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How to write a project report: [templates + guide]
Writing a project report is an essential but often overlooked contributor to your project’s health. However, without the use of automation and templates, it can be a little time-consuming to collect and organize the relevant data that the project generates.
In this post, we’ll explore the basics of project reporting. We’ve included some useful templates and tips to create clear and helpful project reports in less time.
If you want to start creating better project reports using monday.com, sign up today.
What is a project report?
A project report is a document where you share details about different areas of your project. Depending on the report type , your audience, and your intention, the details you showcase might differ.
Project reports can be broken down by time— daily, weekly, monthly, or quarterly— or a number of other factors like risk, budget, and project management style. Bottom line? They simplify the process of gathering and disseminating information about key information on the project. For instance, a typical report might include:
- Resources you’ve used so far
- How project time is being spent
- How you’re doing against key performance indicators (KPIs)
- Workload and team availability
What is the purpose of project reporting?
Reporting gives you, your team, and your stakeholders the ability to track project progress against the original plan. The main goal of a project report is to improve decision-making, to help you make sense of your project data, and decide what your next steps should be. This in turn can impact your budget, timeliness, and project success.
It also plays a vital role in your stakeholder engagement strategy, as it keeps everyone informed on the progress of projects they’re interested in. Those are just a few of the reasons why project reporting has become the most common activity among PMOs (Project Management Offices).
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5 steps to create a useful project report
Project reports can be useful – or they can end up as a 20-page PDF that lives in a drawer somewhere. To put together a report that your project stakeholders can use to gain insights, make decisions and optimize processes, take the following systematic approach to writing your project reports:
1. Define the purpose and scope: Clearly establish the goals, objectives, target audience, and information needs of your project report. 2. Gather and organize data: Collect and organize all relevant data, ensuring its accuracy and reliability. 3. Structure and outline: Create a clear and logical structure for your report and outline the key points you want to cover. 4. Present information effectively: Use clear and concise language and visual aids like graphs or charts to present the information in an easily understandable, visually appealing manner. 5. Review and revise: Proofread your report for any errors or inconsistencies, ensure that it addresses the defined purpose and scope, and revise as necessary to improve clarity.
The different types of project management reports [with templates]
You can split project reports into different types and categories. Here are five different types of project mangement reports, with monday.com templates you can customize for your unique project and team set-up.
1. Project status report
Probably the most frequently used, a project status report offers a general overview of the current status of your projects. A project status report answers the question: “How likely is it that we’ll complete this project on time without overrunning costs?”
These reports analyze whether you’re meeting project goals and key performance indicators. With our single project template , creating a status report is easier than ever.
2. Resource workload report
Resource workload reports help you visualize what your team’s working on, when they’re working on it, and how much work is left. These also reports help you understand how your assets are being used and make sure your actions are aligned with the overall objective.
Our resource management template helps you organize all your assets, locations, and people into one place and track every action with accuracy. You can also manage your resource allocation initiatives and make sure you don’t assign the same resource twice in multiple tasks.
3. Portfolio report
Portfolio reports take a look at all your projects and consolidate all the data into a single document. These reports capture high-level milestones, status, progress, and highlights of your portfolio strategy.
With our portfolio management template , you can track unlimited projects on a single board and get a quick snapshot of their health and profitability.
4. Task list/Time-tracking report
Time-tracking reports, also known as timesheets, help you measure how your team is spending their time and spot potential bottlenecks.
With our team task list template , you can bring in your entire organization, assign tasks to peers, track time and measure the project progress at a glance.
5. Expense report
A project might seem healthy – until everyone starts reporting expenses at the end of the time period. With our expense tracking template , you can proactively manage your cash flow regardless of your accounting skills (or lack thereof!)
Want to try out these templates – and much more? Check out monday.com today.
FAQs about Project Reports
What are the benefits of a project report.
A project report provides a comprehensive overview of a project’s objectives, progress, and outcomes, serving as a valuable documentation and communication tool. It allows stakeholders to assess your project’s effectiveness, identify areas for improvement, and make informed decisions based on reliable data.
What are the main types of project reports?
The most commonly used types of project reports include:
- Progress reports
- Resource management reports
- Project portfolio reports
- Time-tracking reports
- Evaluation reports
- Final reports
What are the main components of a project report?
This will depend on the project and the type of report you’re using, but project reports might include:
- Project objective
- Project scope
- Project milestones
- Project expenses or budget
- Project schedule and timeline
- Project progress
- Resource management
- Risk assessment
- Stakeholder communication
- Financial summary
How to create insightful project reports with monday.com
monday.com makes it easy to create effective project reports. Try it for yourself and see:
Here’s why monday.com can make your project reporting better:
- Track project data in a centralized location, so you have all the information you need to make useful reports.
- Use monday.com’s customized visualization tools to visualize and summarize project data the way you want to see it.
- Set up dashboards to see all of your projects at a glance.
- Take advantage of monday.com’s reporting functionality . You can choose between built-in report templates or customized reports if you have more specific requirements.
- Share your reports with project stakeholders , team members, or even clients directly from monday.com.
- Our embedded communication tools let you collaborate on your reports in real-time, gather feedback, and address any questions or concerns.
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How to Write a Project Report: Step-By-Step Guide [+ 4 Free Templates]
By archtc on December 26, 2017 — 21 minutes to read
- How to Write a Project Report: Step-By-Step Guide Part 1
- Project Report Templates: Free Download Part 2
- Additional Resources Part 3
- How to Dramatically Reduce Time You Spend Creating Reports Part 4
At some point during the implementation of a project, a project report has to be generated in order to paint a mental image of the whole project. Ultimately, a project report must maximize the insight gained with minimal effort from the reader. Apart from describing its results, it must also explain the implications of those results to the organization and its business operations.
How to Write a Project Status Report:
The most common type of project report, a project status report provides a general state of the project to its stakeholders. It quantifies work performed and completed in measurable terms. It compares this with an established baseline to see if the project is on track or; if adjustments have to be made if the project is behind its schedule. It keeps everyone on the same page and manages each other’s expectations.
Project status reports are accomplished to serve the following purposes;
- to keep an updated flow of information in relation to the project’s progress
- to immediately address issues and concerns that may come up at any point of the project’s implementation or duration
- to document reasons for changes and adjustments made to the original plan for the project
- to monitor fund utilization and to ensure that the project expenses are still within the budget
- to serve as a basis for decision-making and addressing problems
- to keep track of the team’s performance and individual contributions
- to act as a uniform procedure for communicating project development to the stakeholders.
Status reports are most effective when they follow a standard form with predefined fields that need to be regularly updated. Doing so will save time and provide consistency and predictability of the information the stakeholders will receive about the status of the project.
WHAT TO INCLUDE
For a status report to be comprehensive, it must include the following elements:
Summary/overall health of the project, facts on the project progress, target vs. actual accomplishments, action(s) taken, risks and issues, keys to an effective project status report.
- Submit the report on time . A status report is time sensitive and sending it late defeats the purpose of such a report.
- Giving complete but inaccurate information is just as bad as giving accurate but incomplete information . Since stakeholders rely on the status report for a heads-up on the project, and its content is used as the basis for decision-making, it is critical that the report provides both complete and accurate information.
- Do not cover up bad news or adverse reports as these are all part of the transparency of the status report . Keep in mind that being open with the stakeholders, whether the project is sailing smoothly or not, will benefit both the team and the client, since any problems there are will be immediately given attention and solved.
- Be proud of the team’s accomplishments, after all, this is what the clients and the stakeholders will want to know about .
- Anticipate questions from the clients or stakeholders and be prepared to answer them .
- Be familiar with the culture of the organization and respect the information hierarchy they observe . There are instances when the CEO wants to be the first to know about the contents of these reports before cascading it to his downlines. On the other hand, middle managers will want a head start on these reports so they can also anticipate and prepare for any reaction from the top executives.
- Craft the status report in such a way that there will be no information overload . It should contain necessary information that the stakeholders need to know. Lengthy reports will consume not only the writer’s time but also that of the reader. Too many details also give an impression of micro management.
All projects, or any activities of business, face risks. It is just a matter of how an organization identifies, assesses, analyzes, and monitors these risks. With a Risk Register, an organization is equipped with a tool to better respond to problems that may arise because of these risks. It helps in the decision-making process and enables the stakeholders to take care of the threats in the best way possible.
A Risk Register, also called an Issue Log, is iterative because it will be updated periodically depending on how often the team identifies a potential risk. It may also be updated if the characteristics of the existing potential risks change as the project progresses.
The Risk Register document contains information about the following:
- Risk Category: Grouping these risks under different categories is helpful. Doing so will provide a way to make a plan of action that will address most, if not all of the risks falling under the same category, saving time, effort, and resources.
- Risk Description: Provide a brief explanation of the identified potential risk. The description can be done in a variety of ways depending on the level of detail. A general description can be difficult to address while giving too much detail about the risk may entail a significant amount of work. Three factors to consider when making a risk description are: the way these risks are going to be managed, who will handle them, and the reporting requirements of the person receiving the risk register.
- Risk ID: Assign a unique identification code to each risk identified to track it in the risk register easily. Create a system of coding in such a way that the category to which the said risk belongs is easily identifiable.
- Project Impact: Indicate the potential effect of the assumed risk on different aspects of the project such as budget, timelines, quality, and performance.
- Likelihood: Referring to the possibility of the risk occurring, the likelihood can be expressed qualitatively—high, medium, low—or quantitatively, if there is enough information available. Whatever criteria are to be used, assign a number—with the highest value corresponding to that which is most likely to occur.
Using the table above, the identified risk can be ranked this way:
- Risk Trigger: These are the potential risk events that will trigger the implementation of a contingency plan based on the risk management plan. This plan should have been prepared prior to the development of a risk register.
- Prevention Plan: This enumerates the steps or action to be taken to prevent the risks from occurring.
- Contingency Plan: On the other hand, the contingency plan determines the steps or action to be taken once the risk events have occurred. This program also contains the measures to be taken to reduce the impact of such risks to the project.
- Risk Owner: The person responsible for managing risk, and the implementation of the prevention and contingency plans, it can be anyone among the stakeholders—members of the team, a project manager, or project sponsors.
- Residual Risk: Sometimes, a risk cannot be entirely eliminated after treatment. Part of it may linger throughout the duration of the project, but once it has been treated, it can be considered as a low-level risk.
