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Power of Single Sourcing 
Liz Fraley 
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
Liz’s Top 10 Reasons to Go to XML 
1. The money they save could go to my vacation fund 
2. Because I need more conference ...
Single Sourcing is More than XML 
• Content reuse for faster delivery of information 
• Consistency of presentation 
• Acc...
“Our goal is to provide the right content 
to the right person, at the right time, in 
the right format, and in the right ...
But underneath that… 
The reason people look towards single 
sourcing project is always the same: 
To increase the efficie...
The trends we’re seeing 
• Increasing product complexity 
• Increasing number of languages 
• Increasing volume of documen...
The Top 5 Arguments for Single Sourcing 
1. Content delivery in the language and format of 
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lav...
A simple idea with a complex 
implementation 
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon 
Single sourcing 
is a methodology 
not a...
Reuse is the foundation and has implications and effects that are 
wide-reaching 
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon 
REUS...
Many Changes Impact Other 
Documentation 
40-1 40C11 40C3A 40C7EH 40C7B 
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon 
Content 
Mast...
One Change Affects Every Medium in 
Which the Documentation Is Delivered 
Master 40-1 40C11 40C3A 40C7EH 40C7B 
@SingleSou...
The Number of Documents Impacted by 
Just One Change Is Immense 
Master 40-1 40C11 40C3A 40C7EH 40C7B 
LANGUAGE 
VERSION 
...
Reuse 
• Changes are populated across documents, 
document versions, organizational 
boundaries, and into the product 
• S...
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon 
Reuse is the key 
Medtronic 
• Project stared 1999 
• Drivers? Cost savings, 
quality,...
Single sourcing your information means you don’t have to enter 
data in more than one place anymore… 
@SingleSourcing #Ado...
From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” 
CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions 
@SingleSourcing ...
Accuracy 
• Change it once, it changes everywhere 
• Simplify long-term content maintenance 
• Manage terms 
– Extreme imp...
Long Term Maintenance 
• Situations, companies, requirements are 
not static 
• Only guarantee is things will change 
• Av...
From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” 
CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions 
Getting the prod...
From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” 
CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions 
Need a New Varia...
From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” 
CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions 
Need to Add a Sp...
Time gets reallocated 
• More writing time per unit = greater quality 
• Increased author collaboration 
• Automate simult...
This is the classic case for single sourced content for a reason 
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon 
TRANSLATION
From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” 
CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions 
@SingleSourcing ...
From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” 
CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions 
The Hard Numbers...
From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” 
CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions 
@SingleSourcing ...
Staggering savings 
Medtronic again… 
• Average cost per page to translate 200 
words (includes QA, everything) 
– Other B...
From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” 
CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions 
Consistency is a...
Consistent Presentation 
• Consistency of presentation 
• Choose a look and feel that fits the tools and 
your capabilitie...
Making small improvements can mean big things to the way your 
company operates 
STREAMLINED BUSINESS 
PROCESSES 
@SingleS...
Including process 
• Frees staff from devoting attention to 
processes that tools monitor automatically 
• Attention not d...
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon 
Simultaneous Work 
Source Configuration 
Topic 
Topic 
Topic 
Topic 
Internal Informat...
Workflow and You 
• It’s easy to get developers to add 
something if there is no serious burden 
(“note to support”) and t...
Correct development 
• Something is added, someone knows 
• Something is deleted, someone knows 
• Automatic red-flags in ...
Benefits aren’t limited to software 
engineering organizations 
• Pharmaceuticals – product labeling 
requirements, clinic...
And farther… 
• Customer support – greater consistency 
between KB articles and docs, linking between 
the two 
• Training...
And farther still… 
• Support Sarbanes Oxley activities 
• Audit trails 
• Branding turnover 
• Acquisitions 
• Connecting...
Achieve true content strategy 
• Import content source from wherever it is created 
(producers) 
– Engineering data, bug d...
Medtronic 
Translations – 20+ languages (EN, European, Asian) now. 
