12 Technical Writer Resume Examples for 2024

Crafting a technical writer resume requires precision. This article offers examples and advice to help you present your skills effectively. Expect tips on showcasing your ability to explain complex information plainly and how to feature your experience with documentation software. Here, learn the must-haves for your resume as you apply for these specialized roles.

  Compiled and approved by Marie-Caroline Pereira
  Last updated on See history of changes

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At a Glance

Here's what successful technical writer resumes have in common.

  • Metrics That Matter: Great resumes show impact with numbers. Include metrics like documents created, % increase in user comprehension, time saved on projects, and reduction in customer inquiries to quantify your contributions.

  • Relevant Skills To Highlight: Match your skills with the job description. Showcase your expertise in documentation management, technical publishing software, API documentation, version control systems, and bash on your resume.

  • Trends In Tech Writing: Understanding current trends is key. Demonstrate knowledge in UX writing and Markdown formatting. Say you're skilled in content strategy or agile workflows if you are.

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Where to place education info

For a technical writer, if you have recently finished a degree, especially in fields like communications, English, or technical subjects, it is good to place your education at the top of your resume. This shows you have the latest knowledge in these important areas. If you have strong work experience, especially in writing technical content, put this first and then your education.

Your most relevant education is what employers look for. If you have taken specific writing or technical courses or certifications that are fresh and relevant, make sure to highlight these near the top as well. Courses in documentation software and technical communication are particularly valuable.

Technical skills to highlight

For technical writers, knowing your audience is key. Mention any experience you have in creating documents for different target users - from laymen to technical experts. Show this by listing specific projects where you tailored complex information to a clear, accessible format.

Highlight proficiency in documentation tools like MadCap Flare, Adobe FrameMaker, or Microsoft Visio. These are not as common in other industries but are essential for technical writers. Include any experience with version control systems and knowledge of programming languages if you've worked closely with developers.

Ideal length of resume

Keep your resume to one page if you are in an early or mid-level stage of your career as a technical writer. Focus on clarity and relevance over quantity. This makes it easier for employers to see your most important skills and experience quickly.

If you have over ten years of experience or if your work as a technical writer includes numerous important projects, it might be okay to have a two-page resume. Make sure every detail adds value and relates to the role you want.

Showcasing writing prowess

Beyond technical knowledge, your fluency in writing is what employers will look for. Include samples or links to your technical documentation in your resume. If you have done diverse forms of writing – user guides, manuals, SOPs, API documentation – point these out.

Show that you can adapt your style as a writer to fit different needs. Mention any recognition or awards you received for your writing. Being recognized shows that your work stands out. Keep explanations brief and clear to make it easy for hiring managers to grasp your skills quickly.

Beat the resume screeners

Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) are used by many companies to filter resumes before a hiring manager looks at them. You need to format your resume in a way that these systems can read it easily.

Here are tips to help you make your resume ATS-friendly:

  • Use standard section headings like 'Work Experience' and 'Education' to ensure the ATS can find your information.
  • Include keywords from the job description, like 'document design' and 'technical documentation,' to show you have the specific skills for a technical writing role.

Highlight your tech skills

To get a good technical writing job, show the skills that make you good at explaining complex info. Use words that show you can write well and know your tech stuff. This way, bosses see you have what it takes.

  • Focus on writing tools and tech you've used like Markdown, Git, and API documentation standards.
  • Show you can handle tough work like creating instruction manuals and help guides.
  • Tell about projects where you explained tech things in a simple way, like writing quick-start guides for software.

Show your achievements, not tasks

When you write your resume, focus on what you achieved as a technical writer, not just your job tasks. Your resume should tell a story of success, highlighting the value you added.

Keep your examples specific and relevant. Here are some ways to turn responsibilities into accomplishments:

  • Instead of simply stating you wrote manuals, say how your manuals improved user understanding by 50%.
  • Rather than mentioning you documented software applications, detail how your documentation reduced customer support calls by 30%.

Remember, show how your work made a difference. This is what will catch an employer's eye.

Essential skills for technical writers

As a technical writer, certain skills are crucial to showcase on your resume. Think about what specific talents you have that make you good at explaining complex information in a clear and accessible way.

  • Technical writing
  • Editing
  • Research
  • Documentation management
  • Version control
  • API documentation
  • Markup languages (e.g., HTML, XML)
  • Technical publishing software (e.g., Adobe FrameMaker, MadCap Flare)
  • Diagramming and flowcharting
  • Usability testing

You don't need to be an expert in all areas, but include the skills that match the job you want. For example, if you are applying for a role that involves a lot of user interface documentation, make sure skills like usability testing and API documentation are prominent.

Skills can be listed in a dedicated section or woven into your job descriptions to show how you used them. This also helps with Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) which scan resumes for keywords. Remember, your goal is to show, not just tell, how you can contribute to the role.

Showcase leadership in writing roles

As a technical writer, showing you've moved up or led projects can catch an employer's eye. It's not just about the documents you've created, but also about the impact you've made. Think about times you've guided others or taken the lead on a writing project.

  • Include titles like 'senior technical writer' or 'lead documentation specialist' to show progress.
  • Mention any awards or recognitions for your writing or project leadership to add weight to your achievements.

Even if you're not sure, consider times when you helped a teammate or improved a process. These are signs of leadership too. Use simple words to explain these moments:

  • 'Trained new writers on style guides and documentation standards.'
  • 'Led a team in developing an online help system, which increased user satisfaction by 20%'.

Show impact with numbers

As a technical writer, showing your impact with clear metrics is key to a strong resume. You may ask, why numbers? They help hiring managers quickly see the value you've brought to past roles. Here's how to think about your experience in terms of quantifiable achievements:

  • Consider documentation projects you’ve worked on. How many pages or manuals did you create or update? This shows productivity. For example, 'Wrote and edited 300-page user manuals for 5 software products.'
  • Think about efficiency. Did your work reduce the time it takes for users to find information? Estimate the percentage of time saved, like 'Developed an indexed documentation system that reduced information retrieval time by 25%.'
  • Reflect on user impact. Did your manuals decrease the number of customer support calls? If so, quantify it: 'Authored a troubleshooting guide that cut customer inquiries by 40% in the first month.'
  • Consider the scope of your readership. Did you write for a large audience? Indicate the reach: 'Created technical documentation used by over 10,000 end-users globally.'

Use estimates wisely when exact numbers are not available. If you trained a team, for example, you could say, 'Conducted 10 training sessions for 15 staff members each, improving their efficiency by an estimated 30%.' Remember, clear and simple figures can show a hiring manager how you deliver measurable results.

Targeting small companies

If you are applying to small companies or startups, focus on your ability to wear many hats. These companies, like Basecamp or Buffer, often need technical writers who can handle various tasks beyond just writing. Highlight your experience in other areas like project management or user experience design.

Include phrases like 'managed end-to-end documentation projects' or 'collaborated closely with developers and designers'. Emphasize your flexibility and ability to adapt quickly to new tools and technologies.

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