Keys to an Effective Risk Register
- The first risk register must be created as soon as the project plan and the risk management plan has been approved . This initial risk register must be integrated into the project plan.
- Active risks during a particular period must also be included in the project status report .
- Risk management is an iterative process which is why the risk register must also be updated from time to time . Updates can be made when new risks are identified or there have been changes in the risks already in the register.
- The numerical value assigned to the likelihood and severity levels must remain constant throughout the duration of the whole project .
- Likewise, any terms used must be defined, and this definition must be utilized consistently .
Project Closure Report
As the end of a project, a Project Closure Report signals its culmination. Its submission officially concludes a project and implies that funds and resources will no longer be needed, and everything will go back to its status prior to the implementation of the project.
This process is critical as it will officially tie up all loose ends and prevent confusion among stakeholders.
This particular type of project report summarizes information on the project results, the criteria used to measure the effectiveness of the project delivery process, and the feedback from the stakeholders. Each performance metric includes an assessment and a narration of how the team performed on such metrics.
This performance metric describes how the team utilized the budget in carrying out the project effectively. Under this performance metric, the following aspects are measured:
Budget variance, explanations for key variances.
Describe how the team implemented the project within the expected time frame and schedule.
Overall Project Duration
Schedule variance, the explanations for key variances, change management.
This metric refers to the team’s ability to handle and manage changes throughout the project’s implementation effectively. It is measured through the following:
Total Number of Changes
The impact of the changes, the highlight of changes, quality management.
This particular metric refers to the team’s ability to observe and comply with quality standards during the project’s implementation.
Total Number of Defects Identified
The explanation for resolved defects, risk and issue management.
This metric deals with how risks and matters that occurred during project implementation were handled and resolved by the team. Key points to include are the following:
The impact of the Risks and Issues to the Project
Human resource management.
This refers to the team’s ability to carry out the project effectively.
Project Organization Structure
This metric looks at how the stakeholders participated in the project.
Under this metric, communication throughout the duration of the project is assessed.
Communication Management Plan
- Summarize essential feedback collected . Describe the method by which these comments were gathered and who was solicited for feedback. Also include how they responded to each question and briefly discuss which items received great responses from the participants and which ones got few answers.
- Take note of common themes or trends of feedback gathered .
- From the feedback gathered, also take note of any opportunities from this feedback and discuss how these opportunities can be applied to future projects, or in the organization itself .
- Give a brief discussion of what the team learned when carrying out the project . Among these learnings, discuss which ones can be applied to future projects and how it will impact not only those future projects but also the whole organization.
Other points of interest may not have been captured in the Project Status Report and may be included in the Project Closeout Report. Some of these factors include:
Duration and Effort by Project Phase
Benefits realized, benchmark comparisons, keys to an effective project closure report.
- The closure report is mostly a summary of all efforts related to the project . It is important to ensure that all highlights of the project have been properly documented so that retrieval of these reports is easier and all efforts will be acknowledged.
- Emphasize the high points the project delivered, how efficiently it was done, and what has been learned from the process.
- If there are notable variances during the project implementation, make sure to provide a fact-based explanation on it . In addition, the impact of this difference must also be described.
- A critical point in a project closure report is establishing the link between the project performance, the lessons learned, and the steps that will be taken by the organization for its continuous improvement . Aside from the project deliverables, another valuable output of a project is the learnings derived from the process and how it will be translated into concrete concepts applicable to the business processes of the organization.
A little bit different from the types of project reports previously mentioned, an Executive Summary is a distinct kind of report which uses different language. It is a high-level report which aims to provide a bigger and deeper understanding of the project—how it will benefit the organization and how it will fit into future business strategies. It is written with a busy executive in mind, someone who has a lot of important things to do and may find reading a lengthy piece of prose a waste of precious time. Factual and objective, this particular type of project report must be able to provide a realistic status of the project, as business executives understand that everything may not go according to the plan.
Some may confuse an executive summary with an abstract but, in reality, they are clearly distinct from one another and serve a different purpose.
An abstract is usually written for academic or scientific papers. It is written with a topic sentence which, generally, gives an overview of what the article is about. It is, then, supported by two or three supporting sentences which support the main idea of the topic sentence.
An executive summary, on the other hand, is composed of different sections discussing almost every significant aspect of an undertaking. It consists of sequentially arranged key points supported by conclusions and recommendations. Check our in-depth article on how to write an effective executive summary .
Things to Remember in Writing Project Reports
Here are some of the principles that need to be observed in writing an effective project report;
Write for the reader
The report should have a structure, ensure that the report is evidence-based and is supported by data, make it as objective as possible.
There is a clear distinction between facts and opinions . These should never be used together, especially if the report is dwelling on a failed project. The report becomes subjective if it reflects personal opinions of the writer. Make it objective by eliminating all parts which are not based on facts and real events. If it is really necessary to include a personal view or opinion, make sure to explicitly identify it as such. A separate section of the project report may be devoted to the writer’s personal opinion to keep the rest of the report unbiased.
There are a number of ways project reporting helps an organization, a team, and even the project itself and here are some of them:
It tracks the progress of the project
It helps identify risks, it helps manage project cost, it gives stakeholders an insight on how the project is performing, project report template: free download.
Click Here to Download Project Status Report XLSX
Click Here to Download Project Update Report DOC
Click Here to Download Project Update Report 2 DOCX
Click Here to Download General Project Report DOCX
Templates on ProsperForms:
Edit and use this template
- How to Write an Outstanding Weekly Report + Free Template Download
- Project Status Dashboard and Project Tracking
- How to Create a Project Meeting Template + Free Download
How to Write a Project Report In 5 Easy Steps (Template Included)
Last updated on 31st January 2023
In this article we’re going to teach you how to write a project report in 5 easy steps.
Did you know that only 64% of projects meet their goals ? That means 36% fall short. And when projects don’t meet their goals it can result in a lot of headaches for your company.
The reasons why projects fail are plentiful but it typically comes back to poor planning or a lack of organisation.
A solid project report can eliminate these issues and ensure you stay on track to complete your goals.
So, let’s take a look at how to write a project report in 5 easy steps…
What is a project report?
A project report is a document that contains helpful information so that teams can ensure their project stays on track, runs successfully, and completes on time.
There are different types of project reports that are used at different periods throughout a project’s lifespan, but they all contain similar data that covers things like progress, tasks, roadblocks, stakeholders, and financial information.
Why is a project report important?
Project reports are important for many reasons. A project report gives your project a sense of direction that can help you maintain consistency throughout the project, even as it passes between different people and teams. Your project report will also be a great document to refer back to if things get difficult, so you can stay on track.
Even in the first instance, before your project kicks off, a project report can help you to manage your budget, workload, and any foreseen risks. It can also give stakeholders insight into the specifics of the project to help manage expectations from the start.
Types of project report
There are many different types of project reports that will help you manage different aspects of your project. For example, a resource report will help you to understand the resources you’ll need for the project, how much resource you have at your disposal, and will also help you to predict when your resources will need to be replenished.
Other examples include: risk assessment reports (to identify potential risks), board reports (to update investors/board members on project progress), and cost-benefit analysis reports (to help you measure benefits against the costs associated with them).
Now, let’s dive into 3 of the biggest, most important types of project reports.
1. General project report
This is your first project report. It should cover predictions and plans for how you expect the project to go, and give you a clear sense of direction when it comes to things like budget, timelines, and everything else you need to keep track of in order for your project to be considered a success.
2. Progress report
A progress report – as you may have guessed – comes in the middle and helps you document your progress. It’s important to keep reassessing your project to see if you are where you expect to be and to help you make adjustments along the way.
A progress report is also very useful for managing stakeholder expectations and keeping them informed on how the project’s going.
3. Project completion report
As you wrap up your project, a project completion report can be a great way to reflect on what went well and what went wrong. This can not only help you wrap up the current project neatly, it can also inform future projects and ensure you don’t make the same mistakes twice.
How to write a project report in only 5 steps
There are many different types of project reports. So, of course, the writing of each one will differ slightly depending on who they are aimed at and what the content of the project report is.
However, there are still some core steps to follow for each. Let’s take a look at how to write a project report in 5 steps.
1. Start with the basics
At the very top of your project report should be a simple table that includes all of the core information for the project. Here’s an example:
The table for your project will probably vary slightly to this, but hopefully this gives you an idea of the most important top-level information to include.
Underneath this table you should have a short summary of the project. This can be just a couple of sentences that sum up the objectives and goals. Think of this kind of like an elevator pitch for the project.
2. Cover your objectives
Now it’s time to go into more detail. List out each objective for the project, including what you need to do to achieve each one.
For example, let’s pretend our project is to create a brand video. There are many objectives, such as:
- Write a script
- Storyboard the video
- Record a voiceover
- Shoot the video
- Edit the video
- Come up with a plan for promotion
Each objective will need to be completed in order to go on to the next. And each objective requires different resources and skill sets. All of this should be recorded, in detail, in your project report.
3. List your obstacles
Next, list any predicted obstacles or risks. This may feel like a waste of time because of course you’re going to be avoiding risks and obstacles as often as you can. However, it’s important to be aware of the potential roadblocks that might appear so that you are prepared to handle them without slowing down.
Some example obstacles for the brand video project could be:
- Equipment breaks
- Weather ruins a shoot
- Editing takes longer than planned
Next to each obstacle, jot down a quick plan for how you would solve this issue if it happened. For example, for “weather ruins a shoot” your potential solution could be to “choose a backup location”.
4. Create a project timeline
With any project, it’s important to know how long everything’s going to take. This is the best way to estimate how much time, money, and resource is required.
A project timeline will help plot a path forward. To create a project timeline all you need to do is break down each objective into tasks and add a deadline for each task. It also helps to add an owner to each task, so you know who the point of contact is for each section of the timeline.
This can be tricky to manage but becomes so much easier with a project management tool, like Project.co . When you create a project on Project.co, all of your clients and team members can see everything that goes on with the project in one centralised place. This includes tasks that can be allocated to team members, assigned a date, and a status – so everyone involved in the project can see how it’s progressing:
You can also add comments, attachments, priority tags, and more.
Plus, it’s easy to keep track of several tasks at once by using the calendar view:
Other views available are kanban, list, and scheduler.
