What Should Be in an Executive Summary of a Report?

What Should Be in an Executive Summary of a Report?


What Is an Executive Summary of Report?

Before you can know what to put in an executive summary, you need to know what it is.

The executive summary of a report is the short section of the report where it provides a brief overview or a summary of a longer report. The main function of the executive report is to give the readers an immediate understanding of a report without having to read it all.

How Long Is an Executive Summary?

The executive summary must be as short as possible. The best length of an executive summary is a single page. However, experts recommend that it should be a just a page or two. Others write their executive summary in details that it takes more than two pages to cover all the information in the executive summary.

How to Write Great Executive Summary

Commonly in a business plan, the first paragraph of the executive summary should include the following information:

  • Business name
  • Business location
  • The introduction of what your biases are all about
  • The products you sell or the services you provided
  • The purpose of your plan

The second paragraph includes the information and should highlight the following:

  • Projected sales
  • Unit sales
  • Profitability
  • Charts that show sales, gross margin, and profits

What Is the Good Executive Summary Looks Like?

The good executive summary should include the following elements.

  • The subject matter. The subject of the technical report should be clearly stated in this section.
  • The methods and analysis. The executive summary should enumerate the methods and analysis used in the project proposal or business plan.
  • The findings. This will highlight the results of the data that have been analyzed.
  • The conclusions. The conclusion of the executive summary should go directly the solutions of the problem.
  • The recommendations. This will list all the possible recommendations to solve the problem of the project. This section must be bulleted to properly list the recommendations.
  • The limitations of the project. A good executive summary should detail the limitations of the project proposal or business plan.

What Are the Functions of an Executive Summary?

  • To effectively communicate the main ideas, topics, and subject, as well as the conclusion of a project proposal, research report paper, business plan, and meeting in a brief way.
  • To inform and notify the higher ranking authority of an organization, such as manager, client, shareholders, etc. about a project and its problems and issue.
  • To properly set out methods and analysis in documenting the project report, indicate point for considerations, and provide scientific-based recommendations.

Guidelines for Writing an Executive Summary for a Report

Here are the following guidelines in creating and preparing an executive summary.

  • Before you will write an executive summary, you must know and understand its function and purpose, what it is all about and what should be included in an executive summary.
  • The executive summary must have a structural principle.
    • Argument
    • Abstract
    • Problem solution
    • Conclusion
    • Recommendation
    • Limitation
  • The executive summary must be:
    • Clear. Write exactly what you intend, get to the point directly, and use definite and concrete language.
    • Concise. Don’t write irrelevant, insignificant, and unnecessary information.
    • Coherent. The information in the executive summary must be relevant to one another and must hold together so that the idea will not be lost.