A report is a business tool used to convey research, findings and recommendations. A mini report is a condensed version of a report. It is used in a number of business cases. For example, a mini report can be used when frequent updates about a project are being made to superiors or when the reader of the report only requires a short summary of the matter at hand. Mini reports are also used when a full recap of the research is not required for the reader in order to understand the main objectives.
Have a Focused Goal for Your Mini Report
A mini report needs to have one clear goal. Don’t try to convey too much information in a mini report because it can get convoluted and confusing. Identify the main point you want to communicate to the reader and extrapolate that in the mini report.
State the main objective of your mini report in the heading so that it’s clear to the reader what the mini report will discuss. For example, if the mini report is about the success metrics of a recent marketing campaign, the heading can be “marketing campaign KPIs and recommendations.”
Provide Only Relevant Details
While a full report may have research and data on corresponding elements of the main subject, a mini report should only provide directly relevant information. As mini reports are used to summarize information or provide key details in a short amount of time, it’s best to only include information that is directly related to the main goal of the report.
For example, if the mini report focuses on customer feedback for your store for the last 30 days, don’t include data that pertain to the last 12 months. Instead, stick to what is relevant for this mini report, which is the 30 days of data.
Use Clear Language and Bullet Points
A mini report should be written using clear language. Avoid using overly technical words or industry jargon in your mini report because it can distract the reader from understanding the key points you’re trying to communicate. Instead, focus on telling the reader the main findings and recommendations using plain language.
Since mini reports are often used when the reader is short on time and isn’t able to review the full scope of information, it’s appropriate to use bullet points in your mini report. This makes it easy for the reader to scan the information quickly and understand the key elements in a shorter amount of time as compared to reading full paragraphs.
In business, you may be required to provide a mini report along with your colleagues or team members. A group report example is a sales update for the last week by each sales representative. If multiple people are working on a report together, be sure to review the full mini report to ensure the same tone and language is being used throughout. This not only makes it easier to read, but it also appears more professional.
Offer Resources or References for Further Information
Mini reports should include a section on resources or other documents the readers may want to consult after reading the mini report. This way, if the readers require further details or more information on the research and findings, they know where they can find additional materials.
This is where you can include data that are indirectly related or research material that is relevant but not required to fully understand the main point of the mini report. A report example for students may include a reference section for materials consulted while writing the mini report, while a report example for business employees may include links to previous mini reports or data from previous studies.
Anam Ahmed is a Toronto-based writer and editor with over a decade of experience helping small businesses and entrepreneurs reach new heights. She has experience ghostwriting and editing business books, especially those in the "For Dummies" series, in addition to writing and editing web content for the brand. Anam works as a marketing strategist and copywriter, collaborating with everyone from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups, lifestyle bloggers to professional athletes. As a small business owner herself, she is well-versed in what it takes to run and market a small business. Anam earned an M.A. from the University of Toronto and a B.A.H. from Queen's University. Learn more at www.anamahmed.ca.