Bedrock business writing training to write any typical document, including email, faster and with better results. Great for writers of all skill levels.
For non-native English writers, learn how to effectively write common documents and email. Includes additional focus on grammar.
Learn to improve both transactional and substantive email messages. Spend less time writing and get better results.
Learn to write any technical document, including Specifications, SOPs, Procedures, and more.
This practicum course teaches you the optimal planning and writing process to report technical and complex information effectively.
Write proposals that win business through better audience focus, more persuasive writing, and a clear value proposition.
This course improves overall business writing skills with a focus on executive summary statements. Learn to extract what matters from complex information.
Improve your sales writing skills and reduce writing time to ensure all sales documents are clear, persuasive, and correct.
Write requisite customer support documents more effectively that solve client problems, while conveying a competent and empathetic tone. This means more satisfied, retained customers.
This course will streamline proofreading and provide a deep dive into correct grammar, punctuation, and format. Find all errors and master grammar.
This course + coaching model is an ideal way to master a major document, hone business writing skills, and receive individual business writing coaching.
We can build a fully customized course to address specialized writing requirements. This option is available for companies both online, virtually, and onsite and is suitable for any size group.
To be successful in business today you must be able to communicate effectively through writing. The ability to write clearly and convey complex information logically is a huge competitive advantage in any industry.
Bottom line? Individuals and teams that communicate clearly succeed at work.
However, most of us have learned business writing on the job, and haven’t received any real training or guidance. The right course can help you measurably improve the effectiveness of your business documents and give you tools to write them more efficiently and with less frustration.
We created this guide to help you choose the right course, based on our 20+ years of teaching business writing and fielding all types of course selection questions. This article details how to:
This is the most definitive guide online on how to choose the best business writing course to develop your business writing skills.
Choosing an online business writing course is not only a financial investment but an investment in your professional future. For this reason, we encourage you to scrutinize and vet each option. It’s critical to your success that you make the right choice.
The first step in choosing a course is to define your goals. It will be difficult to choose the best class if you do not identify the outcomes you want to achieve. Here are a few goals we often see for both individuals and businesses.
You will quickly learn that there are many options and configurations of business writing courses. This chapter will review what to look for when evaluating your options.
Important: The next two sections are dependent on if you are a company looking to provide a course to a group of employees or an individual looking to take an online class.
The first step is to outline what your objectives are for the program. The section above outlines how to identify your project goals, team’s weaknesses, and strengths. Expand on this to create your project brief. This brief should detail the requirements for your organization.
A project brief will not only help you clarify what you are looking for but will also help companies bidding understand what you are looking for.
We find each custom program has what we call “unique requirements.” These are elements that are distinct to your project. Make sure to identify these beforehand and ensure the course is built to support these.
Here are a few examples of unique course requirements we have helped design:
Company writing models
Scalability of the course to multiple geographic areas
Integration with internal training programs
Specific reporting, tracking, and registration
Document compliance for regulatory board review
Coaching for major documents
Individual coaching and mentoring
Ongoing educational program
The next step is to decide what criteria you will use to evaluate your training options. We have created a helpful rubric to aid in structuring your decision-making process. Notice we have highlighted value instead of price. The lowest cost option does not always offer the best value.
During the next stage, you want to use your unique evaluation criteria to review the course options. This is a time to talk with the provider and iron out details. Make sure to discuss outcomes, timeline, and budget. Once you have selected the training provider, they can start designing your custom program.
The fifth step is for the company to create the program. They should work with you to ensure all project criteria are met. This phase should be collaborative between both parties.
Once the course development is complete, it is time to launch the program. You can start enrolling students and tracking results. Periodically it is important to evaluate the program and make updates where necessary.
Depending on your business, you may need just one enrollment period or an ongoing, staggered registration. This decision will be dependent on your size, timeline, hiring process, and budget.
Make sure to discuss what option is best for your business. Feel free to contact us to help design your custom program.
We offer instructor-led in-person and live virtual workshops. These are highly interactive and focus on sample documents and exercises. Training can be one day or multiple sessions and can include instructor feedback for each individual.
Learn more about our custom instructor-led virtual and onsite classes.
When looking at courses it's important to review the course outline. Make sure that it addresses all the weaknesses you have written down on your list. Look for a comprehensive course that uses multiple methods for teaching the content.
Look for courses that allow individual interaction with an instructor. This will allow you to ask questions and gain more actionable feedback. The instructor should not only provide feedback on your writing but also on your skills as a writer.
Students often rate their one-on-one interactions with their instructor as one of the most valuable parts of our web-based courses.
You won’t be able to view the course in its entirety before buying, but there are a few ways to evaluate the structure and quality. Chapter Four details how to review the structure of a course.
For quality, try to dig deeper than the course outline. Ask if you can watch a sample lesson, demo, or view a video that highlights parts of the course.
Review testimonials from the course. Look for individuals that hold similar learning goals as you. If they publish course reviews, read through both the best and worst scoring reviews.
As an alternative, you will often find companies release results from their post-course evaluations. These evaluations may be more valuable as reviews are often given by individuals that had a very good or very poor experience.
Scheduling a discussion can help answer any remaining questions. See if they have a phone number you can call or a link to schedule a call if you still need additional info. Make sure to create a list of questions before the call.
Make sure to review multiple courses to ensure you are choosing the right one. Providers often have multiple courses that address different learning objectives. In the next chapter, we review our business writing courses and detail the differences between each offering.
Pedagogy is the theory and practice of how to best teach. This is important because it dictates how your online course is structured.
You want to ensure courses are developed by experts in both the content and adult learning theories. As an adult, you learn differently than a child. Our courses are based on Robert Gagne’s theory of adult education. Our courses are designed for high-performance individuals in professional industries.
