Power Tools for Technical Communication:
Progress-Report Formatting (Web Pages)


In this lab, you add headings, lists, and illustrations to the unformatted text of a progress report and create a web page. To be ready for this project, you need to have have studied Chapter 17 in Power Tools for Technical Communication and have done at least one other web-page formatting project:
  1. Using a simple text editor or web-page editor of your choice, create a simple web page like the one shown in Chapter 17 entitled My First Web Page. Between the <TITLE> and </TITLE> tags and between the <H1> and </H1> tags, substitute Web Page Progress Report.
  2. Copy the following unformatted the text, and paste it into the web page you just started.
  3. Study the unformatted text carefully, rearrange the paragraphs as necessary, add headings, and reformat text as numbered or bulleted lists or tables as necessary.
  4. Using the business-letter format for this progress report, address this report to Mr. David A. McMurrey, President, E-Wave, Inc., 6700 Lehrer Blvd., Suite 2700, Lakeway, Maryland, 05234. Using your name and the current date, indicate that you are the president of Truhnpas Consulting, Inc., 1122 Centerpoint Ave., Albany, NY 01123.
  5. Put your name, Progress Report Format (Web Page), and the date on this document, and print it out for your instructor.


I am writing to inform you of my progress on the report on online medical networks for E-wave, Inc., which will be presented to you and your managerial staff in the E-wave conference room on May 2 in the form of an oral report. The final written report will be submitted on May 5, 2002. Upon E-wave Inc.'s acceptance of our bid to present an oral report and a background report, I began to gather information in areas specific to online medical networks. According to the proposal submitted by my organization on February 21, 2002, my understanding is that this background report is an initial research tool and will later be followed by feasibility reports.

At this point in my research, I have gathered detailed information on the background of online medical networks. As we initially agreed, I have focused my research on medical “infomediaries.” I also made adjustments to focus on your company's business interests in developing its own online network as you requested in our last meeting. I will perform most of the research and all of the writing for this project. I have also enlisted two of my colleagues at Truhnpas Consulting to assist me in the information gathering and proofreading phases of the project. With their assistance, I have completed 80% of the information gathering and have written about 50% of the rough draft. Thus, the project is on schedule. I will provide a copy of the completed rough draft for your review on April 26 as was detailed in the initial proposal. Based on the progress so far, I foresee no obstacles to presenting an oral report of the information on May 2 and submitting the final written report on May 5 as we originally agreed. In this progress report, I have included a brief project description to assure that we agree on audience assumptions, and report purpose and scope. In addition, I will specifically discuss the work that has been completed, the work currently in progress, and the work still pending completion. In the conclusion section, I will provide an overall assessment of the report project's status.

The intended audience is the managerial team of E-wave, Inc. It is geared toward a group of five employees including software engineers, Web developers, and product engineers. Since all have technical expertise, the background report will not deal with specific technical requirements in creating an online medical network. Rather, it will focus on marketplace needs and business considerations of online medical networks from the viewpoint of a small Internet software company wishing to develop an online medical network. No business training or terminology is required to understand the report results. To review, the purpose and scope of this project are as follows. This background proposal is the first step in a large-scale research project to determine the feasibility and profitability of developing a multifunctional medical network on the Internet. A comprehensive network for medical physicians could benefit the medical and general community by speeding the flow of information and reducing paperwork and advertising expenses, thereby lowering costs. E-wave, Inc., can use the results of the background report as third-party documentation for business proposals and requests for bank funding. The purpose of this project is to inform the E-wave, Inc., managerial team of major online medical networks, define what marketplace needs and trends exist, and provide an idea as to what elements and features would constitute a successful comprehensive online medical network. This background report will describe the four most successful online medical networks. I used the criteria we agreed on in our April 1 telephone conversation to determine which are the most “successful”. The report will be divided into three main topics: (1) major online networks medical networks and their functions; (2) marketplace needs; and (3) description of an ideal “successful” comprehensive online medical network. The major online network section will include the following areas: definition of medical networks, criteria used in selecting major networks, features of major networks, and functions of major networks.

