe...
Summing up the discussion,
and options to continue it.
15:30
45
Conclusion and contact
@aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
Your next challenge
15:30
46
 Go tell the story around content as a business asset.
Use information in this session to “p...
How to do it
15:30
47
 Stats and case studies are ways to prove value
 Engage and educate your audience, reduce support,...
Follow up contact information
15:30
48
 bernard@publishingsmarter.com
 Call 905 833 8448
 Twitter: publishsmarter OR as...
Slides?
15:30@aschwanden4stc
49
http://www.slideshare.n
et/PublishingSmarter/
metrics-that-matter-
making-the-business-
ca...
Metrics that matter Making the business case that documentation has value
Metrics that matter Making the business case that documentation has value
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Metrics that matter Making the business case that documentation has value

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Tell the story around content as a business asset. We agree there is value in documentation but have been challenged at times to “prove it”. Present to groups including sales, support, service, IT, engineering, QA/testing, manufacturing, HR, training, finance, marketing, and every other business unit in your organization. Demonstrate how documentation drives sales and generates corporate revenue to managers and executives helping them see how important documentation is to them

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Metrics that matter Making the business case that documentation has value

  1. 1. Christopher Ward Bernard Aschwanden www.webworks.com www.publishingsmarter.com christopher@webworks.com bernard@publishingsmarter.com Metrics That Matter: Making the Business Case that Documentation Has Value 15:30 1 @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  2. 2. Slides? 15:30@aschwanden4stc 2 http://www.slideshare.n et/PublishingSmarter/ metrics-that-matter- making-the-business- case-that- documentation-has- value-67733639
  3. 3. Overall Objectives 15:30 3  Tell the story around content as a business asset. We agree there is value in documentation but have been challenged at times to “prove it”  Present to groups including sales, support, service, IT, engineering, QA/testing, manufacturing, HR, training, finance, marketing, and every other business unit in your organization  Demonstrate how documentation drives sales and generates corporate revenue to managers and executives helping them see how important documentation is to them @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  4. 4. We will not… 15:30 4  Discuss HOW to collect the numbers  Detail complex spreadsheets, charts, graphs @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  5. 5. Let’s ensure that when we talk metrics we… 15:30@aschwanden4stc 5  Remember they are used to influence a discussion  It’s about an audience and a purpose  Know who you are talking to  Know why you are having the discussion  Know what the outcomes you both want are
  6. 6. Defining “business case” 15:30 6  Formal, written content created to convince decision makers to approve a specific action  Ideally it explores all feasible approaches to a given problem and enables you to provide the business owners the right solution  In the context of documentation, let us justify why a documentation team best serves a business by adding value to every part of the organization @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  7. 7. The story 15:30 7  WebWorks was launching a new product (CloudDrafts) and had a development plan  Needed docs, and looked at that early on  Sales (Chris) was onboard early to have professional writers for many reasons  Frees up developers to develop  Provide higher quality content  Leads to more revenue  Had to pitch this to others in the organization @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  8. 8. What we knew going into the discussions around this project 15:30 8 The business value of content @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  9. 9. Content effects the whole business  Content is not a problem to be addressed by:  Sales  IT  Marketing  Development  Any single business unit  It is a business problem  Wrong or right, it affects the whole business 15:30 9 @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  10. 10. How we wanted to position the conversation with key players 15:30 10 Promoting the value @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  11. 11. Talk to Sales 15:30 11  Metrics they care about: Qualified leads who read online docs, ask better questions, informed consumer  People review docs as part of the purchasing cycle  Sales people need to know that docs help make sales easier, and that numbers go up  More time with qualified buyers, less time wasted with uninformed consumers  More sales helps the business @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  12. 12. Talk to Support/Service 15:30 12  Metrics they care about: Testing the products, and that is what writers do in creating content  Reduce bugs, increase time answering “real” questions  Support continues to support clients, not act as software testers (in beta… not even a final product)  Service continues to develop solutions with clients (billable time to a client)  Happy clients helps the business @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  13. 13. Talk to QA/Testing 15:30 13  Metrics they care about: Usability tested during content creation (if it doesn’t work as planned, documentation will prove it)  Let QA/testing focus on complex use cases, not the day-to-day ones  Stable, reliable products helps the business @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  14. 14. Manufacturing? HR/Training/Finance/Marketing? 15:30 14  Every business unit in your organization is similar  They are often overworked, underappreciated, understaffed, or they feel they are  More often than not this is because they aren’t doing their core jobs, and not through fault of their own  Dedicated doc teams helps the business  With the right support you increase productivity in other departments  People do the jobs they were hired to do, and are supported in content creation for the customer, with a focus on user need @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  15. 15. Some of the names should be on the list, and some are not what you expect Backup the idea that content matters @aschwanden4stc 15:30 Top 500 corporations love content
