Great DX starts with good documentation: How DriveWealth used ReadMe to revamp their documentation and workflows

Now, they have one documentation hub built for internal employees and external partners, with less maintenance required.

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Jon Ursenbach
Lead API Engineer
Actual excerpt from our company Slack channel#nicedocs

DriveWealth was founded in 2012 with the goal of democratizing investing, which it does through powering different digital banks, traditional banks, advisors, and brokers.

Despite the fact that brokerage is a very regulated and compliance-heavy business, the DriveWealth team helps businesses of all sizes achieve their goals. Their team builds its partnerships in a consultative manner, by helping its partners understand the business and its technology platform through every step of the process.

DriveWealth has been using ReadMe for several years, and recently decided to invest more into the platform to take advantage of more features, so they could give developers an edge when developing their investing solutions.

Scaling to the next level 🔼

Towards the end of 2022, the DriveWealth team took a deeper look into its documentation and how to maintain it more efficiently, as they started releasing new features, products, and services more frequently than in the past. Previously, their implementation of developer documentation was maintained via a manual process of writing API descriptions by hand, which meant the process to update fields and schemas was tedious and time-consuming.

In addition to being resource-intensive, the manual update process also meant that partners would sometimes see outdated information before the team could update it, which led to more confusion and support tickets for their team to manage.

When planning this project, the team wanted to fully investigate their options and choose the best path forward not just for now, but for ease-of-use and scalability in the future. Out of this desire to be thorough, they considered using another tool and researched alternatives, but ultimately decided to stay with ReadMe.

Everyone brought their pros and cons to the conversation and we really dug into what made each solution efficient or less efficient. The learning curve was a factor — we were already using and enjoying ReadMe, and we wanted to launch this project quickly. We decided to stick with ReadMe not just because of that, but also because you offer more than the baseline documentation and introduce new products and services at a faster rate than the competition. For example, the developer community features and discussion posts were another deciding factor. Justin, Sr. Product Manager

More automation, a better experience 🤩

The immediacy of updates is a big benefit for the team overall. “The best part about the WYSIWYG editor is that the changes happen in real time,” says Justin. “It’s not one of those things where you change something and then five minutes later the change is reflected. It happens immediately. I love that because it makes for easy verification that the update went through and is showing up as intended.”

The team also appreciates the flexibility in approaches — pages can be updated via API (by making the change within the repo in question) or using ReadMe’s WYSIWYG editor, whichever is fastest and easier for the user at that moment. And, of course, documentation versioning comes in handy too. DriveWealth is continuously releasing API updates to stay compliant with the latest regulations, and it’s important to them to encourage users to be using the latest version of their API unless there’s a specific reason not to.

The versioning makes it so that new partners are always getting the latest and greatest, and if people happen to be using the legacy version, they can access it, without confusing newer partners. Justin, Sr. Product Manager

What’s next? 👀

While these changes have created a significant improvement in developer/partner experience and internal workflows, they don’t plan on stopping there. They’ve started using Owlbot AI and are seeing great adoption and feedback thus far. Additionally, they plan to utilize the Owlbot AI dashboard to understand more about what developers are asking and where there are information gaps in their existing documentation. They also plan to use the Discussions feature to support and engage with their developer community.