Writing great technical documentation is not a cakewalk. It is quite a tough domain, but it is important for businesses that work in this field. Technical writing refers to the art of clearly explaining how to use technology to an amateur individual. Writers need to provide the crucial information, but in the simplest manner so that it becomes interesting for all their inexperienced readers.
Thus, writers need some great technical documentation software, as that will make their job easier. However, nowadays we have innumerable documentation software available in the virtual market. It can be difficult to make the right pick as we are usually left wondering which one to choose.
This blog is a detailed guide answering all of those questions, so do give it a read as it might help budding technical writers pick the best documentation software for their writing pursuits.
Mentioned below are some of the finest content writing software.
I personally found some of these software to be better than the commonly used MS Word or Google Docs.
5 Easy-Breezy Software for Excellent Technical Documentation
1. Microsoft OneNote
Microsoft OneNote is a note-taking documentation software. It is used for information gathering, note taking, and for multi-user collaboration. The software obtains a user’s notes, drawings, audio commentaries, and screen clippings. OneNote enables easy note sharing with other users via the internet. This feature-rich software is available as a part of the powerful Microsoft Office suite. It is also available as a standalone, free app from the official Microsoft website, the Windows 10 app stores, iOS, macOS, and Android. OneNote is even accessible from the web as part of OneDrive and Office365. One of the most prominent features of OneNote is that it facilitates the easy organization of data in Notebook. It allows users to store all their data in the form of a notebook that is divided into different sections, and each section contains pages and subpages.
Key Features of Microsoft OneNote:
- Allows users to create different notebooks and sections on OneDrive.
- Users can share web content, images, videos, articles, files, and more with OneNote.
- Provides the impressive sticky notes feature to quickly jot down all thoughts.
- Offers an array of wonderful templates to organize your notes in a distinct manner.
- OneNote web clipper allows users to obtain information from a specific web page and transfer it to OneNote. Users can easily access all clipper webpages on a computer, phone, or tablet.
- Recording is another distinct feature of OneNote. Users can easily record their audio or video and can create audio and picture notes to streamline their work.
- It is a safe and secure platform where users can create a password for each section of their notebook.
- Offers a tagging feature users can activate to search and organize their content.
- Provides a helpful translation feature that translates notes into your desired language.
- OneNote offers a stellar ink to text and ink to math feature. While the former feature converts handwritten notes into typed texts, the latter is used to convert complex equations into formatted equations.
Document360 is also a wonderful SaaS knowledge-based software. It is specifically used for creating great technical documents. It is a powerful tool that is especially useful for editors, writers, and reviewers. Document360 offers some amazing features such as editing, category management, analytics, etc. It is a knowledge-based solution that helps businesses create a self-service platform for customers. Document360 allows users to draft any kind of technical writing document, not just memos or user manuals. Writers can use Document360 for catchy product descriptions, business proposals, white papers, and so on. Document360 is also loaded with brilliant editorial features. Writers have the choice of using either the Markdown editor that helps edit the way you desire, or the HTML editor. Also, the category manager allows writers to create categories and subcategories. This helps in grouping similar files together and for maintaining a well-structured order for all the information. Furthermore, Document360 offers the version history feature, which allows you to go back to the previous version of the document. This greatly helps writers, especially when a writer mistakenly overwrites some content. Writers can keep a close tab on all the analytics and thus get powerful insights for modifying their content accordingly.
Document360 is quite an easy-to-use tool. It comes with some supremely powerful features, but that doesn't really complicate things. It is therefore a must-try tool, especially for all the not-so-tech-savvy writers. Document360 also allows writers to optimize their content and make it SEO friendly. Collaboration is extremely important, especially when drafting great technical write-ups. Document360 enables writers to work together. The best part of Document360 is that writers can integrate all their documents with different apps such as Google Docs, Zendesk, Intercom, and Slack. Document360 is one of my all-time favorite technical documentation software. I might sound a little biased, but I would definitely recommend it to all the newcomers who have just stepped into the technical writing domain. However, Document360 is a little pricey and it might burn a hole in the pockets of small businesses.
Key Features of Document360:
- It is undoubtedly the easiest content creation software.
- Offers complete compatibility with multiple formatting tools such as code blocks and callouts.
- Provides crucial insights into how audiences are engaging with the content.
- It is a powerful multilingual documentation software.
- Creates roles to easily segregate the editorial workflow of the technical documentation.
- Offers complete customization as per your unique brand guidelines.
- Possesses an AI-powered search feature.
- Features a Google Drive-like feature, which writers can use to attach multiple files.
- Offers support for all complex categorization frameworks.
- Works in perfect harmony with Zendesk, Intercom, FreshDesk, and more.
