CH01 - M01_GERS4751_06_SE_C01.QXD 10:50 PM Page 2 CHAPTER 1...

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In the Gulfview scenario, employees in diverse locations reveal the importance of technical communication. Gulfview Architectural and Engineering Services is home based in Gulfview, Texas, with office sites in ten U.S. cities and five locations throughout the world. Gulfview hopes to build a power plant in Saudi Arabia. To accomplish this task, a team of employ- ees is working on two continents. The project requires that all team mem- bers be involved in numerous communication challenges. Proposal. First, one team, consisting of engineers, ar- chitects, marketing specialists, accountants, lawyers, and technical communicators, put together a pro- posal. In this proposal, they focused on the serv- ices they could offer, the expertise of their workforce, the price they would charge for the construction, and a timeline for their work. Despite many competitors, Gulfview won the account. E-mail. The construction would take Gulfview approximately two years. During that time, Gulfview personnel had to communicate with their Saudi contractors on a daily basis. E-mail answered this need. The team members communicated with each other by writing approximately 50 e-mail messages a day. C H A P T E R 1 An Introduction to Technical Communication COMMUNICATION at work M01_GERS4751_06_SE_C01.QXD 11/2/07 10:50 PM Page 2
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In these transmittals, the team members focused on construction permits, negotiated costs with vendors, changed construction plans, and asked questions and received answers. They also used these e-mail messages to build rapport with coworkers. Intranet Web Site and Corporate Blog. To help all parties involved (those in Saudi Ara- bia as well as Gulfview employees throughout the United States), Gulfview’s Information Technology Department built an intranet site and a blog geared specifically toward the power plant project. This firewall-protected site, open to Gulfview employees and external vendors associated with the project, helped all construction personnel submit online forms, get corporate updates, and access answers to frequently asked questions. Many of these FAQs were managed through online help screens with pull-down menus. The blog allowed employees to provide work journals, web logs in which they could comment on construction challenges and get feedback from other employees working with similar issues. Letters. To secure and revise construction permits, Gulfview personnel had to write for- mal letters to government officials in Saudi Arabia. In addition, Gulfview employees had to write letters to vendors, asking for quotes. Reports. Finally, all of the employees involved in the power plant project had to report on their activities. These included Progress reports providing updates on the project’s status Incident reports when job-related accidents and injuries occurred Feasibility reports to recommend changes to the project’s plan or scope Meeting minutes following the many team meetings Like all companies engaged in job-related projects, Gulfview Architectural and En- gineering Services spent much of its time communicating with a diverse audience. The
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  • Summer '16
  • ian lomotos
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