7 Tips for Writing a Client Report (with Sample Report)

By MBO Partners | June 15, 2024

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Key Points

A client report shares project progress while building a strong client relationship.

At the beginning of a client engagement, a client report summarizes the project background, goals, metrics, and milestones.

At the conclusion of a project, a client report summarizes the project, tasks completed, final metrics, outstanding issues, and recommendations.

Writing a client report is essential for communicating your progress on a project and managing and building positive relationships with clients.  

What Is a Client Report? 

Client reports help you and your client measure progress, identify any barriers or issues, and ensure that you are working toward the same goals. Your written client report could be an informal checklist of items accomplished and upcoming tasks or milestones, or it could be a more formal document that includes detailed information. 

Here are four reasons why writing a great client report is important: 

  1. At the beginning of a client engagement, it summarizes the project background, goals, metrics, and milestones. 
  2. It communicates progress on a project, on a weekly, monthly, or quarterly basis.
  3. At the conclusion of a project, it summarizes the project, tasks completed, final metrics, outstanding issues, and recommendations.
  4. It summarizes research, survey, or study information. 

Whether your report is a Word document, spreadsheet, or presentation, the following seven tips will help you to produce well-written client reports. 

7 Tips for Writing a Client Report

1. Agree on Timing and Content

Establish report timing and content at the start of your client engagement. Every engagement will be different, but it is important to communicate effectively with your client from start to finish. For long-term projects, your client may prefer a monthly phone call, weekly email summaries, and a quarterly report. Some clients may want a short weekly report and a more comprehensive monthly report. Establish the frequency, method, and detail of communications upfront.

2. Write a Strong Summary

Even with an initial agreement, some clients—particularly senior-level managers—may not have time to read the entire report. Use an “executive summary” format that can easily stand alone to communicate the significant parts of the report, including hard data.

3. Maximize Readability

Make your report easy to read by including carefully selected headings and bullet points. This enables your client to find information quickly. If relevant, include visual information such as graphs or pie charts to reinforce your main message and break up text.

4. Write Clearly

Your report shouldn’t be excessively long. Do not add unnecessary length to a report just to make it appear more important. Use clear language and avoid the use of clichéd business language. Keep your report focused on the information that the client wants and needs.

5. Be Accurate 

The ability to write a well-written report is not only a critical business tool, but it also reinforces your brand by demonstrating your expertise and knowledge. Take time to make sure that your information is accurate. Do not rely on spell check alone to catch typographical errors. You may even want to print and read your document—it is often easier to edit on paper than it is to edit on screen.

6. Reflect Your Personal Brand

Your report should align with your client’s culture but also reflect the personality of your brand. Report writing does not have to be devoid of personality to be professional. Your brand should have a consistent voice and tone that matches both your personal brand and the unique needs of your client.

7. Write for Your Audience

Write your report for your audience. What information do they want to read? What questions will they want answered? Consider the best way to deliver the information. Instead of a traditional report, you may opt to use a PowerPoint presentation, an interactive format like a Google Doc, or one of the many virtual collaboration tools currently on the market. Or, if your report contains a lot of data, it may be better to use Excel rather than Word. Use the method and medium that will work best for your intended audience. 

Download our Sample Client Report

We have created a sample client report to help you. To download our sample, let us know where to send it.

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