Carol sings on-line praises

Annual report designers will have to move away from glossy pictorial documents to designing information for the Internet, according to a consultancy which has set up an on-line library of annual reports and accounts.

“Designers will have to learn new skills,” says Paul Reynolds, managing director of Marchcom, which has established Carol – Company Annual Reports On Line. The March Communications subsidiary has sent five designers on Internet courses.

Through Carol, financial details can be accessed for free via hypertext links, either alphabetically or by sector. It is aimed at City analysts, investors and accountants.

David Kidwell, creative director of March Communications, believes the service will help to restore annual reports and accounts as functional documents, which are easily transferable to the Internet, rather than marketing tools.

This in turn will herald a return of the corporate brochure, which usually has a shelf-life of three years, he claims.

Kevin Bruce, deputy managing director of brochure and annual report group C&FD, predicts an increase in work for designers as they will have to tackle both printed and on-line design.

“The website is a useful addition, but it can’t replace the printed document,” he says.

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