Annual reports are often viewed by their traditional function – a mandatory requirement for listed companies to outline developments over the past year. To provide details of the company’s board and management team, its corporate governance and audited financial statements – all the essential information of interest to customers, shareholders and other key stakeholders.
But many non-listed businesses – large and small – also have some form of annual communications document. It can be on whatever scale you want it to be. And you do not necessarily need to call it an annual report (although we will do so for the sake of this article). You might call it an annual review, activity report or yearly summary for example.
In any case it provides a huge marketing opportunity.
For clients and investors
The most important thing is that your annual report should tell a story. Your B2B or B2C customers do not only buy your product your service – they buy into you as a company or brand. So, your annual report is a great opportunity to:
Your annual report is a great opportunity to help suppliers understand what you expect from them. The quality, health, safety and environmental standards that you live by and expect. The employee policies that are important to you and which you expect your suppliers to also reflect. Whether you have a preference, for example, to source local products or services so you can reduce your carbon footprint or support your local economy. Or the reward systems you may have in place for high-performing suppliers.
Your annual report is a motivational tool for employees. A channel to communicate the company’s achievements and their essential contribution. It also gives you an opportunity to communicate future company goals to employees and the role they play in making them happen.
Financials and governance
While there is no obligation if you are not listed, if you have audited accounts and can demonstrate healthy financial performance, publishing financial figures for your stakeholders within your annual report will make a huge impactful difference for clients, potential investors, suppliers and employees – although releasing your financials is of course is optional.
It also gives you an opportunity to communicate your governance and ethics processes, giving all stakeholder groups the confidence that you are an organisation they want to associate with.
Talk to us
To find out more about how MA Technical Copywriting can help you write and design your annual reports, contact us on +44 (0) 1242 230404 or firstname.lastname@example.org.