A documentalist, a branch of the librarian profession, works for both private and public companies, organizing files and records and using precise measures to sort various forms of information.
Also referred to as an archivist, documentalists also work for government associations, collecting and organizing data into archives. They are trained to do specific documentation and work as professional assistants for researchers.
Based on new technology, there are new methods being developed for documentalist work, including programs and software on the Internet. A documentalist’s goal is to make information more easily accessible and adaptable to new technology to create the most proficient methods. Documentalists are used in many professions; they are employed in schools, hospitals, corporations, and website companies.
- Collecting files and documents for a company
- Accommodating researchers
- Creating accessible archives
- Managing information in the archives
- Creating ways to easily extract information from the archives
- Organizing and grouping data into manageable texts
- Creating tools and systems to ensure easy and safe circulation of files
- Generating reports when required
Incomes vary, with salaries ranging from $40,000 to $80,000 a year.
There are many graduate schools that offer renowned documentalist graduate studies.
Northwestern University (Easten, IL), New York University (New York, NY), and Lasell College (Newton, MA) are known for their communication departments, and deal exclusively with technology and technical aspects of writing. At these schools, and many more, there are opportunities for business degrees, and bachelor and masters education.
Degrees in graphic technology, business, library science, management, and technical writing are extremely useful for this profession.
Someone seeking a job in this field should:
- have strong written and communication skills
- be able to work with a variety of different people
- be familiar with digital media
- know office systems, archive software, and laws about information management
- be extremely meticulous
- be able to market information to a desired audience
- be extremely flexible to changing technology
Simplyhired.com lists a documentalist’s salary at $63,000 per year.