Developing a profile workplace written communication ability Abstract

Developing a profile workplace written communication ability
This paper reports on our study to determine employers' expectations of an acceptable level of
written communication ability in graduating students in their quest for employment.. Two
research questions guided our study: (1) what criteria do employers adopt in evaluating the
quality of written assignments? and (2) what minimum level of written language and
communication ability is expected in the workplace? Interviews and samples of two pieces of
writing, one an extended piece of writing highlighting students' expression of opinion on a given
statement and another, a 200--word report on given stimuli were shown to various human
resource personnel from diverse specializations, among others, automotive, media, health-care,
to elicit their views on scripts which are acceptable to them and which are not, the criteria
adopted in determining the quality of the assignments, their views on what constitutes good and
poor writing and their minimum acceptable level for consideration for the workplace. Survey
questionnaires were also emailed to other human resource personnel in order to gather additional
related information. Results indicate that employers expect written works that depict clarity of
thought, accurate reporting, conciseness, correct use of relevant expressions and terminologies
and good organisation.