Four Key Tips for Writing Reports to Funders

Sections of this topic

    Writing Reports to Funders: Four Essential Tips

    Writing reports for funding received is as important as writing your initial proposal. Too often we forget that our funders are very dependent upon written reports to provide accountability for their own activities and actions. It is through the details of these reports that they are able to promote themselves and convince more people to invest in them, which may result in more funding for your organization over the long term.

    But there are components that it is important to include in your reports to your funder that will allow them to use the tools you provide in your report to their most efficient and effective capabilities. So when you write a report, include the following:

    • Outcome measurement chart- This tool will allow your funder to see the progression of your plan, activities, and outcomes at a glance. So make sure you keep it updated throughout the lifetime of the project to ensure you don’t miss any valuable lessons learned by your project.
    • Testimonials – Funders love testimonials. So if you can get written testimonials from clients who have participated in the project and felt their lives were impacted in a positive way, this is probably one of the greatest marketing tools that you and your funder could have.
    • Lessons learned – It’s vital for a funder to know that their investment left some kind of a lasting impact. So if you include lessons learned, it means that you have learned valuable information that both you and your funder can share with others who may hope to try to implement the same type of project that you have done.
    • Financial Report – Every report to a funder must include a financial report and in many cases must be accompanied by copies of receipts. Your financial report becomes a part of your funder’s accounting system and is an important piece in them being able to meet their financial accountabilities to their contributors, government, and consumers of the grants they provide.


    For more resources, see our Library topic Nonprofit Capacity Building.