I edited some copy for a brochure recently that makes a fine example of how a good editor can transform dense copy full of corporate buzz words into clear, readable copy. A part of the original went like this:
'Our group headquarters are based in Sydney, with office locations based throughout Australia. Our clientele maintains a wide variety of specialised services across an extensive range of industry sectors we manage with a degree of professionalism that is second to none. Over the years [we have] invested profoundly in growing and maintaining our Quality Assured Management Practices which has allowed us to translate these gained efficiencies to directly benefit our clientele's bottom line.'
Phew! Are you still with me? It takes some effort to draw the meaning out of that paragraph. Below is my alternative. I have tried to keep the tone and voice of the original, while increasing ease of comprehension.
'Based in Sydney, we have office locations throughout Australia. Our clientele represent a wide variety of specialised services, across an extensive range of industry sectors. Despite this diversity, we manage all our clients' needs with a degree of professionalism that is second to none. Over the years, [we have] profoundly invested in growing and maintaining our Quality Assured Management Practices; these gained efficiencies translate directly to our clients' bottom line.'
There are some things here that I kept in, out of respect for the writer; while I may have put things differently myself, these were elements that were obviously important to the client. But I think that I have made the paragraph much more intelligible, while maintaining the company's style.
And that's just what a good editor does.