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Preparing Project #2’s Reports. CoB Center for Professional Communication. Preparing the Report. Analyze the report problem & purpose Anticipate the audience & issues Prepare a work plan Collect data & document sources Interpret & organize data Prepare graphics Compose first draft

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preparing project 2 s reports

Preparing Project #2’s Reports

CoB Center for Professional Communication

preparing the report
Preparing the Report
  • Analyze the report problem & purpose
  • Anticipate the audience & issues
  • Prepare a work plan
  • Collect data & document sources
  • Interpret & organize data
  • Prepare graphics
  • Compose first draft
  • Revise & proofread
  • Evaluate the product
selecting a report format
Selecting a Report Format

Formal Reports

Informal Reports

formatting a report in presentation software
Formatting a Report in Presentation Software

Talking heading

White background

Detailed, explanatory text

Mix of text and graphics

Bullets or text in graphics

Main points reinforced


Page numbers

  • Focus on graphical elements:
    • Tables
    • Charts
    • Images
    • Strong graphical design
    • But, do not ignore text altogether
  • Every page should contain at least 25-50% text
  • Narrative text font size 11 or 12 pt.
  • Remember: The report is intended to be read, not listened to
  • You will not be present to explain what a graph or table means
  • Thus, the report must be more explicit than slides accompanying an oral presentation
style rule of thumb
Style Rule of Thumb

Each slide should have:

25% white space (margins)

25 to 50% text

25 to 50% graphics

format layout
Create a design template

4 rules for design

Organization Elements



Portrait versus landscape?

Format & Layout
create the design template
Create the Design Template
  • Use the 4 Rules of Design
  • Make a few basic decisions and stick to them
  • You may use company colors and logo
  • Use PowerPoint to create your report
  • Use one of the templates
    • Office Button  New  Presentations  Business  Pitchbook
  • OR create your own using slide master
    • Design  View  Slide Master
portrait or landscape
Portrait or Landscape



  • More familiar reading style
  • Easier to present textual blocks
  • Better for double duty (stand-up presentations)
  • Can be better for graphical elements (complex graphics are often horizontal)
final thoughts
Final Thoughts
  • Think through your design
  • Think through your structure
  • Be consistent
  • Be professional
  • Reports Formatted in Presentation Software are meant to be read: explain the take away from your graphs
  • Use the template as a guide
project 2 s report components
Project #2’s Report Components






Table of contents

Executive Summary

Title Page


Transmittal document

transmittal letter memo
Transmittal Letter/Memo

The letter of transmittal presents your report to its intended audience (in a book this section would be called the preface). Think of the letter of transmittal as the conversation that you would have with your audience (client, boss, etc.) if you were handing the report directly to them. Your letter should have a personal but professional tone to it.

report components front matter
Report Components: Front Matter
  • Transmittal document
    • Announce the topic and explain who authorized it.
    • Briefly describe the project and preview the conclusions – if the reader is supportive.
report components front matter1
Report Components: Front Matter
  • Transmittal document
    • Close by expressing appreciation for the assignment, suggesting follow-up actions, acknowledging the help of others, and offering to answer questions.
formatting business memos

1 blank line

1 blank line

1 blank line

2 blank lines

Formatting Business Memos

Date: May 18, 2008

To: LaTonja Williams, title

From: Sharon Montoya (include initials of printed copy)

Subject: Formatting Business Letters

At your request, this memo illustrates and explains business memo formatting in a nutshell. The most important points to remember are these:

formatting business letters


2 inches from top of page


2 to 7 blank lines



1 blank line

1 blank line


1 blank line

Subject Line

Formatting Business Letters


5090 Katella Avenue PHONE: (310) 329-4330

Anaheim, CA 92642 FAX: (310) 329-4259

May 18, 2008

Ms. LaTonja Williams

Health Care Specialists

2608 Fairview Road

Costa Mesa, CA 92627

Dear Ms. Williams:

Subject: Formatting Business Letters


formatting business letters1

Numbered list for improved readability

One blank line between paragraphs

Formatting Business Letters
  • At your request, this letter illustrates and explains business letter formatting in a nutshell. The most important points to remember are these:
    • 1. Set margins between 1 inch; most word processing programs automatically set margins at 1 inch.
    • 2. Start the date 2 inches from the top edge of the paper or 1 blank line below the letterhead, whichever position is lower.
    • 3. Allow about 5 lines after the date—more lines for shorter letters and fewer lines for longer ones.
  • The two most popular letter styles are block and modified block. Block style, with all lines beginning at the left, causes the least trouble. In modified block-style letters,
formatting business letters2

Complimentary Closing

3-4 blank lines

Printed Name and Title

Formatting Business Letters

the date and closing lines start at the center. For both styles the complimentary close is followed by three blank lines before the writer’s signature. Reference initials and enclosure notations, if used, appear in the lower left corner, as shown below.

So that you can see additional styles, I’m sending our office style guide. I certainly hope this material is helpful to you and your assistants, Ms. Williams.


Sharon Montoya

Sharon Montoya

Executive Director