The LavaCon Content Strategy Conference | 27–30 October 2024 | Portland, OR
Jean-Luc Borie

As the Co-founder and CEO, Jean-Luc leads the Componize team in the development of its business, marketing and culture.

Prior to Componize, Jean-Luc held different management and business development positions with software and IT services companies. He joined the Content Management industry in 2005, when he created the Enterprise Content Management department of a French IT services company, with Frank Shipley. 

Jean-Luc holds a Master’s degree in International Business, with a specialization in Computing from the University of Aix-Marseille in the South of France. A perennial good spirit, he is also a long-distance open water swimmer and a wine enthusiast.

SME collaboration: an analysis of current working practices in 150 companies

Co-presented with Frank Shipley.

For the past decade, Componize has been helping international businesses like Toyota, SAP and Airbus make the transition to DITA. During this time, we’ve had a lot of time to get to know our clients, as well as a range of other potential customers – we understand their needs and we understand their challenges. DITA is clearly a highly acclaimed editorial format, but we’ve noticed a recurring theme when discussing its limitations:

  • DITA benefits can often be offset by cumbersome aspects of the user journey. Users feel frustrated that it doesn’t fit with their Agile processes, and additional costs materialise.
  • SMEs hold vital knowledge on the intricacies of a business, but it’s too difficult to integrate them into the authoring process because they’re very rarely trained, and ‘intuitive’ XML editors have been difficult to navigate for the uninitiated.

We needed a period of honest reflection: Can the advent of agile methodologies revitalize content creation and maintenance? What role should SMEs be playing in the future of information sharing? It was clear that something needed to change.

Our presentation will propose a Darwinian evolution of the process of creating technical documentation within an organisation. In particular, it will unveil the results of a survey of technical writers from around the world.