5. Cover project communication
Somewhere on your project report you should include a link to your communication guidelines . This will help everyone involved on the project to understand what’s expected of them when it comes to communication, for example what tools to use and how to communicate.
This can help your project run more smoothly and create a better result for everyone. According to our Communication Statistics 2022 , 95% of people feel that the businesses they deal with could improve when it comes to communication and project management .
Writing a project report: 7 top tips
1. Be clear
The perfect project report is clear and concise. Try your best to leave no room for errors or misunderstandings, and write in short definitive sentences.
Being clear is especially important when it comes to timelines and targets. It can be helpful to plot out your tasks in a visual way, like a kanban view . This will make your project timeline easy to scan and understand.
2. Be thorough
While it’s important to be clear and concise, it’s equally important to be thorough. Try to include as much relevant information in your project reports as possible.
One of the main functions of project reports, particularly project status reports, is to inform stakeholders on the progress of the project. So the more thorough you can be, the better.
3. Be appropriate
A project report is an internal document that’s likely going to be shared between many different departments or teams in your business, so it’s important to make sure your language is appropriate.
Keep the culture of the business in mind when writing your report. Use the same kind of tone and language that you would in other internal communication documents. This is especially important when you consider more than a third (35%) of businesses have lost an employee because of poor internal communication .
4. Be honest
Your project report is not the place to sugarcoat anything. You should be honest, and brutally so. This means giving accurate and realistic figures, deliverables and deadlines.
A project report should be a factual account so that everyone has a clear understanding of the data and knows exactly what to expect from the project.
5. Be quick
It may seem contradictory to tell you to be thorough and quick with your project reports, but this just means don’t overload people with unnecessary information. Be succinct and to-the-point with every aspect of the report, from points of contact to resources and any potential roadblocks.
The idea is for your project reports to be as easy to digest as possible, especially if you’re supplying busy stakeholders with a steady stream of ongoing status reports.
6. Be prepared
No project runs perfectly, so it can be helpful to be prepared for bumps in the road. You might want to leave an ‘other’ or ‘notes’ section at the bottom of your report where you can jot down anything that’s changed along the way.
It can also help to leave room for slight adjustments in your timeline. Just a couple of buffer days here and there can really reduce stress for your teams, and also help ensure your deadlines are more realistic.
7. Be proud
When you’re carefully documenting things like risks and problems, your project report can become pretty gloomy. So it’s important to even it out by also celebrating your team’s achievements.
Every project has ups and downs, and by giving as much attention to the ‘ups’ as you do the ‘downs’ you can boost team morale and this can be reflected back on your project.
Free project report template
As promised, here is your free project report template !
To use this document, make sure to hit File > Make a Copy to save it as your own. This way you can make edits and personalise it to perfectly fit your needs.
A solid project report can act almost like a map that clearly directs you towards your end goal, helping you to avoid risks along the way and take the best route to success.
In addition to a project report, a project management platform can also help you to maintain your focus and manage your project with ease, thanks to centralised communication and complete visibility of all your work. Click here to get started for free .
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How to write a project report (with steps & templates).
June 22, 2023
Juggling all the different components of a project can be quite a challenge. If that weren’t enough, you also have to write a project status report to update key stakeholders on the project’s progress. The struggle is real.
So where do you start? Fortunately, we have the answer. And that’s precisely why we put together this guide—to walk you through the process so you have a clear path from start to finish.
Learn more about creating project reports and different types of project status reports. Plus, you’ll walk away with five free project report templates, carefully crafted to streamline your project management workflow, save you time, and impress your stakeholders. 🤩
What is a Project Report?
1. project status report, 2. project progress report, 3. project cost benefit analysis report, 4. project time tracking report, 5. project resource report, 6. project risk report, 7. project variance report, 8. project performance report, 9. project completion report, benefits of making a project report, how to make a project report, 5 project report templates for straight-a project managers.
A project report is a document offering a comprehensive overview of a project’s objectives, progress, team performance, and milestone accomplishments. It also gives an account of the challenges faced during a project’s execution , solutions devised to tackle them, and the lessons learned during the process.
Project managers create these reports to communicate with other project stakeholders—including team members, sponsors, clients, and other interested parties—to ensure everyone’s on the same page. The document also serves as a foundation for further evaluation and analysis to ensure the project says on track and achieves its goals. 🎯
9 Types of Project Reports
Project reports come in diverse formats, with each serving different use cases. Here are nine of the most commonly used types of project reports.
A project status report is a document that gives a snapshot of where your project stands at any given moment. It’s like answering the question, “How’s the project doing?”
But instead of just saying “The project is fine,” you actually dive into the project goals, tasks completed, milestones achieved, challenges faced, lessons learned, potential roadblocks, and next steps.
Whether it’s a weekly project status report or a monthly status report, this documentation eliminates the need for status meetings while giving stakeholders the most recent status of the project.
A project progress report is slightly similar to a status update report, as they both discuss task progress. However, the progress report is more quantitative and zooms in on individual tasks and project milestones .
It’s like taking a magnifying glass and examining the progress of each task, one by one. For example, it could include in-depth information on the percentage of completion and current status of each task (completed, on track, delayed, etc.).
The cost-benefit analysis report is usually prepared before a project is put into motion. Of the various project reports, this one aims to answer a simple question: “Is it worth pursuing this project?”
To answer this question, the report first assesses all project costs like operational expenses, materials, salaries, equipment, and potential risks.
It then considers the projected benefits, such as increased profit margins, cost savings, improved efficiency, or happier customers. Finally, the report compares the costs to the benefits to determine if it’s time to move forward or explore other options.
A project time-tracking report is a document that records and summarizes time spent on project activities. Each project team member contributes to writing this report—they track and record the amount of time they’ve spent on tasks and submit it to the project manager. ⏰
Thankfully, the rise of project management tools has eliminated the need for paper-based time-tracking submissions. They make it easy for team members to submit accurate and detailed time reports to the project manager—while reducing the administrative burden of manual report compilation.
Project managers can see how time is spent and the overall productivity of team members. As a result, they’re able to make informed decisions, such as redistributing workload (aka workload management ), reassigning tasks, and providing feedback and support to team members.
A project resource dashboard offers a bird’s-eye view of how resources (e.g., labor, equipment, materials, budget, etc.) are allocated in a project. Think of it as a comprehensive resource inventory, listing every project task, the responsible party, and the resources being used.
Project reports like this help project managers keep track of resource availability, identify potential resource constraints or shortages, and make informed decisions about resource allocation and optimization.
A project risk report offers a comprehensive analysis of potential risks, their likelihood of occurrence, their potential impact on the project, and recommended mitigation strategies.
Rather than waiting for future events to derail the project, project reports like this one allow project managers to take a more proactive approach to risk management—thereby boosting the chances of overall project success.
A project variance report reveals the gaps or deviations between project plans and the actual performance or results achieved. It compares various factors—like budget, time, resources, and scope—and their planned values with their actual values, then computes the differences (or variances).
By analyzing these variances, project managers and stakeholders can discuss the possible reasons behind them, identify areas that need attention, and take corrective actions where necessary.
A project performance report evaluates the overall performance and achievements of a project against predetermined metrics and objectives. It includes information on project deliverables, key performance indicators (KPIs) , and stakeholder satisfaction.
This report helps project managers assess project success, identify areas for improvement, and communicate the project’s performance to stakeholders.
A project completion report marks the end of a project journey. It summarizes the entire project lifecycle, from initiation to closure. This report contains an overview of the project’s objectives, deliverables, milestones, challenges, and recommendations for future projects.
Writing project reports may initially seem redundant and time-consuming. However, it plays a crucial role in achieving project success. While a few benefits were hinted at earlier, let’s get a better picture of why project reports should not be overlooked.
Creating a project report allows you to step back and reflect on the project’s progress. As you record the milestones, successes, and challenges, a wealth of insights begin to unfold—strengths, weaknesses, and areas that need attention.
This holistic view of the project’s health helps you steer it toward the desired outcomes and ensure it stays on track.
Encourages evaluation and analysis
Project reports allow you to evaluate and analyze the different aspects of a project in a systematic way—gathering relevant data, analyzing them, and evaluating their significance. By giving your project a critical analysis, you can uncover valuable insights, identify patterns, draw meaningful conclusions, and take strategic action. 🛠️
Enhances communication and collaboration
Creating a project report challenges you to present the project’s progress and results to stakeholders in a clear and coherent manner. A well-written report promotes project transparency and ensures everyone is on the same page.
It also facilitates collaboration by providing a common reference point for discussions, feedback, and decision-making.
Boosts professionalism and credibility
When you present a comprehensive and well-structured report, it shows that you have conducted thorough research, followed a methodical approach, and can effectively communicate complex information. This, in turn, boosts your reputation, enhances your credibility, and showcases your expertise among peers, colleagues, and potential employers.
A project report serves as a valuable reference for future research or projects. By documenting your process, methodologies, challenges, lessons, and results, you create a resource that can be consulted and built upon by others.
This contributes to the cumulative knowledge in your field and fosters a culture of collaboration and innovation.
Creating a project report doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Follow these three simple steps to create your first project report with ease.
Understand the purpose of the report
Before you create a project report, you need to understand the purpose of the report (the “why”) and know your target audience (the “who”). This will guide the content, structure, and tone of your project report.
Gather and organize the relevant information
At this point, you need to gather project information relevant to your project report. Make sure your data is accurate, reliable, and up-to-date. Organize the gathered information in a logical and structured manner.
- Executive summary : As its name suggests, this project summary gives readers a quick overview of the whole report. It’s a snapshot that highlights the most important parts of the project. While it’s placed at the start of the report, it’s often written last. It covers the project’s objectives, methodology, major outcomes, and conclusions.
- Introduction: This sets the context and expectations of the entire report. It includes the project’s purpose and scope, project schedule, the problems it aims to address, and the methodologies to get there. It also outlines the structure and organization of the rest of the report.
- Body: Typically, this is the longest part of project management reports because it dives into in-depth details, including project progress, data collection, analysis reports, constraints, and limitations. Remember that whatever you include here should reflect the purpose of your project report and the preferences of your target audience.
- Conclusions & Recommendations: Based on your findings and analysis, identify opportunities for improvement, suggest strategies for addressing them, or propose avenues for future research.
