What is IT Documentation?

As the world of IT continues to grow, IT continues to become more complex. Today, it’s next to impossible for MSPs or IT professionals to remember where everything is as they navigate through various systems and gather information. Paired with the fact it is an MSP’s duty to provide security and to respond to occurrences quickly, IT documentation is an essential tool to keep everything in order.

IT documentation involves recording in detailed descriptions tasks, methods, procedures, and any other essential piece of information that’s used in an IT environment. This can mean documenting credentials or configurations that are necessary for devices to function. There is also software that provides a single location and stores that information reliably for quick and easy access.

IT documentation is only as effective as the person who is doing the documentation. As such, consider the following best practices to ensure IT documentation is the best it can be.

Create A Plan

Documenting requires technical know-how and having a plan in place is important. Planning shouldn’t be too complicated, but should consist of the following:

  • Deciding what information is going to be recorded
  • How that information will be recorded
  • How the information will be organized

Covering these three points will ensure higher efficiency in documenting.

Writing With Clarity

IT documentation is meant to be used as a point of reference by many people. With that in mind, it’s important that any person who looks at this documentation can understand what the information is all about. When writing, ensure it is direct and succinct as possible. Remove additional fluff too. What is important in documentation is that the credentials are listed and the procedures that follow are simple.

Additionally, ensure the information written is accurate. Onboarded employees will also be using this information and having clear instructions will ensure they can grasp the information and perform their roles better.

Use Multimedia To Organize

Organizing the information in general is helpful as it’ll be easier for anyone to search for and find the information later. The use of multimedia further enhances this as it includes colours, charts, and graphs that can be used to display key data points. These also make documentation more visually appealing and easier to understand and process.

Standardize Documentation

For further organization, standardizing both the documentation process and the documents themselves can decrease the learning curve and make finding documents easier. In terms of the process itself, IT documentation software makes standardizing simple through multiple templates. Applying a single template for all documentation will make it easier for both recording and locating files.

Make It A Habit

IT documentation is also a living document and updates should be done daily. Documentation is crucial for both security and ease of business processes so it’s important for it to be a daily practice. IT documentation is also a collaborative effort as many departments within an organization will be looking it over for both use and accuracy.

Use IT Documentation

Even though IT documentation provides more work and additional steps, it is crucial for a wide variety of reasons. It’s often used to reduce the learning curve for new employees, to increase efficiency on various tasks, to minimize risks of mistakes, and to provide better security.

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