Adding Middle Eastern and more European, to 30+. 
Comp...
THINGS TO REMEMBER 
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon 
Wrapping up…
Work Is Never “Done” 
@SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon 
Content Always Changes 
• Errors 
• Changes 
• New feature 
• Ne...
Single sourcing provides opportunities to 
reduce work and increase efficiencies 
1. Separation of Archive Source and Deli...
Benefits of Single Sourcing 
• Translation 
• Ability to do more with less 
• Reuse of content 
• Automation of formatting...
Single-Sourcing Solutions 
– Over a decade of experience in dynamic product 
information creation, publication, and delive...
Questions? 
Need a single sourcing electrician? 
Contact us at: 
Phone 408-660-3219 
e-Mail liz.fraley@single-sourcing.com...
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The Power of Single Sourcing

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Every day, technical communications professionals are faced with maintaining their current productivity in the face of increasing product complexity, increasing number of languages, increasing volume of documentation, increasing product overlap and shorter product life cycles. No matter how large or small, how new or how old your company is, or what technology or service your company provides, these challenges must be met without the luxury of expanded resources.

Presented at Lavacon 2014, Adobe Leadership Event

Published in: Technology
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The Power of Single Sourcing

  1. 1. Power of Single Sourcing Liz Fraley @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  2. 2. Liz’s Top 10 Reasons to Go to XML 1. The money they save could go to my vacation fund 2. Because I need more conference swag 3. My team keeps getting smaller & they keep dumping more stuff @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon on me 4. To keep up with marketing changing product names 5. My boss decided to do it 6. So I can go home on time 7. It will look good on my resume 8. It’s new 3-letter acronym that your friends won’t know much about 9. It's related to the X Games – eXtreme! 10. XM what?
  3. 3. Single Sourcing is More than XML • Content reuse for faster delivery of information • Consistency of presentation • Accuracy of information • Content delivery in the language and format of choice • The ability to use resources more effectively/Do more with less/Improve time to market/productivity @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  4. 4. “Our goal is to provide the right content to the right person, at the right time, in the right format, and in the right media.” – Lisa Fisher, IBM Content Management Strategies Conference 2007 @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  5. 5. But underneath that… The reason people look towards single sourcing project is always the same: To increase the efficiency of the entire staff as the demand for documentation deliverables increase while staffing and resources do not @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  6. 6. The trends we’re seeing • Increasing product complexity • Increasing number of languages • Increasing volume of documentation • Increasing product overlap • Shorter product lifecycle @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  7. 7. The Top 5 Arguments for Single Sourcing 1. Content delivery in the language and format of @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon choice 2. Accuracy of information 3. The ability to use resources more effectively/ Do more with less/ Improve time to market/productivity 4. Consistency of presentation 5. Content reuse
  8. 8. A simple idea with a complex implementation @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon Single sourcing is a methodology not a technology It is not an equilateral triangle XML is a technology not a methodology A tool is just a tool Methodology People Technology + Tools
  9. 9. Reuse is the foundation and has implications and effects that are wide-reaching @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon REUSE
  10. 10. Many Changes Impact Other Documentation 40-1 40C11 40C3A 40C7EH 40C7B @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon Content Master From: “Authoring & Document Management at Hamilton Sundstrand” AUGI 2002 by Ray Hicks, Manager Tech Pubs, Hamilton Sundstrand, and Eric Helgerman, Architect, Creative Concepts
  11. 11. One Change Affects Every Medium in Which the Documentation Is Delivered Master 40-1 40C11 40C3A 40C7EH 40C7B @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon WEB PRINT CD-ROM From: “Authoring & Document Management at Hamilton Sundstrand” AUGI 2002 by Ray Hicks, Manager Tech Pubs, Hamilton Sundstrand, and Eric Helgerman, Architect, Creative Concepts
  12. 12. The Number of Documents Impacted by Just One Change Is Immense Master 40-1 40C11 40C3A 40C7EH 40C7B LANGUAGE VERSION PRODUCT LINE PRODUCT OTHER DIMENSION From: “Authoring & Document Management at Hamilton Sundstrand” AUGI 2002 by Ray Hicks, Manager Tech Pubs, Hamilton Sundstrand, and Eric Helgerman, Architect, Creative Concepts @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon WEB PRINT CD-ROM
