A report is a true and accurate account of an event / activity off what has happen somewhere or the state of a given situation/ thing presented by a person/ group of persons to another person/group. A report must be objective in presentation, use passive form and the third person (he/she or the director) as much as possible. A report must have a writer, an audience and the purpose. There is no standard format for writing reports but it must however have the following
- The provision or title
- The sub title
- A report must be written predominantly in past, present perfect and past perfect tenses.
- It must have the writer’s name and position he holds in the institution.
- It must be dated and signed
COMPONENTS OF A REPORT
- Title page, table of contents, list of illustrations ( if needed)
- A concise Introduction ( statement of problem, recommendations/solution and methods of implementation)
- Overview: It includes purpose of report, problem to be examined and scope of the report ( enumeration of the alternative solutions)
- The criteria: The audience( reader) needs to know the grounds on which you will chose your solution e.g. the criteria for the purchase of a radio receiver might be initial cost, reliability and repair cost
- Discussion of Alternative solution in relation to the criteria: This is the lengthiest section of the report and presents an account of what whatever research went into selecting the solutions.
N.B. Reports can either be persuasive where the writer has a goal to convince his employer to implement solutions or reports can be explanatory where the writer uses an explanatory guide to explain a situation.
Example of a persuasive report that shows the above mentioned steps
To: M.A Collins, Supervisor of Nursing (name is optional)
From (Writing 1), Nursing Assistant
Subject: Assignment of Nursing Assistant
The current method of assigning individual duties to nursing assistants on the medical surgical units at City Hospital does not allow the aides to deliver the best care possible to total –care patients. These problems could be remedied by assigning workers in teams rather singly.
It is very difficult for a single person to give good care of a patient who requires attention. It is impossible for a worker to individually turn patients as frequently as necessary………………………………………… these are the solutions to be discussed in this report
1. Allow the assistant to carry out specific duties including blood pressures, temperatures etc
2. Make a possible for the workers to join efforts in the care for patients etc
The format of an explanatory report is as follows:
30th October 2006.
C.B finance Ltd,
Dear sir/ madam
(Topic in small letters and underlined or in capital letters and bold)
Introductory paragraph e.g I wish to report that one of the staff is sick, Body and Conclusion