In most organizations, especially larger ones, the report is a key to identifying problems as well as recommending solutions to them. But writing a report goes more than just putting data down on paper. It takes a lot of careful planning in order to be understood well.
If you have been tasked by your boss to write a report, it may confuse you a lot especially if it is your first time. Actually, even more experienced employees find it hard to write one. But with the help of the steps below, writing your next report will hopefully be much easier than the last time you did it.
- First, you should put your pen down, or if you’re using a computer, keep your fingers off the keyboard. Before doing any actual writing, you must first consider the purpose of your report. Is it to inform, instruct or to sell ideas? Knowing the purpose of your report will decide how you will write it later on.
- You should also consider your audience when writing a report. How much do these people know and what do they need to know? Knowing these things will also help in shaping your report. Otherwise, you might just gather data that are actually useless to the people who will read it.
- Reports are highly structured so you must organize it in a way that the readers will follow what you’re saying. Build up your arguments well.
- You do not merely get information out of thin air. You base it on data. It is therefore important that you document those sources well by giving your report a bibliography. An appendix meanwhile is reserved for supporting information.
- Make sure to wrap up your report well by having a clear conclusion and set of recommendations. This is key to getting your point across to your audience.
How to Write a Report