Technical Writer (Developer Documentation)

  • Ably
  • Remote (London, UK)
  • Dec 21, 2020
Full-time Technical Writing

Job Description

Location: Remote, mainly UK based individual, as travel to our London office will be required periodically.

Working at Ably means helping to build the realtime infrastructure that will power and shape the future of the internet. We enable things like HubSpot’s chat and collaboration products, live scores for millions of Australian Open tennis fans, and real time transit updates for three million Chicagoans. Engineers at some of the largest companies in the world choose Ably because, when it comes down to it, we’re the only platform that dependably delivers on the most demanding realtime requirements at global, production scale.

The opportunity in front of us is immense. Our mission is to become the definitive realtime infrastructure of the internet while powering and accelerating the emerging ecosystem. We’re on track. Today we deliver billions of realtime messages to more than 75 million people across web, mobile, and IoT platforms. But we can’t rest yet. In five years we want to reach one billion people everyday.

To see what life’s like at Ably, check out our careers page at

What we do

Ably’s engineering team is deeply technical, collectively bringing a wealth of experience and broad technology skills across infrastructure, security, distributed systems, and much more. The calibre of the developer-first product and code we produce is what excites and motivates us each day. If you enjoy working with a team that embraces continuous improvement and you are motivated by the journey we are on to be the market-leader in edge pub/sub messaging solutions, then you'll love working at Ably.

In this role

Ably is an engineering company at its heart. Our audience ranges from software engineers to CIOs and it’s our job to make sure the world knows about Ably.

You will take complex information and communicate it clearly, concisely and accurately without relying on technical jargon to explain how developers can quickly use and benefit from our platform. You will maintain, develop, and improve sites such as (which produces You will be the key link between our engineers, marketing team, developer advocates and our developer customers. 

As a Technical Writer, you will be juggling many documentation tasks, from writing how to guides, to reading and writing example code, to updating FAQs, UX interfaces, API documentation and tutorials, to supporting new feature launches.  

You will be successful if you:

  • Like and have a special interest in web technologies, RESTful APIs, coding -- and teaching others about these topics.
  • Enjoy best practice and creating documentation that helps customers to make optimal decision to achieve their requirements.
  • Can analyse documentation usage, support data, and user feedback to continuously improve documentation and inform documentation roadmap.
  • Enjoy writing code, working with APIs, and building prototypes as a polyglot developer.
  • Provide thought leadership to the wider company in regards to how we manage, structure and deliver our documentation to developers.
  • Care about the experience developers have and find it rewarding to positively influence how quickly they can learn concepts and features and ultimately build apps and services more quickly.

The skills needed:

  • Can maintain, develop, and improve sites such as (which creates You should be comfortable enough in code to be able to create, edit, and test documentation-related websites.
  • Ability to create prototype implementations (including lightweight API integrations) to test documentation accuracy and effectiveness.
  • Aptitude for organising information and clearly describing complex business workflow, data management, and Internet networking concepts. Strong written skills are necessary.
  • 3+ years of experience as a technical writer, preferably documenting cloud-based software products and/or APIs.
  • Proven track record in understanding the challenges of keeping documentation up to date with improvements in fast-changing, in-development code, and how to write enough documentation to be helpful without overloading the reader.
  • Ability to build strong working relationships with the Product, Engineering, and Customer Success teams, who will contribute to documentation, led by you.
  • Experience producing training and learning materials that help developers understand how to use an API product.
  • You are proficient in Javascript, and ideally one other widely used general-purpose programming language (Javascript, Python, Java, Ruby, etc.).
  • Comfortable with HTML, CSS and Markdown.

Nice to have skills:

  • Experience managing your own documentation projects.
  • Working knowledge of Swagger, Markdown, Textile and Github or other code repository.
  • Familiarity with web standards, APIs, and other internet technologies.
  • A good understanding of realtime technologies, pub/sub, event-driven architectures or streaming services.
  • Know the SaaS and API business model and have experience documenting solutions for developers.
  • Have a technical background and/or demonstrated fluency in distributed computing systems or other technical concepts relevant to our work.

What’s it like to work at Ably?

Founded by two engineers who spotted a hard and largely unsolved problem, Ably is, at its heart, an engineering company. To provide the infrastructure required for a high-bandwidth, always-connected world, we hire engineers with a broad set of technical skills who are ready and capable of taking on challenging realtime engineering problems.

To provide the infrastructure required for the next generation of the internet, to tell the world about it, and to support everyone inside Ably to do so, we hire people who are ready and capable of taking on challenging problems in a high-growth environment.

We want to work in a company of inclusive people who treat each other well. To really thrive at Ably, you’ll need to believe in and be prepared to do your work in line with what we value, which is:

  • Open for all. Open is a mindset. When open, we’re better collaborators, communicators and creators. Whether open source, standards, or protocols, open hearts, minds, and eyes. It’s better when it’s open.
  • Bias for action. We avoid analysis paralysis at all costs. We lean into doing in order to move us forward. When we have enough of what we need to act, we act.
  • Even the best do better. We want to be the best - but that doesn’t mean we rest when we are. Improvement and growth - true betterment - is an ongoing journey. One fuelled by curiosity and taking risks.
  • Technology needs humanity. Our technology means little without people - whether that’s how we treat our colleagues, or how we design developer experiences. Being human matters.
  • Dependable people make dependable things. Dependability is integral to our mission and technology, but being dependable starts with our people. When we care enough to take real ownership of our products and problems - all else will follow.

What’s in it for you?

  • A good, competitive salary
  • A great company culture
  • Share options
  • A remote first company. Unless you want to pop into our communal office space in Shoreditch, London, you'll work from home most of the time, apart from when we have planning sessions and company Summits.
  • Health Insurance, including Doctor@Hand
  • Employee Assistance Programme
  • ClassPass membership
  • Cycle to work
  • Regular company away days and social events
  • Free drinks and snacks in the office
  • Ongoing professional development (training, events, conferences)
  • Charity volunteer day
  • 25 days of paid annual leave (33 days including bank holidays)
  • Company contributions towards your pension
  • Your choice of high quality tech kit to work on

If you enjoy working as part of a technology company, value open source, and love solving hard problems - then we’d love to hear from you, regardless of whether you fit the spec exactly or not. If in doubt, drop us an email; we’d be more than happy to give you some advice on your application.