Format and proofread the report
Ensure that your project report follows a consistent formatting style—headings, subheadings, and bullet points will make it easier to read. In addition, scan your report for spelling or grammar errors and typos.
Sure, you could write project reports from scratch and spend countless hours formatting and structuring them. But why would you when you can use free project report templates? They provide a structure and format for your report so you can simply plug in your data and customize the design to fit your needs. Not only do project report templates speed up the report creation process, but they also enhance the overall quality of your reports.
Let’s jump right in to explore our top five project report templates. 📈
1. Final Project Report Template
A final project report is the perfect finishing touch to conclude a project and highlight its achievements. ClickUp’s Final Project Report Template provides a solid structure to help you put it together with the following key sections:
- Planned vs. Actual: A quantitative breakdown of how the project deviated from the original plan with regard to its start date, completion date, duration, and budget
- Management Effectiveness: A SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis evaluating how the project was managed
- Project Learnings : Share the important project lessons learned by the team throughout the lifespan of the project
- Contract Terms Checklist : A simple table listing the various contract terms, whether they were completed, and any remarks you have
- Overall Performance rating: A 1 out of 5 rating of the different aspects of the project, from planning and execution to leadership and communication
This template is built in ClickUp Docs , which means you have unlimited flexibility for customization—add extra sections and tweak the appearance to suit your taste. And guess what? The table of content updates in real-time as you add, edit, or delete multiple headers.
If you want to wow your team and clients, this project status report template will help you get the job done.
2. Project Status Report Template
Writing a project status report is fairly straightforward. But staring at a blank document and worrying about crafting perfectly manicured sentences can make this process last a lot longer than it should.
Thankfully, ClickUp’s Project Status Report Template is here to save the day! Built inside ClickUp Whiteboards, this template provides a hassle-free method to quickly capture key project details in a visually engaging way.
- General information: Cover general project details (e.g., project name, objectives, project timeline , reporting period, etc.) which you’ll need to fill in only once
- Progress details: Use color-coding to share in-progress, at-risk, delayed, and completed tasks
- Support and resources: List out assets (e.g., labor, money, etc.) needed for a smooth operation
- Highlights and takeaways: Share key lessons learned and other noteworthy highlights
- What went well/What needs improvement: Use this opportunity to reflect on the project’s progress and share the areas that performed well and what needs attention
- Next steps: Highlight the key action items that need to get done to keep the project on track
Enter the details under each of these sections onto sticky notes, which’ll help you quickly pour down your thoughts without worrying about writing perfect sentences. It’s also very helpful for stakeholders as the information on sticky notes is short and straight to the point.
This template removes the pressure of creating a status report and saves valuable time—all while keeping key stakeholders informed and up to date.
3. Digital Marketing Report Template
After running a digital marketing campaign project, you need to gather key metrics from the campaign and present it to key stakeholders for evaluation, performance analysis, and notes for future improvements.
Sharing this info across multiple digital channels can get overwhelming but there’s no need to worry. ClickUp’s Digital Marketing Report Template has you covered with everything you need. Plus, it’s neatly broken down into the following sections:
- Digital Marketing Performance: This section lets you summarize the overall performance of your campaign by capturing key details like project budget allocations, actual expenses, cost per acquisition, total impressions, and total clicks across multiple campaigns
- Web Analytics Report: This section analyzes website performance during and after the project’s completion. It captures metrics like page views, bounce rate, traffic sources, and overall conversion rate
- Social Media Campaign Performance: This section analyzes social media performance by measuring metrics like impressions, followers, and engagement rate—all in a simple table for each social media platform
Use this template to present the performance of your digital marketing project in a simple and visually engaging way. This makes it easy to identify trends, analyze the impact of your campaign, and make informed decisions regarding future marketing initiatives.
4. Employee Daily Activity Report Template
A key way to stay on track and guarantee overall project success is to engage team members in the process.
The Employee Daily Activity Report Template by ClickUp has a simple tabular layout that makes it easy for team members to record and keep track of:
- Completed tasks and the time spent on each
- Ongoing tasks and their due dates
- Upcoming tasks and any support they’ll need
This template encourages each team member to get work done and ask for support when needed—while allowing you to keep the project on track by providing support and maximizing team performance.
5. Campaign Report Template
Remember the Digital Marketing Report Template we looked at earlier? You can choose to further analyze the marketing performance section, with elements from this Campaign Report Template by ClickUp .
Dive deeper into how each marketing channel contributed to overall ad cost, ad revenue, and ad conversion rate. You can further break down each channel’s performance by analyzing the metrics from each individual campaign on that channel.
Create Polished and Professional Project Reports in Less Time With ClickUp
There you have it—your secret sauce for creating an effective project report in a fraction of the time. And that’s only scratching the surface … working inside ClickUp unlocks a lot more perks.
Not only does ClickUp make project reporting easy and quick, but it also gives you access to free project management templates to enhance your workflow. Quickly assign tasks to your team, keep track of progress, discuss updates, and collaborate on documents and whiteboards—all in one place. ✨
Did we mention the integrations? ClickUp plays nicely with other apps, allowing you to seamlessly connect your favorite tools to supercharge your team’s productivity. And let’s not forget about the time you’ll save using ClickUp’s automations—a feature that lets you breeze through repetitive tasks that used to eat up valuable time across project management reports.
Just imagine what you can do with those extra hours—maybe enjoy a cup of coffee or catch up with your team about how best you can support them. Make project reporting a blast with ClickUp and boost your chances of a successful project.
Get started by signing up for free on ClickUp today … Ready? Set? Report!
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How to Write an Effective Project Report in 7 Steps (+ examples in Microsoft 365)
By: Shubhangi Pandey | Published on: Dec 1, 2022 | Categories: BrightWork 365 , Microsoft 365 , Project Reporting | 0 comments
Many project teams use the reporting tools in their collaborative project site to track work, identify risks and issues, and keep stakeholders informed about the project.
Depending on the project and organizational processes, additional project reports with in-depth analysis and recommendations may also be required when a project ends.
Writing a report is a useful opportunity to evaluate the project, document lessons learned, and add to your organization’s knowledge base for future projects. Try these steps for writing better project reports.
Manage Projects and Portfolios with Microsoft 365
See how you can start any project using templates for Microsoft 365, Power Platform, and Teams.
How to Write an Effective Project Report in 7 Steps
1. decide the objective.
Take some time to think about the purpose of the report. Do you need to describe, explain, recommend, or persuade? Having a clear purpose from the outset ensures that you stay focused, which makes it easier to engage your reader.
2. Understand Your Audience
Writing a formal annual report for your stakeholders is very different from a financial review. Tailor your language, use of data, and supporting graphics to the audience .
It is also useful to consider the personal communication style of the reader, for example, how do they write emails or structure documents? Reflect their preferences where possible. You may need to develop a more formal or informal tone to your own natural style.
Adopting this technique will build rapport and make the reader more receptive to your ideas
3. Report Format and Type
Before you start, check the report format and type. Do you need to submit a written report or deliver a presentation? Do you need to craft a formal, informal, financial, annual, technical, fact-finding, or problem-solving report?
You should also confirm if any templates are available within the organization.
Checking these details can save time later on!
4. Gather the Facts and Data
Including engaging facts and data will solidify your argument. Start with your collaborative project site and work out as needed. Remember to cite sources such as articles, case studies, and interviews.
5. Structure the Report
A report typically has four elements:
- Executive Summary . Your report will begin with the summary, which is written once the report is finished. As the first item the reader encounters, this is the most important section of the document. They will likely use the summary to decide how much of the report they need to read so make it count!
- Introduction: Provide a context for the report and outline the structure of the contents. Identify the scope of the report and any particular methodologies used
- Body: It’s now time to put your writing skills to work! This is the longest section of the report and should present background details, analysis, discussions, and recommendations for consideration. Draw upon data and supporting graphics to support your position
- Conclusion: Bring together the various elements of the report in a clear and concise manner. Identify the next steps and any actions that your reader needs to take.
Spend some time making the report accessible and enjoyable to read. If working in Word, the Navigation pane is a great way to help your reader work through the document. Use formatting, visuals, and lists to break up long sections of text.
The first draft of the report is rarely perfect so you will need to edit and revise the content. If possible, set the document aside for a few days before reviewing or ask a colleague to review.
Automate and Streamline Project Reporting with Microsoft 365
Project reporting can often be a laborious and time-consuming task. Especially on a project where there are so many moving parts and different people involved, getting a clear picture of what’s going on can be quite difficult.
That is why we recommend moving to a cloud-based solution for project management and reporting – and you might have guessed it: we recommend Microsoft 365!
Why use Microsoft 365 for project reporting?
There are many benefits to using Microsoft 365 as the platform for your project management reporting, including:
- Centralizing your project management and reporting on Microsoft 365 brings your project information into one place, so you can automate reporting and save time.
- By leveraging the available reporting mechanisms in Power Apps, Power BI, and Excel you have access to configurable and filterable reports based on the audience. Everyone can see the information in the way they need.
- Linked into Microsoft 365 ecosystem, reports can appear in Power Apps, Power BI, exported to Excel, emailed in Outlook, or seen in MS Teams, so reports are available wherever the audience is working.
- Having project data maintained in a single platform means that project reports are always up to date. No more chasing up PMs or team members for the latest version of a document!
Ways you can use BrightWork 365 for Project and Portfolio Reporting
BrightWork 365 is a project and portfolio management solution for Microsoft 365 and the Power Platform. Here five ways you can leverage BrightWork 365 and Microsoft 365 for more efficient project reporting:
- Capture project status reports in a few minutes
- Track the project schedule with the Gantt
- Get high-level visibility into programs and portfolios
- Surface risks and issues across all projects
- Leverage visual and interactive reports
Capture Project Status Reports in a few minutes
BrightWork project sites have a “Status” tab, where the project manager can capture what is going on in the project right now. This is not a status report, but rather a place for the PM to log what the status looks like at this time. It is not a snapshot, as it will be changing regularly, but the info here will become part of the status report once the PM chooses to create one.
The Status Reports tab is where you can capture a snapshot of the project status at a point in time. It will bring in all the info from the “Status” tab, but you have the ability to add comments
This will also create a new entry in the status report log, and create a Word document version of the report as well. This status report can also be emailed to stakeholders as needed.
