Have you ever counted just how many manuals the technical documentation department in your company creates? How many different ones are there? The result will probably come as a shock; in almost every company, there are tons of instructions documents in countless different variants.
There are manuals for different product variants that differ in just one aspect. There's maintenance literature for trained staff, documentation for the US market, and instructions in French, Danish, Japanese, and English. On top of this come manuals for previous versions as well as paper and PDF instructions, and instructions for mobile devices. Most documents in technical documentation are variants of other documents.
However, while this might sound simple at first, it poses its own unique challenges. For instance, have you ever wondered how a technical writing department is supposed to maintain an overview of all the different variants? Well, it can be easy – with a component content management system like SCHEMA ST4 that is!