Dallas A, Martin A. Establishing an editorial process: tools for success. Poster presented at the 75th Annual Conference of the American Medical Writers Association (AMWA); September 15, 2015. San Antonio, TX.

INTRODUCTION: Building a standard editing process should include developing tools that maximize efficiency and consistency and are dynamic enough to accommodate a variety of needs and high expectations for quality.


  • Recommendation: Identify an existing style guide and modify to meet company-specific needs

  • Benefits: Provides support for editorial decisions, increases editorial efficiency, promotes consistency within and among documents and across editors



  • Recommendation: Develop a request form that estimates editorial time required based on number of pages and type of deliverable; establish calculations using the literature and experience with the organization’s documents

  • Benefits: Quantifies and communicates standard editing times for work capacity planning and project management



  • Recommendation: Develop deliverable-specific templates using Word styles and company branding

  • Benefits: Increases formatting efficiency, results in a polished and company-distinct final product



  • Recommendation: Use macros, wildcards, and proofreading software for common editorial tasks

  • Benefits: Maximizes time available for comprehensive content review



  • Recommendation: Develop editorial checklists for each edit level

  • Benefits: Clarifies writers’ and editors’ expectations, improves editorial accuracy


CONCLUSIONS: Maintaining a professional editorial service for a complex organization requires a variety of tools to maximize efficiency and review quality.

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