You are also required to develop an Oral Presentation (accompanying audio-narrated
PowerPoint) for the Formal Report. Instructions can be found later in this document.
Option 1: Imagine you work for a national employment/placement agency. Your clients
range from the first-time job seeker to the executive level. You specialize in working with
adults who have some work experience and who have just completed a BA or BS degree
from your alma mater, Saint Leo University.
The FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work for List comes out each year in midJanuary (available at http://fortune.com/best-companies/). Your supervisor thinks it might
be useful and has asked you to prepare a report.
Specifically, she wants to know:
• Can establishing a working relationship with any or some or all of the companies
on the FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For list help you do your job
• Are any, some, all of these companies potential employers for the Saint Leo’s
graduates you help find jobs?
• Are there specific companies that the agency should target to establish an
exclusive relationship with? Which ones and why?
Format for the Formal Report:
Remember your audience as you plan, write, and complete your report. Your audience is under
no obligation to read your report: It is up to you understand your audience well enough to craft a
document that they will want to read.
The Formal Report assignment is a formal business report and should follow the conventions as
presented in Chapter 12: Writing Reports and Proposals and Chapter 13: Completing Reports
and Proposals. In other words, use these chapters of the text as your style guide! Other valuable
resources located in your text are Appendix A: Format and Layout of Business Documents, and
Appendix B: Documentation of Report Sources.
Use graphics (tables, charts, pictures, etc.) to assist you in illustrating your findings. Remember,
there is some real validity in the phrase, a picture is worth a thousand words. Make certain to
refer back to the section in Chapter 12 on Producing and Integrating Visuals as you prepare your
report. Your report will be graded for: content, format, style, writing mechanics, and spelling.
For this report you will want to include:
• Title page
• Letter or memo of transmittal. (Depending on which option you pick, you will need a
letter or a memo. Letters go to individuals external to your organization, and memos
are for internal correspondence.)
• Table of contents and list of illustrations
• Executive summary or synopsis (In academic writing, this is called an abstract.)
• Introduction (must include problem/purpose, scope, background, limitations,
• Body (this is where you present your findings, discuss them, and interpret them, and
what do you recommend).
• Close (what where the key points? This is your call to action, what you want done.)
• Appendix, if needed (material referred to but not included in the text which you want
your audience to see)
• References (listing of your sources)
Some FAQs about the Formal Report:
How long should it be?
To cover the assignment, you should plan on needing 4-6 pages of text. This is really
not very long if you include pictures and graphics in your report (strongly encouraged).
What format should be used?
Typically use one-inch margins all around, single-spaced. Use the reference material in the
appendices located in the back of the textbook for guidance regarding format. Pages need
to be numbered (note the conventions for prefatory pages) and can go either at the bottom
or top of the page. Use a font size of between 10 and 12 for the text. Use headers!!
Why is it single-spaced?
Increasingly readers are reading documents online or at least on a computer screen. Singlespaced is standard business format. Double-spaced is not as easy to read. Remember, the
idea is to make the document accessible so the reader reads it! Reader accessibility is also
why this report needs to be a single document and not assorted pieces.
How do I cite materials?
The standard for business is APA format. Use the reference material in the appendices
located in the back of the textbook for in-text citation and list of reference formats. Good
online sources for citing Internet materials in APA format can be found at APAStyle.org
Oral Presentation Instructions:
Since we do not meet "live," it is not possible for you to actually deliver your presentation to the
class; however, you can prepare an outline for about a 3-5-minute informative presentation for
your Formal Report, and then develop an audio-narrated PowerPoint presentation that
corresponds with your outline.
As a rule of thumb, a PowerPoint presentation is usually no more than one slide per minute;
otherwise, your audience is "watching" and not "listening." For longer presentations, the rule
slides up to approximately three minutes per slide.
The topic of your presentation is the one you chose for the Formal Report.
Your presentation should be designed as if you were presenting your report in a professional
workplace setting, only you will not be physically present to give your presentation. This way, your
audience can hear and see your presentation, but not see you.
Your presentation must be 3-5 minutes long and include slides containing information
appropriate for this type of presentation. Examples include:
• Text • Charts
• Other visuals appropriate for a professional presentation
Do not use Clip Art or similar visuals; this is a professional presentation; slides must not be
covered with paragraphs of writing. Include only short phrases (bullets) and visuals.
Textbook: Textbook- Excellence in Business Communication Thirteenth Edition By John V. Thill/ Courtland L. Bovée