  13. 13. Reuse • Changes are populated across documents, document versions, organizational boundaries, and into the product • Separation of content from look and feel • Information scaling – Archive source vs presentation deliverable • Faster authoring through combining reusable information units @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  14. 14. @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon Reuse is the key Medtronic • Project stared 1999 • Drivers? Cost savings, quality, time to market, reuse • Today: 100+ models, variations on features and things that are all over the docs • Reuse level? 90% – Proposed 50% Their Advice? • Reuse is directly tied to “chunk” size – Old: docs had 95K new words – New: docs have 55K new words all the rest comes from reusable modules • Return depends on scope of the problem • Think about localization up front
  15. 15. Single sourcing your information means you don’t have to enter data in more than one place anymore… @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon ACCURACY
  16. 16. From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  17. 17. Accuracy • Change it once, it changes everywhere • Simplify long-term content maintenance • Manage terms – Extreme implications for translation costs • Reduce review cycles – Reviews focus on new content and context • Generate information chunks Single Sourcing systems can be validated @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  18. 18. Long Term Maintenance • Situations, companies, requirements are not static • Only guarantee is things will change • Avoid time lost to invisible causes when something changes … anywhere • Many small efficiencies add up to greater gains @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  19. 19. From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions Getting the product into the hands of customers quickly has a direct impact on its success FASTER DELIVERY @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  20. 20. From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions Need a New Variant? @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  21. 21. From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions Need to Add a Special Case? @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  22. 22. Time gets reallocated • More writing time per unit = greater quality • Increased author collaboration • Automate simultaneous delivery of source material to multiple media • Produce documents with varying levels of detail – One source give document for internal customers, external customers, training student book, training teacher’s aid… @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  23. 23. This is the classic case for single sourced content for a reason @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon TRANSLATION
  24. 24. From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  25. 25. From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions The Hard Numbers No Content Reuse • Total Word Count = 165,280 • Total Languages = 7 • Authoring Costs = $108,000 • Translation Costs = $266,101 • 10% Project Mgmt = $26,610 • Editing Costs = $40,769 • QA Costs = $11,570 • Production Costs = $15,062 • Total Costs = $469,112 70% Content Reuse • Total Word Count = 49,584 • Total Languages = 7 • Authoring Costs = $12,000 • Translation Costs = $79,830 • 10% Project Mgmt = $7,983 • Editing Costs = $12,231 • QA Costs = $3,471 • Production Costs = $0 • Total Costs = $115,515 Total Cost Savings = $373,597 @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  26. 26. From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  27. 27. Staggering savings Medtronic again… • Average cost per page to translate 200 words (includes QA, everything) – Other BU: $47 – Their BU: groups not single sourcing: $38 – Their BU: groups using single sourcing: $5 • New product docs come together in multiple languages in weeks (not months) @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  28. 28. From: “Best Practices for DITA in a Global Economy” CMS 2008 by Eric Severson, CTO, Flatirons Solutions Consistency is a cornerstone for customer experience @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon CONSISTENCY
  29. 29. Consistent Presentation • Consistency of presentation • Choose a look and feel that fits the tools and your capabilities • Automate the changing of look and feel to accommodate future output • Enforce decisions – Company structure – Company look and feel • Team members can think about information and organization in new ways @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  30. 30. Making small improvements can mean big things to the way your company operates STREAMLINED BUSINESS PROCESSES @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  31. 31. Including process • Frees staff from devoting attention to processes that tools monitor automatically • Attention not divided or redirected from primary activities (faster development) • Simultaneous development – Content for translation can go when it’s ready and doesn’t have to wait for the entire deliverable to be complete @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  32. 32. @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon Simultaneous Work Source Configuration Topic Topic Topic Topic Internal Information External/customer facing Information Configured Information Output
