Cherryleaf training – Improve your writing, technical communication and content strategy skills

Cherryleaf training - classroomCherryleaf’s classroom and online training courses have been developed for technical communicators, content strategists and policy and procedures writers who want to communicate more effectively. They help you improve your technical writing and content development skills.

Thank you very much for an interesting and thought-provoking course. The content and themes are very relevant to Citrix Technical Publications as we regularly look at trends and how we can respond and innovate. The way in which customers consume our content is changing, as are the different expectations customers have regarding user assistance and support. Your course provided further insight and ideas regarding how to review and adapt to ensure content is relevant and appealing to our customers.
Amanda Lindsay, Citrix.

Topics covered

Basic/Intermediate Technical Writing

  • The purpose of technical documentation
  • The different models for technical documentation
  • What is a technical author?
  • Adopting a user-centred design approach
  • Overview of the writing process
  • Planning your content
  • Researching the product and audience
  • The information design stage
  • Software tools
  • Writing the topics – Overview
  • Writing the topics – How to write and present different types of information
  • Writing the topics – Using images and videos
  • Writing the topics – Index, Search and Metadata
  • Reviewing and editing

Advanced technical writing

  • What is the traditional approach to technical writing?
  • Why is change happening? Examples from Web-based software where the Help doesn’t follow the traditional approach
  • New writing styles, tone and voice
  • Design-led documentation
  • Embedded Help
  • First-user interaction Help
  • Pathfinder topics
  • Troubleshooting topics
  • Information design and navigation structures
  • Sequencing
  • User generated content
  • How are Citrix, IBM, Microsoft and others changing their documentation?

Single Sourcing and Content Reuse

  • Single sourcing definitions
  • What is single sourcing?
  • Why single source?
  • When single sourcing might be a bad idea
  • Writing for re-use
  • Single sourcing across documents
  • Single sourcing across different media (mobile, paper etc)
  • Creating variations of the same document
  • The writing process
  • Structured v unstructured writing
  • Planning and designing single sourced content
  • Authoring guidelines and style guides
  • Defining information types, content types, metadata dimensions
  • Content modelling and mapping
  • Mapping to output type
  • Publishing single sourced content
  • Single sourcing software


  • Introduction to DITA
  • DITA fundamentals
  • Introduction to DITA topics
  • The base DITA topics
  • The different types of DITA topics, metadata and constraints
  • Organising your content – Maps
  • Linking
  • Embedding content – conrefs
  • Conditions and filtering
  • Transformations and publishing
  • Future developments – Troubleshooting and Lightweight DITA

Embedded Help writing strategies

  • What is Help?
  • Adopting a user-centred design approach
  • The traditional model of User Assistance
  • Emerging models of User Assistance
  • Types of Help
  • Deciding when to use which delivery method
  • Overview of the authoring tools
  • Measuring if it works
  • Best practice of information types
  • Deciding when to break the traditional rules
  • Overview of the authoring tools
  • Measuring if it works

Content Strategy

  • Why does my business need to look at content strategically?
  • What do we mean by content strategy?
  • Meeting business goals through content
  • Discovering what exists
  • Content inventories
  • Evaluating what exists
  • Content audits
  • Workflow analysis
  • Audience analysis
  • Developing a strategy
  • The Five S model
  • Implementing a strategy and systems
  • Creating and publishing content
  • Governance and maintenance
  • Managing new content
  • Maintenance
  • Governance

Policies and Procedures

  • Benefits of policies and procedures.
  • What do we mean by a policy, procedure and guideline?
  • What is meant by a policy, a procedure a guideline? What would you expect to see in each of these and what not to see.
  • What are the characteristics of good policies/procedures?
  • Researching the product and audience
  • Who is our audience? In what situation will they be reading this? What exactly do they need to know?
  • How do we meet the needs of more than one audience (such as staff and auditors)?
  • Planning
  • Outlining and planning the document.
  • How to structure and organise the content to assist users in finding what they are looking for.
  • Writing the table of contents.
  • Navigation flows and filtering content for multiple audiences.
  • Writing the topics
  • Writing a policy and a procedure.
  • Using plain English – what do we mean by this? Description and examples of plain English.
  • How to present different types of information
  • Page layout and how this can help users find what they are looking for.
  • The importance of steps in a procedure.
  • Conforming to standards
  • Writing documents that confirm to external standards (and might be audited).
  • How to write documents that meet more than one external standard.
  • Reviewing
  • Steps involved in reviewing a document.
  • Publishing
  • Which are the best mediums for publishing procedures?
  • Managing and maintaining
  • Content reuse and single sourcing.
  • Governance, maintenance and ownership of procedures.

Training courses and workshops for Technical Authors/Technical Writers and Content Strategists

content strategy elearning course screen

ISTC Accredited CourseClassroom and elearning training courses in:

Training courses in writing policies and procedures

If you’re involved in creating business-related content, our courses in writing policies and procedures will give you the skills you need.

Train your staff in how to create clear and effective policies and procedures information. You can arrange for an on-site training course that focuses on your situation.

More information

contact cherryleaf
If you'd like more information about Cherryleaf's training courses, including options for courses for groups in a single organisation, contact us using our training services contact form. If you can’t see the course you want, contact us, as we may still be able to cater for your needs.

Technical writing – ebooks and report

amazon review

This special report answers the key questions people have when considering a career as a Technical Author.

This guide answers the key questions people have when considering a freelance career as a Technical Author.

Course administration

Our Course Administration page provides details on requirements and terms and conditions.

Contact us

contact cherryleaf
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