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What is the Importance of Report Writing? A Complete Overview

Reports are the backbone of effective communication in both academic and professional realms. Discover the significance of report writing in our blog on the Importance of Report Writing. Learn how mastering this skill can enhance your ability to convey information, influence decisions, and propel your career to new heights.

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Table of contents   

1) Importance of Report Writing  

    a) Evaluation 

    b) Development of skills 

    c) Investigation 

    d) Quick Location 

    e) Decision making tool 

    f) Neutral presentation of facts 

    g) A managerial tool 

    h) Proper control 

    i) Professional advancement 

    j) Encountering advance and complex situation 

2) Conclusion  

Importance of Report Writing  

Report Writing is a skill that can benefit you in various ways and contexts. Here is the list of reasons reflecting the Importance of Report Writing:  

Importance of Report Writing

Evaluation  

The importance of Report Writing can be reflected during the evaluation process. This is because Report Writing can help you evaluate your own or others’ performance, progress, or outcomes. For example, if you are a student, you can write a Report to assess your learning outcomes, achievements, or challenges in a course or a project. As a teacher, you can write a Report to evaluate your students’ learning outcomes, strengths, or weaknesses in a course or an assignment. 

If you are a researcher, you can write a Report to evaluate your research methods, results, or implications in a study or an experiment. Report Writing can help you identify the gaps, strengths, or areas for improvement in your own or others’ work.  

Report Writing Training

Development of skill s  

Report Writing can help you develop your skills in various domains and disciplines. For example, if you are a student, you can write a Report to improve your writing, research, analysis, or presentation skills. If you are a teacher, you can write a Report to enhance your teaching, assessment, feedback, or curriculum design skills. 

If you are a researcher, you can write a Report to advance your knowledge, methodology, innovation, or contribution skills. Report Writing can help you acquire new knowledge, apply existing knowledge, or create new knowledge in your field of interest. 

Investigation  

The Importance of Report Writing also lies in investigating a problem or a topic in-depth and in detail. For example, if you are a student, you can write a Report to explore a question or an issue that interests you or relates to your course or project. 

At the same time, if you are a teacher, you can write a Report to investigate a pedagogical or educational problem or phenomenon that affects your teaching or learning environment. On the other hand, if you are a researcher, you can write a Report to investigate a scientific or social problem or phenomenon that has significance or relevance for your discipline or society. Report Writing can help you collect, analyse, and present data in an organised and systematic way. 

Quick location  

Report Writing can help you locate information quickly and easily. For example, students can write a Report to summarise the main points and findings of your course or project for future reference or revision. If you are a teacher, you can write a Report to document the key aspects and outcomes of your course or assignment for future use or evaluation. 

At the same time, researchers can write a Report to record the essential details and implications of a study or experiment for future dissemination or publication. Report Writing can help you create an index, an abstract, or an executive summary that can help you access information at a glance . 

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Decision making tool  

Report Writing acts as a decision-making tool that can assist you in making decisions based on facts and evidence. For example, if you are a student, you can write a Report to support your arguments or opinions with data and sources in an essay or a debate. If you are a teacher, you can write a Report to justify your decisions or recommendations with data and sources in an assessment or feedback. 

If you are a researcher, you can write a Report to validate your claims or hypotheses with data and sources in a study or an experiment. Thus, Report Writing can help you use logic, reasoning, and analysis to make informed and rational decisions. 

Neutral presentation of facts  

Report Writing can help you present facts in a neutral and objective manner. For example, if you are a student, you can write a Report to avoid bias or emotion in your writing and use facts and evidence to support your points. If you are a teacher, you can write a Report to avoid bias or emotion in your assessment and use facts and evidence to evaluate your students. 

Researchers can write a Report to avoid bias or emotion in their research and use facts and evidence to demonstrate their findings. Report Writing can help you maintain a professional and ethical tone in your communication. 

A m anagerial t ool  

Report Writing can help you manage your work or project effectively and efficiently. For example, if you are a student, you can write a Report to plan, organise, and monitor your progress or outcomes in a course or a project. If you are a teacher, you can write a Report to plan, organise, and monitor your activities or objectives in a course or an assignment. 

If you are a researcher, you can write a Report to plan, organise, and monitor your methods or results in a study or an experiment. As a result, Report Writing can help you set goals, allocate resources, and measure performance. 

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Proper c ontrol  

Report Writing helps you control your work or project effectively and efficiently. For example, if you are a student, you can write a Report to check, review, and revise your work or project before submission or presentation. If you are a teacher, you can write a Report to check, review, and revise your work or project before delivery or evaluation. 

If you are a researcher, you can write a Report to check, review, and revise your work or project before dissemination or publication. Thus, Report Writing can help you ensure quality, accuracy, and consistency in your work or project. 

Professional a dvancement  

The importance of Report Writing lies in advancing and developing your professional career. For example, if you are a student, you can write a Report to demonstrate your competence, knowledge, and skills in a course or a project. In contrast, if you are a teacher, you can write a Report to demonstrate your competence, knowledge, and skills in a course or an assignment. 

If you are a researcher, you can write a Report to demonstrate your competence, knowledge, and skills in a study or an experiment. Report Writing can help you showcase your achievements, contributions, or innovations in your field of interest. 

Encountering advance and complex situation  

Report Writing can help you encounter advanced and complex situations in your work or project. For example, if you are a student, you can write a Report to deal with challenging questions or issues that arise in your course or project. If you are a teacher, you can write a Report to deal with challenging questions or issues that arise in your course or assignment. 

If you are a researcher, you can write a Report to deal with challenging questions or issues that arise in your study or experiment. Report Writing can help you solve problems, overcome obstacles, or discover new possibilities in your work or project. 

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Conclusion  

We hope that this blog has helped you understand the Importance of Report Writing and how to use it effectively. Report Writing is a skill that can benefit you in various ways and contexts. So, why not start writing Reports today? You will be amazed by the results! 

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Some academic assignments ask for a ‘report’, rather than an essay, and students are often confused about what that really means.

Likewise, in business, confronted with a request for a ‘report’ to a senior manager, many people struggle to know what to write.

Confusion often arises about the writing style, what to include, the language to use, the length of the document and other factors.

This page aims to disentangle some of these elements, and provide you with some advice designed to help you to write a good report.

What is a Report?

In academia there is some overlap between reports and essays, and the two words are sometimes used interchangeably, but reports are more likely to be needed for business, scientific and technical subjects, and in the workplace.

Whereas an essay presents arguments and reasoning, a report concentrates on facts.

Essentially, a report is a short, sharp, concise document which is written for a particular purpose and audience. It generally sets outs and analyses a situation or problem, often making recommendations for future action. It is a factual paper, and needs to be clear and well-structured.

Requirements for the precise form and content of a report will vary between organisation and departments and in study between courses, from tutor to tutor, as well as between subjects, so it’s worth finding out if there are any specific guidelines before you start.

Reports may contain some or all of the following elements:

  • A description of a sequence of events or a situation;
  • Some interpretation of the significance of these events or situation, whether solely your own analysis or informed by the views of others, always carefully referenced of course (see our page on Academic Referencing for more information);
  • An evaluation of the facts or the results of your research;
  • Discussion of the likely outcomes of future courses of action;
  • Your recommendations as to a course of action; and
  • Conclusions.

Not all of these elements will be essential in every report.

If you’re writing a report in the workplace, check whether there are any standard guidelines or structure that you need to use.

For example, in the UK many government departments have outline structures for reports to ministers that must be followed exactly.

Sections and Numbering

A report is designed to lead people through the information in a structured way, but also to enable them to find the information that they want quickly and easily.

Reports usually, therefore, have numbered sections and subsections, and a clear and full contents page listing each heading. It follows that page numbering is important.

Modern word processors have features to add tables of contents (ToC) and page numbers as well as styled headings; you should take advantage of these as they update automatically as you edit your report, moving, adding or deleting sections.

Report Writing

Getting started: prior preparation and planning.

The structure of a report is very important to lead the reader through your thinking to a course of action and/or decision. It’s worth taking a bit of time to plan it out beforehand.

Step 1: Know your brief

You will usually receive a clear brief for a report, including what you are studying and for whom the report should be prepared.

First of all, consider your brief very carefully and make sure that you are clear who the report is for (if you're a student then not just your tutor, but who it is supposed to be written for), and why you are writing it, as well as what you want the reader to do at the end of reading: make a decision or agree a recommendation, perhaps.

Step 2: Keep your brief in mind at all times

During your planning and writing, make sure that you keep your brief in mind: who are you writing for, and why are you writing?

All your thinking needs to be focused on that, which may require you to be ruthless in your reading and thinking. Anything irrelevant should be discarded.

As you read and research, try to organise your work into sections by theme, a bit like writing a Literature Review .

Make sure that you keep track of your references, especially for academic work. Although referencing is perhaps less important in the workplace, it’s also important that you can substantiate any assertions that you make so it’s helpful to keep track of your sources of information.

The Structure of a Report

Like the precise content, requirements for structure vary, so do check what’s set out in any guidance.

However, as a rough guide, you should plan to include at the very least an executive summary, introduction, the main body of your report, and a section containing your conclusions and any recommendations.

Executive Summary

The executive summary or abstract , for a scientific report, is a brief summary of the contents. It’s worth writing this last, when you know the key points to draw out. It should be no more than half a page to a page in length.

Remember the executive summary is designed to give busy 'executives' a quick summary of the contents of the report.

Introduction

The introduction sets out what you plan to say and provides a brief summary of the problem under discussion. It should also touch briefly on your conclusions.

Report Main Body

The main body of the report should be carefully structured in a way that leads the reader through the issue.

You should split it into sections using numbered sub-headings relating to themes or areas for consideration. For each theme, you should aim to set out clearly and concisely the main issue under discussion and any areas of difficulty or disagreement. It may also include experimental results. All the information that you present should be related back to the brief and the precise subject under discussion.

If it’s not relevant, leave it out.

Conclusions and Recommendations

The conclusion sets out what inferences you draw from the information, including any experimental results. It may include recommendations, or these may be included in a separate section.

Recommendations suggest how you think the situation could be improved, and should be specific, achievable and measurable. If your recommendations have financial implications, you should set these out clearly, with estimated costs if possible.

A Word on Writing Style

When writing a report, your aim should be to be absolutely clear. Above all, it should be easy to read and understand, even to someone with little knowledge of the subject area.

You should therefore aim for crisp, precise text, using plain English, and shorter words rather than longer, with short sentences.

You should also avoid jargon. If you have to use specialist language, you should explain each word as you use it. If you find that you’ve had to explain more than about five words, you’re probably using too much jargon, and need to replace some of it with simpler words.

Consider your audience. If the report is designed to be written for a particular person, check whether you should be writing it to ‘you’ or perhaps in the third person to a job role: ‘The Chief Executive may like to consider…’, or ‘The minister is recommended to agree…’, for example.

A Final Warning

As with any academic assignment or formal piece of writing, your work will benefit from being read over again and edited ruthlessly for sense and style.

Pay particular attention to whether all the information that you have included is relevant. Also remember to check tenses, which person you have written in, grammar and spelling. It’s also worth one last check against any requirements on structure.

For an academic assignment, make sure that you have referenced fully and correctly. As always, check that you have not inadvertently or deliberately plagiarised or copied anything without acknowledging it.

Finally, ask yourself:

“Does my report fulfil its purpose?”

Only if the answer is a resounding ‘yes’ should you send it off to its intended recipient.

