Presentation Does Count!
Document formatting - what's that?
Well, to put it simply, it is the work you have created which needs to be put into some sort of order before you present it to your client.
I'm sure you are well versed in doing certain amounts of formatting yourselves. You know about bold, underscore maybe even bullet points and inserting numbers into your document. Which in some cases, you will get by and maybe this is all that is needed.
However, when you have gone to the trouble of writing up a proposal, a report, a tender anything which is more than three or four pages, then you want it looking presentable - no matter if your client is a small business or large organisation.
Presentation does count!
You may need to have a contents page, include headers or footers etc and some of this "formatting" will include your paragraphing to be within the Styles Gallery in Microsoft Word. Even if you get to this position of including the "Styles" in your document, you could still run into problems which needs sorting.
I see too often documents having two formats of paragraphing mixed up, they could be different font size, semi-blocked or justified. If the paragraph is "semi-blocked" then all the paragraphs are indented but they are also still separated by a full blank line. For a fully blocked paragraph the first line in your paragraph starts at the left-hand margin and your line finishes in the same position at the right-hand margin.
Excerpt from Waylink English on Writing a Paragraph states "First, a new paragraph will be marked out in one of two ways: either a full line is left between the paragraphs or the first word of the new paragraph is indented." Whichever style you choose, only keep to that style, do not mix.
A long document should have a Table of Contents at the front, you may want to include Captions to your images or figure work, which can also be included in the Table of Contents. Set up your contents page so that the titles link to the page it refers to ie once clicked on this title it takes you directly to that page in your document.
Example -Table of Contents
Also you can amend each heading and/or footer to be relevant to that chapter. You also can add page numbers and if required, start the numbering after the Content page, but your appendices page numbers are unrelated to the previous numbering, so these can number these separately too.
So, as you can see there is more to just typing out a document, it is all about setting out and presenting your piece of work to represent your business.
Way back when, the typewriter was only capable of doing limited formatting, but with the invention of word processing it is all very sophisticated and makes such things as creating a table far more easier than it was many years ago!
Next time you are creating your long document, book in a call with me to discuss how we can help you to present your next report to your client.