Design, Technical Writing, and Organization

How to Create Top-Quality Documents for the Workplace

As more workplaces require employees with a broader education, the need for employees that are proficient in writing and design becomes more important.  Being able to design and write a professional document for the workplace doesn’t take a degree in English to accomplish, as there are some general guidelines you can follow to create works of writing that suit every given situation.

The Design Process

Professional and Eye-Catching

When going about creating a design for a document, there are several things you’ll want to keep in mind.  First, and most importantly, you should think about who your audience is going to be.  If you were to write a document to present to a group of lawyers, having bright flashy colors wouldn’t be appropriate, whereas

Poor use of fonts and colors

if you were creating a flyer for a children’s play, bright colors would be suitable for the occasion.

Choosing fonts for a document is very important as well, and in choosing fonts you also want to keep your audience in mind.  Use professional, legible fonts for workplace documents and save the flashy fonts for documents that aren’t work-related.

It is also important to limit the number of fonts you use to about two to three fonts, and being consistent with where you use fonts makes the document look more professional.   For example, you should use the same font for all the body content of your document, but you could use a different font for the headings, and even another font for the subheadings, and you should also use consistent font sizes for all your headings, subheadings, body content, etc.

Throughout the document, you should also make sure that everything lines up perfectly, meaning all the margins are sized the same, and all content is lined up with the margins.  Overall, consistency (colors, fonts, etc.) is the key to maintaining an eye-catching, professional document for the workplace.

Technical Writing

Writing for a Professional Audience

When preparing to write a professional document, the most important thing to consider is who will be reading your document and the style to write in that suit their vocabulary.  This type of writing is a reader-centered approach, in which you write in a way that is most suitable for your audience, keeping their interests and preferences in mind rather than writing in a way that suits your style.  Although in many other writing situations, having a unique and intellectually challenging writing style may be preferable, in the workplace you want to write briefly and concisely in order to keep your audiences’ attention.

Before you begin writing your document, you’ll also want a good understanding of the purpose of your document, and the format of writing that will best suit the needs of the document.  For example, if you’re creating a brochure you should establish the brochure’s purpose right away, but also catch the reader’s attention so they are tempted to read the entire brochure.  There are many helpful websites and books available that contain examples and descriptions of different types of documents, so using available resources is very helpful with writing.

Remember, if you are creating a document for your workplace, you want it to be as professional as possible, so make sure to revise your document and check for errors.  Keep your readers in mind when writing and revising, and when formatting and designing your final product.  Having proficient writing and design skills can speak volumes about you professionally, so the more you practice these skills, the better impression you can make.