Continue to: How to Write a Business Case Planning an Essay

See also: Business Writing Tips Study Skills Writing a Dissertation or Thesis

Report Purposes & Types

Reports are key communication tools in business; they often become part of an organization’s archives so that current and future employees can see the research, information, and reasoning underlying certain issues, actions, and decisions.  Reports may be formal or informal, informative or analytical.  They may be intended to provide updates, influence action, provide information, and/or offer different perspectives important in an organization’s discussion of an issue. At some point in your career, you most likely will need to write a report related to some aspect of your work.

The following video provides a good introduction to professional reports.

Report Purposes

Reports have two main purposes:

Informative Reports

An informative report explains or instructs and presents details of events, activities, individuals, or conditions. It provides background and explanation without analysis or evaluation. For example, a progress report is a standard informative report intended to explain the completion of a project at certain key points within that project’s timeline.  You might review the project’s purpose, explain what phase the project is in at this particular point in time, identify project accomplishments to date, and/or discuss anticipated next steps within the project timeline.  You would not evaluate, analyze, or recommend, but would simply present relevant information to inform stakeholders about how the project is progressing.

what is report writing and its importance

Analytical Reports

An analytical report often provides some of the same information as an informative report  along with  evaluation of that information. Analytical reports may solve problems, demonstrate relationships, or make recommendations. For example, in addition to informing, you may also have an analytical purpose in a progress report, especially if the project has not progressed as planned.  You might analyze situations that derailed the project from the intended timeline, and/or recommend ways to catch up and get the project back onto the original timeline.  Another example of an analytical report is a field report by a Center for Disease Control (CDC) employee from the site of an outbreak of the H1N1 virus, noting symptoms, disease progression, steps taken to arrest the spread of the disease, and recommendations on the quarantine of subjects.

The following video clearly introduces and illustrates the nature of an analytical report.  Note that the report sections mentioned will vary depending on your own writing context and situational analysis.

Report Types

There are two main types of report:

Informal Reports

Employees in most organizations create and use informal reports, many of which are for internal use. Some institutions have prescribed formats for certain types of informal reports (e.g., expense reports, mileage reimbursement), but allow you, as a writer, the freedom to structure other types of informal reports, such as status updates, recommendation reports, conference reports, or others.

The main characteristic of an informal report is that it tends to be relatively short, with fewer sections than a formal report. Overall, informal reports typically include the following structure:

  • Introduction or background – the “why” of the report
  • Information and/or analysis – your facts, findings, data, analysis, explanatory details, and/or recommendations
  • Summary – restatement of main ideas

Informal reports may be in memo, email, letter, video, powerpoint, or written report format. An informal report usually has specific topics grouped in paragraphs, and these topics tend to have simple headings. Note that while informal reports do not require headings, you may decide to use them, especially if the report is a page or two, since headings may help your reader better understand and retain your main ideas.

A QUICK COMPARISON: USING HEADINGS

Look at the two brief samples to compare how you read and react to the same information in an informal report without headings and with headings. Which one is easier for you to read, understand, and find information?

Formal Reports

Formal reports may be written because of many different situations, for example, to provide information and research on the psychological effects on employees as a result of moving from offices to cubicles, to analyze the results of moving from offices to cubicles in terms of employee productivity, or to make recommendations on the financial feasibility of moving employees from offices to cubicles. The hallmark of a formal report is its length; format reports delve into a subject much more deeply than informal reports. Formal reports synthesize main ideas related to your subject, drawing from your information, analysis, and/or research, to fulfill your purpose. Formal reports are not simply compilations of large quantities of data around a topic, with no purpose or reasoned presentation.

Like informal reports, formal reports also have an overall structure of introduction, information/analysis, and summary.  But because they investigate a concept or issue deeply, formal reports usually have many sections within the body of the report, which definitely require headings and subheadings.  Formal reports also contain standard front and back matter.  You can read more fully about Report Sections in the next page of this text.

Formal reports are usually written documents, because of their quantity of information.  However, formal written reports are often presented and/or accompanied by powerpoint presentations, explanatory videos, or other professional communications that condense and introduce concepts offered in the formal report.

The following video compares and reviews informal and formal reports.

Importance of Reports in Organizations

what is report writing and its importance

Report purposes and types may be combined in many different ways; reports on the same topic may be informative or analytical in different situations, just as they may be informal or formal in different situations.

For example, if a group of workers in a particular department is experimenting with working remotely a few days a week, you could potentially write:

  • an informal, informative, compliance report to your supervisor letting her know that this is occurring and providing a short description of, and question about, company policy on telecommuting
  • an informal, analytical, feasibility report to your supervisor evaluating evidence gathered through discussions with the department head and workers who are part of the experiment
  • a formal, informative, research report citing evidence that worker flexibility in work location can boost productivity
  • a formal, analytical, recommendation report to your supervisor building upon your research and proposing the need to implement this option in your department
  • any number of additional types of reports, depending on your purpose and role

It’s up to you, as a communicator, to decide on the best approach for each particular report you need to create, based on your purpose and comprehensive analysis of the communication situation.

Examples of some common reports include the following:

  • Status updates  may be internal to a company in addressing a business situation, or external in providing the status of a project to another organization. Status reports are usually to-the-point, tightly focused, brief informational reports.
  • Project reports are lengthier documents which may cover many different aspects of a project at various stages, for various stakeholders in the project. They may be informative or analytical, depending on your purpose and situation.
  • Feasibility reports analyze a situation and propose a direction to take. They are often written to explore a new idea or process, or to evaluate a current situation and make recommendations, as a way to explore a change before making major investments of time or money. For example, a feasibility report may be a first step toward doing a full business plan, since it can be developed in much less time and still provides direction for decision makers.
  • Business plans  are often informative reports about what an individual or organization plans to do over an upcoming period of time. A business plan can be informative but may be more analytical if it’s intended for potential investors. In some cases, a business plan may include a request for funds; in those cases, the writing is more persuasive and may, in fact, turn into a formal proposal.
  • Proposals analyze a problem or situation, research possible solutions, and propose a specific solution or action, as a result of the evidence presented. They often include action plans, timelines, costs, and other appropriate information.  Proposals may be informal or formal, internal to a company or external to an outside audience, depending on the situation.
  • Recommendation reports often result from a business problem that an individual or team has been asked to solve; these reports are usually analytical and internal to an organization.  Reports that deal with needs assessment are one type of recommendation report.
  • Research reports  gather and explain data; these reports are usually informative.
  • Compliance reports may be informative or analytical as they deal with how well a department, division, or the whole organization is addressing a set of standards.
  • Financial reports may be informative or analytical as they deal with use of funds in certain contexts.  Financial reports may be internal or external to the organization.
  • Trip or conference reports summarize and transmit information learned, therefore increasing the value of the trip by disseminating information through the organization. They are usually informative.
  • Meeting minutes  are informative reports that summarize concepts and topics discussed at a meeting.

From the list above, which is by no means exhaustive, you can see the pervasiveness of reports in professional situations.

No matter what type of report you create, all reports need to contain accurate information, clear writing, logical organization of information, and professional layout. These characteristics affect the report’s reliability and validity, as well as your reader’s comprehension of your information. Use simple, clear language and organization. Make key report concepts easy to grasp for the widest audience. Remember that a report may be retained for a long time and may be viewed by many readers.

Guadalupe is the manager for meats and seafoods for a rapidly-expanding grocery chain, Valuetown. Valuetown’s expansion has happened mostly by buying up individually-owned stores or small chains in the region. One of the issues Guadalupe has faced is that the display and storage units in these stores are not in great shape, and often meats can’t be displayed. Valuetown is also spending a lot on repairs. Guadalupe has done an analysis of what the old refrigeration units are costing in terms of repairs and lost revenue. Her manager told her to write a report to present to the Valuetown board requesting new units. How should she proceed?

She should write a formal report with her conclusions at the front, a summary of her analysis in the middle, and back matter that includes the raw data on costs and lost revenue as well as estimated costs to replace the units. This report should be thoroughly edited and proofread so it is both stylistically perfect and in line with the needs of her audience.

Is this a good option? Check here.

She should write an informal report that briefly summarizes what she wants to do, gives highlights of her analysis, and then leaves most of the data in the back matter. Her goal should be to get this report out as quickly as possible, even if it has a few errors.

She should ask for time to give a presentation at the next board meeting and then take questions. She’s more persuasive in person than on paper.

  • Report Purposes & Types, original information and information adapted from pages on Business, Informal, and Formal Reports from Business Communication Skills for Managers, and page 9.4 Report from Business Communication for Success; attributions below. Authored by : Susan Oaks. Project : Communications for Professionals. License : CC BY-NC: Attribution-NonCommercial
  • Business Reports. Authored by : Susan Kendall. Provided by : Lumen Learning. Located at : https://courses.lumenlearning.com/wmopen-businesscommunicationmgrs/chapter/business-reports/ . Project : Business Communication Skills for Managers. License : CC BY: Attribution
  • Informal Reports. Authored by : Susan Kendall. Provided by : Lumen Learning. Located at : https://courses.lumenlearning.com/wmopen-businesscommunicationmgrs/chapter/informal-reports/ . Project : Business Communication Skills for Managers. License : CC BY: Attribution
  • Formal Reports. Authored by : Susan Kendall. Provided by : Lumen Learning. Located at : https://courses.lumenlearning.com/wmopen-businesscommunicationmgrs/chapter/formal-reports/ . Project : Business Communication Skills for Managers. License : CC BY: Attribution
  • 9.4 Report. Provided by : University of Minnesota Libraries. Located at : https://open.lib.umn.edu/businesscommunication/chapter/9-4-report/ . License : CC BY-NC-SA: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike
  • image of professional reading a report on a tablet. Authored by : rawpixel. Provided by : Pixabay. Located at : https://pixabay.com/photos/paper-business-document-analysis-3249919/ . License : CC0: No Rights Reserved
  • video How to write a business report. Provided by : USC: University of the Sunshine Coast. Located at : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V8uF1EoIneE . License : Other . License Terms : YouTube video
  • video Formal Reports vs. Informal Reports. Provided by : Penn State Harrisburg . Located at : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aqeeh353NR8 . Project : Penn State Harrisburg English 202 Online Videos. License : Other . License Terms : YouTube video
  • image of businesswoman reading report on a tablet. Authored by : rawpixel. Provided by : Pixabay. Located at : https://pixabay.com/photos/pill-laptop-technology-business-3203069/ . License : CC0: No Rights Reserved

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what is report writing and its importance

Report Writing And Its Significance In Your Career

You reach the office at around 9.00 AM, switch on your system, and start working. It’s a usual workday for…

Report Writing And Its Significance In Your Career

You reach the office at around 9.00 AM, switch on your system, and start working. It’s a usual workday for you until your manager comes to your desk and asks you to create a sales report. That’s the first time you’ve got such a task, and find yourself struggling with basic questions such as, “What’s a report?” and “How do I write one?”

What Is Report Writing?

Elements of report writing, importance of report writing.

You must have heard the term ‘report writing’ before.

According to the commonly known definition of report writing, a report is a formal document that elaborates on a topic using facts, charts, and graphs to support its arguments and findings.

Any report—whether it’s about a business event or one that describes the processes of various departments in a company—is meant for a particular type of audience.

But why do you think your manager wants you to create a report?

One simple answer is: an elaborate report prepared with evaluated facts helps solve complex problems. When managers come across certain business situations, they ask for comprehensive and well-thought-out reports that can help them design business plans.

Once you have an idea about what a report is, the next step is to understand how you can write one.

