Come Join the P&P Sig Slack Channel

Slack is a virtual communication tool and a free benefit for STC members. On Slack, you can meet, engage, and collaborate with fellow technical communication colleagues. The P&P SIG Channel is #sig-policies-procedures. Once you locate us, right-click the name and STAR us.

Click here to join, so you can receive a code to create your account. If you have trouble with the link, please wait and try again after a day or two. Once you are in, go to the Society for Technical Communication Slack Workspace* then look for us (#sig-policies-procedures).

You can also download the Slack client/app for Windows or for Mac. You will need to sign in using your email address and the provided code.

Everyone who joins the STC Slack community is valued and should be treated with respect and courtesy. As such, STC has a Code of Conduct thread that lays out the expected behavior of Slack members; it applies to all channels and areas of the STC Communities Slack workspace.

If you feel that you have a case where someone’s conduct violates or establishes certain behaviors, STC has a thread with guidelines for Reporting Issues.

*Workspaces comprise many different channels.

P&P SIG Spring 2022 Meeting of the Minds

Calling all Policies and Procedures (P&P) SIG members! Join us in a virtual meeting of the minds on Tuesday, March 22, 2022, from Noon EST/11am CST (1 hour). Come and get to know the SIG’s new co-Managers and other volunteer leaders, find out what we’ve been up to, and learn how you can contribute. We would also like to hear from you to get your input, ideas, and interests. Feel free to submit any questions or topics of interest prior to the meeting.

The webinar is FREE. To register, reply to with:

  • Your name
  • Your contact email address
  • Any input, ideas, interests, or questions.

We will respond by sending you a link to the webinar. Thank you in advance, and we look forward to talking with you.

One more thing!

We will be attending the STC Summit in Rosemont, IL 15 -18 May 2022.

It’s not too late to join us!

Meaningful Content: Cross-Functional Techniques That Create Impact

Presenters: Bonnie Chase and Sara Feldman

In the last hour of the 2021 Summit, I was exhausted. It had been a very long day, and I was unable to give it my full undivided attention, because I was torn between focusing on ‘must attend’ meetings or preferably, sitting with Bonnie and Sara. I was so happy that I was able to sit in on their session because there was plenty of energy, knowledge, and information in that room. For those who did not attend this session, they missed a treat. Bonnie and Sara discussed the ideology of ‘content’, establishing how it was ‘purposeful’, ‘demand-driven’, and ‘contextually-relevant’. And I immediately thought to myself, “Well how is that?” And explain, they did. Content is ‘purposeful’ because we use it daily on the job in the tools we build and interact with, we use it as inspiration, and we use it as a tool for gratification. Content is ‘demand-driven’ because it is a way of promoting an achievement; or we use it to give customers an easy way of digesting information; and it can be used to collect measurements about a product or service. Additionally, content is ‘contextually-relevant’ because it says we are committed and focused, and it can move customers to a state of anticipation. Continue reading “Meaningful Content: Cross-Functional Techniques That Create Impact”

Bridging Products, Portals, and Content Gaps with Learning Maps

Presenters: Tyrin Avery and Erin Wagner Tidwell (Salesforce)

Learning Maps are a networked ecology of portals and/or products designed in such a way that people across businesses and even organizational entities are able to easily learn or locate information quickly. From a user interface (UI) perspective, Learning Maps allow the user to follow a staged path whereby selecting a topic from the path renders three additional tables of topics, narrowing the information to more specific content. The tool itself is built using CSS/HTML and some JavaScript, along with ‘Git’, an open-source tool created to control versioning, and ‘Heroku’, which functions as the publishing platform (it puts your content in the cloud). Continue reading “Bridging Products, Portals, and Content Gaps with Learning Maps”

P&P SIG Awarded 2021 Bronze Community achievement Award

The Policies and Procedures SIG leadership team is pleased to announce that the SIG has once again earned the Bronze Community Achievement Award (CAA). This award recognizes our community’s accomplishments and activities for 2020.

Our award citation reads, “For your educational and social outreach, including at the P&P SIG Virtual Open House and Virtual Social Event, impressive membership growth, and creative budget repurposing to send members to the STC Summit.

Per the STC’s website, “The Community Achievement Award recognizes a SIG, professional or student chapter’s outstanding accomplishments in achieving the Society’s goals through a wide range of programs and activities.” The application is a comprehensive point-based application.

Thank you to the volunteers who helped make our award possible.

Thank you also to the P&P SIG members for supporting our SIG. The leadership team looks forward to seeing you at a future SIG event. Please check our website for volunteer opportunities. (

The P&P SIG Leadership Team

The Art of Interviewing SMEs and Tech Comm Celebrities

This session is part of the Project Management, Leadership, and Career Development (PM) track of the Summit. The presenter of this session, Nicky Bleiel, has over 20 years of technical communication experience, is Past President of STC, and served as an STC Director-At-Large for five years. She is also a past president of the Pittsburgh Chapter of STC and has won multiple STC competition awards. In addition to these leadership positions, she has served as a judge for various STC competitions, and published and reviewed for STC Summit and STC’s journal, Technical Communication.

