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Business Writing And Information Literacy

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By Author: Mason Dillon
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Effective communication is one of many distinguishing factors in successful organizations. Therefore, when hiring candidates, employers consider their writing skills as well as information literacy among other job-related skills. Business writing is imperative in the organization as, in many cases, it is the heart of communication. However, due to the fact that writing skills are obligatory, employers have raised complaints about the increasing number of college graduates who lack such skills.
Further, in an age when technology is progressively permeating peoples’ lives, the volume of information people have at their disposal continues to increase. This, however, does not necessarily translate into useful and applicable information. This explains the increased insistence of human resource on information literacy in employees. Some people argue that people do not necessarily have to develop business-writing skills as many, if not all people, are inherent writers. Additionally, there have been debates on whether information literacy relates to business writing. However, the analysis conducted indicates that business writing is imperative to all employees; thus, there is a close relationship between information literacy and business writing.
Regardless of the positions that people occupy in the office or the tasks they handle, it is most likely that one’s everyday jobs will have elements of writing, including but not limited to report writing, evaluation of reports, email drafting, and preparation of informational material such as brochures among others. This forms the basis of the need for discipline in business writing. In their article titled “BIG Writing: The fundamental discipline of business writing”, the two authors assert that though people may consider themselves capable of writing because they have high school or college education, business writing is quite different from what one learns in school. The “BIG” writing strategy provides suggestions and pointers on how one should write for an organization. Considerations such as the message, the audience, and the intended effect should all be borne in mind. Simple but correct grammar, clarity, and brevity are also key elements of business writing. The BIG writing strategy, thus, helps in addressing the writing challenges that people may face in the organization. The authors claim that employees should be trained to ensure that time and resources are not wasted while trying to agree on the best form of writing for a particular purpose. They add that keenness in business writing is also important as it helps avoid any legal issues that may crop from information misrepresentation.
With the increased availability of information, it is imperative for one to understand where and how to search for information. This encompasses information literacy consider to be a person’s skill to recognize the type of information and the time when it is needed, as well as be able to locate the required information, evaluate it, and use it to address the situation at hand. In their article titled “Does business writing require information literacy”, the authors set out to establish if there exists any relationship between ones’ skills in business writing and their information literacy. Using an iSkills assessment tool, the authors enrolled college students for pretests and posttests. Today, many businesses appreciate the advantages and values of an information-literate force as they can “effectively and efficiently use technology to locate, manage and communicate business information”. In their study, the authors established that there is a critical link between business communication skills and information literacy. In the study, the respondents with advanced information literacy presented better emails, memos, and technical reports among others.
The authors of the two articles make valid points. Today, apart from focusing on the skills related to a particular position, employers also seek candidates who can communicate with clarity, demonstrate critical thinking, as well as be creative. As such, business writing skills should be honed among employees or college graduates. Business writing is, to some extent, different from the regular college writing. Writing in college or high school does not necessarily focus on a particular audience. In written essays, time is not usually a constraint; hence, lengthy papers are usually written. People often learn how to write poetry and describe information movements. However, the practice is different when one is writing for organizations. There is a need to capture the major values and strategies that inform of the companies' operations. Thus, one has to reorganize the concept of writing based on what it used to be to suit the business needs. For example, in business writing, people are expected to be themselves, respect other peoples' time (hence, delve into the major points immediately), and be quick to suggest whatever action it is necessary to take. The language used in business literacy is also different from the one taught in class since the former is kept simple for effective communication. Whether by design or default, today's school curriculums put little consideration into teaching students the master skills of business writing. As a result, candidates rarely have the necessary skills such as clarity, conciseness, exactitude, or professionalism. This reduces their effectiveness in the employment positions.
Further, the research studies conducted in 2013 and 2014 and assessing diagnostic perceptiveness, critical thinking, as well as writing and communication, revealed serious deficits in the respondents’ communication skills. This explains the importance of discipline in writing for the organizations. A study by the National Association of Colleges and Employers also established that writing for business is paramount in the hiring process.Good business writing is important as it proves one as being more credible and more capable of handling the task at hand. With fewer institutions directed towards or offering lessons on effective business writing, companies are bestowed with the burden of training the employees' corresponding skills.
With the increased use of the Internet by businesses to market and reach their target market, it is important for one to possess the necessary skills in the platform. People who surf the Internet are usually attracted by catchy phrases. However, that does not necessarily mean that one should be reckless in their grammatical correctness. By learning how to describe products with brevity and accuracy, one increases his/her chances of being suitable for their job positions. Further, since there is a proliferation of information, one needs to know where to locate information using technology and how to put the information into relevant use. Today, if one wants to carry out research on the latest car, they are likely to click through hundreds of relevant websites to find information. Thus, this also shows the need for knowing where and how to place information in the Internet. Further, one needs to know how to retrieve, handle, and ethically manage information. This will not only help save the business time and resources but also increase the overall efficiency of the communication process.