There are different types of reports, and each has a specific structure, usually known as ‘elements of the report’.

While we tell you what the elements of report writing are, if you want detailed guidance, you can go for Harappa Education’s Writing Proficiently course that talks about the popular PREP (Point of starting, Reason, Evidence, and Point of ending) model of report writing.

Every report starts with a title page and a table of contents, after which come the main sections–the executive summary, introduction, discussion, and conclusion.

Executive Summary:

Do you remember summary writing for English class during school days? You were asked to read a story or passage and write a summary, including the important takeaways. ( ambien )

That’s exactly what you are expected to do in a report’s executive summary section. This section presents a brief overview of the report’s contents. You should present the key points of the report in this section.

But why is it important to write an executive summary at the start of the report?

Firstly, the summary will help readers better understand the purpose, key points, and evidence you are going to present in the report. Secondly, readers who are in a hurry can read the summary for a preview of the report.

Here are some specifics that will help you write a clear and concise summary:

Include the purpose of your report and emphasize conclusions or recommendations.

Include only the essential or most significant information to support your theories and conclusions.

Follow the same sequence of information that you have used in the report.

Keep the summary length to 10-15% of the complete report.

Try not to introduce any new information or point in summary that you haven’t covered in the report.

The summary should communicate the message clearly and independently.

Introduction:  

The introduction section should:

Briefly describe the background and context of the research you have done.

Describe the change, problem, or issue related to the topic.

Define the relevant objectives and purpose of the report

Give hints about the overall answer to the problem covered in the report.

Comment on the limitations and any assumptions you have made to get to the conclusion.

Discussion:

This section serves two purposes:

It justifies the recommendations.

It explains the conclusions.

While you are writing the discussion section, make sure you do the following:

Present your analysis logically.

If needed, divide the information under appropriate headings to improving readability and ease of understanding.

Explain your points and back up your claims with strong and evaluated evidence.

Connect your theory with real-life scenarios

Conclusion:

The last key element of report writing is the conclusion section. Present the conclusion as follows:

  • The primary conclusion should come first.

Identify and interpret the major problems related to the case your report is based on.

Relate to the objectives that you have mentioned in the introduction.

Keep the conclusion brief and specific.

Before you start writing a report, it’s important to understand the significance of the report. It’s also crucial to research independently instead of relying on data and trends available on the internet, besides structuring the report properly. Here’s why:

Decision-Making Tool

Organizations require a considerable amount of data and information on specific topics, scenarios, and situations. Managers and decision-makers often use business reports and research papers as information sources to make important business decisions and reach solutions.

Another reason that adds to the significance of report writing is that it is a collection of evaluated information.

Different types of activities by different departments define an organization. Think of the departments your organization has–development, sales, distribution, marketing, HR, and more. Each department follows defined processes and protocols that require many small and large activities on a daily basis.

It is impossible for the management to keep an eye on the different activities in each department.

That’s where the reports can help. With every department writing and maintaining periodic reports, keeping a tab of ongoing activities becomes easier for the management.

Professional Improvements

During the annual appraisal cycle, your manager will ask you to write reports to explain your position, level of work, and performance.

If you have ever wondered how your manager decided to promote your colleague and not you, the answer may lie in his well-presented report.

Quick Source For Problem-Solving

There’s no denying that managers require accurate information on various topics to make quick decisions. Often due to urgency, managers only rely on business reports as an authentic source of information. Almost every employee would have witnessed a situation that needed the manager’s attention urgently. Reports come in handy during such situations.

Report writing is a significant exercise in many ways for your professional life. If you are not well-versed with it already, you must start working on your report writing skills now. For more help or guidance to learn this new skill, sign up for Harappa’s Writing Proficiently course.

Make the most of your time at home and master this new skill. Work on many assignments, improve your skills, and become a pro at report writing.

Explore our Harappa Diaries section to learn more about topics related to the Communicate habit such as the Importance of Writing Skills and the Cycle of Communication .

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Become a Writer Today

Report Writing: Learn How To Write a Comprehensive Report

Discover our guide to report writing with the best writing tips, format template and advice to help you succeed!

Get ready to master the art of report writing, where compelling and exciting arguments are matched with data and factual research. If you’re writing a report for school, college or as practice for an upcoming exam, it’s essential to have a basic understanding of how to write a report that resonates with your reader.

Report writing is the skill of creating a cohesive written document that shares information and findings. For English students, report writing is required to present research and data analysis in an organized way. It’s a fantastic activity that empowers students to become confident in their writing and cultivates communication and research skills that greatly benefit professional careers.

Whether you’re new to writing reports or a pro looking to elevate your writing skills, our guide will help you pick a  report writing topic , format your writing correctly, choose the right report, and begin writing. With plenty of helpful tips and tricks, you’ll become a master wordsmith in no time!

Informational Reports

Analytical reports, recommendation reports, step 1. preparing to write, step 2. gathering information, step 3. organizing information, step 4. writing the report, step 5. editing and revising, table of contents, executive summary, introduction, recommendations, 1. use clear and concise language, 2. avoid jargon and technical terms, 3. use headings and subheadings, 4. use visuals to support the text, 5. proofread thoroughly, types of reports.

Informational Reports

There are three different types of reports for you to master: informational reports, analytical reports and recommendation reports. Let’s look at the differences between these types of reports so you can decide which one best suits your subject.

Informational reports are designed to present factual data, details or summaries without an in-depth analysis. These reports give the reader straightforward information that’s easy to understand. Usually, these reports are a type of business report used to update colleagues in the workplace or provide information to involved third parties. 

An example of an informational business report could be a company update announcing a company name change or an annual report displaying financial updates for shareholders. These reports are purely informative and state only the facts.

Analytical reports present and analyze data, interpret information and draw conclusions. Analytical reports are typically used for research projects, literary analysis and scientific studies. Students often create an analytical report as a part of their final exam. 

These reports involve assessing data, looking for patterns and trends and offering insight into the findings. The author often draws conclusions based on the data and offers their opinion backed by data.

Recommendation reports are written to porose the options available to solve a problem or query. These reports use background information and data analysis to give insight into a recommended course of action. Recommendation reports are excellent for helping organizations make decisions.

For example, as a student, you might be asked to create a recommendation report in business class with a hypothetical situation that must be resolved or in environmental science to recommend sustainable practices for the local community.

Steps in Report Writing

Preparation is the key to success , so it’s important to prepare before you begin writing! Take steps to define the purpose of your report, consider your audience and think about the scope of your report.

Establish an understanding of what you will communicate in your report, choose the type of report your will be writing and take note of the most important information to include. Once you understand what your report will be about, you’ll want to set a timeline to complete it. 

Give yourself a goal for when your outline will be completed, then allow for time to gather data and information, organize your information, complete the writing process and proofread. Remember, it’s always best to have extra time than too little time, so overestimate how long each stage will take.

Step 2. Gathering Information

Gathering your data and information is one of the most important report-writing steps. Collect relevant information from credible sources like interviews, surveys, academic papers and research or observational data. Make sure you have plenty of accurate information to fill out your report to make a compelling conclusion.

When you’ve gathered your information and data, you can begin organizing your information and creating a loose structure for your report. Determine the main points and key findings you will present in your report and lay them out in an order that makes sense for your report topic. Structuring your information logically will make your report easy to understand and allow you to accurately convey your thoughts and findings.

Once you’ve created a plan and organized your information into an outline, it’s time to begin writing. Your report has three main sections: the introduction, the body and the conclusion.

Begin with an engaging introduction that outlines the main points and scope of the report. Then, present your information using headings and subheadings in the body of your report. Using subsections is a great way to showcase important points and create a good report. Conclude by showing your findings and recommendations if applicable to the topic.

You’ll also need to create a title page, table of contents, executive summary, recommendations (if required) and a reference page. Later in this article, you’ll find more information on properly structuring your report. Writing a  business report ? Check out our guide!

After writing your first draft, it’s important to dedicate some time to editing and revising your report. Check for grammar, spelling and punctuation errors as well as general readability. You can use  proofreading software  to help you with this step to ensure you correct any missed mistakes. Editing is one of the most important steps as it refines your work and ensures that it’s up to high standards before submitting. Read our  writing tips  for some extra help when writing your report.

Report Structure

Getting your report writing format right is vital for landing a top grade and creating a research report, book report or analytical report that resonates with the reader. Following the correct report writing format shows the reader that you are a professional, take the subject matter seriously and have dedicated time to creating a cohesive written report.

The title page of your report is the first thing your readers will see. The title page will show your report title, your name, the date of submission and your institution or organization’s name. The title page sets the tone for your report, so make sure to choose an appropriate title that accurately reflects the content of your report.

The table of contents lists the sections of your report along with the page numbers. This page acts as a roadmap to the content of your report so that readers can easily navigate to the appropriate page.

The executive summary summarizes the report in a few short sentences. It highlights the main points and conclusions so readers can grasp the report’s content without reading the entire document. Use your executive summary to give readers an insight into the report and conclusions at a glance in case they don’t have the time to read the entire report.

The introduction sets the tone for your report and introduces the main ideas and purpose of the report. It often includes a summary of the content discussed in the report and explains why the writer has chosen to create this report. For example, if you’re writing an analytical report, you can use the introduction to explain why you are analyzing this data and what you hope to achieve in the report.

The body of your report is where you’ll present all of your information, research data and findings. Divide your body into sections with relevant headings and subheadings for your topic. Focus each section on one specific aspect of your report and include the relevant information you have gathered to support your statements. The body content is the main section of your report, so take this chance to showcase all of your research and information.

The conclusion section of your report summarizes the key points discussed in the report. Use this section to wrap up your findings from all of your research and reiterate the main points of your report. State your conclusion confidently and take pride in the report that you have created.

If you are writing a recommendation report, this is the section where you should provide it! This section should include action-based recommendations on your findings for the reader to carry out. These suggestions should offer solutions to any identified issues in the report and guide the reader to resolve them.

The references section of your report should include a list of all the sources you have used to gather information, research data, ideas and opinion. Include a comprehensive list of all the material you have used to create your report, including books, articles, websites, interviews and more.

It’s important to use the specific citation style you have chosen or been assigned to use if you’re writing a college paper.  What are MLA citations?  Citation styles give a set format for writing your references, such as APA MLA and Chicago. Check out our guide for everything you need about an  MLA format works cited page .

The appendix of your report comes at the very end after your reference list. The appendix should include any additional information the report uses, like interview transcripts, survey data, and raw data. 

Make sure to label your appendices clearly. For example, each piece of data should be marked (Appendix 1, Appendix 2, Appendix 3.) You’ll need to assign each piece of information or data to your appendices throughout your report. Use phrases like “See Appendix 1” to direct your reader to the data.

If you have taken data from outside sources rather than independent work, you must reference them in the correct citation style. Include an  in-text citation  next to the item in your appendices and add the full reference to your references list. Check out our guide on  how to organize in-text citations .

Report Writing Tips

Clarit y is one of the most important things in report writing. Use simple and straightforward language and get to the point quickly! Avoid over-complicating your sentences, and keep readability at the forefront of your mind when writing.

Unless your report targets a specialized audience, it’s best to keep jargon and technical terms to a minimum. You want to ensure that the reader understands what you’re saying and doesn’t need to pause to look up terms or phrases they don’t understand. Keep your writing clear and concise, and use language that can be easily understood.

Split your report into sections to organize your information and make it easier for readers to navigate your report. Break up the content into relevant headings and subheadings and include all related information under each section. This is a great way to highlight your research and make the information stand out in your report.

