Re: Documentation estimates

Subject: Re: Documentation estimates
From: NMR Guru aka 'The Plate' <NICKI -at- MDLI -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 4 Nov 1994 17:07:14 -0800

Paul writes:

>Looking through an old issue of the STC Intercom, I found the
>following figures for calculating documentation hours:

Writing new text: 3-5 hours per page
Revising Existing Text: 1-3 hours per page
Editing: 6-8 pages per hour
Indexing: 5 pages per hour
Production: 5% of all other activities
Project Management: 15% of all other activities

>Do you think these figures are still accurate? If not, why?

>Do you know where I can find more up-to-date statistics?

>Thank you very much for your help!

Those estimates look familiar. When I first started out as
a tech writer, my boss gave me the following figures:

* New text: 8 hrs/page from beginning to finished
product (includes production, project
management, etc.)
4 hrs/page to get to first draft

* Existing text: 4 hrs/page from beginning to finished product

By the way, does anyone have any idea how to estimate the time required for
online help? I'm not sure that we can say "X hrs per screen",
because we also need to take into account the number of hyperlinks
per screen. The more hyperlinks, the more time it takes to
put them in and QA them to make sure everything links up
correctly. Any ideas on this?

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