Below are the essential elements to look for in the structure of a course.
Instructor feedback is the most valuable part of an online course. It ensures that you get personalized feedback and support that will change the way you write at work. Make sure to carefully review the level of engagement that you will receive throughout your course.
Don’t assume all courses come with instructor feedback. Many courses do not offer detailed feedback.
Don’t accept merely submitting a document you’ve written at work for instructor feedback. That feedback will be language editing only. You want feedback that is more holistic, which addresses your ability to assess your audience, plan a document, present relevant content, organize it well, sequence it appropriately, extract what is truly important, and assess the words you use and the way you use them. You want more than mere editing.
Much better is receiving feedback on your writing based on a scenario. This will allow your instructor to assess your planning, organization, sequencing, and the words you choose and how you use them. From this feedback, you discover common pitfalls, your writing strengths, and learn the overall craft of writing.
Instructors should also use this time to expand the lessons and include supplemental resources based on your writing.
Ideally, you are also receiving full support for the duration of your course.
Most importantly you want to look for a course that offers feedback to your goals and you as a writer. Verify that the course asks you to submit your course goals. To become an advanced business writer, you need feedback on your skills as a writer that is specific to your needs. Specific goals allow your instructor to provide feedback that will immediately improve your actual writing at work and help you consistently apply effective business writing strategies.
Individual feedback is one of the most important ways to hone your business writing skills, so make sure it’s meaningful.
Written text is used throughout the courses to teach major writing concepts.
Mock writing allows you to apply new concepts in an optimal situation. This is an excellent way to practice new concepts and achieve effective writing.
These exercises focus on learning by doing. These exercises are practical and focus on solving real-world problems. You apply a proven business writing process and business writing essentials you learn during the course.
Annotated examples of typical documents such as business proposals and business reports can be used to illustrate challenges and improvements.
It is important to ask the class size of the course you are taking.
All our online courses are individually paced and instructed. This allows you to progress at your preferred pace and interact as needed with your instructor.
In addition to learning materials, some courses offer example materials to help you after the course. We call these job aids or resource documents. They are quick reference guides that you can print out and keep at your desk. They ensure you are reminded of key concepts taught during the course. Each of our courses comes with multiple job aids.
Your learning doesn't stop after the course is completed.
Our courses offer vetted support after the course. This ensures you successfully apply your new writing skills to your day-to-day work and use business writing essentials.
Monthly business writing newsletter for clients.
Client-only web form to submit ongoing business writing questions.
Access to exclusive webinars.
Online courses are delivered in our learning management system (LMS), which allows you flexible login access, and links to all integrated resources. This allows us to track, support, and assess your writing properly. Our online self-paced courses allow you or your team to train at any time, pace, or place.
We also offer virtual and onsite instructor-led training.
Each delivery method is interactive with many engaging exercises and actual writing practice and review. No delivery is better than another. They each have individual strengths, so match what works best for your team.
After completing the course, you will earn a personalized certificate. You can display your certificate to the certification section of your LinkedIn profile, download it to print or mention it in your résumé.
We offer onsite training for corporate groups. These allow you to train a group of individuals at the same time. We have presented customized workshops to companies around the world.
The secret to the effectiveness of our courses is the instructors who teach them. An outstanding instructor is the difference between a good course and an outstanding course. The instructor's teaching and feedback will be key to your success. For this reason, it is important to evaluate the instructor you will be working with.
Effective communication is a must. The teacher must be able to organize and articulate their ideas clearly. They must be able to clearly answer questions and explain concepts through a variety of approaches. To be engaging, they must be passionate about the topic. And, they must be warm and caring.
If you are choosing a custom course, make sure they can teach to industry-specific topics.
We offer custom business writing programs that are available both online and onsite. We have worked with some of the largest companies in the world to develop business writing programs for their employees.
You can contact us about a custom program.
If you have a large company, make sure that the provider can scale the number of students enrolled without decreasing quality.
We have worked with major companies to provide online courses to thousands of corporate participants with teams across the globe.
Some companies list logos of companies when they’ve worked with an individual employee of that company only. This is misleading and does not mean they worked directly with the company. Make sure to ask if they have actually worked with all the companies listed on their website.
Yes! We have worked with all the companies on our representative client list – and more – to offer custom business courses based on their unique goals.
If you are signing up for an individual course, testimonials are probably enough to make your decision. If you are choosing a provider for a custom business program, then asking for comparable corporate references may be important.
You want to look for individual feedback that goes beyond proofreading your documents. Look for feedback that focuses on improving the writer, not just their writing.
Yes, you can download and see our real instructor feedback. It includes both an objective and subjective review of your work. Download an example of instructor feedback here.
Not every company offers full support for their courses.
You can call us before, during, or after your course with a question. Our number is 1-609-683-8100.
Look for other businesses and case studies that are in your industry who have participated in the training.
We've worked with an array of companies of various sizes across sectors. You can see our client list organized by industry here.
Your education shouldn’t end after the course. Make sure to ask if you will receive continuing resources after the course.
We offer multiple resources for clients after their course is completed. You have access to our exclusive client-only monthly newsletter. It includes in-depth articles, writing tips, and further training.
As a client, you have the ability to request clarification on a particular writing topic for the next newsletter.
We also offer clients continuing question and answer support for one year after the course. This ensures your new skills are being fully transferred to your work.
We have been delivering online business writing courses since 1998, following optimal online and adult learning principles. We develop all content ourselves, based on our expert credentials and ongoing research.
Whatever you write, Instructional Solutions teaches a proven process to synthesize and communicate complex information. For teams and individuals.