A few years ago we started to move away from individually-authored technical documents to team-authored S1000D Data Modules of information, in order to deal with large volumes of data more efficiently. This process began before we started to fully implement Simplified Technical English (STE).
As technical writers, we already had a strong understanding of technical language and the ability to express that knowledge, in a clear and concise manner while stripping away complexity.
One obstacle with our transition to authoring modular content was not with the quality of the narrative content, but the consistency from one writer to another within different versions of the same module.
As a carefully limited and standardized subset of English, implementing Simplified Technical English helped to ensure consistency between multiple writers while streamlining our narrative writing processes and procedures.
Originally developed by the aerospace industry to ensure technical content was easier to understand for operators and maintainers of equipment for whom English is not their first language, Simplified Technical English also helped produce more precise, less ambiguous narrative content.
The practice of implementing Simplified Technical English has made us more aware of the intended readers’ need for clear and concise instructions that reduce ambiguity and increase comprehensibility, thus reducing the possibility of errors during operation or maintenance of the equipment.
PS: If Engineers want to understand the benefits associated with writing to the STE Specification….. sign up for this webinar session!