Editing & Proofing Samples

21/12/2011 14:41

Exhibit A

Consider the following clip, which is taken word for word (with the exception of "Our client" and "Springfield") from a package of documents that was intended to solicit external partners — believe it or not.

The Original

Our client will no longer pay for both mileage charges per mile as well as an hourly trip charge. Please do not submit a per mile charge on your invoice any longer. These will be adjusted from your invoice and a claim filed as a charge back for the difference. We take our orders from Springfield and that is the edict they have issued. We must abide by that order.

We will only pay for the one trip to the site with resolution to the trouble call is the one we pay for this is the reason you have been supplied with the standard materials list to keep on your trucks/vans. We will not pay for trips to a shop or supplier miles and hours from the site if you were not properly prepared to do your job. Incidents due to acts of God, and beyond your control are of course the exception.

Should a return trip be called for either due to parts missing or lift not on site then fill out the existing Sign Off Sheet and a new one will be issued for the return to the site.

Thank you so very much for your co-operation and understanding. With a commitment to join with us as a team member with a mutual goal in mind, ours can be a very fruitful and long relationship, well into the future.

I have to be honest and admit that there are parts of the above that I plain "just don't understand", but here is my take on it...

The Re-Write

Our client will reimburse for travel on an hourly basis only from now on. Please do not submit additional mileage charges on your invoice. If such charges appear, we will have to file a claim for a charge back on the difference. These new policies come directly from the client's head office in Springfield and we are required to act accordingly.

We will only pay for one trip to the job site. We expect that you can resolve the trouble call with one visit. To ensure that you are properly prepared to do the work, we have provided you with a list of the standard materials that should be kept on hand in your trucks or vans. Any side trips to a shop or supplier will be on your own time/cost. We will accommodate exceptions — incidents due to "acts of God" or otherwise beyond your control — as they arise.

Should a return trip be necessary — due to unavailable parts or a lift not being on site — fill out the existing sign-off sheet anyway; a new one will be issued to you for the return trip to the site.

Thank you for your co-operation and understanding. We hope that your commitment to join our team in pursuit of mutual goals will result in a long-term, prosperous relationship.

Exhibit B

Why do people who want to be hired demonstrate almost the opposite in their cover letters? Functionally speaking, there is a lot wrong with the following example in terms of what a cover letter should actually cover, but we're not here for a job-search seminar.

The Original

My name is John Smith. I'm a graduate at XYZ Institute for the telecommunications engineering program. I beleive I graduated with one of your friends Jill Johnson. I graduated in April 2000. I was wondering if you had any opportunities at your company. I have added my resume as an attachement as my first step to seeking employment with ABC Communications. Thank you for your time.

Again, since we're not here for a job-search seminar, I'm just going to recreate what this person intended to say in the first place. (By the way, two of the words that I've chosen not to use in the new version were misspelled in the original: "beleive" and "attachement".)

The Re-Write

My name is John Smith. I'm a graduate of XYZ Institute's Telecommunications Engineering program. I graduated in April 2000 with Jill Johnson, who I understand is a friend of yours. I was wondering if you currently have any employment opportunities at ABC Communications. I have attached my resume for your consideration. Thank you for your time.