Editing and proofreading for government
Central Editing provides editing and proofreading services to all tiers of government throughout Australia.
Think of us as your backup communications team, ready to help out on those documents that need to be perfect.
We know that the one-size-fits-all approach is not appropriate when providing editing and proofreading services to government agencies. We recognise and listen to your priorities, and tailor our editorial interventions to suit exactly what you need, when you need it.
Our government clients frequently require:
- quick turnaround
- recognition of multiple stakeholders
- no-fuss approach to proposals and quotes
- understanding of urgency and rigid deadlines
- straightforward response to issues
- flexibility with shifting priorities
- minimal red tape in service provision
They appreciate our:
- expertise and knowledge (without pedantry)
- ability to translate officialese and jargon into plain English
- team-player mindset
- calm approach
Our principal editor, Denise Holden, appreciates the challenges facing teams in government organisations, whether local, state or federal. Prior to establishing Central Editing, she worked in market research and media, as well small business (restaurants and travel).
As a market research analyst she gained insights into diverse sectors of the Australian economy including tourism, health, finance, telecommunications, media and infrastructure.
Her understanding of business practicalities and real-world demands means she will find the most appropriate editorial solution in a given situation.
Reasons to engage an editorial professional
It’s common practice for editorial quality checks to be conducted by members of the team who produced the document or a peer group – sometimes even the authors themselves.
For important reports, submissions, presentations and publications – especially those that have to be perfect – engaging an editorial professional for government editing and proofreading will deliver quality and cost benefits (not to mention staff harmony)
1. Subject matter experts are not language experts
Despite impressive academic qualifications and the ability to read with ‘attention to detail’ your staff are not trained in or knowledgeable about current language style and usage. What they learned at school as a grammar or formatting ‘rule’ may no longer apply.
2. Familiarity breeds invisibility
A professional proofreader will find and correct errors your team cannot see. Familiarity with the text results in ‘error blindness’. The brain is supremely efficient at glossing over errors and filling in gaps. It’s called typoglycemia.
It deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.
How much of the text can you still make out?
What if I told you you read this line wrong?
3. Expertise deactivates our jargon detectors
Everyone working in a specialised field uses terminology and jargon that makes perfect sense to them but can be incomprehensible to others. Because this is your field, you cannot ‘unknow’ the language of your sector or department. You do not know what you know. And so cannot gauge how a non-specialist will comprehend your text.
An editorial professional will identify instances where jargon or acronyms could hamper understanding by non-specialists and the general public, and obscure the key message.
4. The editor is the reader’s advocate
Along with jargon the professional editor will identify any instances in the text where the expression is unclear and recommend changes so your audience will get the message immediately, without having to re-read sentences, or puzzle over meaning.
5. Harmony will be restored
Outsourcing the responsibility for document perfection will reduce the stress on and within your team. No more time-consuming discussions about whether a comma is needed, or a capital letter. They will be able to focus on their main roles and what they are good at.
6. You will get a superior end product
Professional editing and proofreading adds value. For important documents they are essential. Your readers will engage with the content and arguments in a high quality report without being distracted by errors or inconsistencies.
7. You will sleep easier
Sending your report out into the world should be accompanied by a sense of accomplishment. It is the culmination of weeks, sometimes months, of work. Applying the ‘polish’ of professional editing and proofreading will give you peace of mind.
Your backup editorial team
Each day government departments generate written content for their customers, clients, stakeholders, regulatory bodies and other government departments. Much of this information has a short lifespan and is intended for quick consumption (like social media posts and press releases). Nevertheless it is generally produced by a communications team who are trained in writing, editing and proofreading.
Ideally this team of language experts would review every report and policy document produced by your department, but this is rarely part of the comms team’s remit.
Think of Central Editing as your backup editorial team. We have the knowledge and experience to conduct quality reviews for those documents that have to be perfect.
We help you with:
- annual reports
- conference abstracts
- issues papers
- literature reviews
- research reports
- style guides
- training materials
- white papers
Thank you Denise … really appreciate your fast approach, guidance and flexibility.
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