Best Practices for Converting to a New Tool

Ed Marshall


We often find that we need to convert from one tool to another for a variety of reasons. This webinar focuses on the best practices that apply, regardless of the tools involved. By following the practices discussed, you should find your conversion process will go much more smoothly.

You will learn:

  • How to select the best test documents for your trial conversions
  • How to prepare your files for trial conversions and what to check in the output
  • The importance of documenting the conversion steps and good ways to document them

All of us have had to convert from tool X to tool Y countless times in our careers for various reasons. Careful planning and upfront analysis can ensure that the conversion will go quicker and easier than if you just practice "ready, fire, aim."

Topics to be covered include:

  • Deciding on the new workflow you are going be using. Will you be moving all your docs from the previous tool to the new tool? It might be prudent to move a subset initially. Explore some of the issues involved in making these decisions.
  • Best practices for selecting test documents for trial conversions.
  • Preparing your source files for efficient conversions. What should you do?
  • Running sample conversions and evaluating the output.
  • Documenting the steps and settings that work for your documentation set.
  • Presenting your conversions and problems to management, if need be.

Presenter Biography

Ed Marshall is an independent consultant technical writer and the sole proprietor of Marshall Documentation Consulting, with over 24 years in technical writing. He specializes in technical documentation for developers including API (application programming interfaces), SDK (software developer's kits), Web Services products, etc. Over his career, Ed has developed expertise in using tools to "let the computer do the work," such as advanced tools for editing files, comparing files, and searching / replacing text.

He has presented many talks at local STC chapters, the STC Summit, the WritersUA Conferences, the DocTrain Conferences, and other professional conferences. Ed can be reached at or at