  16. 16. Content is a business asset 15:30 16  Apple: Empowers people with breakthrough services including the App Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay and iCloud. Depends on content, provides tools to consume it.  Netflix: The world’s leading Internet television network with millions of members in over 190 countries enjoying 100+ million hours of TV shows and movies per day, including original series, documentaries and feature films.  Google: Everything they do is about content. Finding content, delivering content, creating content. They make money when you look for content. @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  17. 17. More companies, more content 15:30 17  Adobe: Help you create content  Microsoft: Create and manage content  IBM: Manage, deliver, analyze content  Samsung: Consume content  Verizon: Deliver content  Walt Disney: Create content  See a pattern? Content is king @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  18. 18. January, 1996 essay: Content is king 15:30  “Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet, just as it was in broadcasting.”  Remains true today: Content is a business asset  Content is not just what is seen by the public  Copyright, trademarks, software code, legal, medical patents, help docs, sales reports, marketing materials and so much more 18 @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  19. 19. Without them you have no baseline and no hope to have a business discussion 15:30 19 Get your metrics started @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  20. 20. General ideas 15:30  Metrics are calculated  You can’t make this up  Track what matters, start now  ID what you want to change, then plan, implement, see if it changes  Metrics must have value as they pertain to a project  Used for decision making 20 @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  21. 21. Measure and have metrics about 15:30 21  Things your business values  Customer satisfaction  Efficiency  Resources  Quality  Time  Costs @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  22. 22. Benefits and uses 15:30 22  Create accurate project estimates  Talk clearly/numerically about scope (why more/less)  Speak with authority  Justify expenditures (e.g. new hires, contractors), tools (licenses, upgrades), or services (trainers)  Have numerically sound reasons for updates to procedures & processes, changes in software tools, attendance at training or seminars, etc. @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  23. 23. Benefits and uses (continued) 15:30 23  Justify saying “no” to increased project scope or to insist on “yes” to your needs  Measure time, money, resources, etc; use this for making strategic decisions  Present information in a way that is easily consumed by management  Determine your documentation improvement strategy with customer satisfaction metrics @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  24. 24. Discovery of a need for content, and how metrics helped form the discussion 15:30 24 The WebWorks story @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  25. 25. WebWorks: Key Players / Celebrities 15:30 25 @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris Tony McDow, CEO/Founder (may double as “The Hoff” in Baywatch) Ben Allums, Director of Engineering (may double as “Locutus” from Star Trek) Chris Ward, Director of Sales (may double as “The Dude” Jeff Bridges)
  26. 26. The Vision: CloudDrafts 15:30 26 @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  27. 27. Development 15:30 27  No documentation existed for CloudDrafts  Knowing content is a key business asset, helps drive sales Chris pitched the importance of content to Tony  Easy pitch as Tony is already in the world of tech comm  Tony grasped the importance of docs for both internal and public use  First thought was “let’s get the developers to write it”  Then laughter, lots of laughter  Not because the developer isn’t a good writer, but… @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  28. 28. Writing expertise 15:30 28  Chris to Tony: “Ben can’t do all the writing…”  Common reasons include:  He’s an engineer, we don’t pay them to talk to customers  He’s paid to manage development, not write manuals  Developers are paid to create code, support product growth, enhance functions and features  This is new, advanced tech, putting demand on Ben’s team  There is an education period for customers, we need tutorials  We need to explain the concept of our repository  Knew we needed good docs to ensure people can relate to it and to generate revenue. Good docs equals success. @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  29. 29. Initial steps 15:30 29  Discussed budget numbers (metrics)  Asked vendors for a few quotes/bids, reviewed them  Didn’t make the call JUST on the dollars  Also looked at experience in writing tech content  Vetted writers based on knowledge of similar tools  Had discussions with stakeholders, got to know the personalities and found a good fit  Looked for ROI (metrics) @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  30. 30. Initial onboarding of writers 15:30 30  Demo to show functions and ask questions  Writers and developers asked questions  The product evolved with writers questions  Expectation of lower service and support needs due to questions (anticipated issues before product release based on input, changes made before RTM)  During testing and docs writing, WebWorks reorganized the product, value added to the engineering team @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  31. 31. Once content was published… 15:30 31  Finished product seen by CEO/sponsor  Positive impression, understood the benefits of what was done by the content team,  Delivered content and attached metrics  Tracking who looks at what, how often  Content achieves the goals it was designed for  Easy to use  Educates and encourages people to use the product  Helps drive sales @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  32. 