As there are no official statistics recording the number of people employed as Technical Authors in the UK, we have to make some educated guesses to get a sense of the size. Searching LinkedIn might provides some useful information.
In LinkedIn’s advanced search page, if we search the job title field for Technical Author, LinkedIn states there are 5,297 people who match this search. This would include past job titles as well as current job titles. Searching on just current job titles, LinkedIn provides 2,109 results for Technical Author. Searching on just past job titles, LinkedIn provides 2,528 results for Technical Author. It’s not clear why those two figures don’t add up to 5,297.
One of the difficulties is that people use a variety of different job titles. In addition to the 2,109 results for Technical Author, we can add the people who have these current job titles in the UK:
- Technical Writer – 603
- Technical Communicator – 28
- Information Developer – 21
- Documentation Manager – 394
That makes a total of 3,155.There may be other job titles people are using in addition to these, which would increase the numbers further.
There were over 19 million registered LinkedIn users in the United Kingdom, as of the 3rd quarter of 2015 (source), out of a UK working population of 30 million people (source), which means it’s unlikely every Technical Author has a profile on LinkedIn.
It seems reasonable to conclude there are more than 3,200 Technical Authors in the UK, but possibly not more than 5,000.
It makes you wonder how many people produce documentation within their companies but don’t class themselves as Technical Authors/Writers/Communicators etc.. as they do this task but it’s not their main role and are under valuing their skills? I know of a few within our company.