Visual aids like charts, graphs and tables can leave a lasting impact on your readers and help them understand the information you are trying to convey. Visuals make complex information easier to understand and can also be used to split up large sections of text and information into bitesize chunks.

Once you have completed your report, dedicate a significant portion of your time to proofreading and editing your draft. Assess your report’s readability and look for grammar, spelling and formatting errors.

A polished report that is free from mistakes will show your level of understanding of the topic and convey professionalism. Check out our guide with the  best grammar checkers  to use for your report!

Organizing your report correctly is critical in landing a top grade as a student and leaving a lasting impact on your readers as a professional. When you create a clear structure and follow report writing rules, readers can find information quickly and understand your carefully researched information. Report writing is a vital skill for all industries to be able to make informed decisions and practice clear communication.

In business, reports can be used for market analysis, problem-solving and strategic planning. Throughout all professional industries, reports are a valuable tool that allows individuals and teams to share information, analyze data and create success.

Students graduate from essay writing to report writing in school and college to hone their research, communication and writing skills while assessing their understanding of topics. Whether you’re a student or professional, learning how to write a report is key to successfully communicating your ideas in a structured and impactful way.

  • See Analytical Report Examples For Quality Data Analysis
  • How do you write a clear and concise executive summary for a data analysis report?
  • Recommendation Report
  • Report writing
  • Unit 37: Report Objective: Informational and Analytical – Communication at Work
  • Appendices – Oxford Brookes University

what is report writing and its importance

Meet Rachael, the editor at Become a Writer Today. With years of experience in the field, she is passionate about language and dedicated to producing high-quality content that engages and informs readers. When she's not editing or writing, you can find her exploring the great outdoors, finding inspiration for her next project.

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Report Writing Format, Tips, Samples and Examples

Pankaj dhiman.

  • Created on December 11, 2023

How to Write a Report: A Complete Guide (Format, Tips, Common Mistakes, Samples and Examples of Report Writing)

Struggling to write clear, concise reports that impress? Fear not! This blog is your one-stop guide to mastering report writing . Learn the essential format, uncover impactful tips, avoid common pitfalls, and get inspired by real-world examples.

Whether you’re a student, professional, or simply seeking to communicate effectively, this blog empowers you to craft compelling reports that leave a lasting impression.

Must Read: Notice Writing: How to write, Format, Examples

What is Report Writing ?

Report Writing – Writing reports is an organized method of communicating ideas, analysis, and conclusions to a target audience for a predetermined goal. It entails the methodical presentation of information, statistics, and suggestions, frequently drawn from study or inquiry.

Its main goal is to inform, convince, or suggest actions, which makes it a crucial ability in a variety of professional domains.

A well-written report usually has a concise conclusion, a well-thought-out analysis, a clear introduction, a thorough methodology, and a presentation of the findings.

It doesn’t matter what format is used as long as information is delivered in a logical manner, supports decision-making, and fosters understanding among stakeholders.

Must Read : Article Writing Format, Objective, Common Mistakes, and Samples

Format of Report Writing 

  • Title Page:
  • Title of the report.
  • Author’s name.
  • Date of submission.
  • Any relevant institutional affiliations.
  • Abstract/Summary:
  • A brief overview of the report’s key points.
  • Summarizes the purpose, methods, results, and conclusions.
  • Table of Contents:
  • Lists all sections and subsections with corresponding page numbers.

Introduction:

  • Provides background information on the subject.
  • Clearly states the purpose and objectives of the report.
  • Methodology:
  • Details how the information was gathered or the experiment conducted.
  • Includes any relevant procedures, tools, or techniques used.
  • Findings/Results:
  • Presents the main outcomes, data, or observations.
  • Often includes visual aids such as charts, graphs, or tables.
  • Discussion:
  • Analyzes and interprets the results.
  • Provides context and explanations for the findings.

Conclusion:

  • Summarizes the key points.
  • May include recommendations or implications.

Must Read: Directed Writing: Format, Benefits, Topics, Common Mistakes and Examples

Report Writing Examples – Solved Questions from previous papers

Example 1: historical event report.

Question : Write a report on the historical significance of the “ Battle of Willow Creek ” based on the research of Sarah Turner. Analyze the key events, outcomes, and the lasting impact on the region.

Solved Report:

Title: Historical Event Report – The “Battle of Willow Creek” by Sarah Turner

This report delves into the historical significance of the “Battle of Willow Creek” based on the research of Sarah Turner. Examining key events, outcomes, and the lasting impact on the region, it sheds light on a pivotal moment in our local history.

Sarah Turner’s extensive research on the “Battle of Willow Creek” provides a unique opportunity to explore a critical chapter in our local history. This report aims to unravel the intricacies of this historical event.

Key Events:

The Battle of Willow Creek unfolded on [date] between [opposing forces]. Sarah Turner’s research meticulously outlines the sequence of events leading to the conflict, including the political climate, disputes over resources, and the strategies employed by both sides.

Through Turner’s insights, we gain a nuanced understanding of the immediate outcomes of the battle, such as changes in territorial control and the impact on the local population. The report highlights the consequences that rippled through subsequent years.

Lasting Impact:

Sarah Turner’s research underscores the enduring impact of the Battle of Willow Creek on the region’s development, cultural identity, and socio-political landscape. The report examines how the event shaped the community we know today.

The “Battle of Willow Creek,” as explored by Sarah Turner, emerges as a significant historical event with far-reaching consequences. Understanding its intricacies enriches our appreciation of local history and its role in shaping our community.

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Report writing Samples

 book review report.

Title: Book Review – “The Lost City” by Emily Rodriguez

“The Lost City” by Emily Rodriguez is an enthralling adventure novel that takes readers on a captivating journey through uncharted territories. The author weaves a tale of mystery, discovery, and self-realization that keeps the reader engaged from beginning to end.

Themes and Characters:

Rodriguez skillfully explores themes of resilience, friendship, and the pursuit of the unknown. The characters are well-developed, each contributing uniquely to the narrative. The protagonist’s transformation throughout the story adds depth to the overall theme of self-discovery.

Plot and Pacing:

The plot is intricately crafted, with twists and turns that maintain suspense and intrigue. Rodriguez’s ability to balance action scenes with moments of introspection contributes to the novel’s well-paced narrative.

Writing Style:

The author’s writing style is engaging and descriptive, allowing readers to vividly envision the settings and empathize with the characters. Dialogue flows naturally, enhancing the overall readability of the book.

“The Lost City” is a commendable work by Emily Rodriguez, showcasing her storytelling prowess and ability to create a captivating narrative. This novel is recommended for readers who enjoy adventure, mystery, and character-driven stories.

Must Read: What is Descriptive Writing? Learn how to write, Examples and Secret Tips

Report Writing Tips

Recognise your audience:

Take into account your target audience’s expectations and degree of knowledge. Adjust the content, tone, and language to the readers’ needs.

Precision and succinctness:

To communicate your point, use language that is simple and unambiguous. Steer clear of convoluted sentences or needless jargon that could confuse the reader.

Logical Structure:

Organize your report with a clear and logical structure, including sections like introduction, methodology, findings, discussion, and conclusion.

Use headings and subheadings to improve readability.

Introduction with Purpose:

Clearly state the purpose, objectives, and scope of the report in the introduction.

Provide context to help readers understand the importance of the information presented.

Methodology Details:

Clearly explain the methods or processes used to gather information.

Include details that would allow others to replicate the study or experiment.

Presentation of Findings:

Give a well-organized and structured presentation of your findings.

Employ graphics (tables, graphs, and charts) to support the text and improve comprehension.

Talk and Interpretation:

Examine the findings and talk about the ramifications.

Explain the significance of the results and how they relate to the main goal.

Brief Conclusion:

Recap the main ideas in the conclusion.

Indicate in detail any suggestions or actions that should be implemented in light of the results.

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Common mistakes for Report Writing 

Insufficient defining:.

Error: Employing ambiguous or imprecise wording that could cause misunderstandings.

Impact: It’s possible that readers won’t grasp the content, which could cause misunderstandings and confusion.

Solution: Explain difficult concepts, use clear language, and express ideas clearly.

Inadequate Coordination:

Error: Not adhering to a coherent and systematic format for the report.

Impact: The report’s overall effectiveness may be lowered by readers finding it difficult to follow the information’s flow due to the report’s lack of structure.

Solution: Make sure the sections are arranged clearly and sequentially, each of which adds to the report’s overall coherence.

Inadequate Research:

Error: Conducting insufficient research or relying on incomplete data.

Impact: Inaccuracies in data or lack of comprehensive information can weaken the report’s credibility and reliability.

Solution: Thoroughly research the topic, use reliable sources, and gather comprehensive data to support your findings.

Inconsistent Formatting:

Error: Using inconsistent formatting for headings, fonts, or spacing throughout the report.

Impact: Inconsistent formatting can make the report look unprofessional and distract from the content.

Solution: Maintain a uniform format for headings, fonts, and spacing to enhance the visual appeal and professionalism of the report.

Unsubstantiated Conclusions:

Error: Drawing conclusions that are not adequately supported by the evidence or findings presented.

Impact: Unsubstantiated conclusions can undermine the report’s credibility and weaken the overall argument.

Solution: Ensure that your conclusions are directly derived from the results and are logically connected to your research objectives, providing sufficient evidence to support your claims.

To sum up, proficient report writing necessitates precision, organization, and clarity. Making impactful reports requires avoiding common errors like ambiguous wording, shoddy organization, inadequate research, inconsistent formatting, and conclusions that are not supported by evidence.

One can improve the caliber and legitimacy of their reports by following a logical format, carrying out extensive research, staying clear, and providing conclusions that are supported by evidence.

Aiming for linguistic accuracy and meticulousness guarantees that the desired meaning is communicated successfully, promoting a deeper comprehension of the topic among readers.

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Often report writing at university is presented as deceptively simple – all you need to do is ensure you follow the required report structure, and write clearly and concisely. But we know this isn’t as straightforward as it seems; although reports have to be easy to read, this doesn’t necessarily make them easy to write.

Reports are formally structured but you've probably discovered that what is needed for a report in one discipline is likely to be different from a report in another discipline. Also expectations can be different from one report to the next, even within the same subject.

Writing concisely and clearly takes time. You have to work out exactly what your audience wants to know in order to make sure you are writing relevant information.

So, the truth is there is no set formula for writing a report - every report is different. Each one depends on what the purpose is, who you are writing for and the kind of research that you are reporting.

So if every report is different, how can you tell what makes a good report? The key is to understand the purpose of report writing rather than just what goes in each section.

The keys to writing good reports are:

Being able to identify the audience and purpose of your report

Knowing how reports are read by your audience     Knowing the purpose of each section in a report (not just where the information goes)

Understanding how good organisation of your report helps the reader find the information they want

Being able to communicate well both in writing   and using graphical data

The good news is the ability to write good reports will stay with you. You’re unlikely to have to write an essay once you leave university but good report writing principles of writing informatively for a specific audience and purpose will help you communicate well in whichever career you choose.   

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Report writing: overview.

  • Scientific Reports
  • Business Reports

Reports are typical workplace writing. Writing reports as coursework can help you prepare to write better reports in your work life.

Reports are always written for a specific purpose and audience. They can present findings of a research; development of a project; analysis of a situation; proposals or solutions for a problem. They should inlcude referenced data or facts. 

Reports should be structured in headings and sub-headings, and easy to navigate. They should be written in a very clear and concise language.

What makes a good report?

