Reports should be designed to encourage action to take place, on a timely basis, in the right direction. They need to:

  1. be a combination of daily/weekly/monthly reporting
  2. be prompt – within 3 working days is better practice from month-end, next day for daily reports
  3. be planned so they are structured with the reader’s decision in mind (especially written reports)
  4. utilise business writing best practice such as the guidelines in Mary Munter’s “Guide to Managerial Communication: Effective Business Writing and Speaking”
  5. report meaningful numbers. Is it necessary to report Sales of $23,456,327? Surely $23.5 million is much easier to read and relate to.
  6. follow the guidelines of Stephen Few, an expert on data visualization
  7. be consistent – between months, judgement calls, maintain format
  8. be presented in a true and fair view
  9. be error free (no inconsistent numbers, no grammar or punctuation errors)
  10. be concise – be a merging of numbers, graphs and comments on the one page

All of these toolkits will guarantee you improvements if implemented.

Lean Practices to Transform Your Finance Team – Toolkit (120 page Whitepaper + electronic templates)  

How to avoid the twenty major mistakes corporate accountants commonly make every year – Toolkit (110 page Whitepaper + e-templates

Fast close: A Guide to Rapid Month-end and Year-end Reporting – Toolkit (120 page Whitepaper + electronic templates)

One-Page Finance Team Reporting Templates (90 page Whitepaper + electronic templates)

20+ System Improvements for the Finance Team – Toolkit (100 page Whitepaper + electronic templates)