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Business writing: learn how to write in plain English
About the course

Learn the core skills of plain language and improve your business writing today.

This course teaches you how to write clearly for business. We use the techniques of plain English, a proven set of techniques that help readers to find what they need and understand and use what they find.

Our course is delivered online by Simplified tutors with 15 years’ experience in training plain language from basic to advanced level. It will give you the skills to help any organisation to get the benefits of plain English, such as:

  • building trust and brand loyalty through clear communications
  • cost savings from fewer queries and internal reviews
  • compliance with consumer and data laws
  • improved accessibility.

What you’ll learn

The training will equip delegates with the core skills of business writing in plain English, including the knowledge and skills to:

  • get more support for plain language in an organisation – we will explore legal and regulatory requirements for plain language, and the benefits of clear communication
  • assess whether a document is written in plain English
  • plan and structure content with headings and summaries
  • write short, simple sentences with strong verbs
  • know whether to replace, define or explain complex words and jargon
  • adapt the tone of plain-language content.

To adapt the course for your needs, we also offer more specific applied training across a range of business writing contexts including presentations, reports, contracts, promotional writing, emails and even instant messages.

For full course details and options, please contact us via the Enquire button, and we’d be happy to provide you with a full module breakdown.

How you learn

The training is carried out by experienced tutors via live online classroom sessions for a maximum of five attendees. We run the training through video conferencing software (usually Zoom or Microsoft Teams) with WhatsApp as a back-up technology.

There are 12 hours of intensive training overall, delivered across two full-days or four half-days. We set practical exercises and assignments throughout the course, with a customised assignment at the end.

Our courses are interactive. We rely on your examples, input and discussion. This is adult-to-adult learning where:

  • we train a principle or technique
  • we show you an example of how it’s put into practice (preferably in a real example from your organisation)
  • you apply the principle or technique in a short exercise, which we discuss as a group
  • you do an assignment at home to reinforce the learning right away.

Who is this course for?

Learning the core skills of plain language business writing is ideal for anyone who feels that they will benefit from improving their writing skills, whether they’re in business, marketing, compliance or a management role.

It will also be useful for teams that need to build a consensus for how to approach writing tasks.

This is a foundational course, suitable for first-language and second-language speakers of English. If you’re already a content professional, you may want to incorporate some of the optional advanced modules in the course. These vary in length and include options such as: theory of clear communication, building reader empathy, web accessibility, user testing, tone guidelines, evaluation, writing for translation and inclusive language.

Please get in touch for further information on advanced modules via the Enquire button below.

What does it cost?

The price is €2,000 (excluding VAT). The course is for up to five delegates so it’s ideal for small businesses or for teams within large organisations. You’re also welcome to book as a group of individuals from different organisations. You pay for the course, and not for each person, so it’s better to take up all five places.

Further plain language training options

We also offer a number of other plain language courses, including:

If you are interested in any of these alternative courses, please email recruit@firehead.net and we’d be happy to provide you with further information.

Testimonials

More than 9,000 delegates from seven countries have already benefited from this plain language training. Here is some of their feedback:

“The course made me aware of the principles involved in plain English – that it is not dumbing down the language.”

“The trainers are knowledgeable about legal and technical language and how to simplify it.”

“I received valuable insight into my own writing – and the tools to improve it.”

“The course was fast-paced and a lot of fun.”

“We learned that clarity means accuracy. You should not over-simplify.”

Course type
Live online
Course duration
12 hours
Course date
Various
Cost
€2,000 for 5 people
Course tutor
Frances Gordon, Candice Burt

Frances has devoted her 20-year career to enabling people and organisations to communicate clearly. Frances is well-known as an advocate for plain language in the legal, financial and technology industries. With her help, many organisations have been able to transform ‘small print’ into useful, usable communication. Besides being founder of Simplified, she has held tenures at large banks, technology companies and fintechs.

Candice is a plain-language lawyer, who combines the rigour of legal writing with best practices in communication. Her focus area is legal and financial documents. She believes that even the most complex legal contract can and must be made accessible to its readers. Over the past 20 years, she has become known as an inspiring trainer and impressive conference speaker.

Contact us today to arrange your plain language course or for further information.
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