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Chapter 10

Formal Reports

Essentials of
Business
Communication 9e

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy


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Understanding Business Reports
▪ Product of thorough investigation and
analysis.
▪ Presents vital information to decision
makers in business, industry, government,
and education.
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Chapter 10, Slide 2


Understanding Business Reports
Report Writing Process
 Prepare to write.
 Research secondary data.
 Generate primary data.
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 Document data.
 Organize, outline, and
discuss data.
 Illustrate data.
 Present final report.
Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 3
Preparing to Write
▪ Define the purpose of the project.
▪ Write a statement of purpose to describe
the following:
• Goal
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• Significance
• Limitations
▪ Use action verbs.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 4
Statement of Purpose
The purpose of this report is to explore possible
locations for expansion. The report will consider
economic data, general costs, consumer
demand, and local competition. This research is
significant because for our company to survive,
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we must grow. This report won’t consider specific


start-up costs or traffic patterns, which will
require additional research.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 5
Primary v. Secondary Data

Primary Data: come from firsthand experience


and observation.
Secondary Data: come from reading what
others have experienced or observed and
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written down.
Nearly every research project
begins with investigating
secondary data.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 6
Generating Primary Data

Surveying Experimenting
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Observing Interviewing

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 7
Documenting Data

How to Paraphrase
▪ Read original material until you
comprehend its full meaning.
▪ Write your own version without looking at
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the original.
▪ Avoid using grammatical structure of the
original.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 8
Documenting Data

Using Citation Formats


▪ Modern Language Association (MLA).
▪ American Psychological Association
(APA).
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Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 9
Outlining Report Data
The main points used to outline a report often
become the main headings of the written report.
1.0 Major headings
left/centered and typed in bold font.
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1.1 Second-level headings


start at the left margin
1.1.1 Third-level headings
indented, becoming part of the paragraph.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 10
Illustrating Report Data

Why use visual aids?


▪ To clarify data.
▪ To create visual interest.
▪ To make numerical data meaningful.
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▪ To make information more


understandable and easier
to remember.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 11
Illustrating Report Data

Most common types of visual aids


▪ Tables
▪ Charts
▪ Graphs
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▪ Photographs

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 12
Matching Visuals With Objectives

Table
To show exact figures and values.
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Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 13
Matching Visuals With Objectives

2009

Bar Chart
To compare one
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item with others.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 14
Matching Visuals With Objectives

Line Chart
To demonstrate
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changes in
quantitative data
over time.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 15
Matching Visuals With Objectives
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Pie Chart
To visualize a
whole unit and the
proportions of its
components.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 16
Matching Visuals With Objectives

Flowchart
To display a
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process or
procedure.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 17
Matching Visuals With Objectives
Organization Chart
To define a hierarchy
of elements or a set
of relationships.
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Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 18
Matching Visuals With Objectives

Photograph, Map, Illustration


To achieve authenticity, to spotlight a location,
or to show an item in use.
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Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 19
Incorporating Graphics in Reports

▪ Evaluate the audience.


▪ Be honest and ethical.
▪ Introduce a graphic meaningfully.
▪ Choose an appropriate caption or title
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style.
▪ Give credit to source if appropriate.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 20
Parts of Formal Appendix
Bibliography

Recommendations

Reports Body
Introduction
Conclusions

Executive summary
List of figures
Table of contents

Letter of transmittal

Title page

Cover
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Generally appear in both


formal and informal reports:

Optional in informal reports:

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 21
Presenting the Final Formal Report

Prefatory Parts
▪ Title page
▪ Letter or memo of transmittal
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▪ Table of contents
▪ List of figures
▪ Executive summary

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 22
Presenting the Final Formal Report

Title Page
▪ 1st page of a formal report.
▪ Includes identifying information.
▪ Report’s title.
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▪ Name of the person or organization for whom


the report was written.
▪ Author’s name, position, and organization.
▪ Date of submission.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 23
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Presenting the Final Formal Report

Table of Contents
▪ Gives readers a quick overview of the content
and structure.
▪ Helps readers find specific sections of the report.
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▪ Include all headings in the report and their page


numbers.
▪ Number pages before the Introduction with lowercase
Roman numerals.
▪ The title page counts as page number i, even though
it is not numbered.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 25
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Presenting the Final Formal Report

Executive Summary
▪ Gives readers a condensed version of the entire
report.
▪ Standard limit is within 1 single page.
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▪ Standard line spacing is 1.0.


▪ Includes all important findings, conclusions, and
recommendations.
▪ May use subheadings to guide the reader.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 27
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Presenting the Final Formal Report
Body of Report
▪ Introduction
Background
Statement of Purpose
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Significance and scope


Sources and Methods/Methodology
Organization (shows structure of the report)
▪ Discussion of findings/Findings and Analysis
▪ Conclusions, recommendations
Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 30
Presenting the Final Formal Report
Supplementary Parts of a Formal Report
▪ Footnotes or endnotes.
▪ Works Cited, References, or Bibliography.
▪ Appendix.
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▪ Always follow MLA/APA format in citing


references.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 31
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Presenting the Final Formal Report
Appendix
• Use appendices for information that readers
might find useful but that would clutter the report
(for example, raw data, calculations, large
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tables, and large graphics).


• Begin each appendix on its own page, starting
immediately after the reference list.

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy, Essentials of Business Communication, 9th Edition Chapter 10, Slide 33
END
Essentials of
Business
Communication 9e

Mary Ellen Guffey & Dana Loewy


© 2013 Cengage Learning ● All Rights Reserved