Technical editing as a central knowledge pool in the company

Ingrid Lenz Ingrid Lenz Head of Sales CMS/CDS at Fischer

Technical writing is the heart of a company when it comes to organizing, preparing, and providing crucial information.

Tabel of contents:

    Technical writing serves as an indispensable hub within companies, managing, preparing, and delivering essential information. As a central knowledge pool, it acts as a guardian of specialist knowledge by not only creating technical documentation, but also building a bridge between complex technical content and comprehensible, user-oriented communication. In this function, technical editing plays a decisive role in the collection, structuring and distribution of knowledge, thereby not only helping to optimize internal processes, but also making a significant contribution to meeting external information requirements.


    Technical editing has always had its roots in an interdisciplinary field that combines numerous specialist areas. Mastering this field requires a broad technical understanding of the products dealt with in this context and basic knowledge of layout and design. In addition, IT skills and the ability to model information are of central importance. A strong feel for language is just as essential as a sound understanding of legal principles relating to product liability and standards.

    The challenges in technical editing, especially in smaller companies, are faced with this broad spectrum of tasks that require an intensive approach. The smaller the company, the more diverse the areas it has to deal with intensively. In this context, the ability to integrate and effectively coordinate different disciplines becomes increasingly important.

    The demands placed on technical writers can be compared to the challenges of a decathlete: Reaching the top requires not only a basic mastery of all disciplines, but also the development of specialized knowledge in certain areas. Similar to a decathlete, who not only has to be fast and strong, but also has to have endurance, technical editing requires a variety of skills.

    The path technical editing takes

    A change in the company often begins with the realization that the construction department needs to focus on its core task again and that an editor should now be appointed for the documentation. This brings with it a variety of new topics and requirements that may have been neglected in the past. Questions such as "Who are our target groups in the company?", "Is there a terminology that I can use as a guide?" or "Have we carried out a comprehensive risk assessment for this product?" are suddenly essential aspects that need to be answered outside of what we were used to.

    In the world of technical editing, this interdisciplinarity opens up numerous interfaces in the daily work process. Technical editors are not just limited to writing texts; their work involves a wide variety of departments. He researches in mechanical construction in order to understand the latest 3D models, coordinates with electrical development in order to identify essential information from the electrical plan, obtains the schedule and product planning from product management in order to coordinate his editing process with it, and negotiates content with the legal department in order to ensure that no legal stumbling blocks can arise in the USA. 

    This multitude of interfaces makes it clear that the work of a technical writer goes far beyond the creation of texts and requires comprehensive integration into different areas of the company.

    From the collection to the knowledge archive: The steps of information processing in technical editing

    Asking questions marks the decisive start on the way to establishing a central knowledge pool in the company. Because only those who ask questions are able to obtain answers and thus lay the foundation for the consolidation of crucial information.

    The first step in technical writing is to gather information from the relevant departments. The customer's information requirements determine the depth of information and define the questions that need to be answered.

    All this data and information must be centralized and managed, and relevant and irrelevant information must be separated.

    The subsequent preparation of this information is then often the step at which the data is first found in the component content management system. Modeled according to the questions of the target group, taking into account standards and guidelines, and enriched with the relevant media for the respective publication process, this becomes a collection of information.

    In the penultimate step, in addition to approval and translation, this information is published and distributed so that it reaches users in the appropriate format and channel - both internally and externally. The final storage of the content in a knowledge archive represents the last step in the life cycle of the information for sustainable usability.

    The digitization of the editorial process

    Today, the digitization of the editorial process only begins when the editor enters and edits data and content in the component content management system.

    To avoid wasting valuable time simply searching for information, it makes sense to digitize the editorial processes in such a way that the information ideally reaches the editors automatically. Ideally, they would then only have to process and combine the information.

    How can Fischer products support the digitization of the editorial process?

    Fischer's products offer tailor-made solutions to effectively digitize the editorial process and ensure optimal support for the challenges of modern information processing. The Web XML Editor is primarily used in the process of data entry and research. The TaskPro Manager, on the other hand, plays a central role in the organization process. The Review Service is available for the correction and review process. The Content Delivery application is used in the provision and distribution process. The Web Client is used in various phases of the editing process and offers versatility. Automation and workflows play a key role in several processes, including the publication and organization of content. As sub-processes of the editorial process, they all contribute to digitization.

    Web XML Editor With the Web XML Editor, browser-based information capture is easy from anywhere. Other departments, external service providers or locations can be connected quickly and easily. This means you don't have to manually transfer the information you have gathered from e-mails, handwritten notes or conversations into TIM. You authorize your "information suppliers" to make it available to you digitally in TIM.
    TaskPro Manager By integrating TaskPro Manager into the TIM component content management system, projects and tasks can be managed collaboratively. The solution not only enables the efficient maintenance of documents, but also offers a wide range of options for collaboration and process optimization. From document maintenance and sprint documentation to detailed step-by-step instructions, there are numerous ways to promote and improve collaboration within the team.
    Review Service An intelligent review service is integrated into the TIM editing system, which enables documentation quality to be maintained at a high level on an ongoing basis. The software offers various dashboards that provide a comprehensive and immediate overview of the status and progress of the review. The comments in the review have a direct link to the module in TIM, eliminating the tedious search for the commented module. You also have all comments in one place.
    Content Delivery Content delivery ensures that information is provided online in a user-oriented manner. The solution ensures that customers' information needs are met effectively and that product information, video instructions or spare parts information can be distributed precisely.
    Web Client The web client enables the seamless connection of different departments via a user-friendly web portal. The convenient faceted search covers all metadata and TIM objects. In addition, the Web Client provides complete information on each object, including metadata, preview options and download options to facilitate comprehensive use and editing.
    Automation and workflows The TIM editing system offers technical editors various automation modules that they can combine depending on the application. The advantages lie in clear and easy-to-define rules that allow individual definitions. The decision as to which tasks TIM should carry out to support certain workflow processes is in the hands of the editors. In well thought-out processes, tasks are collected by the TIM software and jointly issued to the user, who can process them easily and in a time and cost-efficient manner.

    The focus of technical editing

    On the one hand, the focus of technical editing is on information modeling and preparation. This includes the precise determination of required information and its sources as well as their combination. On the other hand, the focus is on knowledge distribution and preservation with the targeted translation and distribution of this information to the target groups and its comprehensibility.


    The integration of technical editing in various areas of the company illustrates the wide-ranging tasks and responsibilities of this department.
    The fact that the technical writing department develops new information models from a wide range of information within the company and makes them available to customers is invaluable in today's world. The technical writing department is probably the only department in a company that has this wealth of information and should utilize it. This is because it is the only place where this information is prepared in this way and modeled together to form relevant information.

    The digitization of the editorial process offers the possibility of optimizing the workflow by automatically transferring information to the editors and enabling them to concentrate more on information modelling and preparation as well as knowledge distribution and storage.

    Anyone who has information and generates new information with it has a certain uniqueness in the company, but also a certain power. Make your processes even more efficient with TIM and make the most of this information. Use it to create user experiences for your customers and sustainable growth for your company. And an outstanding positioning for your technical editing department.