Out of date software documentation is a problem when you are adding new software and systems to your company. Many companies purchase expensive software packages only to discover that they will not integrate with older versions of existing software, and the whole exercise becomes a nightmare of ballooning costs and software glitches that are expensive on many levels.
During our DocAudit process we frequently discover that companies have updated their software without updating the documentation, or have added additional code or other functionality without noting it in the documentation. This frequently causes major headaches during upgrades and integrations.
What will the DocAudit Report do for us?
During the audit service we will review all your existing software documentation and your updating process and provide you with a comprehensive report. Your report will highlight key areas that could be a problem if the software is integrated with other systems or delivered to external providers.
The two main problems we encounter are:
1. Quality of Documentation.
Most companies have many different types of software documentation and usually one person is responsible for managing and updating these. In addition to the main system or application, there are usual third party services which are integrated withit. The documentation relating to these integrations is often inadequate, difficult to follow, or missing key content.
2. Thoroughness of Updating Process.
Companies which use multiple copies of the documentation with no centralised master copy frequently discover (usually when a project is underway) that not all copies of the documentation have been updated. The impact of this on project budgets can be enormous as service providers are suddenly working with a system that is quite different from that quoted.
Imagine this typical situation in which up-to-date documentation is critical:
A Service & Utility company has an existing online system that is available to the public 24/7. The mainarea of the system is the customer account, billing process, and payments.
The company is reviewing the capabilities of the existing system and considering upgrading it to provide better service to their customers. As a result of its internal review of their payment and billing systems, this business has decided to integrate a third party service provider.
Their internal team is already booked up with ongoing projects, so they decide to outsource the project. The service provider you are integrating into your system recommends one of their experienced partners, but they need the documentation for your existing system to complete the work. When he current documentation is given to the integration partner, they immediately realise your documentation is out of date and the task will be far more complex and costly than they anticipated.
Suddenly your budget is totally blown out!
"It's clear that when your documentation is easy to use and up-to-date you will save time and money on your software integrations."
How DocAudit can help
Our business analyst will analyse your documentation for your current software application or for any third party applications you are looking at integrating with thoroughly.
Note: When we are reviewing documentation for integrations we recommend that you provide us with full documentation for each system.
We look at the following areas of your document:
The form of any documentation affects the availability of your documentation and ease of management. Common forms of documentation are: PDF documents, or Word documents.
Cloud software applications are now a good way to manage your documentation and ensure that everyone has access to the latest versions. Repositories such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft One drive are excellent options. Your audit report will contain recommendations on improving the management of your documentation.
The structure of your documentation affects its ease of use. Problems within the structure of the document can make it very difficult for users to follow and interpret
A crucial step of our DocAudit process is the review by our software team. Not only does the form, storage, and structure of your documentation matter, it also needs to be comprehensive and technically correct. If a software engineer cannot understand your documentation and the build and development stage, your integration will take longer and cost more.
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