Political and correct – the city of Zurich relies on Supertext for its annual report

Transparency and accuracy are the hallmarks of successful public communications. Supertext was able to experience this first-hand – by editing the city of Zurich’s annual report.

The city of Zurich’s annual report certainly makes its presence felt – all 403 pages of it. It includes reports from the city council and the city administration, giving accounts of their activities. It is mainly addressed to the municipal council, but is also available to the public, and covers almost everything that could be of even passing interest to the city’s residents: from the results of the municipal votes and the annual financial statement, to the loans of multimedia equipment by the schools and office supplies administration (for 2016: 1,646 items).

The report is impressive not only for the high level of detail, but for the excellent text quality. This is where Supertext comes in. The agency has worked for various city departments since 2012. While the focus was previously on translation services, this time Supertext worked directly on the text itself – a favorite pastime of the online agency. Staffel Medien AG, who were in charge of the project, asked Supertext to thoroughly vet all of the texts.

The 2,000-watt society

The only catch: the texts had not only to be technically flawless when delivered, but also conform to the city’s extensive guidelines. These guidelines range from traditional spelling rules and a list of fixed terms such as “2,000-watt society” to comprehensive regulations on linguistic equality between men and women. In short: what feels right is by no means correct.

Due to this demanding initial situation, Supertext agreed a specific procedure with the client: in a first round, two experienced proofreaders checked for compliance with the guidelines. The content was then sent to Staffel Medien AG for a detailed look through, before a round of conventional proofreading to ensure linguistic accuracy.

“A totally reliable partner.”

The city of Zurich and Staffel Medien carried out the project professionally, in good time and with regular communication between all parties involved, which meant that processing time could be kept to a minimum without everything descending into chaos. Supertext was able to handle around 115,000 words in just one month, as the company starting looking for the right editors for the job in October.

Marcel Felchlin, Head of Media Technology at Staffel Medien AG, was very happy with the process:

“Supertext is a totally reliable partner. No matter how short our deadlines were, jobs were always delivered punctually and to a very high quality. I was able to log in to supertext.ch to monitor the status of our texts at any time, which facilitated better staff planning for the annual report, as I always knew exactly when I would get a revised text back. Overall, I am very satisfied and am already looking forward to the next project with Supertext.”

Cover image via Flickr: Martin Kirchgessner – Zürich (CC BY-SA 2.0)

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