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Event report

Summary of the tekom Danmark event

Tuesday, March 5, we held the second event in tekom Danmark, the Danish country group of tekom, Europe’s largest professional association for technical communication We were about 30 participants from different companies who met at Schneider Electric A/S in Birkerød. We spent the afternoon listening to three presentations covering the topic “Video and Technical Communication”.

Following the presentations and during the breaks there were questions and enthusiastic discussions on the topic (and probably other topics as well). We ended a very informative afternoon by an informal dinner partly sponsored by Schneider Electric and organized by Mette Nyberg. Big thanks to Mette and Schneider Electric for hosting this event and to Mette (once again), Per Frederiksen, and Holger Thater for contributing to the event with very interesting and inspiring presentations.


The agenda for the event was:

· Introduction to tekom by Per Sørensen, head of the Initiative Committee for tekom Danmark

· Video Production by Mette Nyberg, Senior Technical Communicator at Schneider Electric A/S

· Tools and Techniques - A Practical Approach by Per Frederiksen, Owner of Write2Users

· Utility Films by Holger Thater, Senior Manager Technical Documentation at SMA Solar Technology AG

· Discussion and Q&A

· Snack & Networking


Introduction to tekom

Per started out by giving a short introduction to tekom. This session was a summary of the introduction from the first tekom Danmark meeting in November 2012. He informed about the history of tekom, the purpose, the members and memberships, regional and country groups, activities, publications, education, and upcoming events. For more information about Tekom, see http://www.tekom.de/


Video Production

Mette presented the workflow of a video production at Schneider Electric. She talked about the different phases of a video production from preparation to recording, post-processing, and publishing and shared her personal experience with video production, such as what to think of and what you need to know when you, as a technical communicator, start creating videos as a supplement to technical documentation. She stressed that the preparation phase is extremely important as thorough preparation saves time later. She strongly recommended creating a detailed story board and making sure that the physical environment is in place before starting the actual recording of video. Mette ended her presentation by sharing a number of useful tips and tricks.


Tools and Techniques - A Practical Approach

Per started out by also stressing the importance of preparing the video production before recording. It is important to decide on the goal (purpose and length, audience, teaching or selling), create a script, and make sure that the sound works. He showed us an example of a story board and shared tips and tricks on creating good audio. The second part of his presentation walked us through the steps of creating a small video clip using Camtasia Studio. We saw a demo on how to record video and sound, add start and end slides, captions, TOC, and so on. Per also touched briefly on how videos can be localized.


Utility Films

Whereas Mette’s and Per’s presentations focused on creating videos for software applications, Holger’s presentation was about creating instructional videos on how to use to tools and equipment in an industrial production. Holger introduced the concept of “utility film” and shared his practical experience on the creating them using Riva. Compared with the type of videos that Mette and Per work with, these videos are shorter and only show one action step in a procedure at a time and they do not have sound and text. However, the workflow for producing the utility films was similar to the one for software application videos. Once again, the preparation phase is crucial and in the case of utility films, safety regulations are extremely important both in the preparation and recording phase.


What’s Next?

Tekom Danmark activities in 2013:

Date Theme Location Duration
June 7 Technical Content – A major asset for companies. Adobe Roadshow with tcworld Copenhagen Full day event  
Week 36 Localization, translation & terminology Aarhus Afternoon event
Week 47 TBD TBD Afternoon event




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