Business reports in action
Different reports will provide distinct value for all functional areas of an organisation. Examples of some common reports include market analysis, trend analysis and financial analysis as well as operational and performance reports.
Inventory stock reports
Inventory stock records report on the movement of inventory into and out of the warehouse. They help a business identify any problems affecting performance such as product loss, obsolescence or dead stock.
Market analysis reports
They help business owners decide how to allocate their resources. For example, when an analysis of the market concludes that the ensuing business year will see accelerated growth, companies can increase their marketing budget to take advantage of this.
Trend analysis reports
These reports support long-term business development by examining statistical trends such as consumer preferences and the demographic groups that are experiencing the quickest growth rate. The objective of a trend analysis report is to identify growth opportunities to enable businesses to build market share ahead of competitors.
Financial reports are generally prepared on a regular basis by most companies and help to keep them on track toward achieving revenue and profit objectives. These reports highlight any variances in the financial results compared to forecasts in the annual business plan and will explain the reason for any significant negative variance.
Operational analysis reports
These reports show how efficiently a company is operating and will recommend ways to further improve productivity. An analysis of inventory control might indicate that the company experiences periodic shortages of key raw materials that prevent timely order fulfilment. The report may recommend that the company look for back-up suppliers of essential items to ensure availability when needed.
Monitoring performance trends help the company to set KPIs, benchmarks and business goals based on the most important aspects of the business. Performance reporting allows the business to compare performance over different timeframes and report objectives should always align with KPIs to demonstrate if these have been met or even exceeded.