Business report writing is used for a wide variety of topics and objectives, and a report can vary greatly in length, content and format. Examples include annual reports, monthly sales reports, reports requested by management to explore a specific issue, reports requested by the government to show a company's compliance with regulations, progress reports and feasibility studies.
Before writing the report, it is important to determine the report’s purpose. Is it to evaluate the need for new quality controls in manufacturing? Is it to report the results of a new hiring procedure? Is it to investigate competitors' products and services? Is it to propose cutbacks in the training program in order to offset budget cuts in the department? You should be able to describe your objective in one or two sentences.
You also should determine the report’s audience. Your audience may be upper, middle or line management; other departments within the company; coworkers; the client or potential clients; the government; or another company in the same market. Knowing who your audience is helps you determine the information to include in the report.