Overview with tools, template, software, best practices and alternatives

Why do People do Reporting at Small Businesses?

Small businesses make reports to present updated and consolidated information to the team. This allows the team members become updated on what is happening in the team and the small business. Reports for small business allow the team to know what they need to know about the team’s status and progress.

Small business reports also indicate the business’ achievements. The achievements of the team will boost the momentum of the team and its members, enabling them to perform better. In addition, the accomplishments of the small business will also enable the team to determine its competence in the market.

Aside from the team’s achievements, the team’s problems can be also included in the small business report. The problems can be actual or potential in nature. Actual problems are the existing problems of the team while the potential problems are the issues that are foreseen to become problems. By identifying problems as early as possible, the team members will be able to discuss possible ways to solve actual problems and prevent certain issues from developing into problems.

Reports for the small business can be done on a weekly, monthly, or quarterly basis. Ensuring that the report is consistently done will help the members of the team to compare and contrast information from previous and present reports. In addition, the team members will be able to analyze the data in the report, further assisting them in making inferences, conclusions, and rational decisions.

How do Small Businesses usually do Reporting?

Reports for small businesses provide data on the activities, performance, status, and progress of the team and the small business.

In writing a small business report, team members should include factual and updated data. The team cannot afford to fabricate information as it will adversely impact the integrity of the report, which further affects the integrity of the report. Falsified information can lose the validity and reliability of the report, which may affect the credibility of the small business.

Data inculcated in the small business report should be complete and accurate, enabling the team of the small business to formulate concrete plans, effective strategies, and proper actions. Reports will lacking data or incorrect information can lead to ineffective plans, sloppy strategies, and inappropriate actions.

Quantitative data is also presented in the report, to determine rise or fall of the team’s output. The data can be presented using tables, graphs, charts, and diagrams. This is to facilitate easier comprehension and assimilation of data. In addition, these visual representations of quantitative data can be more easily remembered that data written in a narrative format.

Typical questions/metrics/topics that are usually covered in a Report Small Businesses are doing

  • What is the sales status for this week?
  • How many transactions have you handled and made?
  • What are the available resources to the team?
  • What are the actual threats that you see? How are you going to solve them?
  • What are the potential problems that you foresee? How are you going to prevent them?
  • Do you have other concerns or issues?
  • What are your achievements for today?
  • What short and long term goals do you have in order to meet the company’s objectives?
  • What strategies and actions will you implement to meet the plans?
  • Were the strategies and actions previously implemented successful?
  • What are your strong and weak points when it comes to managing the team?
  • Do you see any open opportunities for improving your management skills?
  • What are the feedbacks of your subordinates on how you handle them?
  • What is the trend in your performance? What is its implication to your future performance?

Advantages & Best Practices of doing Reporting at Small Businesses

Reporting for small businesses is beneficial to the team for the following reasons.

Reports for small businesses allow the members of the business to communicate with one another. They will be able to share information on their activities and performance, revealing their overall status and progress. Reports also give team members the opportunity to share their achievements and problems to the team.

Making reports on a timely basis allows the team to make comparisons on the data in between reports, enabling team members to make inferences and conclusions, along with making rational decisions. Also, through making reports, the teams of a small business will be able to decipher changes in information from the previous reports.

Small business reports keep the team on track as their traverse the path to their goals. Information that covers particular period of time is supplied to the team member, informing them if a particular task has already been made. This way, the team will be able to determine if they are meeting their goals or not. Moreover, they will be able to adjust their plans, strategies, or actions if they find it necessary.

Disadvantages & Pitfalls at doing Reporting at Small Businesses

Reporting for small businesses can be beneficial in several ways, but there are also times in which it can be a disadvantage to the team.

Small business reports can be tedious and time consuming. Aside from doing their regular tasks and responsibilities, writing a report for the small business can east the time intended for other tasks or work. Also, operating the business requires adequate time and attention that can also utilize the time for making the report. With this disadvantage, the team can cope with it through proper time management.

Reports for small businesses are inclined to focus on quantitative data, neglecting the qualitative information. This is due to the reports’ high relevance to sales and marketing, which utilizes figures and numbers in reports. Qualitative data that have positive impact to the growth and performance of the team may be left out. For instance, a small business that has highly qualified and motivated team members may not be credited in a financial statement. Thus, there is an imbalance between qualitative and quantitative data in the report.

Another disadvantage of a small business report is its use of money in preparing reports. This may put limitation to the financial and logistic capabilities of the business to capitalize in business operations or enlargement.

Why Teamreporter is great in doing Reporting at Small Businesses?

Teamreporter is a business application that helps teams to decrease the number of their status meetings by using scheduled report mails. The application is free to use if the number of members in the team is four and below. Also, signing up for an account just takes up to less than a minute.

Team members can benefit from Teamreporter as they can easily send and receive information and updates to and from their teammates with Teamreporter’s easy to use and automated interface. Teamreporter will send e-mail notifications to the team members, asking them to submit information regarding important aspects like achievements, plans, and problems. Teamreporter will make a data summary based on the reports submitted by the team members.

Teamreporter can be used by the team in any work flow and work environment as team members can adjust the list of recipients of the information and updates, as well as those members who need to send a report. Team members can also change the questions in Teamreporter’s interface. Additionally, Teamreporter can be used via e-mail and web browser and it can be integrated to existing applications that the team is using.

Another good thing about Teamreporter is that team leaders can use it to have a goodgraspof the team’s activities, performance, status, and progress. As team leaders, they will be able to evaluate the team and its members through their reports. They will be able to identify the members who perform well and those who need help in their tasks. Team leaders can also utilize Teamreporter’s data when they make their modules, assessments, or evaluations.

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Teamreporter is free for small teams (up to 4 members)