5 Tips To Hire Great Editors

Great content requires great talent – we all know that. But hiring the right people for the job can be a real challenge. How do you know if a hire is going to be a good fit for your company and its goals? Often you don’t, but there are steps you can take to give yourself the best shot at finding a gem!


5 Tips To Hire Great Editors


1. Check for Proofreading Ability

Everyone has to start somewhere, but hiring someone with proven ability will make the training process easier for you and your content team.

When you hire someone brand new to the job, your team will spend time training them on the basics, taking time away from more pressing tasks. Even more time is spent giving your new editor corrections and feedback. Thus, taking on someone brand new to the editorial world can cost your business more money than the content itself generates.

Pro tip: You can gauge an editor’s proofreading prowess by giving them a trial task to complete before you officially hire them.

2. Look for Experience in Your Industry

If your editor has subject matter expertise, they can more quickly complete their work. They’ll spend less time deciphering industry jargon and fact-checking, and you’ll avoid common errors, like a change of intended meaning.

With that in mind, look for an editor that is experienced in writing for your industry. For example, if you have a market research company, find an editor with market research experience. You’ll spend less time training them, which means less cost for your business.

Aim to find an editor that already has experience with B2B writing. B2B and B2C content have subtle and not-so-subtle differences, and an editor with past experience in this area should get off to a flying start.


3. Ensure Good Time Management Skills

Looking out for good time management skills is a key part of hiring great talent. For editors, this is important for two reasons. 

First, if their work isn’t delivered on time, it can impact the entire content production process. And, if they’re rushing through at the last minute, they’re much more likely to miss deadlines, forget to check your style guide for new changes, and make errors.

Second, editors with good time management skills are less likely to burn out. Editing can be stressful for some people because of the tight deadlines, varying brand guidelines, and text from writers of varying degrees of skill. Hiring someone who is able to manage their time and properly balance their work life and personal life will benefit everyone. If your editor burns out, you may have to go through the whole hiring and training process all over again, which may result in costly delays.

Pro tip: You can gauge an editor’s responsiveness by reaching out to them. How long does it take for them to respond to your emails? Do they only respond outside of business hours? Do they reference hectic family commitments? This will also give you a sense of their availability.

4. Verify Reliable Availability

You may not always find an editor that can dedicate their time to you at the drop of a hat, but finding an editor with reliable availability is a must – especially if you’re creating a lot of content.

If you choose an editor whose availability is only a few hours per week, is only in the evenings, or varies greatly, you may encounter problems. Editors who are difficult to get in touch with will create a bottleneck in your content production process, making it difficult for you to scale.

It’s always a good sign when an editor is able to tell you how much work they can take on over a set period (e.g., each week or month), and it’s even better if they’re available to answer emails or attend meetings during regular business hours.


5. Find an Editorial Agency

Choosing an editorial agency with pre-qualified editors could be the best option for your business. Editorial agencies give you fully-trained editors while eliminating the time-consuming tasks of training, management, and feedback.

Proofed provides you with a team of experienced editors who know your content goals inside out. Your editorial team will be focused on your content, meaning you’ll be able to meet tight content deadlines with 100% accurate work.

With Proofed, you’ll be matched with a dedicated project manager for your team, freeing up time that you would have spent managing your editors. Your Proofed team will work from a completely customized style guide that matches your business’s tone of voice, special requirements, formatting guidelines, and more.

But don’t just take our word for it. Proofed is a trusted editorial partner of thousands of businesses worldwide, including many Fortune 500 companies.

Summary

Hiring great editors who can hit the ground running is no easy feat. But there are some simple things you can do immediately to make sure you’re looking in the right places.

Find competent editors with experience in B2B content in your industry. You’ll cut training times for your team and have a faster turnaround time from your editors. And if you can’t find seasoned editors specific to your industry, try finding someone who has general B2B content experience, as B2B and B2C content are often very different. 

Look for editors who are able to regularly dedicate enough time to your content and have strong time management skills. This will make life a lot easier for your content team. 

Need More Help?

If the process of finding a great editor sounds painful, choosing an editorial agency like Proofed could be the perfect match for your business. With Proofed’s managed services, you’ll have trained editors working on your content – and none of the hassles of training, managing, hiring, and firing. Learn more about what we can do for your team.

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