Amy E. Sparks
Bridging the Gap Between Technical and Non-Technical Audiences
In more than 15 years of corporate and government experience, I’ve learned some important lessons:
Technical and non-technical people have communications issues.
You’ve got two different audiences - two different sets of terms, two sets of priorities, two different perspectives of the same process.
Creators have a hard time writing instructions.
You’re too close to understand what someone new to the process needs. You know all of the steps, but that doesn’t mean you can write them all down. You might miss a step. You might not explain a step thoroughly. You might use terms or acronyms that aren’t familiar.
You’re not intentionally confusing your reader. It’s just hard to find that sweet spot where your audience has all needed instructions.
Documentation is typically an afterthought.
You’re facing a tight deadline and don’t want to delay the implementation. You’ll be focusing on finishing in time, instead of writing documentation.
You say, I’ll do the documentation when I’ve got some time. Problem is, you don’t have the time because you’re moving on to the next project.
If you’ve got consultants or contractors for that particular project, they’ll walk out the door and take all of their knowledge with them.
I bridge the communication gap between technical and non-technical.
Over 15 years in IT departments, primarily focusing on application implementation and support throughout the software development life cycle (SDLC). I was the translator keeping the technical and business departments working together to document and improve processes.
MBA from Wake Forest University
Bachelor of Science in Commerce from the University of Virginia - concentrations in Marketing and Human Resources Management
ITIL Intermediate Operational Support & Analysis
PMP (Project Management Professional)
I’m an experienced trainer.
For more than 15 years, I’ve developed, updated, and delivered training. I’m used to customizing training for:
- Audience size: one-on-one to hundreds
- Training length: one page guides to 100+ page manuals
- Training time: 5 minute presentations to 3 day long courses
- Media: written, instructor-led, online
- Staff level: entry-level, C-level, and everyone in between
- Content: between or within technical and non-technical teams
You name it, I probably wrote it.
√ Run books
√ Knowledge management
√ User guides
Etc. (See my Services page for more info)
A Little More About Me
I’m a blogger.
Topics including health, chronic illness, parenting, entertainment, and sports.
My pet peeves:
Incorrect usage of it’s/its.
Spelling lose with an extra O (it’s not loose!).
Easy to open bottles that aren’t.
I also write fiction.
Former associate editor and contributor for flash fiction (1000 words or less) e-zine Smokelong Quarterly.
Published microflash (under 200 words) in Green Tricycle.
Written sarcastic reality show recaps for RealityTVWorld.com.
♣ I once drew 3 cards to a straight flush and kept my poker face.
😵 I am the mom of a tween and a teen. Help.
🏀 I am addicted to ACC basketball and have had to convince my UVA friends that marrying a UNC graduate does not make me a traitor.