Technical Writing: Definition and Purpose

Technical writing is the process of researching and writing about specialized topics in a way that is clear to the intended audience.

Technical writers work closely with your subject matter experts (SMEs) to learn the details of your products, policies, and procedures. They take the time to understand you and your audience to eliminate the hassles caused by communication gaps.

Technical writing is meant to convey technical knowledge and its application in specific situations to a very specific audience. In most cases, that technical knowledge is about operation of a specific piece of computer software or hardware.

Today, technical writing encompasses all documentation of complex technical processes. It can include reports, executive summary statements, and briefs. Any time technical information is conveyed in writing at work, it is, by definition, technical writing.

The format is no longer bound to lengthy user manuals. Technical information must be distilled and presented unambiguously. This can come in the form of technical reports, emails, policies, briefs, and press releases.


The sole purpose of technical writing is to inform and instruct the end-users of a product or a program.

Sometimes, technical documentation is treated as a lower priority task by many companies, especially those organizations that lack their own dedicated documentation or technical writing departments.

While it’s understandable that documentation is not the primary expertise of technical companies, it is critically important that documentation is clear, concise, accurate and up to date.

Poor documentation can lead to employee safety risks, increased liability, lost revenue, penalties, and even damaged reputations.

If your company does not have a dedicated documentation department, it pays to go with a professional and expert technical writing firm.

It will allow you the time to focus on your core competencies.

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