Communicate more effectively with our
onsite writing-skills courses

Effective communication is the bedrock of all successful business enterprises. Without being able to quickly and clearly express the benefits of your products or services, you may fail to create a profitable place for your company in today’s busy marketplace. Plain Language Commission offers onsite writing-skills courses that will boost your employees’ ability to create concise and easy-to-understand documents. Our expert editors and trainers can tailor our courses to best suit your needs. By attending our writing-skills courses, your team will learn how to get their message across to clients and colleagues in a more professional style. We offer our onsite courses to clients throughout the United Kingdom and abroad.


Our presenters have gained an unrivalled store of experience by providing more than 4,000 on-site writing-skills courses for government bodies, companies, councils and law firms. Many of these organizations return to us repeatedly. They trust us to pitch courses at the right level, to respect and develop the existing knowledge and skills of their staff, and to provide rational writing and editing methods.

We can tailor courses to meet your writers’ needs, which we identify by discussion with you and by studying their writing examples. The course style is informal and participative, with practical work, quizzes and group work. As needed, we can devise courses on particular topics.

Most of our courses last one day but we also provide half-day and two-day courses. Courses are usually for up to 12 participants. All participants get a set of attractive, regularly updated materials including a pre-course booklet on main principles, a folder and handouts. We offer an optional, tailor-made follow-up. One-to-one coaching is also available. Typical course aims are:

  • to help your staff produce clear, well-punctuated and well-structured writing that fulfils its purpose
  • to save your staff time, particularly by improving their planning of written work
  • to help your staff identify good writing and rectify sub-standard work
  • to help your staff decide when writing is ‘fit to go’, and therefore when they should avoid making unnecessary alterations.

For most courses, we’ll read, annotate and provide a brief assessment of up to four pages of writing from each participant before or after the course. Our course presenters are seasoned professionals – see ‘Our team’ for details.

To get a set of our typical course programmes, email us at

Typical course titles

We’re happy to devise a special programme and course title based on your preferred content, but here are some typical titles:

  • Advanced Writing Skills – usually covering letter- and report-writing
  • Better Letters and Emails
  • Effective Report Writing
  • Grammar and Punctuation Workout
  • Clarity for Lawyers
  • Proofreading
  • Writing Minutes and Agendas
  • Editing for Clarity and Consistency
  • Writing Responses to Complaints
  • Writing Effective Instructional Guides and Manuals
  • Writing for the Web.

NEW! Onsite workshop for up to six authors

Essentials of Clear Writing
Topics: Planning, Structuring, Style (clarity, brevity), Grammar (the important bits), Punctuation, Proofreading.
All at a very reasonable cost. Ask for a programme and price:

Typical topics

We can email you typical programmes on request (, but many of the courses include:

  • how to use the Process Method – our unique, five-stage approach to writing
  • a refresher on the basics: structure, sentence length, everyday English, powerful verbs, active and passive verbs, conciseness, accurate punctuation (including apostrophes, dashes and hyphens), essential grammar
  • writing myths explained and exposed
  • translating bureaucratic prose into plain English
  • effective planning, using the core statement and horizontal document plan, and
  • writing under pressure.

What participants said

Thought you would like to know that everyone on this course came back with very positive feedback; they all thoroughly enjoyed the day and took a lot from it. They were also complimentary of the trainer. It is quite unusual for all delegates to be unanimous in their praise – all credit to the trainer.

Head of conference and office services
Financial Services Authority

I thought the session for management team went very well. Martin Cutts was excellent and using the members’ room with everyone around the table made it feel much less like ‘enforced’ training, engendered a team approach and everyone happily joined in. Three service managers have already told me how much they enjoyed it and it is good to hear the word ‘enjoy’. So congratulations and thanks for your efforts.

Pendle Council

The training was fantastic! Ruth was excellent and highly knowledgeable and the course materials were, as you would expect, well structured, clear and highly effective. The team and I found the entire experience extremely useful and I would be keen on exploring other courses in the near future, in particular creative and marketing writing.


The sections on planning and structuring gave me a whole new way of approaching something I dread and, I hope, avoiding debilitating panics!

The balance of theory and practice was just right.

The course presenter is fantastic – very knowledgeable and knows how to get across the key messages.


It was refreshing to be taught by people who could take an independent look at our written work. Their comments and criticisms were constructive. I found them approachable and their enthusiasm motivating.


Please email us for details of prices (
Discounts are sometimes available for local councils and charities.

The prices we’ll quote are for a one-day on-site course in the UK for up to 12 people, and include:

  • a pre-course booklet in PDF and all other course materials for participants
  • a copy of the Good Word Guide (retail £12.95) or the Oxford Guide to Plain English (retail £7.99) or a reasonable substitute, and comments (for most courses) on several pages of each person’s written work.

Prices exclude VAT, the presenter’s reasonable travel, any necessary overnight-stay expenses, and any agreed special preparation. We may make an extra charge for courses held at remote UK locations.

We regularly provide courses outside the UK – please email us if you’d like details of prices.

Pricing for onsite courses

Concentrating on communication can really boost your bottom line. For details on our writing-skills courses. For details, send an email to