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Techwrit

Wong, Elaine Joyce Sept. 19, 2012


LF1W Ms. Sale


Types of Technical Documents and Their Function

1.Reports
Definition: It contains the complete information of any project. Wide knowledge pertaining to the
subject of the report is absolutely necessary for any author. It requires intense research and data
analysis. Some types of reports are: business and sales reports, academic project reports, and case study
reports.
Function: Reports are made at all levels from students to business people, for various purposes.

2.Presentation
Definition: The presentation model depends upon the intended audience, whether they are internal
audience or external audience. A presentation can be made using equipment and graphical aids such as
flip charts, tables, transparencies, bar graphs, slides, multimedia objects, pie charts, dry erase boards,
line drawings, handouts, physical objects, etc.
Function: Presentations are made to support the information being given and also for the audience to
understand the information more and quickly.

3.User Manual
Definition: The user manuals are the set of instructions or explanations written to help the reader,
understand some software application or any system.
Function: The important criteria of a properly written user manual is simple language, because it is
mostly targeted for non-technical people. Mainly, to understand the troubleshooting techniques, people
refer to the user manual. So, the writer should cover all the minute details of the product and the
troubleshooting tricks. The difficult terms should be well explained and made easy.

4.Executive Summaries
Definition: Executive summary is an important communication tool used by academicians and
business people. Executive summaries are basically documents that contains the summary of reports, so
that the reader is acquainted with the required knowledge, without reading the large body of the report.
The typical structure of an executive summary should be 10% of the report from which it is derived.
Concise analysis of the report is made and final conclusions are drawn from it. Executive summary is
different from abstracts, in a way that, abstracts are short and it just provides the overview of a large
document, whereas, reports can be replaced with executive summaries, as it contains the condensed
version of the report.
Function: Executive summary documents, are widely used in management sectors like sales &
marketing, accounts & finance, etc. Executive summary documents mostly contains the summary of the
problems of the service or the product.

5.Abstracts
Definition: Abstracts are basically, a concise and brief guide of a report that summarizes the whole
report, which is mainly addressed to technical readers. There are two important types of abstracts. They
are:
Descriptive Abstract: Descriptive abstract is also called topical, table-of-contents abstract and
indicative abstract. This type of abstract lists the topics or chapters that are covered in the
reports.
Informative Abstract: This type of abstract summarizes the important information in the report,
which includes results, recommendation and conclusions.
Function: Abstracts provides the overview of a large document.

6.Spec Sheets
Definition: Spec sheet is an information sheet that, illustrates the construction and manufacturing
process.
Function: Spec sheet documents are widely used especially in mechanical, instrumentation,
architecture, production and manufacturing industries. The spec sheets are mainly targeting to the
contractors, who will analyze the information and the package which includes all the required
schematics and they would estimate the scope and expertise required for the completion of the project.
After studying the spec sheet data, bid sheet will be prepared.

7.Proposals
Definition: It is a narrative work that is made to bring out successful sales experience. The good
proposal should be made in such a way that, it should be "as easy as possible to digest". Many business
people say that, writing a proposal is an art and it should be persuasive and rational as well. The
proposals can be formal or informal.
Function: Proposals are persuasive documents that are made to provide solutions, recommendations
and needs regarding to the problems concerning a product or service.



8.Employment Documents
Definition: Employment document is mainly referred to as resumes, follow-up letter, resignation letter.
The employment documents are prepared from the employer's perspective.
Function: Follow-up letter is written by a candidate, to thank the employer for the conducted interview
and to express his continuing interests in the job. Resignation letter is a professional courtesy letter to
inform the current employer, that you are resigning from your job and the reasons for your resignation.
Resume is another employment document produced by a candidate, who is seeking for a new job.

9.Questionnaires
Definition: Questionnaire is a document that contains a list of questions that are targeted to the readers,
in order to gather information from the respondents. The modes of questionnaire administration are
paper-and-pencil mode, computerized mode and face-to-face administration mode.
Function: Questionnaires may be for the purpose of survey or to get statistical data. The questions in a
questionnaire is basically targeted to get information on preferences, behavior, facts and guidelines.

Notes:
Technical writing types of user documentation. (2012, June 27). Retrieved from http://
en.wikiversity.org/wiki/Technical_writing_Types_of_User_Documentation

Sukumar, S. (2011, September 20). Types of techincal writing. Retrieved from http://
www.buzzle.com/articles/types-of-technical-writing.html