Last updated on Oct 8, 2020
Daniele Procida, Community and Documentation Manager at Divio AG joins us in this episode of Knowledgebase Ninjas.
Connect with Daniele and Divio AG here:
How Daniele initially got into documentation
Daniele was an open source software developer and then moved into documentation as he became frustrated with the quality of documentation out there. He moved over to the writing side to help create better documentation for all the open source developers out there 🙂
Daniele’s belief in the importance of “documentation buy in”
Divio and Daniele believe that in order for a documentation process to be effective, each party (programmers, developers and other co-operating parties) must be “bought in” to its creation. This is a mindset, not a process.
Documentation as a selling tool
Daniele states that if potential customers or users see the quality of documentation, they see that the business actually cares about “people like me”, then they are more likely to convert.
And of course, quality documentation enables existing customers or users to “get done, what they need to get done quickly”. This over time will improve the word of mouth about your product as happy customers love to spread the word.
Well structured documentation is easier to maintain
If you structure your documentation effectively from the start, it will be much easier to maintain in the future. Daniele advocates for investing time upfront to ensure that each piece of documentation you create has clear headings and subheading to enable it to be easily updated or edited in the future.
Documentation can also be used internally
Daniele explains that documentation can also be used to drive efficiencies internally. Instead of people having to explain how certain parts of the product work… they can direct their colleagues to the relevant piece of documentation.
Documentation provides a return on investment in multiple different ways
Yes, you can see that the numbers are going in the right direction but there are many other benefits of documentation. Actually it is very hard to ascertain a direct ROI from documentation as Daniele says it can come from a variety of different sources: reduced support cost, increased conversion rates, increased organic traffic and so on.
Daniele will often find his own writing on Google
Daniele was searching to find a solution to a technical issue he was facing, he found an article on Google and clicked through to start reading. He didn’t even realise which website he was on when he realised that it was actually his own writing! His past self had written out the solution and his present self was benefitting.