Track the project schedule with Gantt
At some point during project planning, you would have agreed the project plan and Target finish dates or deadlines for the tasks. The plan timeline is clearly laid out in the BrightWork 365 Gantt.
Nevertheless, as the project goes on, some dates and timelines may slip. And when those dates are updated it will affect the actual finish date of the project.
Project stakeholders can compare the Target (initial) dates of the plan to the initial plan by viewing the project plan against the original baseline.
Get High-Level Visibility into Programs and Portfolios
BrightWork 365 enables a hierarchy for your project management – with Portfolios being the highest level. For example a portfolio may house all the projects in a company. Portfolios consist of many Programs, are groups of projects put together based on some common criteria (maybe business function or geography). The Portfolio and Program areas show a snapshot of the status of the underlying projects, including KPI indicators, status, dates, type etc.
Surface Risks and Issues across all projects
One of the most important elements for senior executives and project stakeholders is being aware of the project risks, but especially understanding any issues that arise quickly.
I’ve heard it said before that “Senior executives don’t like bad news, but especially don’t like bad news late.” In BrightWork 365, team members or project managers have the ability to flag tasks or log issues on a project, and escalate them to the program or portfolio level for full visibility.
These reports are available directly from the navigation menu on the left hand side, so anyone can can view the current risks and issues without having to wait on a formal report, enabling quicker and better decisions.
Leverage Visual and Interactive Reports
The type and format of a report often depends on the audience. For example, senior executives often want the high-level details of a project. That’s where BrightWork 365 Power BI Dashboards come in.
BrightWork 365 pushes project data to visual and interactive Power BI dashboards. These reports give an overall summary of a program or portfolio, but can be filtered and sorted any number of ways as required. Again, the benefit here is that the dashboards are always real-time, and you never have to wait to understand.
The reports also enable drill-down as necessary, in case you see an issue that requires further investigation.
Spend less time on your project reports with BrightWork 365
One of the major benefits of a tool like BrightWork 365 (or any collaborative project management tool really) is that it consolidates and centralizes all project information in one system.
As team members and project manager update the project data in the solution, it is readily available to be reported on, in real-time, and in the format that is appropriate for the audience – right with the solution.
Reports in BrightWork 365 are available on a push/pull basis. Some users may like to log in and view the dashboards with all the filtering and configurability built in. Others may prefer to have a status report emailed to them on a regular basis.
BrightWork 365 removes the busy work of project reporting and surfaces the right information, at the right time, in a format that is right for the audience.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in September 2016 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness
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How to Write a Report: A Guide
A report is a nonfiction account that presents and/or summarizes the facts about a particular event, topic, or issue. The idea is that people who are unfamiliar with the subject can find everything they need to know from a good report.
Reports make it easy to catch someone up to speed on a subject, but actually writing a report is anything but easy. So to help you understand what to do, below we present a little report of our own, all about report writing.
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What is a report?
In technical terms, the definition of a report is pretty vague: any account, spoken or written, of the matters concerning a particular topic. This could refer to anything from a courtroom testimony to a grade schooler’s book report .
Really, when people talk about “reports,” they’re usually referring to official documents outlining the facts of a topic, typically written by an expert on the subject or someone assigned to investigate it. There are different types of reports, explained in the next section, but they mostly fit this description.
What kind of information is shared in reports? Although all facts are welcome, reports, in particular, tend to feature these types of content:
- Details of an event or situation
- The consequences or ongoing effect of an event or situation
- Evaluation of statistical data or analytics
- Interpretations from the information in the report
- Predictions or recommendations based on the information in the report
- How the information relates to other events or reports
Reports are closely related to essay writing , although there are some clear distinctions. While both rely on facts, essays add the personal opinions and arguments of the authors. Reports typically stick only to the facts, although they may include some of the author’s interpretation of these facts, most likely in the conclusion.
Moreover, reports are heavily organized, commonly with tables of contents and copious headings and subheadings. This makes it easier for readers to scan reports for the information they’re looking for. Essays, on the other hand, are meant to be read start to finish, not browsed for specific insights.
Types of reports
There are a few different types of reports, depending on the purpose and to whom you present your report. Here’s a quick list of the common types of reports:
- Academic report: Tests a student’s comprehension of the subject matter, such as book reports, reports on historical events, and biographies
- Business reports: Identifies information useful in business strategy, such as marketing reports, internal memos, SWOT analysis, and feasibility reports
- Scientific reports: Shares research findings, such as research papers and case studies, typically in science journals
Reports can be further divided into categories based on how they are written. For example, a report could be formal or informal, short or long, and internal or external. In business, a vertical report shares information with people on different levels of the hierarchy (i.e., people who work above you and below you), while a lateral report is for people on the author’s same level, but in different departments.
There are as many types of reports as there are writing styles, but in this guide, we focus on academic reports, which tend to be formal and informational.
>>Read More: What Is Academic Writing?
What is the structure of a report?
The structure of a report depends on the type of report and the requirements of the assignment. While reports can use their own unique structure, most follow this basic template:
- Executive summary: Just like an abstract in an academic paper, an executive summary is a standalone section that summarizes the findings in your report so readers know what to expect. These are mostly for official reports and less so for school reports.
- Introduction: Setting up the body of the report, your introduction explains the overall topic that you’re about to discuss, with your thesis statement and any need-to-know background information before you get into your own findings.
- Body: The body of the report explains all your major discoveries, broken up into headings and subheadings. The body makes up the majority of the entire report; whereas the introduction and conclusion are just a few paragraphs each, the body can go on for pages.
- Conclusion: The conclusion is where you bring together all the information in your report and come to a definitive interpretation or judgment. This is usually where the author inputs their own personal opinions or inferences.
If you’re familiar with how to write a research paper , you’ll notice that report writing follows the same introduction-body-conclusion structure, sometimes adding an executive summary. Reports usually have their own additional requirements as well, such as title pages and tables of content, which we explain in the next section.
What should be included in a report?
There are no firm requirements for what’s included in a report. Every school, company, laboratory, task manager, and teacher can make their own format, depending on their unique needs. In general, though, be on the lookout for these particular requirements—they tend to crop up a lot:
- Title page: Official reports often use a title page to keep things organized; if a person has to read multiple reports, title pages make them easier to keep track of.
- Table of contents: Just like in books, the table of contents helps readers go directly to the section they’re interested in, allowing for faster browsing.
- Page numbering: A common courtesy if you’re writing a longer report, page numbering makes sure the pages are in order in the case of mix-ups or misprints.
- Headings and subheadings: Reports are typically broken up into sections, divided by headings and subheadings, to facilitate browsing and scanning.
- Citations: If you’re citing information from another source, the citations guidelines tell you the recommended format.
- Works cited page: A bibliography at the end of the report lists credits and the legal information for the other sources you got information from.
As always, refer to the assignment for the specific guidelines on each of these. The people who read the report should tell you which style guides or formatting they require.
How to write a report in 7 steps
Now let’s get into the specifics of how to write a report. Follow the seven steps on report writing below to take you from an idea to a completed paper.
1 Choose a topic based on the assignment
Before you start writing, you need to pick the topic of your report. Often, the topic is assigned for you, as with most business reports, or predetermined by the nature of your work, as with scientific reports. If that’s the case, you can ignore this step and move on.
If you’re in charge of choosing your own topic, as with a lot of academic reports, then this is one of the most important steps in the whole writing process. Try to pick a topic that fits these two criteria:
- There’s adequate information: Choose a topic that’s not too general but not too specific, with enough information to fill your report without padding, but not too much that you can’t cover everything.
- It’s something you’re interested in: Although this isn’t a strict requirement, it does help the quality of a report if you’re engaged by the subject matter.
Of course, don’t forget the instructions of the assignment, including length, so keep those in the back of your head when deciding.
2 Conduct research
With business and scientific reports, the research is usually your own or provided by the company—although there’s still plenty of digging for external sources in both.
For academic papers, you’re largely on your own for research, unless you’re required to use class materials. That’s one of the reasons why choosing the right topic is so crucial; you won’t go far if the topic you picked doesn’t have enough available research.
The key is to search only for reputable sources: official documents, other reports, research papers, case studies, books from respected authors, etc. Feel free to use research cited in other similar reports. You can often find a lot of information online through search engines, but a quick trip to the library can also help in a pinch.
3 Write a thesis statement
Before you go any further, write a thesis statement to help you conceptualize the main theme of your report. Just like the topic sentence of a paragraph, the thesis statement summarizes the main point of your writing, in this case, the report.
Once you’ve collected enough research, you should notice some trends and patterns in the information. If these patterns all infer or lead up to a bigger, overarching point, that’s your thesis statement.
For example, if you were writing a report on the wages of fast-food employees, your thesis might be something like, “Although wages used to be commensurate with living expenses, after years of stagnation they are no longer adequate.” From there, the rest of your report will elaborate on that thesis, with ample evidence and supporting arguments.
It’s good to include your thesis statement in both the executive summary and introduction of your report, but you still want to figure it out early so you know which direction to go when you work on your outline next.
4 Prepare an outline
Writing an outline is recommended for all kinds of writing, but it’s especially useful for reports given their emphasis on organization. Because reports are often separated by headings and subheadings, a solid outline makes sure you stay on track while writing without missing anything.
Really, you should start thinking about your outline during the research phase, when you start to notice patterns and trends. If you’re stuck, try making a list of all the key points, details, and evidence you want to mention. See if you can fit them into general and specific categories, which you can turn into headings and subheadings respectively.
5 Write a rough draft
Actually writing the rough draft , or first draft, is usually the most time-consuming step. Here’s where you take all the information from your research and put it into words. To avoid getting overwhelmed, simply follow your outline step by step to make sure you don’t accidentally leave out anything.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes; that’s the number one rule for writing a rough draft. Expecting your first draft to be perfect adds a lot of pressure. Instead, write in a natural and relaxed way, and worry about the specific details like word choice and correcting mistakes later. That’s what the last two steps are for, anyway.
6 Revise and edit your report
Once your rough draft is finished, it’s time to go back and start fixing the mistakes you ignored the first time around. (Before you dive right back in, though, it helps to sleep on it to start editing fresh, or at least take a small break to unwind from writing the rough draft.)
We recommend first rereading your report for any major issues, such as cutting or moving around entire sentences and paragraphs. Sometimes you’ll find your data doesn’t line up, or that you misinterpreted a key piece of evidence. This is the right time to fix the “big picture” mistakes and rewrite any longer sections as needed.
