Content management systems help you organize your content greatly. But they are not always enough to keep up with the workload by themselves. Using tools for technical authors gets more important everyday.
When you are using a CMS like Paligo, WordPress, etc. there are tools to support you along the way. You may need to capture screenshots, have your content translated, edit images, have meetings with your team members, and so on.
Here is a list of some of the tools for technical authors we know that you can benefit from and get the most out of the CMS tools you use!
Here are must have tools for technical authors:
Due to this year’s unfortunate events, most companies switched to working from home. As technical documentation requires you to be in touch with your team constantly, communication became a huge problem to solve. During these difficult times, we all discovered tools to overcome this problem by trial and error.
We had the easiest time using Zoom and Google Meet thanks to their simple interfaces and less connection and resolution issues. Now connecting with your teammates is easier than ever!
ZoomZoom became especially popular after the Corona Virus pandemic and is currently being used by over 300 million people daily! Thanks to its simplistic interface, you can easily connect with your team, have business meetings or even online classes. Zoom allows you to record your meetings, share screens simultaneously and integrate your scheduled meetings with your calendar.
Google Meet is another quick and easy alternative for your online meetings. You can create a link quickly and invite all your colleagues. The organizer can record the meeting and, just like Zoom, you can share your screen with your team and integrate your meetings with your Google Calendar!
Screenshot Capturing Tools
Snipping Tool is a Microsoft Word utility you may have already heard of. You can take shots of the whole screen, a specific area or an open window and store the image as a PNG, GIF or JPEG file. Did you know that Snipping Tool also has a delay function which allows you to take scheduled screenshots?
While Snipping Tool is easy, basic, and handy, Snagit allows you to customize your screenshots with shapes, arrows, and stamps. If you want to capture more than what is on the screen, we recommend for you to check out the Panoramic Scrolling Capture feature in Snagit!
Online To-Do Lists
Organizing tasks is an essential part of increasing productivity as technical authors have many tasks to complete while having a deadline to meet. Here is some of the online tools we tried and absolutely loved as a team!
With Microsoft To-Do, our team was able to manage their day to day workload easily. It has a very minimalistic interface, and you can even add steps and deadlines to each of your tasks and set reminders. Organizing your workload has never been easier!
Remember The Milk
Remember The Milk is a smart solution for busy people! You can choose where you want your reminders to come from, create as many lists as you want and share them with your team. Remember The Milk works perfectly when connected to Google Calendar, Gmail, Twitter and many more. Have the freedom you always desired with your workload!
Translation Management Systems
In the ever-changing global world, having your content translated is a must if you want to reach an international audience. Due to the wide variety of content and different formats in technical documentation, it can become a nightmare to have your content translated. But with the right companies with the right tools, you don’t even have to worry about the translation process!
Memsource is one of the most user-friendly CAT tools you can use. Getting a word count is a click away and it does not have any odd and complicated features only a handful of people can use; making its interface one of the most user-friendly ones there is. As Translation Memories and Term Bases are easily updated in each and every project, it reduces the cost and the time spent on any of the projects you complete using Memsource. As Paligo has a direct integration with Memsource, we never face bug issues, misplaced/missing tags, or corrupted files.
Similar to Memsource, Trados is another alternative that supports multiple file types. Trados increases productivity and responds to requirements of different projects with its customizable working interface and settings. Our experienced team is highly trained to troubleshoot any compatibility and corruption issues.
Switching to a new technical documentation tool or adapting to the new updates of the one you currently use can be a bit tricky at first. When you are testing and learning new features while wanting to share them with your team members, what is easier than to demonstrate what you are doing with a video? Here is a few useful tools you will never give up once you start using!
As a team, we always use Loom to record videos when we learn something new and want to share them with the rest of the team. You can either share your screen, your camera’s view or both at the same time. Thanks to Loom’s user-friendly interface, you can pause, trim and edit your videos before publishing them. Loom’s free version now allows you to record 5 minute videos at a time and there is no limit to the videos you can record!
Handbrake is another useful tool you can use to enhance your performance. While some users prefer to read the manual/help, some prefer video tutorials/guides. With the developing technology and innovations, companies also include videos within their technical contents and in their websites. Using lots of videos can slow down your website’s upload speed and you can lose visitors as a good SEO requires fast and light pages. Handbrake is a great tool to reduce your video sizes incredibly. And with Handbrake, your content will become even more accessible!
We know for sure that organizing your workload can be a bit tricky and confusing at times. You may get your hands full and lose track of things along the way. But don’t worry, we are here to talk about some of the best organizational tools there are!
Airtable is one of the most flexible organizers you can ever see. You can integrate the app with your favourite tools, set up automations and reminders, invite your team members to work with you and choose the most suitable template for your needs among a pool of hundreds! Collect all your data in one place start working faster, safer and simpler!
Teamwork can be a mess and you can feel confused and disconnected at times –unless you have the right tool to help you! Slack is just that. The app allows you to organize everything in one single platform. You can connect with your team members and even share information with other teams from different companies. Keeping your workflow organized has never been more fun!
How Can We Help?
If you need help with your technical authoring translation needs, contact TTC wetranslate for free, no-obligation consultation by calling +44 (0)1245 216933 or email us.