Recently at Limestone we’ve been working with a client who has stringent style guidelines for all their company documentation, including the training program that we've been developing. The process of editing - by our editing team and the client’s internal style and subject matter experts (SMEs) - has been a critical part of the overall project.
Reflecting on this makes me think about how the editing process is an important but often overlooked part of any training project. The learner experience and an organization’s credibility are greatly influenced by the quality of the written content - just think of how many times you’ve taken training that’s poorly organized, has spelling mistakes and grammatical errors that make it confusing or provides incorrect information. How did this affect your opinion of the training and the organization providing it?
We’ve found through experience that incorporating professional editing up front is well worth the time and cost involved. Editing your own work can be challenging – even the best writers realize the value of a second set of eyes. For projects that involve written content, we include editing tasks in our training project plans to ensure this process isn’t missed. There are many different types including Subject Matter Expert (SME) edits and reviews, copy edits, production edits, and style edits. Choose the type of editing that’s right for your project.
This makes me realize that validating training content for accuracy before your intended audience actually sees your information is really important, from both a technical and editorial perspective. Editing ensures that your content is not only technically accurate but is easy for learners to read and understand. It also ensures that information is consistent regardless of how many ways it’s used.