tekom - Europe

The Results of the tekom Members’ Survey

Personal and Digital at the Same Time

Daniela Straub

Here at tekom, we find ourselves in the midst of change, which we would like to actively shape together with our members. To learn more about our members’ wishes and needs, we sent out a survey in Autumn 2019. Nearly 800 members in all age groups and with different professional requirements provided comprehensive feedback to the tekom board.

One of the questions we asked was why our members decided to become and remain members. Two main motivations were revealed as equally strong: beneficial services and belonging to a community. tekom members benefitfrom the various offerings that come with membership. First and foremost, tekom offers its members relevant information on various current topics – which can be found in two magazines, in publications, on the website, or on the blog. "Through tekom I stay up to date on all aspects of technical communication/translation that are relevant to me", wrote one member.

Members also value the exchange between colleagues, especially at tekom’s conferences and other events: "I think it's good to have an association of other editors where you can exchange ideas and receive further training. In a company, technical editors are more like a necessary evil before delivery, so it's great if you know you're not alone and others have similar problems or solutions". Indeed, according to the results, tekom events are very much appreciated, attended by many with enthusiasm and regularity.
The central services of the association also include professional support, for example from the expert council or the practical guides. Technical support is important and valuable in the daily work of many respondents.
According to the results of the survey, our members expect investments to be made above all in:

Many members emphasize that tekom is the professional association that supports their profession at various levels. They see standardization work as a central pillar – it is considered very relevant. Members expect "active shaping of standards and directives at the international level", as well as a "strong focus on practical application" of these.

Training and Education play an important role

According to the survey, tekom is also the professional association representing the occupational profile in the public and promoting professionalization, both at the national and international level. The members appreciate the fact that tekom has "defined, concretized and professionalized the profession of ‘technical writer’ for the first time ever". tekom should offer "all possible help for career changers, which is needed to be able to work well in the profession" and be "a contact point where I can get professional help and further training", says one of the members. Training and further education play an important role in professional work. One member sees tekom certification as a “recognized qualification standard that is increasingly requested in job offers".

In addition to the wide range of offerings, the factor of belonging is the reason for many to be a tekom member: they value the community, "the feeling of solidarity", "the big family of like-minded people", in which they can exchange ideas. In addition, active work with young talents is encouraged: younger members are enthusiastically supported, and need-based offerings for students and young professionals are being further expanded.

We would like to thank everyone who took part in the survey. Your input helps us redesign and improve ourselves. “Personal and digital” sums it up in a nutshell!