What does a content engineer / technical content engineer do?

by parson on February 14, 2024

The job description for technical communicators is constantly changing. A relatively new area of work is content engineering, which is becoming increasingly important in projects with our customers. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at the tasks, skills, and education of a content engineer or technical content engineer and provide insights into the job search.

Responsibilities of a content engineer / technical content engineer

The content engineer plays a central role in the technical documentation of products and services. While an information architect lays the structural and conceptual foundation for technical documentation, a content engineer builds the company's content on that foundation. They also organize content from different parts of the organization along the content supply chain defined as part of the organization's content strategy. They ensure that documentation content from many different areas is harmonized and structured to be accessible across media, platforms, and devices. A content engineer uses a variety of technologies and formats, including content management systems, XML, APIs, and AI processes.

The content engineer / technical content engineer is responsible for the following, among other things :

1  Content is clear and accessible

Technical information and documentation can be complex. The content engineer ensures that the information is structured, organized, and presented in a way that is clear and accessible to the intended audience, whether they are end users, developers, or other technical teams.

2 Content is consistent

Content from different parts of an organization must be consistent despite different authoring systems and authors. The content engineer ensures that terminology, language usage, and formatting are consistent across all content.

3 Content is adaptable

As technology evolves, content must be updated and adapted. The content engineer ensures that content is designed to be easily updated, making it flexible and adaptable as the product or industry standard changes.

4 Content is searchable and discoverable

Organizations often publish large amounts of content across multiple channels. The content engineer develops metadata and structures to ensure that content is easily searchable and retrievable so that users can quickly find relevant information.

5 Content is user-friendly

Well-designed and well-thought-out technical content improves usability. A content engineer ensures that users can easily navigate the documentation, find solutions to their problems, and understand how to use a product effectively.

6 Content can be integrated

Along the content supply chain, content must be integrated with various systems or tools. The content engineer ensures that content can be seamlessly integrated into different platforms or applications or reused across systems via interfaces.

Overall, the content engineer plays a central role in ensuring that technical documentation and other corporate content is effective, accurate, up-to-date, and user-friendly. When companies launch new products or want to ensure optimal use of their technical products and services, the work of a content engineer is essential.

What knowledge and skills does a content engineer / technical content engineer need?

Because the job of a content engineer is so diverse, they need a wide range of knowledge and skills:

  • Content modeling expertise: A content engineer is able to collect and organize information and put it into a meaningful structure. They are familiar with metadata models and information architectures. They are able to evaluate existing content for modularization and reusability. To organize content into a meaningful structure, they are familiar with navigation concepts, taxonomies, and hierarchies.
  • Technical communication expertise: A content engineer/ technical content engineer has knowledge about all aspects of technical communication and knows what requirements and standards are important when writing documentation, instructions, and tutorials.
  • Technical competence: The content engineer has a deep understanding of the product, system, or service for which the content is being created. To deliver documentation content or migrate existing content to a new content management environment, the content engineer has a broad knowledge of various authoring systems, software applications, and platforms. Ideally, the content engineer is also familiar with coding and markup languages such as HTML, CSS, AsciiDoc, and XML.
  • Social skills: A content engineer understands the needs and expectations of the documentation content's target audiences and takes these into account when developing content. Developing and maintaining a content supply chain requires collaboration with various areas and departments within the organization.

Becoming a content engineer / technical content engineer

A degree in computer science, technical communication, linguistics, or engineering provides a solid foundation for a successful career in content engineering. Because the technology industry is constantly changing, it is also important to keep up with new developments and trends and to continue your education.

Where can I find jobs as a content engineer / technical content engineer?

If you are looking for a job as a content engineer, search the LinkedIn job board or major job platforms online. parson also regularly posts content engineering jobs.

parson is a content engineering expert

We organize your content efficiently in the content supply chain. Learn more about our services

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