I am a technical writer who works in the office 1 day per week. The job I have does not require a lot of teamwork because I am the sole writer, but I do need to get information from developers. The info I need falls into the following categories:
- General information about the features, how they work and why they were implemented.
- Specific information (like how a feature behaves in a very specific situation and why it is behaving in a way I don't expect)
- Feedback for the work I have done (to ensure accuracy)
I have no problem getting 1, but I can't get responses for 2 or 3. The developers responsible for 2 have other priorities and their managers (responsible for 3) are very, very busy as the release approaches. My boss does not want to be involved in chasing them down.
If I go to their office in person, they say they will get back to me when they have the answer, but they never do. If I send an email, I either get no response or I get sent on an endless journey of "ask person x" responses.
On top of all of this, I am often very rushed to get the documentation ready, so it is a big problem that some days I do almost nothing but chase people down.
I know the problem involves all of the following points:
- I am not in the office every day
- Developers don't care about documentation
- Everyone has too much to do before a release
- My boss (who cares about the documentation) is not the developer's boss
- Decisions I need to know about are not being made until the very last minute
- features are barely being finished and tested before the release, so there is almost no time at all to tell me the final decisions and have me document it
How do I do my job without poison darts?
Edit: I do not think this is the same question as How to proceed when remote boss doesn't answer emails? because
- I am the one who is remote, and
- The dynamic is very different between an employee and boss.