  33. 33. Workflow and You • It’s easy to get developers to add something if there is no serious burden (“note to support”) and the task is “in line” with work they are already doing • It’s hard to get developers to add something if the work is obviously additional: – “after adding a syslog message, fill out a @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon document explaining it”
  34. 34. Correct development • Something is added, someone knows • Something is deleted, someone knows • Automatic red-flags in the process • No amount of process can solve this in the real world – Water flows downhill – People do valuable “optional” work all the time (“do it right”) – People will not work extra hard to “do it right” – Make it hard, get less @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  35. 35. Benefits aren’t limited to software engineering organizations • Pharmaceuticals – product labeling requirements, clinical data trials/letters • Manufacturing – self service troubleshooting, integrating diagnostic information with procedures • Biotech – database/assay machine integration • Med Device – single sourcing systems can be validated to Part 11 @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  36. 36. And farther… • Customer support – greater consistency between KB articles and docs, linking between the two • Training – aggregate schedules on the fly, for multiple audiences simultaneously, scalable one-source course materials (level of detail) • Marketing – profiled price lists, consistency between white papers and docs • Sales – easy proposal generation, integrate with customer database for personalized content @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  37. 37. And farther still… • Support Sarbanes Oxley activities • Audit trails • Branding turnover • Acquisitions • Connecting to operations, manufacturing, doc control • HAZMAT database integration • Universal Business Language (UBL) integration @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  38. 38. Achieve true content strategy • Import content source from wherever it is created (producers) – Engineering data, bug database, project/product management – Diagnostics, assay machines, web apps, simulators – Training – Sales – Marketing – Customer support – Field service… • Deliver content source to wherever it is used (consumers) • Streamline feedback (annotators) @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  39. 39. Medtronic Translations – 20+ languages (EN, European, Asian) now. Adding Middle Eastern and more European, to 30+. Compositions – Fully automated in all languages Results examples • Costs – Saved $11 million in past 5 years in EU • Cycle time – Reduced 9-month cycle to 1 month • Success –Beat every ROI goal they ever conceived Star of Excellence Award – Most successful project Medtronic has ever done @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  40. 40. THINGS TO REMEMBER @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon Wrapping up…
  41. 41. Work Is Never “Done” @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon Content Always Changes • Errors • Changes • New feature • New product • New company Change Triggers Change • Data Model • Metadata • Stylesheets • Processes • Supported Languages • Output Formats
  42. 42. Single sourcing provides opportunities to reduce work and increase efficiencies 1. Separation of Archive Source and Deliverable Content @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon – Future proof your content – Automate production 1. Supports reuse and repurposing of content – Improves efficiency on a larger scale – Publications staff, support staff, and customers! 1. Supports configuration of content everywhere information intersects information consumers – For Customers audiences, skill levels, languages, internal & external, etc – For the authoring and publication team creation, construction, aggregation, and production – And all across the enterprise engineering, marketing, customer support, product/project management, training, legal
  43. 43. Benefits of Single Sourcing • Translation • Ability to do more with less • Reuse of content • Automation of formatting • Authors can focus on writing • Authoring content can start earlier in the process • Ability to provide customized output effortlessly • Single-source of content for multiple outputs @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  44. 44. Single-Sourcing Solutions – Over a decade of experience in dynamic product information creation, publication, and delivery. – Experts for every phase of the single-source development process. – Deep community relationships to ensure your success. – Unique customer focus with concierge level service. o Advisory Line o Blogs o Podcasts o Code repositories http://single-sourcing.com/company/community.html @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon
  45. 45. Questions? Need a single sourcing electrician? Contact us at: Phone 408-660-3219 e-Mail liz.fraley@single-sourcing.com Or visit us on the web at www.single-sourcing.com @SingleSourcing #AdobeDay @Lavacon In the next TC Dojo “Unhappy Customers are Just the Beginning: Potential Business Costs of Skimping on Documentation” http://bit.ly/1n7oVK7

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