Creating a Beautiful Financial Report for Your Business
Posted on 20th October 2017 in Reporting
Written by Freya Hughes
Creating your financial reports has never been easier. In this blog, we’re looking at how to make your reports look great, so when it comes to presenting them your audience will be more than impressed.
Did you know that 90% of information sent to the brain is visual? On top of that, that a massive 93% of human communication is visual. These are pretty staggering statistics, and certainly things you need to keep in mind for your reports, branding and marketing. Accountants might get excited by the ‘wall of numbers’ a spreadsheet will show you, your prospective investors, or board members, are quite likely to switch off completely. In an age of information overload, it can be a challenge to keep a room captivated, therefore it’s crucial for you to not only get your message out there but to understand it yourself. We’re going to look at how to create a financial report for your business, laid out beautifully on your screen, and in print.
First things first: the online view. You need to create your financial report so you can show your results to your board, investors and team. Reporting on a four-weekly period is best practice, as you’re going to have a pretty up to date view of your business, so we’ll start there.
First create a report card, then select the cog in the top right of the card to place it into edit mode. This allows you to change the configuration of your report to ensure it suits your requirements. In this example, we want to change the date range of our report, so that we can view data weekly, for a four week period. To do so, simply select ‘This Week’ ‘& the previous’ ‘3 weeks’ as your date range under settings and then click done in the top right. That’s your four week report set up!
Now we’re going to display four-weeks of data in one report. You’re doing a similar process, but instead selecting ‘& the previous’ zero weeks. Next up, to the report tab.
You can create custom key performance indicators using the Formula Builder, but in this case we can easily expand the row options and choose to show only cumulative data from the start of our report. This will give you your total income for the four-week report period.
Press save and you’re all done!
So now you’ve got your report set up, let’s make it all yours. Choose the way you want to see your data. FUTRLI is designed to be practical and beautiful, so take advantage. A slick design can elevate your business pitches and meetings to the next level. Choose from…
- Bar graphs
- Pie charts
- Line graphs
You can even mix and match, so have a play with using the pie chart for your KPI measurements, the bar graph for your forecast, etc.
Presentation mode is ideal when you need to talk through your reports with clients, colleagues or shareholders. It essentially makes your dashboard full screen, so you can show what’s happened with no distractions. You can show the bigger picture of what’s going on in your company, utilising the screen space you have to play with.
You’re able to scroll through your dashboard, card by card, displaying your rather beautiful report and making it the focus of your meeting. It allows you to hone in on the details where needed – so you can discuss each department or group as you go through them. It’ll stop any fumbling over your laptop, so won’t disrupt the flow of your meeting. Every card on your board can be expended, and if you want to do them one by one, simply click the ‘expand’ icon on the card.
We’ve got you covered if you need to get a physical copy of your reports. While we prefer to be a paperless office, it doesn’t mean it’s right for everyone. Benefits of keeping paper copies of your reports include (but aren’t limited to):
- Some institutions (banks, etc) will only allow this format
- Some people “think” better on paper and/or are not familiar with computers
- Take away information
- Physical data back up
- Collaborate on paper – write as many notes as you need!
- Connect to different ways of working
- Check back on performance from that date
- Little margin for error
Some people think that printed reports mean you’re a bit limited with what you can do and can’t see a detailed breakdown of everything in the given business. With our PDF report builder, however, we’ve kept this all in mind: they’re fully flexible and customisable, yet quick to prepare. All the data is seamlessly connected to Xero or QuickBooks cloud accounting software so you can analyse and present how your business is performing against it’s budgets and forecasts.
Your printed reports will be exact replicas of whatever you’ve mocked up online. Keep these in mind if you want to make a real impact on those investors who will take them away, finding the beautifully prepared data a joy to analyse.