Whether you’re developing a new product, launching a marketing campaign, or redesigning a website, your company’s success hinges on keeping your project on track. Project status reports can provide you and your team regular snapshots of project progress, including timelines, costs, work completed, and potential problems.
Read on to learn more about:
The benefits of effective project status reporting
Not sure how to create a project status report? You can write one in five steps:
List out everything the report should include. See the sidebar to jumpstart this list.
Collect essential information. Using the list you just made, gather all the data you’ll need to make sure you’ve got a good handle on budget, timing, and other key details. Reach out to key stakeholders to confirm you aren’t missing anything.
Build an outline. Based on the template you’ve chosen, start organizing your data with an outline. This will help you decide which sections in the report are most relevant for your project’s success.
Write your status report, then edit it. Fill out your template based on the data you’ve gathered. Include links to supporting materials to provide context as needed. After you’ve finished a first pass, go back and edit your report for accuracy and clarity.
Target your audience. What and how much detail you include in your project status report will depend on who you’re sharing it with. Your executive team will expect a high-level summary of project progress mapped against key business metrics. Your design or development team may need more intel around tasks and deadlines to help them get work done.
Keep it short and simple. Use language that’s easy to understand. Limit your project status report to one page, including need-to-know information only.
Show progress and accomplishments. Is your project not going as planned? Flag this issue in your report as an action item to address. On the flip side, highlight any big wins to motivate your team to keep moving forward.
Go for visual appeal. A well-formatted, visually engaging status report is easier to scan, read, and understand. Colors, fonts, and icons help guide your users through the report.
Make it easily accessible. Share your project status report in a weekly or bi-weekly status meeting. Then agree with your team on the most convenient way to access it, whether via email, instant message, or an online collaboration tool such as FigJam.