Notion is another frequently used tool for writing great technical documentations. It is ranked amongst the top 20 documentation software on Capterra, a software comparison website. Notion is a multifaceted tool that not only performs the function of a writing repository, but it can also be used as a task management software and a database. It is an incredibly flexible, all-in-one virtual work place that is not just limited to taking notes. It offers numerous functions to its users and is one of the finest and easiest tools that I have come across so far. Notion can work as a robust repository for all of your company’s knowledge and creativity, and it can be easily stored under one roof. It keeps a tab on all the work projects, tasks, due dates, etc. Furthermore, Notion offers a wide range of attractive templates and it also comes with a free version wherein the users can access all of its wonderful features. Also, Notion enables guest access of up to five individuals in its free plan. Notion is an underrated tool, but I personally had a delightful experience using it. It is a wonderful task management and collaboration software that is especially useful in the remote working landscape, and its supremely splendid interface actually made my otherwise grueling work a lot easier.
Key Features of Notion:
- It's resplendent interface allows users to be at their creative best, putting forth their thoughts and notes in the most organized manner.
- Features a Lego-like structure that enables users to build their own dashboard however they may deem fit.
- Notion automatically saves notes and syncs the notes to multiple user devices.
- Allows unlimited file uploads with an attachment size of under 5mb for each file.
- Offers a magnificent free plan for individual users with access to unlimited pages and blocks. Also, it's paid plan for businesses is quite cost-effective and is undoubtedly worth the price.
- Allows writers to set due dates, flags, and reminders for keeping a tab on their projects.
- Permits users to collaborate with each other while working on a technical document or work project.
- Provides an array of templates that are fully customizable and makes the content more appealing.
- Notion has a stunning drag and drop feature for dragging and dropping items around the page, just like an editor.
4. Google Keep
Google Keep is another eminent note taking software that is a component of the free, web-based Google Docs Editors suite offered by Google. Google Keep is operational as both a web and mobile app that works on different mobile ecosystems such as Android and iOS.
The app comes with a variety of tools for note taking purposes. Google Keep allows notes to be color-coded, and there can be distinct labels for organizations. Users can also work in real-time and can collaborate on notes. Google Keep has some exceptional features such as its universal device access, native integration, and the option of converting photos into text via optical character recognition. The app, however, has mixed reviews, although I personally enjoy writing on Google Keep. It is an easy-to-use platform where I can take notes without any hassle, and I would definitely recommend Google Keep to all writers out there.
Key Features of Google Keep:
- Google Keep enables users to take various kinds of notes, be it simple texts, images, or audio recordings.
- Users can set automatic reminders with Google Keep. These reminders are integrated with Google Now and offer options for time and location.
- Allows users to extract texts from images via its powerful optical character recognition technology.
- Automatically transcribes all voice recordings.
- Provides conversion options for converting notes into checklists.
- Users can opt between a single-column view or a multi-column view.
- Users can make their notes color-coded.
- The "Copy to Google Docs” button in Google Keep allows users to automatically copy all their text into Google Docs documents.
- Users can create notes and lists with their voice.
- Notes can also be divided by using a list of labels in the app's navigation bar.
5. MadCap Flare
MadCap Flare stands tall as one of the most recognizable technical writing software. It is a content writing tool that helps generate output in different formats such as HTML5, Microsoft Word, Eclipse Help, PDF, Web Help, and EPUB.
Flare does not just create and import content. Whether it be subject matter expert review, multi-channel publishing, translations, or integrated cloud-based workflows, MadCap Flare does it all with unparalleled efficiency. It is a versatile tool that can cater to content teams of all sizes.
Also, Flare offers writers a robust topic centric XML authoring and publishing. It helps writers create self-service support, different online help sites, training guides, policy and procedure manuals, documentation portals, and a lot more. Flare helps businesses maximize their content reuse. It meticulously leverages multi-channel publishing that aids businesses’ growth by expanding their ROI.
MadCap Flare is undoubtedly the most powerful and all-inclusive solution that is specifically designed for technical writers.
Key Features of MadCape Flare:
- A robust and feature-rich tool that is specifically designed for technical writing.
- Offers advanced multi-channel publishing options.
- Provides topic-based authoring that helps with maximum content reuse, and reduced costs.
- Furnishes a single-source content development.
- Offers a redesigned style sheet editor.
- Provides multi-language translation, authoring, and publishing options.
- Offers the easiest and most-advanced content import options for a wide array of file types.
- Helps improve collaboration between technical writing teams and writers.
- Provides innumerable project templates for creating the most brilliant and visually appealing content.
- The multilingual publishing feature allows for the publishing of multiple languages in a single
That is all you need to know if you are keen on getting the best technical documentation software. While there is countless writing software available in the market, mentioned above are some of my personal favorites. I can vouch for these, and I am sure you too would like these documentation tools because of their stellar features. These technical documentation tools would definitely aid you in your writing process and would help streamline all your otherwise grueling tasks in the easiest manner. So do try these and enjoy your otherwise monotonous writing.
My Final Verdict - Writing detailed technical documentation is not a Herculean task anymore, thanks to the above 5 technical documentation software!