Business Reports

This is a general outline for a business report. Structure varies depending on the nature of the report. Each section below could be broken down into further sections or shrunk depending on the requirements of the report.

Overview

  • This section is the introduction to the business report.
  • Depending on the nature of the report, the introduction could include a brief company history.
  • This section should mention the purpose of the report and the methodology being used in order to develop recommendations.

Analysis

  • This section includes a summary of the analysis, both external and internal (whichever is relevant to the company).
  • Findings should be presented in a summarized version, with details in an Appendix.
  • If a professor wants all details in the main body, then all findings are to be presented here.
  • The summary of the analysis should be discussed in reference to the issue at hand. For example, if the report is on increasing market share, it should provide a Porter’s five forces analysis, and summarize what that means for the company.
  • This section could have many sub-sections, unless an instructor has provided specific requirements.

Options and Alternatives

  • Based on the findings, the report can offer options or alternatives, and analyze each (pros and cons).
  • If there are no alternatives to the problem or topic, then this section may be skipped.

Recommendations

  • This section offers recommendations on handling a problem or challenge.
  • Recommendations may be broken down into timelines, i.e., short, medium, and long term recommendations.

Appendices

  • Extensive research, which includes evaluation tools (SWOT, PEST, Five Forces etc), financial projections, and evaluations, should be included in this section.
  • All additional information that validates the main points in the report should appear in this section.
  • Appendices should be structured in the order in which information appears in the body of the report.
  • All appendices must be properly referred to in the report, saying (Appendix A) or (Please see Appendix A) after each point.