• Web-based Career & Technical Education

12 Types of Business Documents Your Students Should Learn for Their Careers

April 4th, 2018 Mike Gecawich

When was the last time you wrote a haiku?

How about a book report?

Unless you’re a poet or a book critic, the chances you’ve written either of these in the past few years is pretty unlikely.

When it comes to writing assignments we do in school, there are some that are more practical than others once students get to the workplace.

So which are the documents that give the most bang for their buck in trying to prepare students for the business world?

Read on to find out!


Short, sweet, and to the point, the memo is an essential business document to master.

Effective memos generally present a problem or issue and provide a clear and actionable solution for said problem.

If you can write an effective memo you’ll hugely enhance your ability to communicate in the business world.

Personal Business Letter

Between an email and a formal business letter in formality, a personal business letter is one document you can’t do without.

This form of correspondence is typically used with acquaintances and should be warm but professional.

Business Letterhead

Business letterhead takes your professional correspondence to the next level.

Business letterhead should be visually appealing but simple and sophisticated in order to help your company stand out in a crowd.


You can’t excel at your job until you’ve landed it, and this document is essential for snagging your dream job.

While everyone’s resume will be different, there are ground rules to follow regarding formatting, sequence, and style that can’t be ignored.

Cover Letter

While a resume outlines your prior experience and accomplishments, cover letters are your space to explain why you are the perfect candidate for a job.

A perfect cover letter is to the point, includes specific examples, and (of course) is error-free.


Outlines can take many different forms in the business world but are easy to do wrong.

A well-written outline will allow you to organize and communicate your ideas more easily whether it’s for an official report or a pitch presentation.

MLA Style Report

High schoolers don’t learn to write an MLA style report for nothing.

Depending on your role and sector within the business world, you might need to write up a formal research report.

Knowing how to do this well now will save you a headache when you’re racing to meet an approaching deadline.

Work Cited Page

Citing sources for anything you write is a non-negotiable.

In the business world, it’s incredibly important to give credit where credit is due and ensure that others can check out your sources should they want more information.


Whether you’re planning a team meeting or fundraising event, you’re going to need an agenda.

A well-structured agenda will not only include a play by play of what will take place, but also times, locations, task owners, and a space to record future actions steps.


The communication cornerstone of the business world, emails are everywhere.

In fact, the average person working in an office sends around 40 emails per day!

It’s important to show your best professional side in an email by following correct formatting and using appropriate tone, language, and grammar.

Table of Contents

You’ve spent months writing up your company’s earnings report. But just because you know what’s on every single page, doesn’t mean anyone else does.

A well-formatted table of contents is essential for making your deliverables user-friendly so that they are easily shared and appreciated.

Meeting Minutes

Many people feel that meetings are a necessary evil in the business world. Regardless how you feel about them, it’s useful to know how to take organized meeting minutes.

Teaching Business Documents

With all of these business documents to tackle, where should teachers start in helping their students become masters at each of these?

A great starting point is iAcademy’s course, Formatting Business Documents.

This web-based course will help students learn the formatting, content, and stylistic elements of each of these documents and others.

Not only will students learn the ins and outs of these documents, but they’ll also get authentic practice using formatting tools on their word processor.

Give the course a try and your students will be ready to communicate in the business world in no time!


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