If you’re unfamiliar with what to look for when editing, you can read our previous guide with some more advanced self-editing tips .
7 Proofread and check for mistakes
Last, it pays to go over your report one final time, just to optimize your wording and check for grammatical or spelling mistakes. In the previous step you checked for “big picture” mistakes, but here you’re looking for specific, even nitpicky problems.
A writing assistant like Grammarly flags those issues for you. Grammarly’s free version points out any spelling and grammatical mistakes while you write, with suggestions to improve your writing that you can apply with just one click. The Premium version offers even more advanced features, such as tone adjustments and word choice recommendations for taking your writing to the next level.
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8 steps to write an effective project status report
Effective project status reports are the best way to keep your stakeholders aligned and in the loop during your project progress. These high-level updates proactively let your team know if a project is on track, at risk, or off track—so you can course correct if necessary to hit your deadlines every time. Learn how to create project status reports in a few easy steps, plus check out a template you can use right away.
It’s the end of the week and here you are again: having to dig through a variety of spreadsheets, emails, and tools to patch together an update of how your project is doing.
Instead of manually assembling this information, use a project status report template to streamline this process for you. That way, you spend less time on unnecessary data gathering and more time on work that matters.
Whether you’re gearing up for your first ever project status report or you’re looking for a better system than the one you currently use, this article will walk you through what a progress report is, how you can build one, and how to use project status reports to hit your project deadlines on time, every time. Here’s how.
What is a project status report?
Project status reports are timely updates on the progress of your projects. Written concisely, project reports offer high-level information about project progress, so team members get at-a-glance insight into what’s happening within the project. With a timely status report, you can ensure your entire project team and cross-functional stakeholders understand what’s on track, what’s blocked, and what’s coming next.
Regularly sharing project status reports is important because they help you keep all project stakeholders in the loop and aligned on how your project is progressing. They answer the questions everyone has before team members even have a chance to ask them. They show and tell your team that you’re on track, making you (and everyone else) feel confident.
How often you share project status reports depends on your project’s timeline. Some projects benefit from weekly reporting, while others only need to be updated once a month. Schedule your project reports as frequently as is helpful for your stakeholders. These shouldn’t be reactive reports on things going poorly—rather, effective reports keep your team updated on the project’s progress, whether the project is on track, at risk, or off track.
The benefits of effective project reporting
Reporting isn’t just something you should do for the sake of doing it. Effective reporting has a variety of benefits. When you correctly report on project status, you effectively:
Keep track of project health
The worst thing for a project is when you arrive at the end of the timeline and realize you were off track the whole time. No one likes being blindsided—and as the project manager, you’re empowered to make sure your team is aware of your project health at all times.
Progress reports are a way to do that without too much manual work. Because these reports mix high-level summaries with some important metrics, everyone has a sense of the project's health. And if the project is off track? You can quickly and proactively fix it—so you still hit your project deadline on time and on budget.
Summarize project progress
Project status reports are not real-time reports. These reports are summaries of what happened during the past week, two weeks, or month of project work. They’re an opportunity for your stakeholders to stay informed on how well you’re sticking to the project plan .
If you’re looking for tips on how to report on projects in real time, check out our article on universal reporting tools for every team .
Reduce manual work
As the project manager, you already have enough on your plate. You don’t need to also spend hours every week or month grabbing data from different places. Project reporting tools make it easy to find all of this information in one place, and create a project status report with the click of a button.
Share next steps and action items
Project status reports should go out to your project team, project sponsor, important stakeholders, and cross-functional team members. Because these are high-level reports, they’re appropriate for anyone who wants to stay informed about project progress.
This is the optimal way to let everyone know what’s happening without getting into the details. If there are important project next steps or action items, share them here so everyone knows what to expect.
Proactively identify blockers
If your project isn’t on track, your status report lets others know what the delay is and what you’re doing to resolve any blockers, allowing you to show off your proactive approach to getting things back to where they should be. Similar to the project risk management process , proactive status reporting helps you identify and overcome issues before they impact your project timeline.
Say goodbye to status meetings
The day of the status meeting is over. We now know these aren’t effective ways to spend your time. Unlike face-to-face meetings, project status reports are shared in a central tool that team members can check asynchronously when they want to. They can refer back to the information, or dig deeper into the project if necessary. Save your face-to-face meeting time for valuable meetings like brainstormings or all hands.
Before you report: Combine reporting with effective project management
The biggest benefit of project status reporting is that it reduces your manual work, centralizes information, and makes it easy to keep everyone up to date. If your information is scattered across multiple tools, you can’t effectively use project reporting templates—you still need to manually open this Excel spreadsheet and that team email to gather your information.
Instead, make sure you’re using project management software as your central source of truth. With project management software you:
Have a central source of truth so team members can see who’s doing what by when.
Can easily visualize project information in a Gantt chart , Kanban board , calendar, or spreadsheet-style list view.
Create status reports with the click of a button.
Offer a place for team members who read the status report and want more details to look and find the information they need.
Have access to additional project information, like your project plan, communication plan , project goals, milestones, deliverables , and more.
Naturally, we think Asana is a great option. Asana is a work management tool your entire team can use. Your cross-functional collaborators need a way to view past status reports. Your key stakeholders need a bird’s eye view of the entire program or project portfolio management progress. And your team members need a way to track individual work throughout the project lifecycle.
8 steps to write a great project status report
So, how do you go about doing project status reports? Be sure to create a clear structure you can use consistently for all future status reports. You should also make sure it matches with your project brief to keep your report on topic.
Follow this guide to understand what to include in your project status report, and watch as we put each step into practice with an example of an Employee Satisfaction project.
1. Build your report where work lives
Before you build your report, make sure you’re already tracking your work information in a project management tool. That way, you don’t have to manually grab information from a host of sources—instead, you can reduce manual work and create a report with a few clicks.
Starting off with a project management tool makes it easy to capture dependencies and note upcoming tasks so you’re never blindsided about your project health.
2. Name your report
A great option is to simply use the project name for clarity. If you’re reporting on this project regularly, you should also include a date or timestamp.
Example project report title: February 2020 - Employee satisfaction initiative
3. Indicate project health
The project health is the current status of the project. Project health may change from report to report, especially if you run into blockers or unblock big project risks. Look for a project management tool that allows you to communicate the project’s status and whether or not it’s on track. One way to do this is to use a color coding system (green = on track, yellow = at risk, red = off track).
Example project health update: Project status is on track.
4. Quickly summarize the status report
Your project status report summary should be brief—about 2-3 sentences. The goal here is to give readers who may not have time to read the entire report a quick TL;DR of the most important facts.
This is the first section of your report, so it’s the best place to:
Flag major blockers
Note unexpected project risks
Example status report summary: Our survey results are in and being reviewed. At first glance, we’re seeing 80% employee satisfaction, up 3 points from the last survey. The Engagement Committee is working with the Executive team on what new engagement initiatives to implement in our key target areas, which include career growth and transparency.
5. Add a high-level overview of each key area
Depending on your project, your key areas may vary from report to report, or they may stay consistent. For example, in an Agile project that’s continuously improving, you’d likely use dynamic key areas that cover the things your team worked on during the last sprint. Alternatively, for an event planning project, there are a set number of key areas that you always want to touch on, like promotion, signups, and speakers.
For each key area in the status report, add a few bullet points that give an update on progress, accomplishments, and upcoming work.
Example high-level overview of a key area: Survey results
70% of employees took the satisfaction survey.
Our overall satisfaction rating is 80%.
Only 57% of employees report having a clear path towards career advancement, down 5% since the last survey.
41% of employees listed transparency as the number one improvement they’d like to see.
6. Add links to other documents or resources
While you shouldn’t include every little detail about how your project is going, some people will want to know more. For stakeholders who are looking for more in-depth information, provide links to documents or resources. This can include more specific project information, like links to specific project milestones , or the broader impacts of the project, like a reference to the business goals the project is contributing to.
Example: Include a link to the employee satisfaction survey , as well as to the larger company OKR around increasing employee engagement over the course of the fiscal year.
7. Flag any blockers the project has run into
All projects run into roadblocks. These can come in the form of project risks , unexpected increases to the budget , or delays that impact the project timeline . Keeping stakeholders in the loop when issues arise will help everyone adjust accordingly to stay on track.
Example roadblock: The executive team wants to look at results before the engagement committee meets again, but won’t be able to do so for another three weeks. This will delay our overall project timeline.
8. Highlight next steps
These could include a list of next steps, kudos you want to give someone, or anything else you want to highlight.
Example: Thank you Sarah A. for sending out multiple communications to employees encouraging them to participate in the survey!
Template for creating your project status report
To quickly put everything you learned in the previous section to use, write your next project status report using this easy-to-fill-out template:
Name your report. This can be as simple as the project name and the date of the report.
Is the project on track, at risk, or delayed?
Include a short description of the most important takeaways from your project status report here. Keep in mind that busy stakeholders may only look at this section, so include any highlights or blockers the entire team needs to know about
Key area 1: High-level overview
Specific details about progress, accomplishments, and upcoming work.
Key area 2: High-level overview
Key area 3: High-level overview
Additional information and links:
Link to relevant project details or higher-level project information that stakeholders might be curious about. This section is a chance for team members to dig deeper on specifics, or understand how the project initiative fits into your larger strategic goals .
Are there any challenges you’re facing? How will you resolve them?
Additional notes or highlights:
Are there any additional things your team needs to know? What are the main next steps?
Example project status report
While a how-to guide on writing project status reports is helpful, sometimes seeing a real-life example allows you to really see what your own update could look like, right? We thought you might agree, so here’s an example you may find useful:
Report name: Ebook launch
Project status: On track
Great progress this week! We are still in the concept phase, but Avery Lomax will be choosing a topic this week. Content and Design teams are standing by and ready to get started once we give the go ahead.
Planning team met to discuss an overall topic
We have three final ideas and will choose one on Friday
A brief is due to the Content team the following Thursday
The Content team is ready to start writing copy as soon as our idea is finalized
They are gathering pertinent company information that should be included
Design reviewed five ebook examples to determine the style they liked
They will be choosing a template by next Tuesday
Jen is out of the office all next week so please direct any content questions to Joy
Thank you to Henry for curating a huge list of topics for us to choose from!
