In simple terms, a report is an account or statement presenting details and conclusions about a process or meeting. As such, this compilation can be a few pages or an entire book that is prepared by one or more individuals. In general, a report may be created by a single person who may be the secretary of a meeting. On the other hand, this document can be developed by a committee that is tasked with completing a set of objectives.

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Importance of a Report

In the corporate world or any functional institution, reports are crucial for organizing administrative and financial information. When decisions are taken at any level within an organization, the details are primarily presented as reports. In addition, reports are made for various reasons and have different circulation statutory. Therefore, some documents are meant for all, while others are reserved for a few. Commons examples of reports include:

  • Annual reports;
  • Internal reports;
  • Audit reports;
  • Product reports.

Features

Although there may be different types of reports, each document has several features. Highlighted below are some common features of a typical report.

  • Most accurate reports are created based on real information presented as a reference, data, or statistic.
  • Creating this documentation requires proper formatting and styling. However, the style and format used to depend on the purpose of the report.
  • Every valid report has a primary purpose for compilation. Therefore, a typical report may be created to present records, compile evidence, or highlight a process.
  • A report may be for the general public or exclusive groups of people.

Report Types

In general, there are various report types. These types are described below.

Special

A special report is only made when there is a reason for making one. For example, the report of an inquiry into an occurrence can be classified as a unique report.

Routine

The opposite of a special report is a routine report. As such, most types of reports are routine. For example, the documentations made after meetings and other periodic gatherings are routine.

General

A general report is a type of documentation made for all to see and read. Examples of such documents include annual general meetings of a business. As such, there is no particular restriction associated with this document. Government arms and agencies frequently publish such reports for public consumption.

Confidential

Confidential reports are made for a specific set of people. Common examples of confidential report are intelligence reports, which are generated by the intelligence community for people responsible for making decisions.

Formal and Informal

A formal report usually follows a prescribed form and style. An informal report will naturally be the opposite.

Report Uses

The use of a report mostly depends on the reason for its creation. Some common uses of reports are highlighted below.

  • Present in detail information about an institution.
  • Convey the decision of a committee or organization.
  • Most professional institutions highlight details about the skills of their members using reports.
  • A report can be used to present plans, policies, and other matters of public interest.

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