SitePoint Technical Editor Might Just Be Your Dream Job

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SitePoint is still looking for a technical editor to join our publishing team. The technical editor positions are always hard to fill; the required technical and communication skills are a unique combination. But I also think a big problem with filling this kind of role is that not many people in the web industry are ever looking to move specifically into this kind of role. I know I wasn’t. In fact, before I got the job, I had no idea that this kind of job existed.

Some of the blame might rest with the job title: “technical editor” is no match for web industry jobs with titles that include the word wizard, genius, guru, or ninja. The title technical editor makes the role sound like it’s for the resident apostrophe nazi. Banish that thought; we already have a word nerd. What we need is a real web nerd.

If you are someone, or know of someone, who enjoys tinkering with stuff on the web just for the fun of it, and then sharing your knowhow, this might just be the perfect job — getting paid for staying up to date with web technology and working with a bunch of hardcore web geeks who share the passion.

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  • http://www.geekdaily.net justinbezanson

    Hi Andrew, I asked this question before but got no response. Is this position only available for someone living in Australia or is telecommuting an option?

  • http://www.SitePoint.com Matt Mickiewicz

    The position requires working out of our office in Melbourne Australia.

  • http://www.geekdaily.net justinbezanson

    Hey thanks Matt, thats too bad for me…sounds like an awesome job.

  • Anonymous

    I am from Nepal.

    Can I join your Team.

  • the moose

    i guess you could take me to oz for an interview…as i can get a working visa…!!!

  • not near

    What about the millions of sitepoint users that do NOT leave near Melbourne Australia? What is the relevance of this front page post for 99.9% of your audience?

  • WMX

    >> The position requires working out of our office in Melbourne Australia.

    Awww, *sad face*

  • http://www.SitePoint.com Matt Mickiewicz

    We’re willing to consider relocation for the right candidate. We have people from Canada and the UK working out of SitePoint’s Melbourne office.

  • hiddenpearls

    i have posted my resume ..is that considered ?
    i am from pakistan .. can i get this job ?

  • http://tetlaw.id.au Andrew Tetlaw

    Just to echo Matt’s comment and provide some clarification, yes we consider applicants from all over the world. If an appropriately skilled and experienced candidate, who is not a local resident, makes an application we are quite willing to make contact and do an initial interview over the phone.

    However, the job does require the applicant to relocate to Melbourne. The practicality of this situation is such that we give preference to local applicants over international candidates.

  • Pointless

    Why is this post on your home page? Are you that desperate to fill the role that you spam your visitors with this crap? How about spending money and working with a recruiter to find a proper candidate instead of posting a blog? As you can see from the brainless replies, you wont find a good candidate unless you invest some money. Monkeys.

  • jpollar

    Yep, this is going to be a hard sell. Your fan base is mostly comprised of individuals looking to not have a job. Plus, I can’t really imagine a technical editor having a very lucrative salary either.

  • http://www.magain.com/ mattymcg

    @Pointless and @jpollar: Your assumption that we haven’t invested money in recruiting is unfounded. Recruiting agencies here in Melbourne have done very well out of us, in fact, but traditionally they fail to deliver. We’re fussy about who we take on board, and in the past we’ve filled positions before based on readers who have read our blog post and applied. We’ll probably continue to do so. Believe it or not, but there are plenty of people who visit SitePoint who would love to work here. If that’s not you, fine. Thanks for your feedback.

  • molona

    To be honest, I think that many of Sitepoint members that have been around for a bit of time would love to work with Sitepoint. They have bought their books, they have learnt with them, and they know what quality they expect. I think this is a great opportunity and I hope that Sitepoint will find the appropiate person soon, if they haven’t done so yet.

  • JaniceG

    You might be having trouble filling this job because the job description and title do not emphasize that you are looking for someone with web development skills, which is not in the usual purview of a technical editor.

    Also, calling people who make sure that technical content is well structured, consistent, and clear by calling them “apostrophe nazis” is unprofessional and gratuitously insulting, not something I would expect from a company that supposedly prides itself on its publications.

    — Janice, an experienced technical editor

  • http://tetlaw.id.au Andrew Tetlaw

    Hi @JaniceG,
    The linked job description (http://www.sitepoint.com/about/jobs/job2-technical_editor.php) clearly indicates we are looking for someone with a web technology background. SitePoint is a publisher of books for the web industry.

    Regarding your perceived insult, it was not intended to be one (after all I’m a technical editor too). I merely trying to emphasize the ‘technical’ part of the job over the ‘editor’ part of the job. Professionals in the web industry may avoid applying if they think the job is all about correcting grammar. We already have a professional editor on staff. We need an experienced web professional who is also a good communicator.

    I think you’d agree that being technical editor, is more about technical accuracy, structure, consistency and clarity, as opposed to being primarily about editing?

  • JaniceG

    The linked job description clearly indicates we are looking for someone with a web technology background.

    I was (apparently clumsily!) trying to point out that the title that shows up in job searches is “Technical Editor” but the job itself is more wide-ranging than that.
    I think you’d agree that being technical editor, is more about technical accuracy, structure, consistency and clarity, as opposed to being primarily about editing?
    In what sense is “structure, consistency, and clarity” not editing? It’s certainly always been part of my job description :->
    &nbsp

    Also, at many companies, the technical editor is not responsible for technical accuracy. The title comes from the fact that the editor is editing technical documents, not that s/he is technically trained necessarily. The editor is responsible for making sure that the document is consistent, clear, and well structured but not necessarily that code examples or the like are accurate.

    There are even some schools of thought that say that technical editors shouldn’t be too familiar with the technical aspects of the work so that they can spot things that might not be clear to the reader. As you undoubtedly know, if you’re very familiar with a technology or interface, you sometimes skip explanations or steps that would be helpful for someone who is not yet as familiar with the material. However, you certainly need some degree of familiarity with the field just to make sure that you are not constantly querying terminology or concepts that are well known.

  • http://tetlaw.id.au Andrew Tetlaw

    Also, at many companies, the technical editor is not responsible for technical accuracy.

    I suspect that at SitePoint, the job of technical editor is not a typical one (more wide-ranging as you say), which might be the cause of the issue you have. Here the TE is the guardian, the last word and accountable for the technical accuracy and quality of the books.

    In what sense is “structure, consistency, and clarity” not editing?

    You’re right! And I thought that after I had posted :) What I meant was the TE’s primary resonsibility is technical accuracy and quality, and less about grammar. The TE also does code testing to make sure it works as advertised.

    The nature of the job makes it very difficult to find the right sort of person and the above blog post is my clumsy attempt to market the position to the right sort of candidate.

    I know what you mean about the familiarity aspect. But at SitePoint TE’s will often edit books on topic with which they’ve had no experience. They do need web industry experience of one sort or another in order to have a ‘nose’ for when something doesn’t look right in a book on an unfamiliar technology.

    This is actually one of the reasons I love this job – lot’s of accountability, opportunity to explore new technologies, and most of all it’s incredibly stimulating, often involving research and experimentation.

  • JaniceG

    Wish I had a bit more ability to check code accuracy aside from basic CSS and HTML – sounds like a good place to work!