The Write Way

The Unbeatable Benefits of Tailored Online Training

Businesspeople working together at laptopToday's IT industries are navigating a major change: Cloud technologies are making it easier than ever to provide software, platform, and infrastructure as a service. Industry leaders must shepherd customers through this transformation of operations with innovative products and services that allow customers to store, manage, protect, and analyze data in a fluid and cost-effective manner.

For Brian McGovern, a technical manager for North and Latin America in a leading global IT company, communicating the supportability, reliability, and sustainability of these new technologies is a major focus. McGovern is also responsible for working with field-based customer-service teams to address concerns that might affect productivity. Accurate, effective written communications and technical documents are necessary.

"Clear writing is critical," says McGovern. "It's a representation of not only the individual, but the corporation. [Our customers] reference and internally share the documents that we present. If the communication isn't clear, then we wind up investing additional time meeting and communicating the same message repeatedly."

With such a broad theater of operations, consistency and accuracy in written documents has always been the biggest challenge for McGovern's team. He notes that past online training courses failed to meet expectations because they weren't able to address the company's "true concerns." Fortunately, a colleague of McGovern's contacted Pam Hurley, Ph.D., of Hurley Write. "Her understanding of what we needed to accomplish and her experience providing similar training to many other companies made it a very easy decision to bring Pam on board," says McGovern.

"Writing is personal"

After contacting key people in McGovern's company to pin down their exact concerns and needs, Hurley developed a specialized technical writing course, Writing Effective Root Cause Analysis Reports. Technical document samples from McGovern's team were used to develop a baseline for the training sessions.

"Writing is a personal thing," notes McGovern. "But there are rules and standards that need to be adhered to, ensuring that your intended message is clearly delivered. Written communications should be clear, influential, and developed with a specific intent. Pam does an excellent job of conveying the baseline information and then honing in on the necessary areas for improvement. She has the ability to do that, because she has examples of the attendees' writing, and she's prepared.

"The class is high-energy and very interactive," he continues. "Pam has a very friendly approach. To start, she has everyone introduce themselves and makes the attendees feel at ease. Having Pam provide the training makes a world of difference. She is very attentive and works to ensure that each participant understands the point and lesson she is providing."

Valuable, specialized skills

McGovern is happy with what he and his team have learned from the Hurley Write course, now entering its third iteration. "Knowing that most people skim [documents] and don't read every word or every line has helped me think about the way I communicate my messages," he says. "Using fewer, smaller words allows me to be very direct in my communications. Now, my written communications are more concise."

McGovern also appreciates the writing development skills he's learned from Hurley Write: "One of the most valuable skills I learned is the ability to free-form write: Getting all of my ideas in front of me, and then developing a clearly designed message. Formatting the communication to meet the style of the audience is another skill."

His team uses the skills they've learned daily. "The specialists who have completed the training are responsible for developing root cause analysis documents and completing peer-to-peer reviews, ensuring that everyone is continuing to use the skills. I am using them as well; keeping them in mind helps me to provide clear, concise, and purposeful communications."

Are you tasked with writing scientific or technical content that non-technical readers can understand? Hurley Write can show you how. Email or call us toll-free at 877-24-WRITE (877-249-7483).

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Hurley Write, Inc.