Frequently Asked Questions
Why hire an outside firm to do
documentation ... our associates can just do it in their spare time?
In most organizations these days "spare time" is just about impossible
to find! Also, documentation is not usually the technician's favorite task so it
typically gets a very low priority. The most difficult part of documenting an
infrastructure is just getting started on the project! The documentation system
that we develop for you will get you started and make it easy to keep your
What is a "documentation
It is our term for an established set of procedures and tools used to create,
publish and maintain documents customized to your needs and preferences. We will
work with you to reach agreement on what documents would be useful to you, and
how the information can best be organized and presented within your facility.
Who does the work?
Jones Technical Services will develop the agreed upon documents and create a complete
documentation system with instructions on how to maintain it in the future.
We will ask you to review work-in-progress and provide
information as needed. You will have final approval on all
Where will the work be done?
Typically, most of the work is done at the
facility being documented. If you prefer, we can do some of the work at our
office after collecting information, taking measurements, taking photographs,
etc. at your location.
Will the documentation project be
disruptive to our day-to-day activities?
Although we will need to meet periodically with your designated staff in order to obtain information necessary to develop the documentation, we
will make every effort to minimize any impact upon their time. We
can also make arrangements to conduct potentially disruptive activities such as
circuit testing during off hours.
What software do you use?
To develop and publish the documentation we use Microsoft Visio,
FrontPage, PhotoDraw, Excel, Word, Access, PowerPoint, Internet Explorer and
Adobe Acrobat. Programming languages used to develop the documentation system
Outlook for project management and reporting.
Will I need to purchase anything else
in order to use and maintain the documentation system?
It is likely that you already have the necessary computer hardware. Software
needed to access the documentation is free, i.e. Microsoft Internet Explorer
and/or the Adobe Acrobat Reader. You may need to purchase one or more software
products to maintain the system, such as Microsoft Office 2000, Visio, and Adobe
Acrobat (full product) if you aren't licensed for them already. One license per
product will be needed for each computer in your organization that will be used
to maintain the documentation. Though we are not a reseller, Jones Technical
Services can help you find the best price on these products.
What resources will I need to
We will need the use of a desk or worktable in your facility, an Ethernet
connection to your Local Area Network, and access to a shared network printer.
We will need appropriate access to the network, building, data center, wiring
closets, electrical room and any other rooms that will be included in the
What resources will you
We will provide our own computers, office supplies, and testing tools.
What about confidentiality?
We will safeguard any confidential information or documents entrusted to
us. We will not
divulge any confidential information or take advantage of proprietary information obtained from the
client. Jones Technical Services is a member of the Independent Computer Consultants
Association and strictly adheres to the
ICCA Code of Ethics.
What is this going to cost?
We believe that you will find the costs to be quite reasonable. Our hourly rates
are based on the GSA schedule for Documentation Specialists and those rates are
negotiable depending upon the size and scope of the project. If you prefer, we
can propose a fixed cost for the entire project.
What are your qualifications?
Jones Technical Services has over 30 years of experience in Information
Technology. Our experience includes multiple computing platforms,
telephone systems, data center operations, network management, systems
programming and software development.
Can we see examples of the work you
have done for other organizations?
on this web site accurately reflect our capabilities.
Due to the confidential nature of the material, we cannot show actual work
samples without the consent of our clients.
On your Examples page you provide
links to a "VML version" and a "PDF version". Why?
Though the content is identical, each version demonstrates a different alternative for creating scaleable
diagrams for online presentation.
What are VML and
Vector Markup Language (VML) is an application of Extensible Markup Language (XML) 1.0 which defines a format for the encoding of vector information together with additional markup to describe how that information may be displayed and edited.
A Typical or Full install of Microsoft Internet Explorer version 5 or above is required to view VML
Portable Document Format (PDF) is a distribution format developed by Adobe Corporation to allow electronic information to be transferred between various types of computers.
The software which allows this transfer is called Acrobat. The Adobe Acrobat Reader version 3 or above ActiveX component (for Internet Explorer) or Plug-In (for Netscape and other browsers) is required to view PDF (Portable Document Format) documents within your browser window.
What are the pros and cons
of creating the online documentation using VML vs. PDF?
VML documents are smaller, easier to maintain, don't require installation of
the Adobe Acrobat Reader, and the user interface is simple. PDF documents don't require the Microsoft Internet
Explorer browser, provide a better zoom capability, more precise printing
control, and additional tools that are
helpful when working with diagrams. We have implemented systems that
use a combination of both technologies.
What is the first step?
We would like to arrange a meeting to discuss your documentation needs and
answer any other questions that you might have. Based on our initial meeting we
will develop a written proposal including the objectives, scope, approach, timing and fees for your
[Home] - [FAQ] - [Examples]
- [About Us] - [Contact]