Business Writing Skills
Writing is an influential part of communication. Different circumstances have a distinct format of writing that is required for written information to communicate the intended message (Guffey, 2003). This paper is a combination of analysis of three employment contracts and a business letter.
Analysis of draft Contracts of Employment
All three drafts have been written in a format that is official enough to indicate the implication of the paper as binding to both parties. All the three papers have included complete addresses of the employer and employees hence provide full details of the participants in the contract. It is highly valuable for an official document to identify the source and the target group. This part has been fully met by these three drafts. However, of the three, the second draft has the best identification of the addresser and the addressee that ensures that both the parties provide detailed information of their whereabouts, which is an influential part of the contract. The first draft needs some improvement on the addresses of the organization and the employee as very little information is requested at the declaration. This makes the draft not detailed enough. The inclusion of such information will help the draft enhance its effectiveness as far as communication is concerned (Means, 2009).
The contracts are communications about an agreement between an employer and an employee detailing the terms of service. It is truly valuable to list out the place where the employee will be working so that the employee understands the place he/she is expected to work. From the analysis, it is evident that the first draft has detailed the place of work and any variables that the company is liable to. The language should be sufficiently polite and at the same time official since it is a good communication tool that links the employer to the employee (Ober, 2007).
The letters begin by providing the audience with positive aspects of the contract, then follows by the penalties that are associated with any form of divergence from the contract. In fact, the third draft is elaborative enough of the penalties but in a nice way signifying that the organization does not intend to penalize any of its employees, but for the sake of vision of the organization some regulations must be set up. The second draft is brief on the regulations, especially the penalties limiting the applicability of the contract in employee management. Most of its inscriptions are hanging and hence limiting it as a communication tool for agreement between the organization and the employee. The draft should be improved to eradicate the inconsistencies.
In terms of effective communication that integrates specificity and use of active voice, the drafts have been written in an acceptable official communicative language. The contracts are well structured, and most of the illustrations are straight to the point. An official communication must be straightforward and not too detailed to scare the audience. In terms of preciseness, the second draft meets that quality. Most of the information that has been elaborated in the other drafts has simply been highlighted and the responsible party for elaboration provided. The first draft is too long, limiting its effectiveness as a communication tool, as most readers may end up signing the contract without even going through the contract. The third draft is a well-summarized version of the first draft and provides all information presented in the first draft but using fewer words. It is clear enough to communicate the information in the first draft effectively (Means, 2009).
The first draft of the contract has so much information that can be done away with and still be effective enough without being too long. The draft is written detailing information that can be provided to the employee afterwards using an employee manual or guidebook. The level of elaboration on topics such as a probationary period, notice, holiday, and restrictions are too detailed. If these topics are summarized and the rest of the information provided to the employee via the manual, the contract will be precise and highly accommodating and understandable for the employee (Guffey, 2003). Additionally, the appendix included in the fast draft contract is not needed at all. This information makes the document too complicated and appearing like a booklet and hence sounds negative and impolite to the employee. All that information is too general and not specific to the employee and hence can be included in the employee manual. This manual can be provided to the employee afterwards.
As earlier mentioned, the second draft is satisfactory in terms of preciseness, which is the main idea behind writing official communication. It is comprehensive enough to meet the requirement of the employment contract and also simple enough. The employee can interpret the document without any complications. The parts of draft, one that were over emphasised have been precisely addressed without omitting any relevant communication tools for making the contract official and binding as far as the employer, and employee expectations are concerned. The only part that seems to be misplaced in the draft is the restrictive covenant which should have been part of the list and for effective presentation of the draft; it should have been listed as the 24th item and not an independent entity which is somehow confusing. Furthermore, the 23rd part of the list of terms of service is irrelevant. Such information can be addressed through company memos or notices.
The third draft seemed effective enough with minimal complications and well simplified to provide the employee with all relevant information on the contract. The subtopic general is irrelevant as the information is already listed in the introductory part of the document. However, the document is comprehensive and polite enough to necessitate effective written communication. Most of the aspects of the contract have been elaborated in a precise manner, providing a document that is not only official but acceptable as a binding contract.
Application of effective letter writing ensures that communication is well received by the audience and hence speeds up the implementation of the intended message. This analysis of a letter is based on the 7C’s communication criteria (Ober, 2007).
Clarity is one of the areas that need to be addressed in this letter. As much as the letter is written based on the KISS formula, it has various sentences that are limiting its readability (Guffey, 2003). The short form of the name is particularly wrong in an official letter. Some elements of jargon were also present.
In terms of completeness, the letter tried to address all the elements that needed to be addressed. However, the idea of absolute freehold is contradicted with the rights of passage of a gas line. Such inconsistencies should be avoided. Conciseness, on the other hand, is also a problem with the letter. The author is extremely repetitive, making some statements to lose meaning. The letter has also some long sentences that limit effective communication.
Correctness has not been fully addressed in this letter. The letter has some contradictory statements and also the level of language used is not right. It is not simple enough to communicate without confusing the reader. Concreteness of the letter also needs to be addressed. The letter has several abstract and relative words. Some of the words used in the letter do not fully portray the intended message.
To deal with the above problems, the letter will be rewritten below:
Myton & Co Solicitors,
26, High Street,
5 August 2013
Sally and Richard Williams,
Dear Mr. & Mrs. Williams,
Re: Your Purchase
With respect to the previous correspondence on the above matter, we have in-closed copies of all the documents that relate to your purchase for your kind consideration. This is in fulfilment of the requirement of section 1(4) of the Property Act law. The law expects seller’s solicitors to supply you with the stated documents in order for the purchase to be completed effectively.
This property is registered at the Land Registry with an absolute freehold title. Nevertheless, there is a small area of land coloured red. The Gas Board has a right to laying a gas pipe across the land within the area coloured red. Because of this right, you are advised not to erect any permanent structures on this property since this right is not time bound. This means that the Gas Board can access that area unconditionally and are not liable of any destruction of property that may result due to their operations. Of course, the board would have to make good any damage or losses caused thereby. However, to be on the safe side, it has been deemed necessary that you are informed of this issue.
In case you don’t understand the information presented in these documents, please contact us as soon as possible for clarification. More information concerning the above communication will be availed as soon as the surveys and searches are availed to us from the land registry.
Vice President of Myton & Co Solicitors
Guffey, M. 2003, Business Communication: Process & Product. New York, NY: Cengage Learning.
Means, T. 2009, Business Communications, New York, NY: Cengage Learning.
Ober, S., 2007, Contemporary Business Communication. New York, NY: Cengage Learning.