What are the Various Types of Technical Documents

There are many types of technical documents related to different fields, which are meant for specific purposes such as science, business, industries, engineering, construction, etc. You can use the required type, when you know what are the various types of technical documents.

Manuals and User Guides

Manuals are technical documents, which consist of explanations or instructions, in order to help the users, in understanding specific software application or a technical product. These documents are written, by keeping the targeted audience in mind. Here the main focus is on language; it should be simple and clear enough to make the readers understand the subject matter. The writer must ensure that minute details regarding the product are covered and explained properly.


When preparing reports, the emphasis is laid on the layout and format of the document. A report is used to present complete information about a project. Extensive knowledge regarding the subject is required for the author, in preparing reports. It requires thorough research and analysis of data. Reports are majorly used in businesses, academic projects and case studies.

Executive Summaries

Executive summaries are documents, which contain report summaries, in order to provide the user with required information, without having to read the entire body of the report. These types of documents are mostly used in sales & marketing sectors, accounting and finance sectors, etc. An executive summary document typically consists of the summary of the issues related to the service or product. A well drafted executive summary document should include analysis methods, inference, conclusion, justification and the drawbacks of the report.


Basically, an abstract is a concise document, summarizing the complete report, which is addressed mainly to the technical readers. Generally two main types of abstracts are used. They are:

  • Descriptive Abstract – This type of document is also called as indicative abstract and table-of-contents abstract. Descriptive abstract is used to list the chapters or topics, covered in reports.
  • Informative Abstract -This is used to summarize the important content present in the report, including conclusions, results and recommendations.


The model of presentation depends on the audience, being internal or external to the organization. A presentation mostly consists of graphical content such as tables, different types of charts, transparencies, various graphs, multimedia objects, physical objects, line drawings, etc. A good presentation should include slides, in which the information is point wise and clear. The size and type of the fonts used must be readable; a title or heading should be present for each slide and images must be used wherever required.

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