The marketplace needs section will include the following areas: marketplace needs, needs currently met by online medical networks, unmet/inefficiently met needs, future trends, and potential business opportunities. The description of a comprehensive online medical network will include the following areas: research findings, comprehensive online medical network features, comprehensive online medical network functions, business advantages and risks of creating on online medical network. At this time I have completed about 80% of the research phase of the project, and have written about 50% of the rough draft of the final report. As for the section on major online medical networks, the research and writing for this section of the report is complete. I have described in great detail the four networks that meet the definition of “medical network” that we agreed on prior to starting the project. This section includes a description of that definition, the features and functions of the major networks, the target audience, and the cost of each. These findings will assist E-wave, Inc., in determining the potential business opportunity in creating its own online medical network. As for the section on marketplace needs, this topic has been researched in detail and writing for this section is 50% complete. I have successfully determined what needs current online medical networks fill; however, the future marketplace needs section is by its very nature uncertain. I am currently seeking additional information sources for this topic in order to determine marketplace needs. So far, I have quotes and detailed statistics from three online marketing sources. As for the section on comprehensive online medical network, as you requested, I have used my research findings to describe what a successful online medical network would include; I have completed 80% of the rough draft for this section.

At the present time, I am focusing on completion of the rough draft. As the initial proposal defined, I will submit a copy of the rough draft for your review on April 26. Currently, I am working on organizing the marketplace needs section and finding additional marketing information sources. In addition I am in the process of creating the graphics, which will include the following: (1) a pie chart of the GNP spent on medical care; (2)-(4) three tables describing different types of medical networks; and (5) a chart depicting trends in Internet usage. I have the information for all of the graphics, and am currently organizing and formatting the information. Because this section on major online medical networks is complete, I am currently performing more extensive online searches to ensure that I have indeed chosen appropriately in my selection of the major online medical networks. I want to include the top four that meet the criteria we detailed in our April 1 telephone conversation. At this point a colleague is proofreading the current draft of this section for readability, content accuracy, and grammar and spelling errors. as for the section on marketplace needs, I am currently organizing and researching additional marketing sources to include in the body section of this topic. Since writing for this section is 50% complete, I am focusing on obtaining additional marketplace statistics on future marketplace needs and the potential business opportunity for online medical networks from E-wave, Inc.'s perspective. I am also in the process of depicting the relative success and failure of the current online medical networks in a table format. I am working on the final 20% of the rough draft for the section on comprehensive online medical network. Once I have organized the new information culled for the marketplace needs section, I will integrate that information. Then I will add final conclusions that will aid E-wave, Inc., in determining whether this topic merits further analysis through a feasibility report. Once the first draft is complete, two of my colleagues will proofread it in areas of overall effectiveness, content accuracy, organization, readability, and grammar and spelling. I will then revise the rough draft and submit it for your review on April 26 as we initially agreed.

Once my colleagues proofread the section on major online medical networks, I will fine-tune it prior to submission for your review. I will include the formatted graphics once they are complete. After the research on marketplace needs is complete, I will fill in the gaps in my sentence outline for this section and finish the rough draft. Then my colleagues will proofread the section and I will revise it prior to your review. I will include a table including current and future marketplace needs once all information has been found. I will complete the final 20% of the writing for the section on comprehensive online medical networkonce the research on marketplace needs is complete. Also, I will include a bulleted list or table of what features E-wave, Inc., may want to include if it ultimately decides to develop its own online medical network. The background report covering online medical networks is on schedule to be completed on time and within budget. Since I have not encountered any obstacles that would impede the project's progress, I look forward to presenting the oral report to your managerial team on May 2, 2002 and submitting the final written report on or before the May 5, 2002 deadline. Enclosed is a detailed outline of the current status of the background report. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me at (000) 000-0000. I look forward to discussing the rough draft with you after you review it so that I can incorporate minor changes or correct errors prior to the oral report date. I will call your office on April 27 to discuss the rough draft. Again, I am pleased to report that you will receive a copy of the final written report on or before the May 5, 2002 deadline.

Notes on the outline:

Introduction: purpose, scope, audience.
Major online medical networks: definition of medical network and "infomediaries"; criteria used to select major online medical networks; networks' features; networks' functions.
Marketplace needs: defining marketplace needs (Internet marketplace; online medical network marketplace); needs that are currently being met (educational forum; links to related industries [insurance companies; hospitals]; government); free public services; links to merchandise and paid services (prescriptions; medical products for doctors and hospitals; medical products for consumers; subscription service); unmet/inefficiently met needs; future trends; success/lack of success of current networks; potential business opportunities.
Composite of a ideal successful online medical network: research findings; features of a comprehensive online medical network; functions of a comprehensive online medical network; advantages of creating an online medical network; risks of creating on online medical network.
Conclusion: summary of online medical networks; summary of advantages and disadvantages of existing networks; summary of marketplace needs; summary of suggested features/functions for use in developing a comprehensive online medical network; summary of business opportunity


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