A key aspect of running a business is keeping investors informed about the obvious benefits of being associated with the organization. Therefore, most companies have investor relations teams whose primary responsibility is to ensure that the company’s relations with its investors are transparent and positive.
The investor relations department is essentially responsible for two-way communications. The first is to create and present a consistent investment message to the investor community (both existing and potential investors). The inverse is also true, where the department would also be responsible for presenting the opinions of the investor community to the company’s management.
One of the most prominent methods of ensuring transparency and clarity in the communications between investors and the company is the annual report. And what is more important is making the report a compulsive read. While numbers, data, and information are an obvious part of a report, the way you present them – using infographics and visually appealing elements – is crucial.
Potential and existing investors look at multiple metrics before making investment decisions, such as financial performance, operational procedures, corrective decisions taken by the management, sustainability and CSR activities, governance structures, employee engagement, attrition, retention, etc.
Therefore, an engaging and visually emotive annual report acts as a source of comprehensive insight to investors, informing them of why certain pertinent decisions were taken and their outcomes. These decisions may pertain to shareholder policies, employees’ perspectives, and future courses of action.
Understanding employee-company relations
A key point to note is that annual reports act as a form of communication between the company, its management, and all stakeholders – ranging from shareholders and investors to employees.
Any company’s reputation with its employees can have a huge impact on the sustainability of its business model and significantly, its long-term value-generation potential. If employees are unhappy or feel disconnected from the organization, the company will lose talent which can cause a domino effect where the business is unable to attract talent.
The annual report, therefore, provides the company’s leaders with a platform to reach out to its employees. Sections of the report such as the Chairman’s message and the letter from the CEO/MD can help employees (current and potential) to get an understanding of the organization’s performance over the last year, and prospects and can go into further details showcasing activities that the company has undertaken to increase employee engagement, training programs, etc.
When the company leadership’s message is integrated into the narrative of the annual report in an effective manner, it works towards instilling unity amongst employees and raising motivation or morale. When the CEO’s message is at the start of an engaging annual report, it helps set the ‘mood’ of the narrative in addition to informing other stakeholders (such as investors) about how the company treats its employees.
Reading a story, not a report
Hiring an award-winning annual report design agency has great benefits and adds value thanks to the work and resources dedicated to creating a stunning report. These designers and content writers would be able to turn a mundane stats-filled report into a strong piece of visual storytelling.
As with any well-narrated story, the annual report focuses on the past, informs about the present, and builds a path toward the future. This sort of narrative storytelling would be welcomed by investors and other stakeholders who would be interested in reading about the company’s story and would allow them to see if the decisions and changes made in previous years had an impact on this year and what lessons were learned.
In addition, the annual report would inform stakeholders of the company’s values, beliefs, and mission, thereby providing a bigger picture of the company’s future standing in its business verticals.
Finally, the annual report can act as a great branding tool for companies and affect the perception of the brand in the minds of investors and the general public. In addition to visually stunning designs, a theme line can act as the axis on which the report’s story and designs are built.
Get your Annual Report designed the right way
ReportYak is an agency that is known for its focused content and exceptional designs. With an established expertise in corporate reporting, ReportYak can help you set industry-wide benchmarks in not just Annual reports but also Integrated, Sustainability, ESG, and Impact reports.
Should you wish to create outstanding reports or understand how we can cater to your requirements feel free to reach out to us. Meanwhile, have a look at some of our award-winning work.