The e-book’s deadline is tight, as we all know. It’s critical that we’re all working in our project management tool to keep everyone organized and on track. Thanks!
Streamline reporting with a work management tool
The above report is clear and easy to follow. By building this report in a work management tool like Asana, you can automatically fill each section but the summary. Here’s what the above report looks like in Asana:
Project status reporting best practices
Now you know what to include in your project status report, but you may still have a few additional questions. As you’re creating status reports for your project, these best practices will help you formulate a winning update.
How often should you report out?
The frequency with which you send project updates depends on the type of project you’re running. If your project has a short timeframe, or if things are moving quickly, aim to send weekly project status reports. Alternatively, if the initiative you’re reporting on is a long-term project, you probably only need to send biweekly or even monthly reports. The most important thing is making sure your project stakeholders are up to date.
When you use a project reporting tool, you can set a task for yourself to always send status reports on a certain day each week. These recurring reminders make it easy to keep stakeholders informed, whether you're sending weekly status updates or monthly progress reports. Either way, stakeholders will begin to expect your updates, which means less frequent check-ins from them (plus they’ll appreciate always being in the loop).
By sending regular reports, you can avoid multiple meetings related to a project (we all know unnecessary meetings have their own reputation ). Skip the check-in meetings and save your time for more important work.
Who should you include?
It depends on the project and who is involved, but typically plan to send an update to any stakeholders working on your project. You should have created a stakeholder analysis—outlining all stakeholders, sponsors, and team members—during the project planning process, but refer to your project plan if you aren’t sure.
Even if that week’s status report doesn’t affect a particular team member, you should still share it with everyone. It’s important for everyone to have a high-level overview. Team members who don’t need to review the report in depth can quickly skim your summary section, while others who are more involved can dive into the details you’ve provided.
How detailed should you get?
A project status report shouldn’t offer every little detail. Let the work tell the story—you’re simply curating information and adding a little color. Think of a project status report as a top line message—just the most important pieces of your project that affect most of stakeholders should be included.
You should always indicate whether the project is on track, at risk, or off track, give a quick summary of what’s complete and what’s upcoming, then link out to other resources for people who want more details.
Where should you write your project status report?
The best way to draft and share status updates is with a work management tool . Look for a tool that offers an overview of your project, so your team has a central source of truth for all project-related work. That way, instead of managing projects in spreadsheets , you can keep it all—status updates, project briefs, key deliverables, and important project milestones—in one place. Your reports will be easily shareable, and stakeholders can look back on previous reports at any time, avoiding email overload on your end.
Wrapping your project up: summarizing your work
The status reports we’ve been talking about are always sent during a project to keep everyone in the loop. However, once the project is finished, it’s smart to send out a final summary report. Think of this as the executive summary for your project. This is your chance to offer stakeholders a wrap-up to the project. Use it to officially close it out.
Again, it’s a high-level overview, but instead of including updates and statuses, you’ll provide a summary of how the overall project went. Here are a few questions to answer in a project summary report:
What were the goals of this project and were they met?
Was the project completed on time and on budget (if applicable)?
What successes should be highlighted?
What challenges did we run into?
What can we learn from this project to help us on future projects?
Keep every stakeholder on track with status reports that write themselves
If you’re looking to over-deliver on your next project, try sending project status updates. They keep you productive, efficient, and accountable, while giving everyone else a quick (and engaging) look into what’s been happening.
Use the resources we’ve provided to create reports that give just enough information without diving into too much detail. Find a project management solution like Asana that has features designed specifically to help with status reports. You’ll save time and be as organized as possible.
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How to Write a Project Report
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What Is a Project Report?
Why are project reports important, examples of project reports, tips for creating useful project reports.
- Pinpoint the purpose: Understand the purpose of the project report and what you are being asked to convey.
- Know the audience: Who are you creating the report for, and what they want to know about the project?
- Choose a report format: Choose whether it will be a presentation, a link to a file, or a printed document.
- Draft the report: Create a rough draft of what you are preparing and review it carefully. Make sure you are including all of the details you want to share with the team, and reach out to team leads to fill in any gaps before finalizing.
- Consider layout: Give the report a good structure and effective layout. Make it easy to spot the most important information first at a scan, and list other details as secondary.
- Highlight key content: If a report is more than a few pages in length, create a table of contents and subheadings for easy review. Readers should be able to quickly find key information.
- Proofread: Use simple and easy-to-read language that is free of grammatical, spelling, and punctuation errors.
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How to Write a Project Management Report
A project management report is a summary overview of the current status of a project. It is a formal record of the state of a project at a given time. The exact form and details may vary depending on your company and project management office requirements. Many businesses have their own project management report templates their project managers adhere to.
Depending on the size and complexity of your projects, a project management report may be required weekly or monthly. It is provided to all project stakeholders to help keep them up to date with the progress of the project and any pressing challenges it may be facing.
Project management reports are useful for all sorts of different types of projects across a variety of industries. For example:
- A marketing project manager could provide a regular project status report to the entire organization so they can keep tabs on how the company rebrand is progressing
- A software development team might use resource reports to effectively plan a sprint and ensure they have the resources they need
- An executive might present a project risk report to the company’s board of directors to get guidance and help navigating potential issues and roadblocks
- A project manager could use a project performance report to monitor the project budget, schedule, and success metrics, and share that crucial information with leaders
- A leadership team could use a time tracking report to understand how the team’s time is being used and how the team could become more efficient
That’s only the beginning. There are numerous types of project management reports that can be used for an assortment of project goals and scenarios.
Most project management reports are single-pagers but may have appendices or links to more information for stakeholders who wish to delve into the details. However, project reporting can be much more in-depth in some companies and circumstances.
But regardless of the specific report, the point remains the same: Project management reports are intended to provide a clearer understanding of a project — whether it’s only getting started, in progress, or just wrapped up.
Project management reports are as unique as projects themselves.
Whether you’re creating a one-page report or a comprehensive one, Wrike is the must-have tool for project planning, monitoring, and reporting.
What is included in a project management report?
As you figure out how to prepare a project report, you’re bound to have one big question: What should you include?
The information you include in your project management report will largely depend on the type of project, the scope of the project, your organizational processes, as well as your goal in generating a project report in the first place.
Understanding and appropriately allocating project resources will likely require more detail and a far more comprehensive report than providing a straightforward status update. And in general, more complex projects typically require more complex project reports.
With that said, there are some standard elements that apply to project reports across nearly every industry, organization, and type of project. Whether you need them all or only a few, here are some key characteristics to consider when creating your own project report.
Identifying project information
Think of this as the “basics” of your project. While it might seem like overkill to include it in every single project report you create, doing so (ideally, near the top of your report) gives people the necessary context they need about the project before reviewing the report.
You’re essentially laying the groundwork for them, which is especially important for people who might not be privy to every single report or who only need to be kept updated at a high level. They aren’t as close to the project, so they likely require regular refreshers.
- Project name: Give your project a name to quickly and easily identify it. Resist the urge to get too creative — instead, name your project something instantly recognizable and intuitive (for example, “CompanyXYZ Website Revamp”).
- Project number (if it has one): If your company uses project numbers or any other identifying code, include that on each report as well.
- Name of project manager: If and when people have questions after reviewing the report, this means they can quickly understand their best point of contact for more information.
- Project sponsor(s): Your project sponsor is the person (or people) at the senior leadership level that’s providing resources and overall support for the project. For many people, it’s easy to confuse this person with the project manager. So, listing the sponsor on each report provides clarity about those roles.
- Start date of the project: Timing matters for projects. Including the project’s start date at the top of the report helps people instantly glean how long the project has been progressing and how much time has already been invested.
- Expected end date: Projects don’t stretch into eternity (at least, they shouldn’t). Including the project’s anticipated end date with the start date means people can understand the overall timeframe of the project.
- Customer name and information: If you work in professional services or any industry where you’re doing work for customers, the customer’s name and other identifying details should be included on the project report. That helps ensure accuracy in reporting and also makes file management a little easier.
- Date the project report is released: Particularly for long projects, you could generate many reports throughout the process — maybe even dozens of them. Dating each project report means you can maintain a paper trail and ensure those reports are easy to refer back to and make sense of in the future.
Key metrics of project success
Exactly what metrics you report on will depend on the intention of your overall report. For example, a project risk report will dedicate much more space and detail to potential threats to the project while a project status report will focus far more on the tasks that have been completed and what’s still left to do.
It’s important to include some project success metrics in each report you generate. Much like the basic identifying project information, it’s helpful context for any team members or stakeholders who review the report. Think of it almost like the project’s highlight reel. It’s a quick rundown of project performance that should be included at the beginning of your report (after the identifying information) or at the very end, depending on your report formatting.
- Schedule progress against plan: Is the project ahead of or behind schedule? How far ahead or how far behind? This helps people understand a more realistic timeline as well as how much time is left for the project.
- Current cost versus budget: Is the project under budget or over? How much over or under? It can also be helpful to include a few notes or bullet points about how the budget or project plan will be adjusted or managed moving forward, particularly if you’ve already experienced severe overages.
- Current scope compared to plan: Has the project scope changed since the project began? If so, how? Understanding how the scope evolves throughout the project will make it easier for everyone to manage resources and expectations.
- Planned versus actual resourcing: Are any resources missing or overallocated? How will you secure or reallocate resources moving forward?
- Overview of risks: Are there any high risks that need to be managed?
- Current quality findings: Has quality testing been done? Were there any issues?
Additional information to include
- Project change management : This is usually an update of any pending and approved change requests for the project.
- Actions taken: This provides a high-level summary of key actions taken and decisions made since the last project report. It can also include accomplishments, such as milestones recently met.
- Decisions required: If there is a crucial decision that needs to be made, this is the right place to share it, whose decision it is, and when it’s due. An example could be sponsor approval for the project management plan .
- Upcoming milestones: Deliverables due soon and milestones approaching are communicated here.
- Task lists : This is a list of all the tasks to be completed to deliver the project successfully. Task lists should have the start and end dates of the included tasks.
Types of project management reports
Below is a list of the most important project management reports you may need to track and report on your project status.
Time tracking reports
Time tracking reports show what projects your team members are spending time on. This helps you improve project management and communicate adequately with stakeholders about a project ’ s progress. Time tracking reports provide useful data to improve scheduling and resource management and boost revenue, especially in professional services agencies and companies.
