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Designing an Accounting Report

The steps involved in designing an accounting report are-
  1. Define objectives of the report clearly.
  2. The contents and format of the report should be such that it has complete information and is easy to understand by the users.
  3. The report should specify the queries that are helpful in database manipulation. The users can make their independent manipulation on the basis of the query list.
  4. The report should be complete with respect to analyses and suggestions.
The MIS reports are user- specific, which means the management decides the reporting requirement and its design. Usually, MIS reports with respect to accounting data, are-
  1. Debtors report - As discussed above, the reports are user- specific but, normally the report is obtained with respect to the age of debtors, i.e., the period since when the amount is due, purchases made by the, say top 20, customers and their list of customers who have not made purchases for the last, say, two months and so on. All these reports are used by the management for better debtor management.
  2. Creditors report - Management seeks a report on suppliers to check whether it is availing of the trade discounts, cash discounts etc.,
  3. Routine reports - Routine reports refer to reports received regularly, such as inventory report (to ensure cash credit limits are regular), available bank balance (to ensure cheques etc., issued are honored), cash in hand (to ensure meeting of daily expenses) and so on.
  4. Exception reports- Exception reports refer to reports specially sought by the management or reports upon matters happening as per instructions. For example, a report may be sought by the management when a critical item in stock has reached below the inventory level. Another example is quality report of items of production.
  5. Financial Statements - Management may seek quarterly financial statements for the purpose of review.
  6. Other Reports - Management may seek report on other activities of the organization besides the specific reports mentioned above.

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