How to Write Effective Reports
This workshop teaches you how to plan, write, and revise effective reports. What makes an effective report?—one that decision makers can use to choose options, set policies, allocate funds, solve problems, capitalize on opportunities, and implement plans. But when reports are poorly structured, biased, difficult to read, or misleading, decision making can suffer—with potentially harmful consequences for organizations and careers. This workshop explains how to write and publish reports that improve decision making and generate results.
You’ll learn to apply the steps in the report-writing process and to convey the right information in the right way for your readers. You will also learn to avoid common report-writing problems that can cloud and weaken your messages.
Following the five steps to producing effective reports
Knowing your readers and meeting their information needs
Planning and outlining your reports
Choosing from one of nine report structures
Helping readers find information and navigate your reports
Selecting the appropriate amount of detail—how much is too much?
Writing the various parts of reports: summaries, introductions, bodies, conclusions, and recommendations
Getting to the main point quickly
Interpreting your data
Persuading your readers
Illustrating your report
Designing page layouts
Reviewing and editing reports
- Anyone who needs to write clear and objective reports for decision makers
- Business, government, or technical professionals who want to effectively communicate the results of studies, evaluations, investigations, or analyses
Moira White is a versatile communicator with decades of experience in plain language editing, writing, and teaching.
Moira holds a master’s degree in social policy. She has managed onsite production of reports in Canada and Europe and has travelled across Canada with public consultations writing, editing, and producing reports. Her specialties include synthesizing the work of multiple authors, writing to tight deadlines, and writing executive summaries.
She is an honorary life member and past president of Editors Canada and is a member of PLAIN (Plain Language Association InterNational).
In her spare time, Moira indulges her fascination with fibre and colour by spinning, knitting, and weaving.
“The class was great! I really enjoyed it and I take away new ideas on how to write effective reports.”
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