writing Services for councils

Helping you to make the most of your talents and time

Almost everyone working in local government is involved in writing and editing in some way even though that’s not always what attracts engineers, parks, community services and environmental professionals to work for a council.

There may be people in your team who resist the need to write a report or complete an asset management plan, because that’s not what they enjoy doing, or they are unsure how to go about it. I can help you to make the best use of your staff resources by reducing the amount of time they need to spend writing strategies, plans and reports.

I work alongside subject experts to learn about an issue and the options to address it, and to access relevant resources. Then I use your council’s report or plan format to draft documents for your review.

Council writing services with a difference

Systems thinking

Throughout my local government career my natural inclination has been to find ways to integrate the objectives of different departments — such as being alert to the potential impacts of plan rules on infrastructure provision, and vice versa. When I work on your projects, I will be considering how to integrate council-wide objectives and projects, and to reflect the direction being provided by central government.

Focused attention on your project

I understand how challenging it is to make rapid progress on a large document when working in an open plan office with multiple meetings occurring on a daily basis. I now have the benefit of being able to work on one project at a time in a quiet home office which makes it much easier to complete large writing projects in a timely way.

A wide ranging interest in local government issues

My goal is to make life easier for council managers and their staff across a wide range of council departments — including infrastructure, environment, community services and parks. I enjoy learning about a diverse range of topics. For example, my recent and current work includes a report on camping ground management, development of an environmental grants policy and process, an accessibility guide for council facilities, a climate action plan and an infrastructure strategy.

Writing an environmental grants policy and process

Staff had been supporting individuals and community organisations to carry out planting and fencing projects for a number of years through provision of plants, advice, contracted services and assistance with fencing costs. Formalising this work with a policy on what grants would be available and setting up a process for assessing applications, providing support and keeping records, will contribute to the provision of efficient, fair and transparent support services.

Client feedback: “Thanks for all your fantastic work on this Debra. It is much appreciated.”

Writing an infrastructure strategy

Many different people need to contribute to an infrastructure strategy which can lead to multiple different writing styles and levels of detail being included in a document. Setting up meetings with subject experts to ask the relevant questions and having one person responsible for writing the document was an efficient process for staff. It also enabled the council to express its approach to strategic challenges in a clear, consistent way.

Client feedback: “Kudos from many councillors on how well written and structured the document was.”

Collaborating on a complex report

A client had a complex issue to discuss with councillors, and we knew from the start that the report would need multiple revisions following its review by different people. My client provided me with the background information and I drafted a first version of the report. Since then we have passed the report between us, as more information has been added and subtracted from the report.

Client feedback: I have just made your corrections. I can’t tell you how incredibly grateful I am for your amazing attention to detail and understanding of the topic. Your suggestions make such good sense.”