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5 top tips to master report writing

5 top tips to master report writing

What is a report?

A report is a document that is written with clear purpose and directed at a particular audience. All the information and evidence are clearly presented, analysed and applied to a particular issue. The information should be in a clear structure and format, making use of sections and headings to make it easier to locate information.

Technical report writing is important in all aspects of life whether this is in an educational environment or even a work environment. When you are asked to write a report you will be given a report brief, this will report the purpose, audience and issues your report must address. Be careful to always follow specific instructions provided by the department.

Why is report writing important?

Report writing is important because when people in businesses, companies, governments and third party organisations look at these reports, it will help them to make prompt decisions about any planning involved. Reports also help organisations see whether there is any internal problems within their company or if this can be used to give stakeholders information about the daily running of the business.

Reports can help a business to update their information about developments and future plans, for example a change in policy in the government. Reports are extremely treasured, organisations send their employees to report writing courses or if they are working in the medical sector then they will be referred to technical report writing courses.

Here are 5 top tips to master report writing:

  1. When you are completing a report whether this is for a business or for educational purposes, the golden rule is to always collect more information than required. You may gather the information from different sources such as books, the internet, surveys or simply talking to people. Once you have all this information it is important to sieve through it to see what is the most relevant to go into your report. The information needs to be clear and concise to make your report excel.
  1. Presentation of the report is very important, no one is going to take interest in a report that is poorly put together. A few days before the report deadline you should check through the report to ensure that your facts, grammar, spelling and punctuation are accurate. Read through three sentences at a time to ensure that you are looking at it with a critical eye, ask yourself - is it clear to the reader?
  1. Planning is key when you set out to complete a report. Make brief notes about the subject that the report is based on and its contents. Always keep the reader in mind, their level of education, familiarity with the subject and knowledge of technical terms.
  1. When you reach the recommendations sections, make them clear so that anyone reading the document will be able to clearly see them. Illustrate how you have come to writing these recommendations, the analysis is the main part of the report so keep the recommendations short and sweet. 
  1. The summary is another important part of your report, most people will skip to this section and then go back and read the whole report. Keep this section to who, what, when, where and why and any underlying root causes uncovered by the investigation. This can be placed in the beginning to enable the reader to pick whether they would like to read on or not.

Are you struggling with technical report writing? Why not browse through our report writing courses.