How product documentation improves decision-making

Posted by
January 22, 2018

Decisions are made every day at work. From simple, almost automatic ones like answering a common customer query. To more conflicting ones such as calling out a colleague for his or her behavior. Decisions can be as powerful to make or break a business. For an organization to achieve its overall strategy, it is important that every decision made supports it.

The demand for quality decisions

But making decisions is hard. An EY survey revealed that 81% of global senior executives from the consumer products sector indicated that they needed to improve their decision-making speed and level of insight. “They suggested that their people spent too much time making decisions based on intuition, working on mechanical tasks and focusing on unnecessary detail.”

Likewise, an Economist Intelligence Unit survey, supported by Capgemini, found a growing demand for fact-based decision-making in organizations. It revealed that 54% of senior executives increasingly viewed management decisions based purely on intuition or experience as suspect.

The value of better information flow

While big data, automation, and analytics are usually the first to come to mind, promoting better decision-making practices in an organization starts with easy access to the right information. That can be done with a streamlined information flow, and this is where product documentation comes in.

People resort to intuition because they don’t have all the information they need to be in a good position to make informed choices. Conversely, when there is a smooth flow of information throughout an organization, departments are in sync, performance are monitored, data are collected, processes are improved, strategy is executed, and mistakes avoided—on a holistic level. Having all the information to paint a complete picture, quality decisions are easier to make.

Facilitating information flow, product documentation helps decision-making

Being the creator, facilitator, and repository of content, product documentation plays a critical role in promoting and streamlining information flow. It breaks down barriers, lets people gather cross-functional insights, and gives way to a more horizontal and integrated organizational culture. This increases the quality of decision-making of everyone—not just of executives who often make the tough decisions.

Let’s see how this works:

  • For example, the engineering team received a feedback from the community manager about users noticing how the app freezes when they open a certain feature.
  • To address that, the engineering team introduced a code that eliminates the bug responsible for the poor app performance.
  • This change was then communicated to the following: UX designers who made sure it didn’t interrupt with customer experience;
  • Support specialists who appeased customer complaints with the solution;
  • Marketing who released a statement about the issue being solved;
  • Community managers who shared the development in online discussions; and
  • Business development executives who communicated more product value to potential customers.

Product documentation makes it possible for multiple departments to have the same access to the latest product changes which not only informs people, but also empowers them to make quality decisions and actions that support the overall strategy of the organization.

Zoomin Docs is an off-the-shelf customizable and rich dynamic documentation portal that helps organizations deliver quick access to relevant technical information. By ingesting any type of structured or unstructured content and presenting this in a topic/article format for ease of access and consumption, Zoomin Docs enables product documentation to improve the flow of information throughout the organization. As a result, making decisions, from the simplest to the most complex, becomes easier and even strategic.

Zoomin Software