Ask an Expert – April 2018 – How to Make Manuals More Accessible

How to Make Manuals More Accessible

Before you say no or turn thumbs down on these suggestions; consider these thoughts.

You can definitely increase your revenue and reduce both your internal and external costs and here’s how.

Come to think of it, there is really not too much that anyone would need to do in order to make their manual more accessible. True it is that you need to first and foremost consider your audience but there are also important things for you to consider and implement and here they are:

  1. Make sure that your manual is written in language that is easy to understand. You need to keep in mind that if your manual is written in the English language, chances are that many of your readers are going to be those whose first language is not English.
  2. If you translate from English to another language, then make sure that your translator’s first language is the language that the manual is being translated to. Too many times translators are not properly used. This is a common pitfall.
  3. Make sure that your table of contents is very clear and concise and that chapter headings are easy to find. Same for section headings.
  4. Check your fonts to ensure that they are easy to read.
  5. Make sure that fonts are bold and easy to distinguish.
  6. Make your paragraphs short, your sections compact, and do not overcrowd your pages with too many graphs, images, and writing.
  7. Make headings easy to find and make sure that you provide introductions for each chapter.
  8. Make your manual available not just in print, but also electronically.

This should be a good start for you.

Good luck!

I’m Donna J. Jodhan your freelance writer and roving reporter wishing you a terrific day.

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