Writing reports can be an intimidating task for many students or professionals. Reports are a great way to communicate information in an organized manner, but it can be difficult to start. This post provides an overview on how to write reports, including tips on choosing a topic, researching, outlining, and writing.
What is a Report?
A report is a document that outlines a problem, project, or situation. It also analyses information related to it and provides recommendations and conclusions. They are used to inform others of the current status of particular issues and present options for solutions.
Reports can be found in many different settings and forms, such as marketing reports, school reports, scientific reports, etc. However, these structure guidelines will apply regardless of the type of report you are writing.
What Should be in a Report?
In order to present your findings in a concise and logical manner, outline your report like so:
- Title: Straight to the point statement to communicate what your report is about.
- Table of Contents: A page detailing the order of your report’s contents.
- Summary: An overview that summarizes your report.
- Introduction: Section where you introduce your topic and establish what will be in the report.
- Body: Where the majority of your writing about the topic will be, using supporting evidence to back up your findings.
- Conclusion: Summarize your findings again while concluding the report body.
- Recommendations: The call to action with steps to take based on the information provided in the report.
- Appendices: A list of sources referenced during your research for the report.
Regardless of how you format your report, this structure will allow you to communicate your points clearly and effectively.
How to Write a Report
Despite the numbering of the items in the outline, you will not actually work on each one in that order. For example, how can you summarize something that hasn’t been written yet? In the following paragraphs we will work through the process of your outline.
Creating a Report Title
Starting off, you’ll need a title. Unlike an article or a novel, you needn’t put too much thought into making it sound snappy or creative. A report should be direct and clear about what it is, with a title that communicates to the reader exactly what the topic is.
How to Write a Report Introduction
Next, you’ll write the introduction. Depending on how long your report is, this could be a paragraph or a whole page. You will want to use it to introduce your topic and why your report was created.
The Bulk of Writing Reports: The Body
The longest section of your report is the body. You will want to divide it into sections and subsections in order to draw attention to each of your supporting points. Within each section, clearly present the main issue relating to that section’s theme and relate it back to your overall findings.
How to Write The Conclusion of a Report
The conclusion will act as a summary that follows the presentation of your findings. It provides the audience with no new information, but rather a concise restating of the main findings of the report.
Though a recommendations section may be unnecessary in a school or university setting, it is an essential component to a business report. It is here where you will list out actionable steps to be taken in order to address the problem presented by your findings.
Now that you’ve reached the end of your report, you can go back and work on the remaining components. Firstly, you can write a final summary of your report, using only a paragraph or two for the audience to read before the main body. The appendices will be listed at the end. Though you may want to start compiling your sources during the research process, you can save this section for after you’ve finished writing the report. Lastly, now that you have everything to list out, you can create the Table of Contents to direct the audience to the location of each section.
Ways to Write a Report in ParagraphAI
If you’re still developing strategies for how to write reports, one of the most helpful ways to improve your work efficiency is to become acquainted with a free AI writing tool, like ParagraphAI. Whether it’s to generate ideas or to improve the phrasing of your writing, making use of its different features can help you to keep your work moving and overcome your writer’s block.
Example 1: Summary
As you may have noticed, some of the sections in your report outline are on the shorter side —around maybe a paragraph or two. For writing an introduction, conclusion, or summary, ParagraphAI’s paragraph writing feature is your best bet. As it will create text about your topic in a clear and straight to the point manner that you can incorporate into your own writing.
Example 2: Subsections
The majority of your writing will be found in the report body, which means you’ll need a bit more than just a paragraph or two in order to cover all of the supporting points within your subsections. This is where you’ll use ParagraphAI’s article writing feature, as it can go into a bit more detail about the findings of your report as it produces a good bit more text for you to build off of or reference while writing.
It may seem daunting at first, but by following the right steps and having an understanding of how to write reports, anyone will be able to write one successfully. With that skill, you can take your productivity to another level with ParagraphAI. So if you’ve got to put together a report, consider using a free AI writing tool like ParagraphAI to help assemble your thoughts, you may find the writing process much easier!