Things That Make a Good Annual Report

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YONKERS, WESTCHESTER COUNTY, NY — February 7, 2022 — Whether you are running a small or big business, you’re required to present a report to your members, shareholders, and donors every year. In that report, you are expected to write everything that concerns your business’s operations and financial status.

If you are in doubt about the annual report you’re making, there’s probably something wrong with it. Make sure your report has the following qualities to feel more confident about it.

Financial Statement

Venngage

You aren’t fully required to present a full accounting in your annual report. However, it’s a good idea to include a detailed financial statement when you file an annual report for transparency. It can help strengthen your overall report.

To avoid leaving your audience feeling bored and uninterested, you can just provide a summary of the year’s financial history. However, if your audiences are interested in getting the full details, indicate how they can get a complete report.

You can use pie charts, graphs, and charts to present your financial statement. These make it easier for your audience to see a clearer picture of the financial health of your business.

List of Accomplishments

Your annual report needs to summarize what your business has accomplished in the prior year. Your accomplishments need to reflect not just your mission statement but the goals you’ve set for the year, too.

Consider grouping your accomplishments into different categories to make the list easier to understand. For example, you can set three as the minimum and five as the maximum. Then list specific goals that you’ve met in the categories.

Your audience will find it easy to understand if you use charts to show the growth in the last couple of years. Include a summary of the areas that require improvement.

Interviews

As much as possible, try to include client or customer experiences in your annual report. For example, you can use testimonials from people that highlight great experiences with your personnel, services, or products.

Stick with first-person interviews. You can use quotes from them throughout your report. This way, you’ll be able to highlight the satisfied person and how their testimony helped you meet a goal.

If possible, connect each testimony to someone on your staff. This is an excellent way to highlight your company’s commitment to providing quality customer service.

Here’s the thing, even though including first-person interviews is excellent to add to annual reports, it’s not a strict requirement. Don’t fabricate one just to show how good your product or service is. Remember, you need to be completely honest when delivering your annual report. It reflects the status of your business and making false testimonies will just cause problems in the long run.

Company Lists

Try to include the mission statement of your company, as well as the complete summary of your annual report. If possible, you can also have notes that come from the CEO.

In case you’re running a small nonprofit organization, you can include the list of board members, board directors, and executive staff.

Don’t forget about the list of your company’s financial contributors too. You can break up the section by using the contribution amounts. This will encourage others to do the same thing if they want to be included in your annual report.

Infographics

Venngage

Including an infographic in your annual report can make it exciting and easy to understand. They make analysis and interpretation less stressful too.

Not having enough experience in designing shouldn’t stop you from making one. There are lots of tools you can use to make an infographic you can use in your report. Whether you’re a credit annual report or a company annual report, you’ll find such tools helpful.

One of the best tools around is Venngage. It’s easy to use, even for beginners. Plus, it comes with a lot of templates. You can even find a sample annual report there and edit it according to your business needs.

Photos

When making your annual report, it’s a must that you consider its readability. In fact, it should be one of your primary goals.

One way to break up the elements in your report is to add photos. In fact, adding pictures of one or two people is ideal.

When picking images, stick with the photos of your programs, events, staff, or constituents. It helps personalize your report. Plus, it also allows you to highlight that you are making a difference while you’re sharing facts.

Bonus Tip: Simplicity

A simple annual report is easy to understand. How to write an annual report, on the other hand, is a different story. Your audience will find it easier to focus if fewer things are going on in your report. Moreover, suppose you try to report on too many things. In that case, it will just cause unnecessary stress on anyone who’ll be reading it.

However, even though keeping reports simple is ideal, you should still ensure that you’re not missing any essential points. To make annual report creation simple, stick with premade templates like Venngage. It’s free to sign-up, and the basic templates cost nothing. So instead of focusing on the design, you can focus on the content more! Sign-up here and see for yourself!

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