This investigative report found out that business writing and information literacy are imperative for any employee. As such, the two can be used by current employees. First, the scholars assert that a writing culture is still to be introduced or embraced in many organizations. Most employees have not realized yet that skills in the two areas can set them apart in their effectiveness in written communication. Therefore, current employees can use this information to equip themselves with the knowledge on how to be effective in the area of business writing. Employees who still find it challenging to draft memos or compose emails for shareholders, for example, can be guided by the information in their actions. The current employers can also use the information to avoid the common pitfalls of business writing. These pitfalls include overstepping leaders, the overuse of organizational jargon, and the failure to address the real situation facing the team. If they can be avoided, effectiveness will undeniably be increased in the workplace. Further, employees can use this information to promote effective writing among those involved in different ways in the business writing process. For example, miscommunication between teams may make business writing a challenge. With the information discussed herein, however, an employee who is involved in the business writing, brochure preparation, for example, will be sure to get all the relevant information before designing the final product. Collecting the relevant information from all teams will ensure that one knows the value proposition, the correct design, the values as well as the intended message of a particular type of writing. The skills should also be combined with information literacy. Without information literacy, an employee may be bombarded with information and find it challenging to find the relevant data. Thus, current employees should focus on information literacy to ensure that they know how to access and use information in a corresponding way.
On the other hand, future employees can use this information to distinguish themselves in in the labor market. It is predicted that by 2020, the use of technology will have increased drastically. This will necessitate the enhanced application of business writing skills and information literacy. New media technologies will characterize the future, presenting information in new and different ways, which will influence communication. Future employees should thus use the information on business writing and information literacy to prepare themselves for the impeding change. Further, the rate of information proliferation will also be rapid. Future employees will have to align themselves with the need for obtaining information fast and presenting it concisely and clearly. In the future, employees will also use this information to establish the most applicable skills of business writing that employers will be looking for. Today, employees are quite open in providing training on business writing. However, future employees may be expected to be already equipped with appropriate knowledge. Therefore, they can use the information generated from this report to prepare themselves for the future in business.
The information discussed above applies to my part-time job in the present workplace. First, the company did not provide me with any direction in business writing or information literacy upon being hired. However, I can use the information from different sources to learn the foundations of clear and concise communication, which is reflective of the company’s value and mission. There have been cases when the designs, which were initially assigned to me, have been reassigned to my co-workers. With the knowledge of effective business writing, I hope to become better in my work. Further, information literacy can be applied in my workplace both at present and in the future. The company is relatively new and has been reaching its consumers through traditional means. This investigative report reveals that most of the written materials of our company lack some aspects, with the use of appropriate language and respect for the audience's time being the major areas. The written materials such as brochures are usually lengthy and characterized by the wide use of the company's jargon. Therefore, the report containing the present information can be employed to change the situation. Also, the company has been discussing the idea of creating a website where consumers can not only make their queries but also purchase products. The Internet users skim through website pages and read only the few headlines that catch their attention. As such, the information from this investigative report will be used to determine the kind of written material placed on the website. Further, in the near future, I will equip myself with more knowledge to increase my indispensability in the organization. Presently, most of the employees exhibit very low levels of information literacy. The experts explained in the study results that the respondents with higher literacy levels demonstrated better skills in business writing. The two, therefore, seem to be important for the future workforce. Consequently, the employees, including myself, should increase their information literacy skills.
In addition, it would be recommended for schools to include business writing and information literacy courses in their curriculums. In this respect, a study carried out in Luther College demonstrated that such courses do improve the business writing abilities of students. If learning institutions included courses directed at equipping students with the ideas on business writing, the latter’s employability chances would considerably increase. Furthermore, employees would also be armed with the necessary knowledge to handle the increasing volume of information. Another recommendation would be for organizations to provide training on business skills and information literacy. Thus, the pitfalls characterizing business writing would be avoided. Further, when employees can effortlessly write for the organization, the values, missions, and objectives will be easily communicated to the consumers.
In conclusion, business writing and information literacy skills are becoming increasingly important nowadays. Unlike high school and college writing, business writing is concise and direct. As one writes for business, he/she learns to respect the audience’s time, hence using simple language and getting quickly to the point. Information literacy can also be used as a qualification skill which increases the chances of one’s employability. This investigative report has established that today business writing is a critical tool while people with high information literacy levels demonstrate impressive writing skills. It is also recommended that institutions should offer courses on business writing to increase the chances of graduates’ employability. Businesses should also train their employees on effective business writing to ensure the success of communication.
Mason Dillon is a talented writer at https://essaysprofessors.com. Whose hobby is to transfer his thought to the paper sheets.

More About the Author

Hello, I'm Dillon. I work as an administrator. My life is closely connected to the writing process. From early childhood, I like reading and writing. As a result, I developed this habit and now I combine my hobby and job which is a perfect combination.

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