Top 5 BEST Report Practices for a New Report

Creating effective reports is crucial for making informed decisions and driving construction business success. Anterra offers powerful tools to help you generate insightful reports. Here are the top five best/worst practices for creating reports in Anterra’s Corporate Performance Management (CPM) platform.

 1. Define Clear Objectives

Before diving into the data, it’s essential to define the objectives of your report. Ask yourself what you aim to achieve with this report. Are you looking to track project progress, analyze financial performance, or identify areas for improvement? Clear objectives will guide your data selection and analysis, ensuring your report is focused and relevant.

Tips:

    • Write down the main questions your report should answer.
    • Identify the key metrics and KPIs that align with your objectives.
    • Consider the audience for your report and tailor the content to their needs.

2. Choose the Right Data Sources

Selecting the appropriate data sources is critical for the accuracy and reliability of your report. Anterra CPM allows you to integrate various data sources, including project management systems, financial software, and other business applications.

Tips:

    • Verify the accuracy and completeness of your data sources.
    • Use data from trusted and reliable systems.
    • Regularly update your data sources to reflect the latest information.

3. Utilize Templates and Pre-Built Reports

Anterra CPM offers a range of templates and pre-built reports that can save you time and effort. These templates are designed to address common reporting needs and can be customized to fit your specific requirements. Using templates ensures consistency and helps you get started quickly.

Tips:

    • Explore the available templates and choose one that aligns with your objectives.
    • Customize the template to include your specific data and metrics.
    • Save your customized templates for future use.

4. Focus on Data Visualization

Effective data visualization is key to making your report easy to understand and actionable. Anterra CPM provides various visualization tools, such as charts, graphs, and dashboards, to help you present your data clearly. Choose the right visualization techniques to highlight important trends and insights.

Tips:

    • Use charts and graphs to represent data visually.
    • Highlight key metrics and trends with color coding and annotations.
    • Ensure that your visualizations are easy to interpret and understand.

5. Review and Validate Your Report

Before finalizing your report, review and validate the data and analysis. Check for errors or inconsistencies and ensure the report accurately reflects your objectives. Validation helps maintain the credibility and reliability of your report.

Tips:

    • Cross-check your data with other sources to verify accuracy.
    • Review the report with colleagues or stakeholders for feedback.
    • Make necessary adjustments based on the review and validation process.

Top 5 WORST Report Practices to Avoid

While knowing the best practices is essential, it’s equally important to avoid common pitfalls that can undermine your reporting efforts. Here are the top five worst practices to avoid when starting a new report in Anterra CPM.

1. Lack of Clear Objectives

Starting a report without clear objectives can lead to unfocused and irrelevant data analysis. Without a defined purpose, you may include unnecessary information that confuses the audience and dilutes the report’s impact.

Avoid:

    • Jumping into data analysis without a clear plan.
    • Including data that doesn’t align with your report’s goals.
    • Failing to consider the needs and interests of your audience.

2. Using Inaccurate or Outdated Data

Relying on inaccurate or outdated data can compromise the integrity of your report. Data that is not current or verified can lead to incorrect conclusions and poor decision-making.

Avoid:

    • Using data from unreliable sources.
    • Failing to update data regularly.
    • Ignoring data validation and verification processes.

3. Overcomplicating Data Visualization

While data visualization is important, overcomplicating it can make your report difficult to understand. Too many charts, graphs, or complex visualizations can overwhelm the audience and obscure key insights.

Avoid:

    • Using excessive or unnecessary visual elements.
    • Creating complex charts that are hard to interpret.
    • Failing to highlight the most important data points.

4. Ignoring Report Customization

Using generic templates without customization can result in reports that don’t fully address your specific needs. Failing to tailor the report to your objectives and audience can reduce its effectiveness and relevance.

Avoid:

    • Relying solely on pre-built templates without customization.
    • Ignoring the unique requirements of your report.
    • Failing to include specific data and metrics relevant to your objectives.

5. Neglecting Review and Validation

Skipping the review and validation process can lead to errors and inaccuracies in your report. Without thorough validation, you risk presenting flawed data and analysis, which can undermine the credibility of your report.

Avoid:

    • Finalizing the report without a thorough review.
    • Ignoring feedback from colleagues or stakeholders.
    • Overlooking data validation and cross-checking processes.

Conclusion

By following these best practices and avoiding common pitfalls you can create effective and impactful reports in Anterra CPM. Clear objectives, accurate data, effective visualization, and thorough validation are key to successful reporting. Anterra CPM provides the tools and templates to help you streamline your reporting process and deliver actionable insights.

For more information on how Anterra CPM can enhance your reporting capabilities, request a demo by clicking the button below, or reach out to us at info@anterratech.com.