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Synopsis

As if the end of the year wasn't mind-spinning enough, business owners and managers have to add annual reports releases to their endless to-do lists. With this in mind, we created our 100% modifiable Annual Report presentation, which can be used to highlight your business' most prominent achievements of the year and keep your stakeholders informed and happy. Also, check out our Quarterly Report and Mid-Year Business Review Report.

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Slide highlights

People crave personal connections with their favorite brands, so use the opening slide to introduce your company's personality from the get-go. Customize it to reflect your brand's theme colors, fonts, logos, messaging and taglines.

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End of year is a great time to measure your progress and accomplishments. Use this slide to communicate the results and data of the major Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) you used throughout the year to measure company performance.

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Overview

Annual reports deliver information on the company's mission and history and summarize its achievements of the past year. Financial achievements are usually perceived as most important, however, other accomplishments should be noted in the report, such as research advances, market share gains or honors awarded to the company or its employees. The achievements section also may show information on sales increases or new equipment or software that increases profitability and productivity. "The chief purpose of the achievements section is to make shareholders and stakeholders feel good about their investments or participation in your company," according to "Chorn."

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Application

When sitting down to write your annual report, first and foremost, per the experts from management software provider, Wild Apricot, ask yourself:

  • Who will be involved?
  • What is the objective of the annual report?
  • What format will be used?
  • What should a content outline look like?
  • What are key messages and themes?
  • Was a production schedule developed?

Then, their colleagues at FreshBooks say, use a more detailed guide to complete your annual report:

  1. Determine the key message – highlight your accomplishments and the impact they had. Let the investors and employees know what your company did and why you did it. "By connecting your activities and your accomplishments to the final goals and mission statement, businesses can build trust and foster long-lasting connections," the experts say.
  2. Decide on structure and content – make a list of what to include and what to leave out; and map out the content and the structure of the report.
  3. Employ compelling visuals – a clean, aesthetically-pleasing report that is engaging and professional can be easily used as a marketing tool by a business. The experts say: "Ideally, readers should be able to scan through the document and get the information they need. Here are some pointers for good annual report design."
  4. Strategize – developing an annual report is a long-term process that requires an organized system for collecting and tracking data, media clipping, visuals and a list of business achievements. So strategize and schedule each task.
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Case study

Nestlé global

The world's largest food and beverage company, Nestlé Global, makes a great case study for creating compelling, informative and entertaining annual reports.

Let's take a look at Nestlé's 2019 report. It starts with a short and sweet tagline, which reflects the company's mission and vision: "Enhancing quality of life and contributing to a healthier future." From there, it breaks down into several sections: Facts and Figures, Letters to Stakeholders, Creation Strategy, Innovation Strategy Report, Value Creation, Communication and Shared Value, each of which is "stuffed" with data and details.

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Nestlé does a great job presenting its annual report in a visual format that has a Pinterest-like feel to it, that is warm, family-oriented and is 100% on-brand. The company's Letter to Stakeholders also reflects the leadership's knowledge of the target audience and what the customer thinks is important. For example, Nestlé makes emphasis on its sustainability efforts, as well as the health and wellness focus and financial stability of the business.

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Other things that Nestlé does well are: making their annual report easy to share on social media; talking about their people and culture and sharing the values.

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