For today’s presentation, Ms. Bleiel presented on the key considerations for interviewing subject matter experts (SMEs) and well-known technical communicators. Before conducting your interview, make sure you are well-prepared with questions prepared and preliminary research completed. Be sure to review all product/subject-related information, diagrams and drawings, and related documentation. Do you have a good idea of the tools and technologies this SME uses in their work environment?

When starting the interview, be sure to cover the Five Ws:

• Who would use this feature?

• Why should they use this feature?

• When would users use this feature?

• When shouldn’t they use it?

• What are the prerequisites?

Continue reading “The Art of Interviewing SMEs and Tech Comm Celebrities”

Now I Get It: Three Strategies for Effectively Sharing Scientific Research

This session was part of the Content Design and Delivery (CD) track and features Dr. Jennifer Goode from Mercer University. Dr. Goode self-describes as a teacher, project manager, instructional designer and trainer, organizational expert, and holds the STC’s CPTC Foundation-level certification.

The impetus for her crafting this presentation is her experiences interacting with researchers at her university while assisting them with presenting their research information in the form of research posters. Often producers and consumers of scientific information have different perceptions of the information presented, though the expectation of understanding might have been the same. With the method crafted by Dr. Goode and her colleagues, audiences from all backgrounds find the scientific information accessible and easier to interpret.
Continue reading “Now I Get It: Three Strategies for Effectively Sharing Scientific Research”

Meet the P&P SIG Leadership Team

Aleshia Jefferson, Co-Manager

Aleshia Jefferson is a Member of STC. Her career began with writing hardware specs and operations manuals for some Fortune 500 Information Technology (IT) companies. She then moved on to develop training courses, write technical requirements, and work as a Project Manager.

For the last five (5) years, Aleshia has indulged in Content Engineer and Content Management roles to define governing, cataloging, publishing, and archival procedures used to solution regulatory, state mandated, and contractual business processes for clinical and medical Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). She has also been heavily involved in managing SharePoint sites and building tools that help automate processes.

Aleshia loves to mentor students and volunteer with non-profit organizations. She holds a Masters in Writing from DePaul University, Chicago.


Sam Lee, Co-Manager

Sam is a Member of STC and is also one of the P&P SIG Co-Managers. He started his career as a program coordinator in the intellectual property (IP) management industry. Sam learned many different technology fields, while working at the IP firm. He wanted to upskill his background by studying in a particular specialized technological area to advance his career. So, Sam decided to move into aviation, where he studied at an aircraft maintenance engineering program. Over ten years, he has gained experience in both fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft. He has also earned maintenance and avionics licenses. While working full-time, he received his Master of Technology Management and Master of Electrical Engineering degrees.

With determination, Sam chose to contribute his efforts in the aircraft certification process to meet airworthiness standards. He is currently a Senior Avionics Engineer for PAL Aerospace Engineering. He designs avionics systems, writes test plans and compliance reports, and conducts test witnesses. Recently, he completed a Technical Writing Certificate at the University of Waterloo.


Andrew Habashi,  Website Manager

Andrew joined the SIG as Website manager. Andrew has been busy upgrading our website. If you haven’t visited our site, please check out his recent posts.

Andrew works as a Technical Documentation Specialist for Ansys Inc. Ansys is a global public company based in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. It develops and markets multiphysics engineering simulation software for product design, testing, and operation.


Rich Hellinga, Membership Manager

Rich has agreed to continue as our Membership Manager. Thank you, Rich!
Rich is returning for another year as the SIG’s Membership Manager. He is happy to be volunteering for the P&P SIG and working with the other SIG leaders.

He works for a utility company in Michigan, primarily on developing and maintaining policies and procedures that have to do with safety. He ran his first marathon last October (in Detroit) and hopes to run another one in 2020.


Tricia Spayer, GoToMeeting Technical Manager and leadership team member

Tricia has agreed to continue serving on the leadership team. Thank you, Tricia!

Tricia is currently President of the Northeast Ohio Chapter of STC, which is where she learned her GoToMeeting skills. The P&P SIG currently shares its GoToMeeting resources with the Northeast Ohio chapter, and hopes to inspire more collaboration between STC communities.

Tricia has been a Technical Writer/ Illustrator for Pressco Technology Inc. for almost 24 years, and works as a department of one. She is an STC Associate Fellow, a former Director-at-Large for STC, and former chair of the Community Achievement Awards Evaluation Committee (CAAEC), Community Affairs Committee (CAC), as well as the STC Summit Columbus, Ohio host committee.

License to Edit: Techniques for Technical Editing Success

Policies and Procedures SIG members are invited to a multi-community webinar hosted by the Technical Editing SIG. Ann Marie Queeney will present “License to Edit: Techniques for Technical Editing Success” on July 7, from 2:00 to 3:00 PM (EDT).

How can the editing of the iconic James Bond series help technical editors sharpen their skills? Ann Marie will draw upon Ian Fleming and his editing team’s witty and insightful letters for an interactive discussion about technical editing issues, such as technical accuracy, jargon and clichés, and consistency. There will also be time for a few James Bond fun facts.

The webinar is free, but attendees must register to receive the link to the presentation.

Register here

Hope to see you there!

Thank you.

Ann Marie