Technical Information Provider
Structured Authoring of Technical Documentation
Quark XML Author’s low-code / no-code technology means technical writers can produce XML-based content without any formal XML or schema architecture training.
The familiar Microsoft Word environment lets technical writers spend more time writing and reviewing content, and less time inserting mark-up codes.
A more collaborative authoring approach streamlines the document production cycle and reduces human error.
Effective content workflows make it simple to reuse and repurpose content components for faster delivery of documentation.
The company has digitally transformed its technical authoring processes and now produces consistent content for omnichannel publishing
This company is Europe’s leading publisher and supplier of technical information for automotive professionals through printed and electronic documents. Its core business is the research, compilation, and creation of technical documentation for use in independent automotive workshops for the maintenance and repair of vehicles.
Authoring Technical Documentation
The secret to the company’s success in delivering comprehensive documentation for automotive professionals lies in its 55 skilled technical writers who have “hands on” experience in the workshop, able to produce rigorous yet user-friendly information.
The company’s Business Assurance Manager explains: “We experienced a drastic shift from paper-based products to electronic media. Ever higher processing demands for electronic publishing, new products and languages exposed the limitations of the SGML-based mark-up we had developed and used. Some issues were caused by inconsistent use of tags, tags containing formatting information and not having an end delimiter. Other problems derived from the method of text creation. It still placed the responsibility of inserting the correct codes into the file with the author.”
The company’s investment in training for technical writers was substantial too. Yet it still did not always produce the levels of accuracy needed. The company decided to look for alternative low-code / no-code solutions, where authors did not have to get involved in the technicalities of the mark-up language. This led them to Quark XML Author for Microsoft Word.
We did not want our authors to invest their time inserting the correct mark-up codes, but to focus on content. We took the view that Quark XML Author was the most user-friendly and suitable option.
– Business Assurance Manager
Why Quark XML Author?
“Our technical authors were already compiling information using Microsoft Word and therefore were familiar with its layout and functions. We did not want our authors to invest their time inserting the correct mark-up codes, but focus on content. Equally we did not want to move them from the familiarity of Microsoft Word to the alien environment of an XML Editor. We took the view that Quark XML Author was the most user-friendly and suitable option.”
The company needed an effective structured, componentized authoring workflow that could keep up with regular updates of their electronic products. Adopting a low-code / no-code XML (eXtensible Mark-up Language) approach allowed them to produce documentation in a collaborative environment, streamline the workflow and reduce human mistakes. They also improved the effectiveness of their production cycle, making it simpler to reuse and repurpose content components for faster delivery of documentation.
With Quark XML Author for Microsoft Word, their technical writers can automatically generate XML metadata with no knowledge of XML and very little training. Other XML-based solutions require the use of specialized tools and costly training sessions.
Technical writers are free to concentrate on the creation of accurate, timely and effective content without having to use precious hours learning and managing metadata mark-up tags and template formatting.
“Quark XML Author is very user-friendly. The authors are not confronted with code or input and can focus on what they do best – writing. And this means a competitive edge for our business.”
Quark worked with the company to develop a bespoke schema with customized rules and templates around their needs. “Quark’s Professional Services team in Dublin provided outstanding service throughout the configuration process. The fact that they were readily accessible with expertise and support and that we formed a solid working relationship, enabled us to achieve a positive outcome.”