Your company might, depending on the sector, compile a vast number of business reports in a year. These could take the form of an annual report, consultation paper or some research findings, for example. Proofreading of any type of report for business is really important, whether it is technical, financial or sales-related. If your report is being reviewed externally, you will especially want to pay attention when it comes to accuracy of grammar, the words used, spelling and sentence structure. The report should appear professional to anyone that reads it.
It is not always easy to find someone in the establishment who can proofread to a high level. If you feel there is someone internal who is up to the job, that is obviously a bonus. You may also want to consider a professional proofreader or proofreading service that can carry out work for you. This would help you to concentrate on the content and getting the bulk of the report together. However, if you require some guidance on making your business report error-free, the following tips may help.
Proofread the report a few hours after completion – you are more likely to spot errors with fresh eyes
Ensure any data is correct by double-checking the facts and figures – a mistake here could cost your company its reputation
Check one type of error at a time. Focus on spelling, grammar and sentence structure separately as you are more likely to pick up errors this way
Business reports are often long so cut back on excessive information and complicated jargon
Use the spell-checking function where possible to identify any critical spelling errors
Print the report out and read through a hard copy. Scribble changes and suggestions down
Read through the text out loud as you may hear a mistake you have missed
Pass it to someone else to review. They may spot something you have overlooked.
Whilst it is good practice to follow these tips, remember that a business report is not just like any other document. When it comes to an annual report, for instance, such a report can serve to promote and endorse your company. Therefore, it needs to be professional and transparent as well as being a structured and easy-flowing document that is simple to comprehend. You will, of course, also want to stick to any corporate guidelines so that the reader can easily understand and interpret your company’s report.
When it comes to a business report, you may have many experts in their fields who produce exceptional information. However, when it comes to accuracy of the data, they will need to get this correct from the outset since a proofreader is unlikely to know if a figure in a balance sheet is wrongly stated. The proofreader will still need to do the essential checks at the end though, namely using meticulous attention to detail to ensure the entire business report is free from errors and ready to be praised by its audience.