Following the instructions 

You may have been given a report brief that provides you with instructions and guidelines. The report brief may outline the purpose, audience and problem or issue that your report must address, together with any specific requirements for format or structure. Thus, always check the report guidelines before starting your assignment. 

An effective report presents and analyses evidence that is relevant to the specific problem or issue you have been instructed to address. Always think of the audience and purpose of your report. 

All sources used should be acknowledged and referenced throughout. You can accompany your writing with necessary diagrams, graphs or tables of gathered data.

The data and information presented should be analysed. The type of analysis will depend on your subject. For example, business reports may use SWOT or PESTLE analytical frameworks. A lab report may require to analyse and interpret the data originated from an experiment you performed in light of current theories. 

A good report has a clear and accurately organised structure, divided in headings and sub-headings. The paragraphs are the fundamental unit of reports. (See boxes below.)

The language of reports is formal, clear, succinct, and to the point. (See box below.)

Writing style

The language of reports should be:

Formal  – avoid contractions and colloquial expressions.

Direct  – avoid jargon and complicated sentences. Explain any technical terms.

Precise  – avoid vague language e.g. 'almost'  and avoid generalisations e.g. 'many people'

Concise  – avoid repetition and redundant phrases. Examples of redundant phrases:

  • contributing factor = factor
  • general consensus = consensus
  • smooth to the touch = smooth

Strong paragraphs

Paragraphs, and namely strong paragraphs, are an essential device to keep your writing organised and logical. 

A paragraph is a group of sentences that are linked coherently around one central topic/idea.   Paragraphs should be the building blocks of academic writing. Each paragraph should be doing a job, moving the argument forward and guiding your reading through your thought process.

Paragraphs should be 10-12 lines long, but variations are acceptable. Do not write one-sentence long paragraphs; this is journalistic style, not academic.

You need to write so-called strong paragraphs wherein you present a topic, discuss it and conclude it, as afar as reasonably possible.  Strong paragraphs may not always be feasible, especially in introductions and conclusions, but should be the staple of the body of your written work. 

Topic sentence : Introduces the topic and states what your paragraph will be about

Development : Expand on the point you are making: explain, analyse, support with examples and/or evidence.

Concluding sentence : Summarise how your evidence backs up your point. You can also introduce what will come next.

PEEL technique

This is a strategy to write strong paragraphs. In each paragraph you should include the following:

P oint : what do you want to talk about?

E vidence : show me!

E valuation : tell me!

L ink : what's coming next?

Example of a strong paragraph, with PEEL technique:

what is report writing and its importance

Paragraph bridges

Paragraphs may be linked to each other through "paragraph bridges". One simple way of doing this is by repeating a word or phrase.

Check the tabs of this guide for more information on writing business reports and scientific reports. 

Report Structure

Generally, a report will include some of the following sections: Title Page, Terms of Reference, Summary, Table of Contents, Introduction, Methods, Results, Main body, Conclusion, Recommendations, Appendices, and Bibliography. This structure may vary according to the type of report you are writing, which will be based on your department or subject field requirements. Therefore, it is always best to check your departmental guidelines or module/assignment instructions first.  

You should follow any guidelines specified by your module handbook or assignment brief in case these differ, however usually the title page will include the title of the report, your number, student ID and module details.

Terms of Reference

You may be asked to include this section to give clear, but brief, explanations for the reasons and purpose of the report, which may also include who the intended audience is and how the methods for the report were undertaken.

(Executive) Summary 

It is often best to write this last as it is harder to summarise a piece of work that you have not written yet. An executive summary is a shorter replica of the entire report. Its length should be about 10% of the length of the report, 

Contents (Table of Contents)

Please follow any specific style or formatting requirements specified by the module handbook or assignment brief. The contents page contains a list of the different chapters or headings and sub-headings along with the page number so that each section can be easily located within the report. Keep in mind that whatever numbering system you decide to use for your headings, they need to remain clear and consistent throughout. 

Introduction

This is where you set the scene for your report. The introduction should clearly articulate the purpose and aim (and, possibly, objectives) of the report, along with providing the background context for the report's topic and area of research. A scientific report may have an hypothesis in addition or in stead of aims and objectives. It may also provide any definitions or explanations for the terms used in the report or theoretical underpinnings of the research so that the reader has a clear understanding of what the research is based upon. It may be useful to also indicate any limitations to the scope of the report and identify the parameters of the research. 

The methods section includes any information on the methods, tools and equipment used to get the data and evidence for your report. You should justify your method (that is, explain why your method was chosen), acknowledge possible problems encountered during the research, and present the limitations of your methodology. 

If you are required to have a separate results and discussion section, then the results section should only include a summary of the findings, rather than an analysis of them - leave the critical analysis of the results for the discussion section. Presenting your results may take the form of graphs, tables, or any necessary diagrams of the gathered data. It is best to present your results in a logical order, making them as clear and understandable as possible through concise titles, brief summaries of the findings, and what the diagrams/charts/graphs or tables are showing to the reader. 

This section is where the data gathered and your results are truly put to work. It is the main body of your report in which you should critically analyse what the results mean in relation to the aims and objectives (and/or, in scientific writing, hypotheses) put forth at the beginning of the report. You should follow a logical order, and can structure this section in sub-headings. 

Conclusion 

The conclusion should not include any new material but instead show a summary of your main arguments and findings. It is a chance to remind the reader of the key points within your report, the significance of the findings and the most central issues or arguments raised from the research. The conclusion may also include recommendations for further research, or how the present research may be carried out more effectively in future.

Recommendations

You can have a separate section on recommendations, presenting the action you recommend be taken, drawing from the conclusion. These actions should be concrete and specific. 

The appendices may include all the supporting evidence and material used for your research, such as interview transcripts, surveys, questionnaires, tables, graphs, or other charts and images that you may not wish to include in the main body of the report, but may be referred to throughout your discussion or results sections.

Bibliography

Similar to your essays, a report still requires a bibliography of all the published resources you have referenced within your report. Check your module handbook for the referencing style you should use as there are different styles depending on your degree. If it is the standard Westminster Harvard Referencing style, then follow these guidelines and remember to be consistent. 

Formatting reports

You can format your document using the outline and table of contents functions in Word

what is report writing and its importance

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Importance of Report Writing

Report writing is an essential skill across various disciplines and industries, from business and science to education and law enforcement. A well-crafted report can communicate complex information in a structured, clear, and professional manner, enabling decision-makers to understand issues, make informed decisions, and take appropriate actions. This article delves into the significance of report writing, exploring its numerous benefits and the impact it holds in professional settings.

Table of Contents

What is Report Writing?

Report writing involves the systematic and structured presentation of factual information, often resulting from research, analysis, or an event. The purpose of a report is to relay information to a specific audience in a clear, concise, and accessible manner. Reports can take many forms, including business reports, scientific papers, technical reports, and incident reports, each serving a unique function and audience.

Communication of Information

At its core, report writing is about communication. It serves as a bridge between the writer’s findings and the audience’s understanding. The ability to distill complex data and analysis into a format that is both accessible and understandable is invaluable. This ensures that all stakeholders, regardless of their expertise in the subject matter, can grasp the implications of the data and contribute to discussions and decision-making processes.

Decision Making and Action

One of the primary purposes of report writing is to inform decision-making. A well-written report provides a foundation for action, presenting decision-makers with the necessary information to assess situations and determine the best course of action. Whether it’s a business leader considering strategic directions, a scientist evaluating the results of an experiment, or a policy-maker shaping public policy, reports play a crucial role in guiding critical decisions.

Accountability and Transparency

Reports often serve as official records that promote accountability and transparency within organizations and institutions. They document processes, decisions, and actions taken, which can be referred to in the future to ensure that individuals and entities are held responsible for their responsibilities. In this way, report writing contributes to the integrity of organizations and the trust placed in them by stakeholders.

Professionalism and Credibility

The ability to write a comprehensive and coherent report is a hallmark of professionalism. It demonstrates the writer’s competence in understanding and conveying important information. Moreover, a well-written report enhances the credibility of the author and the organization they represent. It shows that they have conducted thorough due diligence and are committed to presenting their findings with accuracy and integrity.

Educational and Reflective Value

Report writing is not just about informing others; it has educational value for the writer as well. The process of creating a report requires a deep dive into the subject matter, which can lead to a more profound understanding of the topic. Additionally, the reflective aspect of report writing enables writers to consider their methodologies, evaluate their findings, and learn from the process, which is vital for continuous improvement.

Legal and Historical Documentation

In legal contexts and historical records, reports serve as vital documentation. They provide a factual account of events, investigations, and findings that can be used as evidence in legal proceedings or as a record for future reference. The preciseness and accuracy of report writing in these contexts are critical as they can have significant legal and societal implications.

Structured Thinking and Problem Solving

The process of writing a report encourages structured thinking and problem-solving. It requires the writer to organize their thoughts, present information logically, and build a coherent argument or narrative. This structured approach is not only beneficial for the clarity of the report but also enhances the writer’s analytical and critical thinking skills.

Knowledge Sharing and Continuity

Reports are a means of knowledge sharing within and between organizations. They capture insights and experiences that can be passed on to others, fostering learning and development. This continuity is particularly important for organizations as it ensures that the knowledge is preserved even when there is staff turnover, maintaining the organization’s intellectual capital.

The Impact of Technology on Report Writing

With the advent of technology, report writing has evolved significantly. Digital tools and software have streamlined the report writing process, enabling writers to analyze data more efficiently, collaborate with others in real time, and present their findings in dynamic and interactive formats. The ability to incorporate multimedia elements, such as graphics, videos, and hyperlinks, has enriched the presentation of reports, making them more engaging and impactful.

Final Thoughts

The importance of report writing cannot be overstated. It is a skill that underpins effective communication, informed decision-making, and professional accountability. Whether it’s used to influence policy, share research findings, document events, or communicate within a business, a well-executed report has the power to inform, persuade, and drive change. As such, investing in the development of report writing skills is crucial for anyone looking to succeed in today’s data-driven and information-rich world. As we continue to advance technologically, the ability to write clear, concise, and compelling reports will remain an indispensable asset to individuals and organizations alike.

About Mr. Greg

Mr. Greg is an English teacher from Edinburgh, Scotland, currently based in Hong Kong. He has over 5 years teaching experience and recently completed his PGCE at the University of Essex Online. In 2013, he graduated from Edinburgh Napier University with a BEng(Hons) in Computing, with a focus on social media.

Mr. Greg’s English Cloud was created in 2020 during the pandemic, aiming to provide students and parents with resources to help facilitate their learning at home.

Whatsapp: +85259609792

[email protected]

what is report writing and its importance

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why is report writing so important

Why is report writing so important?

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Often report writing at university is presented as deceptively simple – all you need to do is ensure you follow the required report structure, and write clearly and concisely. But we know this isn’t as straightforward as it seems; although reports have to be easy to read, this doesn’t necessarily make them easy to write.

Reports are formally structured but you’ve probably discovered that what is needed for a report in one discipline is likely to be different from a report in another discipline. Also expectations can be different from one report to the next, even within the same subject.

Writing concisely and clearly takes time. You have to work out exactly what your audience wants to know in order to make sure you are writing relevant information.

So, the truth is there is no set formula for writing a report – every report is different. Each one depends on what the purpose is, who you are writing for and the kind of research that you are reporting.

So if every report is different, how can you tell what makes a good report? The key is to understand the purpose of report writing rather than just what goes in each section.

