October Meeting: Growing Your Tech Pubs Group

Join us on Tuesday, October 14, 2014 for an informative, interesting, and insightful presentation by Rebecca Firestone.

Growing Your Tech Pubs Group

How do you know when your documentation team needs to grow, and how do you make it happen? As a lone writer who’s not accustomed to dealing with upper management, this can be a huge challenge. Rebecca Firestone, Senior Technical Writer at Zep Solar, Inc., faced this problem earlier this year. She had to convince her own management that there was more work than one person could do, and that they needed to create a second job position. Not being a manager, she had no idea how to frame her arguments as a value proposition. She asked a few other professional Tech Pubs managers and HR recruiters about staffing and various ways to allocate resources. A lot of it is knowing which questions to ask, in order to choose an approach that will best fit the company’s unique situation. In the end, however, the first hurdle was convincing people to create a new position. Rebecca will share candidly what ultimately worked and how she successfully persuaded her company to create, and fill, a second position.

Rebecca Firestone

Rebecca is an award-winning technical writer, content developer, course developer, and trainer with 20 years’ experience. Since 2012 she has worked as a Senior Technical Writer at Zep Solar in San Rafael, CA, where she is responsible for product documentation for Zep Solar’s patented photovoltaic rooftop mounting systems. In the past, she worked with various Bay Area architectural design firms, creating over 90 full-length articles for two blogs: The Architect’s Take (thearchitectstake.com), and Green Compliance Plus (greencomplianceplus.com). Prior to moving to architecture in 2006, she spent 15 years producing documentation and training materials for complex enterprise software applications. As a trainer, she developed and delivered industry-specific hands-on courses for the Arbor/BP telecom billing platform. Rebecca has a keen interest in the effective use of graphics for effective communication, and has created product brochures, presentations, and video storyboards to showcase products and projects. She has also worked with supply-chain analysts to create business articles and white papers on a variety of OR/MS topics such as the use of expert systems for supply-chain optimization.

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