Guest Blog: Policies and Procedures Marketplace: Emerging Trends, Predictions

Thursday, October 17 2013 @ 10:12 AM, By Maxwell Hoffmann

In this guest blog, Policies and Procedures expert Raymond Urgo shares highlights from his recent webinar, “P&P Sess 3) The Policies & Procedures Market Place – Emerging Trends and Predictions.” (Click in the title in previous sentence to view the webinar recording.)

Policies and Procedures are becoming more intertwined with every department throughout your company as time goes on. This is due to a variety of factors from the Global Workforce to expensive, potential litigation.

You will definitely want to view the webinar recording, but in this brief blog Raymond gives a good overview of the guidelines he covered in his webinar. Please note that if you click on the URL above to view the webinar recording, you will be presented with what appears to be an “Event Registration” page. You can use your credentials to log-in, or create a new account if you don’t have one.


Purpose of this Webinar


To know what’s happening in the P&P marketplace so that you know
•    where you are
•    where you want to be,   and
•    what you need to do to get there.


11 BLOG MARKETPLACEWhat Is a Marketplace?


The space or situation (actual, virtual, or metaphorical)
•    of buying and selling, and/or
•    where ideas, opinions, and values are presented, recognized, or exchanged.


Topics for Trends and Predictions


•    Eras of P&P Communication – Major Drivers
•    P&P Documentation Practices – Two Leagues
•    P&P Talent – Two Leagues
•    P&P-Related Software – Two Leagues
•    P&P Learning & Development Resources


Eras of P&P Communication –  Major Drivers


P&P Documentation Practices – Two Leagues


Static P&P Content


•    Document-based for paper
•    Document-centered, subject-oriented, and not interactive
•    Pre-packaged P&P content
•    Authors write their own P&P led with or without P&P specialist
•    Based on 17th century rhetoric, and often on habit, imitation, and ignorance.

Dynamic P&P Content


•    Topic-based for multi-media
•    User-centered, performance-oriented, and interactive
•    Collaborative authoring led by P&P specialist
•    Based on multiple research-based disciplines for effective communication


P&P Talent – Two Leagues
(Is P&P Talent Primary, Secondary, or Non-Existent?)


12 BLOG LEAGUEP&P Is Primary Expertise
P&P Knowledge & Skill
•    Believes a good P&P specialist can communicate any subject
•    Believes better to be naïve on subject to be objective
•    May be or become a specialist in a subject matter
•    May cross-pollinate value among subject specialties
•    May get the re-dos of poor P&P documentation by SME


P&P Is 2nd- or Non-Existent
 SME Knowledge & Skill
•    Believes anyone can communicate P&P if they know subject matter
•    SME may
— be too close to subject
— give more info than needed,
— assume others know what SME knows
•    Buyer may be more comfortable with SME if in same specialty
•    Buyer may be paying too much for an SME performing P&P as a non-expert


P&P-Related Software – Two Leagues


Authoring Software
•    Designed for creating online help in software applications
•    Emerged out of advanced needs for communicating technical information competitively to users.
•    Suited for developing, managing, and publishing components of content (including P&P) via different media

P&P Document
Management  Software
•    Designed for managing P&P documents
•    Emerged out of need for demonstrating compliance
•    Suited for managing workflow of P&P document reviews and approvals, and for tracking distribution, attestation, and version control.


P&P Learning & Development Resources


•    P&P discipline compared to Technical Communication
•    Education in P&P or related writing
•    Corporate training in P&P
•    Books on P&P
•    Newsletters, blogs, forums on P&P

Biggest problem and consequences
•    Over focused on the wrong concerns
•    Bad reputation
•    Ebb and flow will continue
•    Always will be a need for star-performing P&P professional services


About our guest blogger: Commonly known as “Mr. P&P”, Raymond Urgo holds the honorary rank of fellow in the Society for Technical Communication for his contributions to Policies & Procedures Communication. Urgo, who has observed and studied the P&P marketplace for more than 30 years, provides consulting to a variety of industries through his firm, Urgo & Associates. Urgo’s previous webinars with AdobeTCS have drawn record attendance!

An excellent solution for Policies & Procedures: RoboHelp 10!

Many customers have discovered the dramatic time and cost savings of authoring and managing dynamic P&P content with RoboHelp. You can link or import Word or FrameMaker files as your source files. Many other file formats (even PDF) may be used to import source contents. After watching this recorded webinar, you may wish to have your own hands-on with RoboHelp. The quickest way to do this is to have use a trial copy of Tech Comm Suite 4, which includes FrameMaker 11 and RoboHelp 10. You can try your own hands-on by clicking here. This link also includes a link to a Quick Start Guide for RoboHelp.

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