The job of an editor is much more complicated than one imagines. The main responsibilities are to read the text carefully, to correct all grammatical, spelling and punctuation mistakes, as well as to check whether the text is easy to read and whether there is a logical transition between the paragraphs.
Even though there are lots of vacant jobs for editors, some companies and organizations tend to adhere to the following tactic: an editor is paid based on the number of corrections they have made. Here’s why this policy is ineffective. When one of the duties you specify in the jobs for editors vacancies is to require an applicant to correct as many mistakes as possible because their salary depends on it, they will try to correct every single sentence even when it is grammatically correct. This way, an editor will try to paraphrase simply because they want to earn more money. It is wrong because it may ruin the whole structure of a text, as well as give the writer of the text no opportunity to craft a text using their own unique style.
An editor should get paid for a job well done. What it means is that the main task of an editor is to make sure the text does not contain any mistakes and is easy to read. Sometimes, they need to make only a few corrections. Sometimes, they need to rewrite the whole paragraph. Yet, the salary of an editor should remain the same no matter how many corrections they have made in a text. Besides, the number of corrections and the amount of work differs depending on the quantity of texts an editor gets to deal with within a certain month.
In general, the working day of an editor looks like this: get manuscripts or texts they are supposed to edit, fact-check all pieces of information mentioned in a document, correct all mistakes, complete this task within the required time frame. The ability to meet deadlines is one of the most important aspects for an editor, no matter whether they are working in an office or have chosen freelancing. Speaking about skills and professional competence, an editor should have exceptional reading skills and be able to grasp all vital information quickly. In addition, their writing skills should be impressive as well due to the fact that editors are often required to rewrite certain parts of the text to make it easier to comprehend for a reader. There is no doubt that a good editor is the one who demonstrates attention to detail. This is one of the most significant skills for an editor as it is their job to notice everything a writer of the text has missed. Finally, editors should demonstrate sound judgment: it is the ability to take a look at a text and determine that it is plagiarism-free and ethical.
Taking everything into consideration, the skills and responsibilities mentioned above are the main markers which play a vital role in determining how much an editor should be paid. Paying an editor based on a number of mistakes they have corrected is ineffective, especially when you are looking for a long-term editor. If you are currently looking for an editor, take a look at their previous work, if possible. You need to make sure your applicant has the so-called ‘language feeling’ which basically means that they know how to rewrite a sentence to make the whole text sound better. Thus, the main message of the text will reach its target audience.