The keys to writing good reports are:

Understanding the types of writing a report involves Being able to identify the audience and purpose of your report Knowing how reports are read by your audience Knowing the purpose of each section in a report (not just where the information goes) Understanding how good organisation of your report helps the reader find the information they want Being able to communicate well both in writing  and using graphical data

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Learning Outcomes

An explanation of why reports are a critical format for presenting research results. Includes a brief outline stating the identifyable traits of a good report.

Additional Resource Information

View resources by author(s): LearnHigher

Institution(s): LearnHigher

License: Creative Commons licence (4.0)

Categories: LearnHigher Resources | Report Writing

Published: 15/01/2012

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  • Research Report: Definition, Types + [Writing Guide]

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One of the reasons for carrying out research is to add to the existing body of knowledge. Therefore, when conducting research, you need to document your processes and findings in a research report. 

With a research report, it is easy to outline the findings of your systematic investigation and any gaps needing further inquiry. Knowing how to create a detailed research report will prove useful when you need to conduct research.  

What is a Research Report?

A research report is a well-crafted document that outlines the processes, data, and findings of a systematic investigation. It is an important document that serves as a first-hand account of the research process, and it is typically considered an objective and accurate source of information.

In many ways, a research report can be considered as a summary of the research process that clearly highlights findings, recommendations, and other important details. Reading a well-written research report should provide you with all the information you need about the core areas of the research process.

Features of a Research Report 

So how do you recognize a research report when you see one? Here are some of the basic features that define a research report. 

  • It is a detailed presentation of research processes and findings, and it usually includes tables and graphs. 
  • It is written in a formal language.
  • A research report is usually written in the third person.
  • It is informative and based on first-hand verifiable information.
  • It is formally structured with headings, sections, and bullet points.
  • It always includes recommendations for future actions. 

Types of Research Report 

The research report is classified based on two things; nature of research and target audience.

Nature of Research

  • Qualitative Research Report

This is the type of report written for qualitative research . It outlines the methods, processes, and findings of a qualitative method of systematic investigation. In educational research, a qualitative research report provides an opportunity for one to apply his or her knowledge and develop skills in planning and executing qualitative research projects.

A qualitative research report is usually descriptive in nature. Hence, in addition to presenting details of the research process, you must also create a descriptive narrative of the information.

  • Quantitative Research Report

A quantitative research report is a type of research report that is written for quantitative research. Quantitative research is a type of systematic investigation that pays attention to numerical or statistical values in a bid to find answers to research questions. 

In this type of research report, the researcher presents quantitative data to support the research process and findings. Unlike a qualitative research report that is mainly descriptive, a quantitative research report works with numbers; that is, it is numerical in nature. 

Target Audience

Also, a research report can be said to be technical or popular based on the target audience. If you’re dealing with a general audience, you would need to present a popular research report, and if you’re dealing with a specialized audience, you would submit a technical report. 

  • Technical Research Report

A technical research report is a detailed document that you present after carrying out industry-based research. This report is highly specialized because it provides information for a technical audience; that is, individuals with above-average knowledge in the field of study. 

In a technical research report, the researcher is expected to provide specific information about the research process, including statistical analyses and sampling methods. Also, the use of language is highly specialized and filled with jargon. 

Examples of technical research reports include legal and medical research reports. 

  • Popular Research Report

A popular research report is one for a general audience; that is, for individuals who do not necessarily have any knowledge in the field of study. A popular research report aims to make information accessible to everyone. 

It is written in very simple language, which makes it easy to understand the findings and recommendations. Examples of popular research reports are the information contained in newspapers and magazines. 

Importance of a Research Report 

  • Knowledge Transfer: As already stated above, one of the reasons for carrying out research is to contribute to the existing body of knowledge, and this is made possible with a research report. A research report serves as a means to effectively communicate the findings of a systematic investigation to all and sundry.  
  • Identification of Knowledge Gaps: With a research report, you’d be able to identify knowledge gaps for further inquiry. A research report shows what has been done while hinting at other areas needing systematic investigation. 
  • In market research, a research report would help you understand the market needs and peculiarities at a glance. 
  • A research report allows you to present information in a precise and concise manner. 
  • It is time-efficient and practical because, in a research report, you do not have to spend time detailing the findings of your research work in person. You can easily send out the report via email and have stakeholders look at it. 

Guide to Writing a Research Report

A lot of detail goes into writing a research report, and getting familiar with the different requirements would help you create the ideal research report. A research report is usually broken down into multiple sections, which allows for a concise presentation of information.

Structure and Example of a Research Report

This is the title of your systematic investigation. Your title should be concise and point to the aims, objectives, and findings of a research report. 

  • Table of Contents

This is like a compass that makes it easier for readers to navigate the research report.

An abstract is an overview that highlights all important aspects of the research including the research method, data collection process, and research findings. Think of an abstract as a summary of your research report that presents pertinent information in a concise manner. 

An abstract is always brief; typically 100-150 words and goes straight to the point. The focus of your research abstract should be the 5Ws and 1H format – What, Where, Why, When, Who and How. 

  • Introduction

Here, the researcher highlights the aims and objectives of the systematic investigation as well as the problem which the systematic investigation sets out to solve. When writing the report introduction, it is also essential to indicate whether the purposes of the research were achieved or would require more work.

In the introduction section, the researcher specifies the research problem and also outlines the significance of the systematic investigation. Also, the researcher is expected to outline any jargons and terminologies that are contained in the research.  

  • Literature Review

A literature review is a written survey of existing knowledge in the field of study. In other words, it is the section where you provide an overview and analysis of different research works that are relevant to your systematic investigation. 

It highlights existing research knowledge and areas needing further investigation, which your research has sought to fill. At this stage, you can also hint at your research hypothesis and its possible implications for the existing body of knowledge in your field of study. 

  • An Account of Investigation

This is a detailed account of the research process, including the methodology, sample, and research subjects. Here, you are expected to provide in-depth information on the research process including the data collection and analysis procedures. 

In a quantitative research report, you’d need to provide information surveys, questionnaires and other quantitative data collection methods used in your research. In a qualitative research report, you are expected to describe the qualitative data collection methods used in your research including interviews and focus groups. 

In this section, you are expected to present the results of the systematic investigation. 

This section further explains the findings of the research, earlier outlined. Here, you are expected to present a justification for each outcome and show whether the results are in line with your hypotheses or if other research studies have come up with similar results.

  • Conclusions

This is a summary of all the information in the report. It also outlines the significance of the entire study. 

  • References and Appendices

This section contains a list of all the primary and secondary research sources. 

Tips for Writing a Research Report

  • Define the Context for the Report

As is obtainable when writing an essay, defining the context for your research report would help you create a detailed yet concise document. This is why you need to create an outline before writing so that you do not miss out on anything. 

  • Define your Audience

Writing with your audience in mind is essential as it determines the tone of the report. If you’re writing for a general audience, you would want to present the information in a simple and relatable manner. For a specialized audience, you would need to make use of technical and field-specific terms. 

  • Include Significant Findings

The idea of a research report is to present some sort of abridged version of your systematic investigation. In your report, you should exclude irrelevant information while highlighting only important data and findings. 

  • Include Illustrations

Your research report should include illustrations and other visual representations of your data. Graphs, pie charts, and relevant images lend additional credibility to your systematic investigation.

  • Choose the Right Title

A good research report title is brief, precise, and contains keywords from your research. It should provide a clear idea of your systematic investigation so that readers can grasp the entire focus of your research from the title. 

  • Proofread the Report

Before publishing the document, ensure that you give it a second look to authenticate the information. If you can, get someone else to go through the report, too, and you can also run it through proofreading and editing software. 

How to Gather Research Data for Your Report  

  • Understand the Problem

Every research aims at solving a specific problem or set of problems, and this should be at the back of your mind when writing your research report. Understanding the problem would help you to filter the information you have and include only important data in your report. 

  • Know what your report seeks to achieve

This is somewhat similar to the point above because, in some way, the aim of your research report is intertwined with the objectives of your systematic investigation. Identifying the primary purpose of writing a research report would help you to identify and present the required information accordingly. 

  • Identify your audience

Knowing your target audience plays a crucial role in data collection for a research report. If your research report is specifically for an organization, you would want to present industry-specific information or show how the research findings are relevant to the work that the company does. 

  • Create Surveys/Questionnaires

A survey is a research method that is used to gather data from a specific group of people through a set of questions. It can be either quantitative or qualitative. 

A survey is usually made up of structured questions, and it can be administered online or offline. However, an online survey is a more effective method of research data collection because it helps you save time and gather data with ease. 

You can seamlessly create an online questionnaire for your research on Formplus . With the multiple sharing options available in the builder, you would be able to administer your survey to respondents in little or no time. 

Formplus also has a report summary too l that you can use to create custom visual reports for your research.

Step-by-step guide on how to create an online questionnaire using Formplus  

  • Sign into Formplus

In the Formplus builder, you can easily create different online questionnaires for your research by dragging and dropping preferred fields into your form. To access the Formplus builder, you will need to create an account on Formplus. 

Once you do this, sign in to your account and click on Create new form to begin. 

  • Edit Form Title : Click on the field provided to input your form title, for example, “Research Questionnaire.”
  • Edit Form : Click on the edit icon to edit the form.
  • Add Fields : Drag and drop preferred form fields into your form in the Formplus builder inputs column. There are several field input options for questionnaires in the Formplus builder. 
  • Edit fields
  • Click on “Save”
  • Form Customization: With the form customization options in the form builder, you can easily change the outlook of your form and make it more unique and personalized. Formplus allows you to change your form theme, add background images, and even change the font according to your needs. 
  • Multiple Sharing Options: Formplus offers various form-sharing options, which enables you to share your questionnaire with respondents easily. You can use the direct social media sharing buttons to share your form link to your organization’s social media pages.  You can also send out your survey form as email invitations to your research subjects too. If you wish, you can share your form’s QR code or embed it on your organization’s website for easy access. 

Conclusion  

Always remember that a research report is just as important as the actual systematic investigation because it plays a vital role in communicating research findings to everyone else. This is why you must take care to create a concise document summarizing the process of conducting any research. 

In this article, we’ve outlined essential tips to help you create a research report. When writing your report, you should always have the audience at the back of your mind, as this would set the tone for the document. 

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  • Research Report
  • Post last modified: 11 January 2022
  • Reading time: 25 mins read
  • Post category: Research Methodology

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What is Research Report?

Research reporting is the oral or written presentation of the findings in such detail and form as to be readily understood and assessed by the society, economy or particularly by the researchers.

As earlier said that it is the final stage of the research process and its purpose is to convey to interested persons the whole result of the study. Report writing is common to both academic and managerial situations. In academics, a research report is prepared for comprehensive and application-oriented learning. In businesses or organisations, reports are used for the basis of decision making.

Table of Content

  • 1 What is Research Report?
  • 2 Research Report Definition
  • 3.1 Preliminary Part
  • 3.2 Introduction of the Report
  • 3.3 Review of Literature
  • 3.4 The Research Methodology
  • 3.5 Results
  • 3.6 Concluding Remarks
  • 3.7 Bibliography
  • 4 Significance of Report Writing
  • 5 Qualities of Good Report
  • 6.1 Analysis of the subject matter
  • 6.2 Research outline
  • 6.3 Preparation of rough draft
  • 6.4 Rewriting and polishing
  • 6.5 Writing the final draft
  • 7 Precautions for Writing Research Reports
  • 8.1.1 Technical Report
  • 8.1.2 Popular Report
  • 8.2.1 Written Report
  • 8.2.2 Oral Report

Research Report Definition

According to C. A. Brown , “A report is a communication from someone who has information to someone who wants to use that information.”

