Technical Author (multiple roles and seniority levels)

  • Canonical
  • Home based - Worldwide
  • 29 May, 2024

Job Description

Our ambition is to set a standard of excellence in the industry for technical documentation and documentation practice. This is your chance to be a part of that, as a Technical Author at Canonical.

We are building documentation capacity at scale. We have dozens of positions opening, for products and teams across the organisation, at all levels from Graduate to Senior Staff.

All applications and candidates are handled through this one entry-point. We'll be able to discuss seniority levels, suitable teams and more later in the process, to help place you in the most suitable role for you.

The role of a Technical Author

A Technical Author leads the documentation efforts of an engineering team, typically focused on a product or family of products. You'll help the team develop documentation that serves the needs of the product's users, embracing the principles of the Diátaxis documentation framework. You will have a broad impact on - and responsibility for - the quality of the user experience with the product, and will contribute towards the long-term success of the project itself.

These are not traditional technical writer roles. As a Technical Author, you will participate in development of product strategy. You will have input into product design and user experience. You will combine technical expertise with leadership in documentation, collaborating with colleagues across the company to establish documentation as a first-class engineering discipline. Even the most junior Technical Authors will have the opportunity to develop and demonstrate technical authority.

As well as your role in an engineering team, you will also be a part of Canonical's documentation practice team, that includes all the company's Technical Authors. Here, you'll be amongst other documentation experts, who collaborate to define documentation excellence and drive the development of documentation practice and theory, across the company and in the open-source software community.

Location: These are fully remote roles, open to candidates across the globe. 

What you'll do on a regular basis

  • Create, maintain and improve software documentation
  • Work with engineering team members, to help them make effective documentation contributions
  • Influence the development of the product, as an expert user of the product, who has important opinions about its function and design
  • Engage with user communities to ensure that our documentation meets their needs 
  • Encourage and support community engagement in and contribution to documentation
  • Help standardise the structure, presentation, style and language of content across products
  • Collaborate with documentation peers to advance the state of the art in documentation at Canonical
  • Challenge and advance documentation understanding and best-practice, as part of a disciplinary team 

Our best candidate

  • Cares deeply about functional written communication
  • Is a technical writer with a programmer’s mindset, or a programmer with a record of producing excellent documentation
  • Has a record of community engagement, in open-source software, documentation, research or other disciplines
  • Is sympathetic to the needs and challenges of open-source software and its communities
  • Demonstrates technical curiosity, and is fascinated by software technology and its challenges
  • Has demonstrable documentation skills, insight and enthusiasm
  • Has experience of software development contexts; is familiar with: Linux, working on the command line, application deployment, system operations, and infrastructure management, Git, documentation markup languages
  • Has excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Holds a BSc/BA degree or equivalent
  • Is able to travel twice a year for up to two weeks for events

Additional skills that you might also bring

  • Deep technical domain knowledge
  • Open-source community leadership and management
  • User-experience, interaction or visual design

What we offer you

We consider geographical location, experience, and performance in shaping compensation worldwide. We revisit compensation annually (and more often for graduates and associates) to ensure we recognise outstanding performance. In addition to base pay, we offer a performance-driven annual bonus. We provide all team members with additional benefits, which reflect our values and ideals. We balance our programs to meet local needs and ensure fairness globally.

  • Distributed work environment with twice-yearly team sprints in person
  • Personal learning and development budget of USD 2,000 per year
  • Annual compensation review
  • Recognition rewards
  • Annual holiday leave
  • Maternity and paternity leave
  • Employee Assistance Programme
  • Opportunity to travel to new locations to meet colleagues
  • Priority Pass, and travel upgrades for long haul company events

About Canonical

Canonical is a pioneering software technology firm at the forefront of the global move to open source. As the company that publishes Ubuntu, one of the most important open source projects and the platform for AI, IoT and the cloud, we are changing the world on a daily basis. We recruit on a global basis and set a very high standard for people joining the company. We expect excellence - in order to succeed, we need to be the best at what we do.

Canonical has been a remote-first company since its inception in 2004.​ Work at Canonical is a step into the future, and will challenge you to think differently, work smarter, learn new skills, and raise your game. Canonical provides a unique window into the world of 21st-century digital business.

Canonical is an equal opportunity employer

We are proud to foster a workplace free from discrimination. Diversity of experience, perspectives, and background create a better work environment and better products. Whatever your identity, we will give your application fair consideration.

#LI-remote