32. Moving forward 15:30 32  Metrics help with future product development  Pinpoints where people have trouble  Identify the most common topics searched for, time on page, search results, other valuable information  Specific implementation:  Through discovery realized more features were needed  Docs helped provide a clear roadmap to CloudDrafts v2.0 @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  33. 33. Net results of metric driven decisions 15:30 33  Metrics via Google Analytics  24/7 responses to customer inquiries  Feedback expresses true needs of consumers  Better than a focus group, live results evolved as content was updated  Allowed WebWorks to realize revenue quicker with solid documentation  The case was made with metrics delivered in the format best suited to the audience @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  34. 34. Proof that this where you make the business profitable 15:30 34 Which metrics show the value of docs? @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  35. 35. Top 10 lists are awesome 15:30 35  Ask support for the top 10 questions  Document how often they are asked, and how long to answer  If 2 times/day/rep, for 5 minutes  Rep spends 10min/day. If 6 reps, 1 hour… Each day  365 hours per year (about 9 weeks if people work 40hrs/week)  ID how long a team needs to document answers  Or how long to code/rebuild UI/fix the damned thing at the source  Assume it takes 2 weeks with 3 people = 6 weeks effort  Compare the savings  2 weeks pass, you “spend” 6 resource weeks, to save 9 weeks/year  Resource cost = 6 units. Return is 9 units (50%) within 2 weeks… @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  36. 36. Top 10 your sales reps 15:30 36  What do they demo the most  Create videos so that the world can see it  Add tutorials to the demo version (if you have one)  What do they find most complex to explain  Write clear information to summarize it  Free up reps to say “sure, let me send you a copy of the specs for IT” and then move on @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  37. 37. Top 10 your content 15:30 37  Not only the 10 things MOST read/reviewed  Also the 10 things LEAST read/reviewed  Is it because the content is not ‘findable’  Or no longer relevant  Has the issue been fixed  In any case, if no one reads it, why do you create/edit/manage it @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  38. 38. Tools, tips, processes 15:30 38 What you can do to improve @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  39. 39. Stop doing “the same thing” 15:30 39  Just rewriting content doesn’t help  If you repackage bad content into good content, but do not solve a problem, no one wins @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  40. 40. 15:30 40
  41. 41. Comparing two sets of text 15:30  Your browser is not one of our officially supported varieties and therefore the flow through certain areas of our site may not be as robust as otherwise. To fully utilize all of our great features, we recommend switching to one of the following:  Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher (download now)  Mozilla Firefox 3.0 or higher (download now)  If you prefer not switching to one of our recommended browsers at this time, you are still more than welcome to visit our website, although you may not get to utilize all of our features to their fullest extent,  If you have any questions, please call our Sales Super Centre at 1- 800-538-5696.  Our site does not officially support your browser. Feel free to explore with it, but you may not be able to use all our features.  You may want to update your browser. Consider using one of the following:  Microsoft Internet Explorer (download now)  Mozilla Firefox (download now)  If you have questions or encounter problems, please call our Sales Super Centre at 1-800-538-5696.  From 114 words to 67 ~40% reduction!  Message is clean, easy to understand  Translation costs decrease  Message removes the feeling of blame 41 @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  42. 42. Add metrics 15:30 44  You can start to see how to build a story  Make it something they relate to  Talk about what others have done  Talk about successes and about failures  Explore your metrics  Then get to know what people are looking for  Take the story and make it personal @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  43. 43. Summing up the discussion, and options to continue it. 15:30 45 Conclusion and contact @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  44. 44. Your next challenge 15:30 46  Go tell the story around content as a business asset. Use information in this session to “prove it”  Present to groups including sales, support, service, IT, engineering, QA/testing, manufacturing, HR, training, finance, marketing, and every other business unit in your organization, using their terms, and show value to their teams  Demonstrate how documentation drives sales and generates corporate revenue and help managers and executives understand how important documentation is @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  45. 45. How to do it 15:30 47  Stats and case studies are ways to prove value  Engage and educate your audience, reduce support, complaints, costs; improves sales cycle, increases profits  Show that good docs (written by good people) reduce overhead and turnover of staff in other departments, improving the entire organization  Walk into any discussion and present the value of documentation  Explain why technical communicators should always be in charge of that documentation. @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  46. 46. Follow up contact information 15:30 48  bernard@publishingsmarter.com  Call 905 833 8448  Twitter: publishsmarter OR aschwanden4stc  LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/bernardaschwanden  christopher@webworks.com  Twitter: @WebWorksChris  Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WebWorksChris  Company Facebook: www.facebook.com/WebWorksePublisher  Blog: http://blogs.webworks.com/christopher @aschwanden4stc @webworkschris
  47. 47. Slides? 15:30@aschwanden4stc 49 http://www.slideshare.n et/PublishingSmarter/ metrics-that-matter- making-the-business- case-that- documentation-has- value-67733639

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