Online help is a system designed to help the user that is delivered as part of the application with which the user is interacting. Help files can be “state-dependent”, such as commands or keywords which can be highlighted and clicked upon, and they can be external html or pdf files which contain the full printed documentation in a searchable format.
Online help can also include product tutorials which guide a user through specific tasks. These tutorials can incorporate video of the product being used, or may be a more static “walk-through” of the tasks required to complete a specific goal. Interactive tutorials show users how to carry out a task in your software, and then require users to actually perform tasks for themselves (with background information and guidance provided along the way). They provide an excellent, cost-effective way of training new users.
Online help and tutorials provide a variety of benefits:
Self help – Users can find out how to carry out tasks as and when they need to. This is particularly important for software packages sold ‘off the shelf’.
Reduced support costs – Making good quality walkthroughs available online reduces the burden on your support desk.
Global availability – Because they run over the web, the demos can be made available to users world-wide. We can translate the demos into the language you require to support the dialect of your users.
Standardization and consistency – They ensure that all users within your organization are carrying out tasks in the same way.
The Art of Documentation is fully experienced in creating both static and interactive help and tutorials. We stand ready to help your users get full use of your software and project by giving them the tools they need to help themselves.