What is a report? • Three Functions of Professional Writing • Record • Inform • Persuade • Reports Focus upon Record and Inform
What Makes It Informal? • Routine or “Regular” Information • Regular Activities • Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly Reports • Progress Reports • Common (but not necessarily routine or regular) Tasks • Expense Reports, Minutes, etc.
Formats for Informal Reports • Memos • Short Internal reports • Forms • Templates for reports • Usually for longer more formal reports • Letters • Usually Cover Letters introducing forms • Email • Similar to memos • Be careful about formatting
Common Types of Informal Reports • Directives • Trip Reports • Field / Lab Reports • Minutes • Progress or Status Reports
Directives • Policy Change • Organization of Directives • Introduce Topic • Explain Reasons • Present Directive
Trip Reports • Summary Report • Intro the Trip (Summary) • Discuss Relevant Details • Recommend Future Action • Expense Report • Intro trip • Detail expenses • Support w/ documentation
Field and Lab Reports • Format Often Peculiar to Organization • Purpose of report (include discussion of problems leading to report) • Describe methods • Describe and interpret results • Follow up • Lists / Bullets / Tables / Graphics
Minutes • Detail, Detail, Detail • Name of Group • Location, Date, Time of Meeting • Include start and stop times • Members in attendance • List and discuss agenda and discussions • Topics, resolutions, voting, motions, etc. • Avoid interpretation and evaluation, just report
Progress / Interim / StatusReports • Oral or Written • Set Forth in Proposal • Managerial Control • Forces Goals Upon work Team
Writing Issues • Eases the Burden of Writing Final Report • Can Be Used to Explain or Handle Problems • Like What?
Components of theProgress Report • Format (Letter/Memo) • Introduction • Procedural Status • Work Completed • In Progress • Scheduled Work • Schedule Status • Budget Status
Introduction • Give appropriate introductory information in first paragraph • Project Name • Dates • Amount Completed • Previous Communications • Statement of Progress
Work Completed • Follow Steps From Proposal • Layout Using List or Bullets • Expand with Details • Be Specific • Good Place for a Graphic
Work in Progress • A brief detailed description, usually in a single paragraph, devoted to what you are currently doing.
Scheduled Work • Use unfinished procedural steps directly from Proposal • May want to include percentage of work to be accomplished • Include reference to project completion (Final Report)
Budget Status • Detail (graphic/table) amount of money spent and amount remaining from Proposal budget • Be Explicit (2 @ $50) • May want to include % of total spent/remaining
Problems in the Progress Report • Subordinate problems within the appropriate section • Do not begin/end with problem • Use appropriate styles/org pattern within sections • Use Graphics wherever possible • Include Logistics • time, names, dates, locations, etc *