What is format of Business Report? Whether formal or informal, the subject matter of a special report is usually arranged in the following order:
- Terms of Reference
3. Findings and Conclusion
Lets us discuss Format of Business Report are as under;
FORMAT OF BUSINESS REPORT
Terms of Reference: Terms of Reference are usually incorporated in the opening section of a report. They contain a reference to the authority who ordered the report, the subject of the report, its specific requirement and its scope.
Procedure: Procedure concerns the method of investigation, the sources consulted, the research made and the steps taken by the writer of the report to ascertain the facts of the subject. This element is usually incorporated in the text section of the report.
Findings and Conclusion: This section of a report comprises the statements made on the logical outcome of the discussion held above. It refers to the drawn-out conclusions of the author of the report.
Recommendations: This is the final section of a report in which the author makes his recommendations, leading towards the proposed solution of the problem. Recommendations should always be made distinctly, clearly and objectively without giving any weight-age to personal likings and disliking.
PARTS OF A SHORT REPORT
The structure of a short report is simpler than the structure of a long, formal report which includes many other things that are not a part of a short report. aSince a short report is written on the pattern of a letter or a memo, so its structural parts, with a little variation, are almost the same. A short report should usually be structured according to the following layout: Other parts of the short report being, self-explanatory, the main sections are discussed here under:
Introduction: Purpose of the introduction section is to prepare the reader for the main text of the report. It usually begins by making a reference to the Letter of Authorization and introduction of the subject of the report. Here the writer tells the reader what the report is about. He may also include in this section any such references as he thinks are necessary to orient the reader with what he is going to say.
Text: The text of the report has its own structure. The facts of the subject are arranged properly inappropriate, desirable number of paragraphs. The writer should take care that the material or arguments are developed and presented methodically and logically, and nothing irrelevant is included in his discussion of the subject of the report.
Conclusion: Conclusion of the report is the most important part of the terminal section. It sums up, in brief, the gist of the discussion. The writer should be sure that his conclusion does not include any new material, and it follows logically from the facts already presented in the text. In some reports, a conclusion is not mentioned separately and is made a part of the text of the report.
Suggestions or Recommendations: In this part of the report, the writer should clearly mention his suggestions or recommendations. Once again, he has to be careful of their relevance to the subject of the report. In case the number of suggestions or recommendations is more than one, the writer should list them clearly and categorically.
PARTS OF A LONG REPORT
The basic principles of the writing of a long, formal report are the same as applicable to a short report. However, in view of the specific nature of a long report and the fact that it covers up a wide range of aspects related to the subject of the report, certain prefatory and supplementary parts arc also added to it. A strictly written long formal report is composed of the following parts:
1. Title Page
2. Letter of Authorization
3. Letter of Transmittal
5. Table of Contents
6. Table of Charts
Title Page: It is a usual practice to combine the cover and title page for the top page. It bears the subject of the report, the name of the recipient, name of the writer or sender and the date of completion. Sometimes, the cover page is designed to reflect the subject matter of the report. In that case, the title is given on the next page.
Letter of Authorization: Letter or Memorandum of Authorization is the letter that authorized the writer to write the report. It is reproduced in its original contents and form by the writer of the report to maintain the authenticity of the document.
Letter of Transmittal: Letter of Transmittal comprises the message that conveys the report from the author to the reader It is usually worded in conversational language. Sometimes it also includes an acknowledgment by the of the report to the people who assisted him in the report. In such cases, the author’s message is labeled as ‘Foreword.’
Introduction / Preface: Introduction is an important part of the report. It describes, in general, the subject of the report, its purpose, and scope. The writer in this part introduces, in brief, the subject with its background and true perspective.
Table of Contents: Table of Contents is a prefatory part of a long report. It contains a list of the main headings of the report outline with page numbers shown against them. Purpose of Table of Contents is to provide a sort of guidance to the reader to facilitate easy reading of the report.
Table of Charts: Purpose of this Table, like the Table of Contents, is also to guide the reader. It contains a list of the charts, maps and other illustrations included in the report.
Summary: It is a condensed, concise, accurate statement of what is important in the report. In other words, we may say that summary is a report of the report. It serves the very useful purpose of enabling the reader to learn about the gist of the report through a synoptic brief.
Text: Text or the Body of the Report is the actual report which contains an objective and analytical discussion of the problem. It presents the problem, focuses it, explains it, analyses it and concludes it with suggestions and recommendations.
Appendix: Appendix is the collection of supplementary material, given at the end of the report. It comprises the material which is relevant to the subject but not included in the report. This part of the report is used for reference purpose only.
Bibliography: It contains a list of the books, magazines, journals, and other such published sources which the author benefited from to compile the report.
Index: Index is a kind of guide for the reader. It lists alphabetically important words, terms, names, etc. used in the report with their respective page numbers to enable the reader to find them in the document without trouble.