According to Goode and Hatt , “The preparation of report is the final stage of research, and it’s purpose is to convey to the interested persons the whole result of the study, in sufficient detail and so arranged as to enable each reader to comprehend the data and to determine for himself the validity of the conclusions.”

It is clear from the above definitions of a research report, it is a brief account of the problem of investigation, the justification of its selection and the procedure of analysis and interpretation. It is only a summary of the entire research proceedings.

In other words, it can be defined as written documents, which presents information in a specialized and concise manner.

Contents of Research Report

Although no hard and fast rules can be laid down, the report must contain the following points.

  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of contents
  • List of tables
  • List of graphs
  • Introduction
  • Background of the research study
  • Statement of the problem
  • Brief outline of the chapters
  • Books review
  • Review of articles published in books, journals, periodicals, etc
  • Review of articles published in leading newspapers
  • Working papers / discusssion paper / study reports
  • Articles on authorised websites
  • A broad conclusion and indications for further research
  • The theoretical framework (variables)
  • Model / hypothesis
  • Instruments for data collection
  • Data collection
  • Pilot study
  • Processing of data
  • Hypothesis / model testing
  • Data analysis and interpretation
  • Tables and figures
  • Conclusions
  • Shortcomings
  • Suggestions to the problems
  • Direction for further research

Preliminary Part

The preliminary part may have seven major components – cover, title, preface, acknowledgement, table of contents, list of tables, list of graphs. Long reports presented in book form have a cover made up of a card sheet. The cover contains title of the research report, the authority to whom the report is submitted, name of the author, etc.

The preface introduces the report to the readers. It gives a very brief introduction of the report. In the acknowledgements author mention names of persons and organisations that have extended co-operation and helped in the various stages of research. Table of contents is essential. It gives the title and page number of each chapter.

Introduction of the Report

The introduction of the research report should clearly and logically bring out the background of the problem addressed in the research. The purpose of the introduction is to introduce the research project to the readers. A clear statement of the problem with specific questions to be answered is presented in the introduction. It contains a brief outline of the chapters.

Review of Literature

The third section reviews the important literature related to the study. A comprehensive review of the research literature referred to must be made. Previous research studies and the important writings in the area under study should be reviewed. Review of literature is helpful to provide a background for the development of the present study.

The researcher may review concerned books, articles published in edited books, journals and periodicals. Researcher may also take review of articles published in leading newspapers. A researcher should study working papers/discussion papers/study reports. It is essential for a broad conclusion and indications for further research.

The Research Methodology

Research methodology is an integral part of the research. It should clearly indicate the universe and the selection of samples, techniques of data collection, analysis and interpretation, statistical techniques, etc.

Results contain pilot study, processing of data, hypothesis/model testing, data analysis and interpretation, tables and figures, etc. This is the heart of the research report. If a pilot study is planned to be used, it’s purpose should be given in the research methodology.

The collected data and the information should be edited, coded, tabulated and analysed with a view to arriving at a valid and authentic conclusion. Tables and figures are used to clarify the significant relationship. The results obtained through tables, graphs should be critically interpreted.

Concluding Remarks

The concluding remarks should discuss the results obtained in the earlier sections, as well as their usefulness and implications. It contains findings, conclusions, shortcomings, suggestions to the problem and direction for future research. Findings are statements of factual information based upon the data analysis.

Conclusions must clearly explain whether the hypothesis have been established and rejected. This part requires great expertise and preciseness. A report should also refer to the limitations of the applicability of the research inferences. It is essential to suggest the theoretical, practical and policy implications of the research. The suggestions should be supported by scientific and logical arguments. The future direction of research based on the work completed should also be outlined.

Bibliography

The bibliography is an alphabetic list of books, journal articles, reports, etc, published or unpublished, read, referred to, examined by the researcher in preparing the report. The bibliography should follow standard formats for books, journal articles, research reports.

The end of the research report may consist of appendices, listed in respect of all technical data. Appendices are for the purpose of providing detailed data or information that would be too cumbersome within the main body of the research report.

Significance of Report Writing

Report writing is an important communication medium in organisations. The most crucial findings might have come out through a research report. Report is common to academics and managers also. Reports are used for comprehensive and application oriented learning in academics. In organisations, reports are used for the basis of decision making. The importance of report writing can be discussed as under.

Through research reports, a manager or an executive can quickly get an idea of a current scenario which improves his information base for making sound decisions affecting future operations of the company or enterprise. The research report acts as a means of communication of various research findings to the interested parties, organisations and general public.

Good report writing play, a significant role of conveying unknown facts about the phenomenon to the concerned parties. This may provide new insights and new opportunities to the people. Research report plays a key role in making effective decisions in marketing, production, banking, materials, human resource development and government also. Good report writing is used for economic planning and optimum utilisation of resources for the development of a nation.

Report writing facilitates the validation of generalisation. A research report is an end product of research. As earlier said that report writing provides useful information in arriving at rational decisions that may reform the business and society. The findings, conclusions, suggestions and recommendations are useful to academicians, scholars and policymakers. Report writing provides reference material for further research in the same or similar areas of research to the concerned parties.

While preparing a research report, a researcher should take some proper precautions. Report writing should be simple, lucid and systematic. Report writing should be written speedily without interrupting the continuity of thought. The report writing should sustain the interest of readers.

Qualities of Good Report

Report writing is a highly skilled job. It is a process of analysing, understanding and consolidating the findings and projecting a meaningful view of the phenomenon studied. A good report writing is essential for effective communication.

Following are the essential qualities of good report:

  • A research report is essentially a scientific documentation. It should have a suggestive title, headings and sub-headings, paragraphs arranged in a logical sequence.
  • Good research report should include everything that is relevant and exclude everything that is irrelevant. It means that it should contain the facts rather than opinion.
  • The language of the report should be simple and unambiguous. It means that it should be free from biases of the researchers derived from the past experience. Confusion, pretentiousness and pomposity should be carefully guarded against. It means that the language of the report should be simple, employing appropriate words, idioms and expressions.
  • The report must be free from grammatical mistakes. It must be grammatically accurate. Faulty construction of sentences makes the meaning of the narrative obscure and ambiguous.
  • The report has to take into consideration two facts. Firstly, for whom the report is meant and secondly, what is his level of knowledge. The report has to look to the subject matter of the report and the fact as to the level of knowledge of the person for whom it is meant. Because all reports are not meant for research scholars.

Steps in Writing Research Report

Report writing is a time consuming and expensive exercise. Therefore, reports have to be very sharply focused in purpose content and readership. There is no single universally acceptable method of writing a research report.

Following are the general steps in writing a research report:

Analysis of the subject matter

Research outline, preparation of rough draft, rewriting and polishing, writing the final draft.

This is the first and important step in writing a research report. It is concerned with the development of a subject. Subject matter should be written in a clear, logical and concise manner. The style adopted should be open, straightforward and dignified and folk style language should be avoided.

The data, the reliability and validity of the results of the statistical analysis should be in the form of tables, figures and equations. All redundancy in the data or results presented should be eliminated.

The research outline is an organisational framework prepared by the researcher well in advance. It is an aid to logical organisation of material and a reminder of the points to be stressed in the report. In the process of writing, if need be, outline may be revised accordingly.

Time and place of the study, scope and limitations of the study, study design, summary of pilot study, methods of data collection, analysis interpretation, etc., may be included in a research outline.

Having prepared the primary and secondary data, the researcher has to prepare a rough draft. While preparing the rough draft, the researcher should keep the objectives of the research in mind, and focus on one objective at a time. The researcher should make a checklist of the important points that are necessary to be covered in the manuscript. A researcher should use dictionary and relevant reference materials as and when required.

This is an important step in writing a research report. It takes more time than a rough draft. While rewriting and polishing, a researcher should check the report for weakness in logical development or presentation. He should take breaks in between rewriting and polishing since this gives the time to incubate the ideas.

The last and important step is writing the final draft. The language of the report should be simple, employing appropriate words and expressions and should avoid vague expressions such as ‘it seems’ and ‘there may be’ etc.

It should not used personal pronouns, such as I, We, My, Us, etc and should substitute these by such expressions as a researcher, investigator, etc. Before the final drafting of the report, it is advisable that the researcher should prepare a first draft for critical considerations and possible improvements. It will be helpful in writing the final draft. Finally, the report should be logically outlined with the future directions of the research based on the work completed.

Precautions for Writing Research Reports

A research report is a means of conveying the research study to a specific target audience. The following precautions should be taken while preparing a research report:

  • Its hould belong enough to cover the subject and short enough to preserve interest.
  • It should not be dull and complicated.
  • It should be simple, without the usage of abstract terms and technical jargons.
  • It should offer ready availability of findings with the help of charts, tables and graphs, as readers prefer quick knowledge of main findings.
  • The layout of the report should be in accordance with the objectives of the research study.
  • There should be no grammatical errors and writing should adhere to the techniques of report writing in case of quotations, footnotes and documentations.
  • It should be original, intellectual and contribute to the solution of a problem or add knowledge to the concerned field.
  • Appendices should been listed with respect to all the technical data in the report.
  • It should be attractive, neat and clean, whether handwritten or typed.
  • The report writer should refrain from confusing the possessive form of the word ‘it’ is with ‘it’s.’ The accurate possessive form of ‘it is’ is ‘its.’ The use of ‘it’s’ is the contractive form of ‘it is.
  • A report should not have contractions. Examples are ‘didn’t’ or ‘it’s.’ In report writing, it is best to use the non-contractive form. Therefore, the examples would be replaced by ‘did not’ and ‘it is.’ Using ‘Figure’ instead of ‘Fig.’ and ‘Table’ instead of ‘Tab.’ will spare the reader of having to translate the abbreviations, while reading. If abbreviations are used, use them consistently throughout the report. For example, do not switch among ‘versus,’ and ‘vs’.
  • It is advisable to avoid using the word ‘very’ and other such words that try to embellish a description. They do not add any extra meaning and, therefore, should be dropped.
  • Repetition hampers lucidity. Report writers must avoid repeating the same word more than once within a sentence.
  • When you use the word ‘this’ or ‘these’ make sure you indicate to what you are referring. This reduces the ambiguity in your writing and helps to tie sentences together.
  • Do not use the word ‘they’ to refer to a singular person. You can either rewrite the sentence to avoid needing such a reference or use the singular ‘he or she.’

Types of Research Report

Research reports are designed in order to convey and record the information that will be of practical use to the reader. It is organized into distinct units of specific and highly visible information. The kind of audience addressed in the research report decides the type of report.

Research reports can be categorized on the following basis:

Classification on the Basis of Information

Classification on the basis of representation.

Following are the ways through which the results of the research report can be presented on the basis of information contained:

Technical Report

A technical report is written for other researchers. In writing the technical reports, the importance is mainly given to the methods that have been used to collect the information and data, the presumptions that are made and finally, the various presentation techniques that are used to present the findings and data.

Following are main features of a technical report:

  • Summary: It covers a brief analysis of the findings of the research in a very few pages. 
  • Nature: It contains the reasons for which the research is undertaken, the analysis and the data that is required in order to prepare a report. 
  • Methods employed: It contains a description of the methods that were employed in order to collect the data. 
  • Data: It covers a brief analysis of the various sources from which the data has been collected with their features and drawbacks 
  • Analysis of data and presentation of the findings: It contains the various forms through which the data that has been analysed can be presented. 
  • Conclusions: It contains a brief explanation of findings of the research. 
  • Bibliography: It contains a detailed analysis of the various bibliographies that have been used in order to conduct a research. 
  • Technical appendices: It contains the appendices for the technical matters and for questionnaires and mathematical derivations. 
  • Index: The index of the technical report must be provided at the end of the report.

