Carol Menzigian leads the technical documentation effort at Adaptive Insights, a Workday company, where she and her merry band of writers have taken self-service knowledge from okay to awesome in just two years.
Carol is the consummate technical writer. She has experienced documentation evolutions from the Multimate word processor and first release of Robohelp to the advent of knowledge management. Carol continually strives to streamline the user experience with simple language, scannable headlines, and content discovery.
She believes it takes a village to deliver a quality knowledge experience. She has collaborated with the full gambit of professional associates, from reluctant database architects to eager college grads, helping them share their knowledge through the written word. All that is needed, she says, is a little encouragement, a good template, and a few ground rules. And voila! You’ve got content that serves even the most complex systems.
Her current team is organized around their MindTouch implementation. They are can-do writers, dedicated and passionate about helping their customers use Adaptive Insights solutions. They take on any documentation challenge Carol dishes out and always pass with flying colors.
Even with limited resources and availability, her team always finds a way to get a project done or improve content quality in some way. “They are simply the best,” she says. Her team includes:
- Jonathan “J-2-the-power” Powers: video editor/script writer extraordinaire.
- Serena “She’s got style” Cavanaugh: instrumental in developing the Adaptive Insights style guide.
Fun fact: Carol is a piece-maker. She has passion for putting patterns and colors together to create beautiful quilts. She is also an avid gardener, producing just the right amount of veggies and herbs for perfect salads and soups. “Life is good when pieces fit together,” she says.
The Problem Adaptive Insights Faced
- Existing product documentation was poor quality, not easily accessed, and outdated in terms of presentation.
- Content production methods were inefficient. The technical documentation team spent too much time updating duplicate content and generating/publishing content using outdated tools.
- Content was not easily accessible or mobile friendly. When customers needed help they had to leave the application to search for answers or submit a support request.
- Rapid growth, siloed content, and increased product complexity resulted in outdated, disconnected, and duplicate content across KB articles in Zendesk, customer success library, and product documentation.
What Adaptive Insights Achieved
- External engagement: Article views have doubled since launching the Knowledge Center and increased tenfold since moving from PDFs in Zendesk. Now there are more than 6k views a day on article-level content.
- Internal engagement: There is now an internal Slack Channel and internal teams are starting to engage, sharing how happy they are with the system. They love the access they have to the content and how much easier it is to find and get updates on information.
- Improved customer confidence and adoption: Eliminated dependency on PDFs—customers now rarely ask for them. Community scores are on the rise as new content gets published.
- Video support: Added well-produced one- to two-minute features and how-to videos to doc deliverables (without adding additional headcount).
- HR kudos: Co-workers are giving thumbs up and leaving encouraging feedback for the work of the technical documentation team.
- Company pride: The new Knowledge Center and contextual help was showcased during a new feature demo during the Adaptive Live 2017 product keynote.
- Holistic (we are one) content: Content is regularly monitored and updated. Cross-functional writers meet regularly to link related KB articles, customer journey articles with product documentation.