Rahel Bailie, senior consultant and founder at Content, Seriously Consulting, joins us in this episode of Knowledgebase ninja to share quality documentation strategies. Check out all the episodes here.
Connect with Rahel Bailie and Content, Seriously Consulting here:
Rahel’s journey from technical writing to content strategies
Rahel started her journey as a technical communicator in the 90s; with the feeling that she had more to contribute to quality content and documentation processes, she upgraded her profession slightly and started working as a content strategist in Vancouver.
As a content strategist, she got contracts related to technical communication, web marketing, and journalism. She led a team of eight content strategists, writers, and related specialists to ensure top quality documentation delivery and tackle the hurdles in content creation. According to her, she never left working as a technical communicator; she just went a level up.
At Content, Seriously, she analyses business problems and helps businesses to see where content performance is lacking in achieving business goals. She manages the technical and editorial aspects of the content. According to Rahel, “strategies optimise the content.”
Rahel believes that efficiency is extremely important when you are working as a content strategist. She never liked the old clunky ways of doing things and always wanted to do something better. “Modern content creation urges you to think out-of-the-box in order to deliver the best to your clients.”
Rahel acknowledges that the important factor for content creation might differ based on the content’s scope and requirement. However, if she were to choose one key factor that implies any nature of content in the modern world, it would be creating personalised content. As companies nowadays look for intelligent content that they can relate with and feel as if it’s talking to them.
According to Rahel, in order to measure the quality, we need first to define the quality. The definition of quality changes, for example, if you have a very good editorial, but if it is made for an audience that has a low literacy rate, then the definition of quality changes.
In quality, there are two sides of a coin, editorial and technical. If you don’t take care of the technical side, it doesn’t mean you are delivering quality.
Rahel mentioned that tagging, categorising, a high-quality topic, and language all these measures are important. Quality is all about the methodology you choose to follow.
Rahel mentioned that having a natural curiosity for things is important, questioning things like “how can I explain it better, why does it work that way, how can I deliver it, and how can I automate the personalisations.”
Questioning yourself and your work is the most important quality, whereas single sourcing and intelligent content serve as a cherry on the cake for content writers.
The content should be seen in a holistic way and from a broader perspective.
Recently, Rahel read about exponential transformation and exponential organisations. This concept is about the companies’ growth and what they should do if they want to grow. This movement was initiated by Rahel’s good friend Salim Ismail; she talked about the book 11 secrets you need to know about exponential growth. In this book, the writer used pneumonics to explain the ten things, and according to him, the eleventh thing is information enablement.
If you cannot enable your information, you cannot become a big company like BnB, Spotify, etc.
The advice for 20 years old Rahel would be that there are jobs where you have to work with words so you don’t have to pigeonhole yourself to some other profession that you will not enjoy. There are jobs related to the words you need to find.