Popular Report

A popular report is formulated when there is a need to draw conclusions of the findings of the research report. One of the main points of consideration that should be kept in mind while formulating a research report is that it must be simple and attractive. It must be written in a very simple manner that is understandable to all. It must also be made attractive by using large prints, various sub-headings and by giving cartoons occasionally.

Following are the main points that must be kept in mind while preparing a popular report:

  • Findings and their implications : While preparing a popular report, main importance is given to the findings of the information and the conclusions that can be drawn out of these findings.
  • Recommendations for action : If there are any deviations in the report then recommendations are made for taking corrective action in order to rectify the errors.
  • Objective of the study : In a popular report, the specific objective for which the research has been undertaken is presented.
  • Methods employed : The report must contain the various methods that has been employed in order to conduct a research.
  • Results : The results of the research findings must be presented in a suitable and appropriate manner by taking the help of charts and diagrams.
  • Technical appendices : The report must contain an in-depth information used to collect the data in the form of appendices.

Following are the ways through which the results of the research report can be presented on the basis of representation:

  • Writtenreport
  • Oral report

Written Report

A written report plays a vital role in every business operation. The manner in which an organization writes business letters and business reports creates an impression of its standard. Therefore, the organization should emphasize on the improvement of the writing skills of the employees in order to maintain effective relations with their customers.

Writing effective written reports requires a lot of hard work. Therefore, before you begin writing, it is important to know the objective, i.e., the purpose of writing, collection and organization of required data.

Oral Report

At times, oral presentation of the results that are drawn out of research is considered effective, particularly in cases where policy recommendations are to be made. This approach proves beneficial because it provides a medium of interaction between a listener and a speaker. This leads to a better understanding of the findings and their implications.

However, the main drawback of oral presentation is the lack of any permanent records related to the research. Oral presentation of the report is also effective when it is supported with various visual devices, such as slides, wall charts and whiteboards that help in better understanding of the research reports.

Business Ethics

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  • What is Ethics?
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  • Values, Norms, Beliefs and Standards in Business Ethics
  • Indian Ethos in Management
  • Ethical Issues in Marketing
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  • Ethical Issues in Production and Operations Management
  • Ethical Issues in Finance and Accounting
  • What is Corporate Governance?
  • What is Ownership Concentration?
  • What is Ownership Composition?
  • Types of Companies in India
  • Internal Corporate Governance
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  • Corporate Governance in India
  • What is Enterprise Risk Management (ERM)?
  • What is Assessment of Risk?
  • What is Risk Register?
  • Risk Management Committee

Corporate social responsibility (CSR)

  • Theories of CSR
  • Arguments Against CSR
  • Business Case for CSR
  • Importance of CSR in India
  • Drivers of Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Developing a CSR Strategy
  • Implement CSR Commitments
  • CSR Marketplace
  • CSR at Workplace
  • Environmental CSR
  • CSR with Communities and in Supply Chain
  • Community Interventions
  • CSR Monitoring
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  • Voluntary Codes in CSR
  • What is Corporate Ethics?

Lean Six Sigma

  • What is Six Sigma?
  • What is Lean Six Sigma?
  • Value and Waste in Lean Six Sigma
  • Six Sigma Team
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  • What is Binomial, Poisson, Normal Distribution?
  • What is Sigma Level?
  • What is DMAIC in Six Sigma?
  • What is DMADV in Six Sigma?
  • Six Sigma Project Charter
  • Project Decomposition in Six Sigma
  • Critical to Quality (CTQ) Six Sigma
  • Process Mapping Six Sigma
  • Flowchart and SIPOC
  • Gage Repeatability and Reproducibility
  • Statistical Diagram
  • Lean Techniques for Optimisation Flow
  • Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA)
  • What is Process Audits?
  • Six Sigma Implementation at Ford
  • IBM Uses Six Sigma to Drive Behaviour Change
  • Research Methodology
  • What is Research?

What is Hypothesis?

  • Sampling Method

Research Methods

  • Data Collection in Research

Methods of Collecting Data

  • Application of Business Research
  • Levels of Measurement
  • What is Sampling?
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  • What is Management?
  • Planning in Management
  • Decision Making in Management
  • What is Controlling?
  • What is Coordination?
  • What is Staffing?
  • Organization Structure
  • What is Departmentation?
  • Span of Control
  • What is Authority?
  • Centralization vs Decentralization
  • Organizing in Management
  • Schools of Management Thought
  • Classical Management Approach
  • Is Management an Art or Science?
  • Who is a Manager?

Operations Research

  • What is Operations Research?
  • Operation Research Models
  • Linear Programming
  • Linear Programming Graphic Solution
  • Linear Programming Simplex Method
  • Linear Programming Artificial Variable Technique
  • Duality in Linear Programming
  • Transportation Problem Initial Basic Feasible Solution
  • Transportation Problem Finding Optimal Solution
  • Project Network Analysis with Critical Path Method
  • Project Network Analysis Methods
  • Project Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT)
  • Simulation in Operation Research
  • Replacement Models in Operation Research

Operation Management

  • What is Strategy?
  • What is Operations Strategy?
  • Operations Competitive Dimensions
  • Operations Strategy Formulation Process
  • What is Strategic Fit?
  • Strategic Design Process
  • Focused Operations Strategy
  • Corporate Level Strategy
  • Expansion Strategies
  • Stability Strategies
  • Retrenchment Strategies
  • Competitive Advantage
  • Strategic Choice and Strategic Alternatives
  • What is Production Process?
  • What is Process Technology?
  • What is Process Improvement?
  • Strategic Capacity Management
  • Production and Logistics Strategy
  • Taxonomy of Supply Chain Strategies
  • Factors Considered in Supply Chain Planning
  • Operational and Strategic Issues in Global Logistics
  • Logistics Outsourcing Strategy
  • What is Supply Chain Mapping?
  • Supply Chain Process Restructuring
  • Points of Differentiation
  • Re-engineering Improvement in SCM
  • What is Supply Chain Drivers?
  • Supply Chain Operations Reference (SCOR) Model
  • Customer Service and Cost Trade Off
  • Internal and External Performance Measures
  • Linking Supply Chain and Business Performance
  • Netflix’s Niche Focused Strategy
  • Disney and Pixar Merger
  • Process Planning at Mcdonald’s

Service Operations Management

  • What is Service?
  • What is Service Operations Management?
  • What is Service Design?
  • Service Design Process
  • Service Delivery
  • What is Service Quality?
  • Gap Model of Service Quality
  • Juran Trilogy
  • Service Performance Measurement
  • Service Decoupling
  • IT Service Operation
  • Service Operations Management in Different Sector

Procurement Management

  • What is Procurement Management?
  • Procurement Negotiation
  • Types of Requisition
  • RFX in Procurement
  • What is Purchasing Cycle?
  • Vendor Managed Inventory
  • Internal Conflict During Purchasing Operation
  • Spend Analysis in Procurement
  • Sourcing in Procurement
  • Supplier Evaluation and Selection in Procurement
  • Blacklisting of Suppliers in Procurement
  • Total Cost of Ownership in Procurement
  • Incoterms in Procurement
  • Documents Used in International Procurement
  • Transportation and Logistics Strategy
  • What is Capital Equipment?
  • Procurement Process of Capital Equipment
  • Acquisition of Technology in Procurement
  • What is E-Procurement?
  • E-marketplace and Online Catalogues
  • Fixed Price and Cost Reimbursement Contracts
  • Contract Cancellation in Procurement
  • Ethics in Procurement
  • Legal Aspects of Procurement
  • Global Sourcing in Procurement
  • Intermediaries and Countertrade in Procurement

Strategic Management

  • What is Strategic Management?
  • What is Value Chain Analysis?
  • Mission Statement
  • Business Level Strategy
  • What is SWOT Analysis?
  • What is Competitive Advantage?
  • What is Vision?
  • What is Ansoff Matrix?
  • Prahalad and Gary Hammel
  • Strategic Management In Global Environment
  • Competitor Analysis Framework
  • Competitive Rivalry Analysis
  • Competitive Dynamics
  • What is Competitive Rivalry?
  • Five Competitive Forces That Shape Strategy
  • What is PESTLE Analysis?
  • Fragmentation and Consolidation Of Industries
  • What is Technology Life Cycle?
  • What is Diversification Strategy?
  • What is Corporate Restructuring Strategy?
  • Resources and Capabilities of Organization
  • Role of Leaders In Functional-Level Strategic Management
  • Functional Structure In Functional Level Strategy Formulation
  • Information And Control System
  • What is Strategy Gap Analysis?
  • Issues In Strategy Implementation
  • Matrix Organizational Structure
  • What is Strategic Management Process?

Supply Chain

  • What is Supply Chain Management?
  • Supply Chain Planning and Measuring Strategy Performance
  • What is Warehousing?
  • What is Packaging?
  • What is Inventory Management?
  • What is Material Handling?
  • What is Order Picking?
  • Receiving and Dispatch, Processes
  • What is Warehouse Design?
  • What is Warehousing Costs?

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What is Report Writing, Importance, Purpose, Principles, etc.

what is report writing and its importance

Report Writing

Report writing is a formal style of describing any specific topic for the specific audience. A report contains the information about an event, function, on some situation. So a document which provides the some useful information about any event is called report .

And a report is written in past tense, because a report describes the information about any event which is already happen.

A report writing is the formal style of describe any topic in briefly.  And a report is written on specific topic for the specific audience. A report can cover many topics but in most of the cases is written for the specific topic or audience. A report can have 1 to 2 sentences in present but other sentences must be in past tense.

Importance of Report Writing

i) Report provides the important details about any specific topic which helps in future for the decision-making.

ii) Reports help to keep track on the process of the business or an organization.

iii)  Reports help an organization to easily recognize the work.

iv) Report is use to collect the important information on specific topics or related to the specific topic.

v) Reports are used in a business by the managers to control the activity of the business.

Types of Report Writing

i) Long/Formal and Short/Informal Reports

ii) Internal and External Reports

iii) Informal and Analytical

iv) Vertical and Lateral

Purpose of Report Writing

i) Reports are used to analyze the past records of any business or organization.

ii) Reports are used to analyze the problems and issue of an organization.

Advantages of Report Writing

i) Reports provide an exact and up-to-date information about specific topic.

ii) Reports help of a business in decision making and managers use for internal uses.

iii) Reports help managers to solve the problems faced by the company.

iv) Reports keep the records and provide the valuable information to the managers to re-use in future.

Principles of Report Writing

The terms or points which are required for writing a good and quality report are:

i) Accuracy

Report should be accurate, correct, and totally free from mistakes, and errors. 

ii) Completeness

A report should be complete and should provide accurate and to the point information. While writing a report the writer keep in mind that don't share or explain half information of any topic. 

iii) Selective

A reports must be for the proper or specific audience. And should mention for which person or audience the report is written.

iv) Clarity

A report should be clear and their is no word include which are inconvenience for the audience or don't use the paragraph or sentences which are not related to the report.

Report should be simple and easy to readable for the audience and don't use complicated words in the reports.

vi) Easy to Understand

A report must explain in easy way which is easy to understandable for the audience. And never use complicated sentences or paragraphs in the reports.

Report Writing Notes PDF ( Download Now ) 

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