Project status reports
Project status reports communicate how a project is progressing within a specific period. This helps to keep stakeholders updated on the project ’ s progress and any emerging issues with cost, scope, schedules, or risks. You can easily compare a project status report to the project baseline or project plan to assess how well it is doing. Project status reports typically include the work that ’ s been completed, a summary of the project’s costs and schedule, a plan for what is to follow, and any issues and risks.
Project health reports
Project health reports provide a snapshot of the status of a project. This helps to share how well or poorly a project is doing. Project health reports show what ’ s been done, what ’ s on schedule, and what ’ s overdue. They make it easy to communicate to team members and stakeholders about the overall health of a project. A project health report makes it obvious if you ’ ve stayed on track or deviated far from the project plan. It brings to the forefront the most important tasks to tackle to get a project back on the intended path. Different teams and companies may have unique ways of organizing their own project health reports.
Project risk reports
Project risk reports identify and categorize risks in a project based on their severity and likelihood of happening. This helps prioritize issues and eliminate harmful risks before they cause irreparable damage or project failure. Project risk reports communicate problems to stakeholders so they can take action. The goal of project risk reports is to catch and identify project risks before they occur.
Variance reports show how a project has deviated from the project plan or baseline. This helps compare how a project is doing with the project plan and reduce any chances of project failure. With a variance report, project teams can monitor actual and planned performances and ensure they are on track with the project scope, costs, and schedules. This helps mitigate risks and implement change management procedures where necessary. Variance reports also aid in planning for future projects.
Resource reports are helpful for managing available resources and planning a successful project. You can use them to adjust workloads and make decisions to make the project workflow more efficient and effective. Resource reports take costs, schedule, and scope of work remaining into consideration to make the best resourcing decisions for the project and team. It’s easy to see how much team members have on their plate and redistribute work to achieve the desired results and complete the project.
How often should you report on projects as a manager?
There’s no set cadence for your project reports. However, when determining how often you should send a project report to the team or other stakeholders, here are a few important elements to think through:
- How long is the project’s timeline? For a project that spans many months, reporting daily would be overkill. But for a project that only spans a week or two, a quick daily report could be warranted. The duration of your overall project is one of your most important considerations when figuring out how often to create and share project reports.
- What are client or stakeholder expectations? Are you creating deliverables for clients that expect frequent communication? Or have stakeholders expressed that they’d like regular weekly updates? Keep in mind that being a project manager is ultimately a service position, so you’ll need to consider other people’s needs, expectations, and preferences in terms of reporting cadence.
- How much has the project changed? Whether the project scope has ballooned, broader organizational goals have shifted substantially, or the team recently achieved a significant project milestone, major and consequential changes to the project almost always warrant a report and an update to stakeholders — even if it’s not your “regularly scheduled” time to send one.
If you still feel unsure about how often to report on projects, have a conversation with the project team and any relevant stakeholders to get their insights on a cadence that would keep them informed without making them feel overwhelmed.
Tips for effective project reporting
When writing a project management report, it is essential to keep the following in mind:
- Be concise and share results and outcomes: Don't focus on details your stakeholders don't need to know. Try to use bullet points, not paragraphs. If you create a 10-page document every week, no one is likely to read it. Plus, you won't have time to manage the actual project.
- Understand your audience: Make sure the project report is not too technical and avoid jargon. Otherwise, your stakeholders won't be able to understand it.
- Provide context: Don't just say a deliverable will be two weeks late. Share how it will impact the rest of the project and what actions are being taken to resolve it. Stakeholders need to know how significant the problem truly is.
- Be clear about any asks: If you require your stakeholders to do something, make sure you explicitly mention who is responsible, what they are responsible for, and when it needs to be done.
- Make it visual: Use project management software that offers project management report templates . This allows stakeholders to quickly identify which projects are struggling and what areas they are struggling with before reading further into the project report. Executives may receive dozens of project management reports (or more) every week, so making your project reports easy to read is crucial.
Project management report example
How can Wrike help you with project management reports?
Learning how to write a management report for your projects might seem daunting, but using the right software can make all the difference in the reporting process — whether you’re reporting on a small project or are tasked with enterprise project management .
Wrike has all of the features you need to make every type of project a success, including reports . These reports are completely customizable and make it easy to gather all of the data you need from your tasks and projects and generate a helpful summary that you, your team, and all of your stakeholders can easily understand.
No more combing through spreadsheets or scrolling through endless email threads to find and compile the information you need. Wrike will gather your project-related information right from the source and save you all of the mundane and tedious work that’s usually synonymous with reporting.
And if you’re tired of reports being lost, misfiled, or even hitting the recycling bin after a cursory glance, Wrike makes storage and management of your reports easy too. You can access and view all reports created by or shared with you by simply clicking “Reports.” It’s painless to find the information you need and you also have the peace of mind that you can always refer back to those reports in the future.
Ready to jump in with project reporting that’s more helpful and less of a hassle? Get started with a two-week free trial of Wrike today and see how simple project management reports can be.
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How to write a project report - guide & templates, table of contents, what is a project outline, what is a project report.
A project report is a document created for a team or company that ensures a project stays on track. The project report should describe progress, milestones, and roadblocks.
Why is a project report important?
Project Reports are a core part of any project management process. There are a few key documents necessary for successful project progress, and a project report is undoubtedly one of them.
Alongside a project plan, a project report holds significant weight in justifying budgets, team members, tools, and other resources. In this article, we'll explore one of the two types of project reports any project manager needs to be able to write.Report number one is an ongoing project status report ; this report will be needed on more than one occasion throughout a project's life span and explores the overall progress of the project.
Report number two is a project completion report ; this report comes at the end of the project and wraps everything up.
We've also provided a project report template that you can adapt to your project and project report type that you need.
A Complete Guide to Project Reports
Why write a project report in the first place.
This report is so crucial in keeping key players up to date - we'll explore who exactly you need to be writing for in the next point. A project status report is needed to give a summary of a project , significant changes, and to keep a record of the project's progress.
A project status report adds milestones and target reminders to the process. Without the report, many project teams will struggle to keep up the momentum on long term projects.
Who prepares project reports?
A project status report is typically prepared by insiders who are involved in its day-to-day workings. Usually this is the project management team, a body of project managers and department executives with general or specific knowledge of the project.
Who is a project status report for?
A project report will need to be written for different people; each stakeholder will require different information that's important to them - remember this when putting together the progress of the project. It's not a one size fits all situation.
You may be dealing with sensitive information that could damage relationships or even severe them if put in front of the wrong eyes. At the same time, you could be releasing information that isn't relevant to certain people; in receiving an onslaught of information someone may miss the data or info that is specifically important for their eyes.
Different people that need to see an ongoing project status report:
- Project Stakeholders need the status report to stay in the loop and aligned with other team members
- Project Team need to know the project's progress across all departments and divisions
- Project Sponsors use the project status report to provide necessary guidance and resources to the teams and managers
- Leadership uses project status reports to stay apprised of the project's progress
- Finance Team use the project status report to determine areas that need funding allocation and to avoid potential cost overruns
- Contractors can see the project's priorities and timelines and allocate time and resources accordingly
- Project Management uses the status report to produce project manager reports on their department's progress
When to write a project status report?
This largely depends on the timeline (or predicted timeline for that matter) outlined in your project manager reports . If your project is expected to run over a few years, it may be best to create quarterly project status reports. However, if your project is set to run around six months to a year, monthly is recommended.
For all of the help that project status reports provide, it's important to remember that they can be pretty time consuming to make. We've provided a sample project report in this article to make your job easier; however, it's still a process. This is why we recommend incorporating a project proposal template as well.
For all the time a project manager is putting into a status report, they're not putting the work into managing their team. Pick a regular period to deliver the report in and put it in the Gantt calendar. Be conscious of the time it consumes, and try to stick to the real-time delivery dates.
In doing this, you'll save a lot of time with unnecessary communication from different players. Questions like "What’s the status of XYZ?" "How's the budget looking for XYZ for the project?" can all wait for the regular report- leaving the team to focus on their job.
How to write a Project Report in 7 Steps
Step 1: define your objectives.
Clearly state the purpose of the report and explain why it is necessary. Defining your objectives and providing smart goal examples can help you stay focused while writing and keep those reading the report engaged and informed.
Step 2: Have Your Audience in Mind
When writing project reports, tailor the content and your tone of voice to the audience as much as possible. Use impactful graphics and important data to connect with the people who will be reading this report.
Step 3: Write the Outline
Before you start writing, first create a list of all the sections in your report. For more details, check "What to Include in a Project Status" below, or take a look at our status report templates .
Step 4: First Draft
After your outline and analysis, you can start a rough draft. As the name suggests, it doesn't need to be perfect. If you are looking for a tool to help you put together project reports, try our document editor .
Step 5: Fine Tune Your Analysis
As time permits and new information comes in, fill in any data gaps or highlight any current or potential issues you find. Use the 'Findings' section to focus on the values, and make clear any limitations of the analysis.
Step 6: Recommend Next Steps
Once you have completed your data analysis, you will be able to propose actionable ideas towards the project's mutually desired outcome. The more solid your analysis and findings are, the more credible your project reports will be.
Step 7: Polish for Distribution
Before you send your report, proofread for grammar, spelling, and typos so that your final document looks as professional as possible. If you're sending the report in a group email, keep an eye on the file size.
What to include in a project status report?
Depending on who you're writing the report for, this will change. However, there are a few core elements to include for the project progress , despite who is reading the project report.
If you are wondering how to write a report about a project, start with an executive summary. Short overviews provide the reader with the essential takeaways from the report without having to read all the project details. Executive summaries are very helpful for those who need a quick glance at the project's general direction without wading through a lot of data.
In the project status report, the project's progress is tracked with real metrics. This provides an overview of the project's status and budget and also identifies potential risks and issues. This data-driven approach provides project management with feedback and enables them to make adjustments.
It's important to document all of the resources you had mapped out in your project plan . What do you have left still available? What have you used and found insufficient? Of what resources do you need more? This can include project management tools and physical resources like software or a PDF, but also human resources.
Timelines and targets
It's essential to give everyone an overview of your project timelines in these status reports, especially those that are outside of your project team and not using the project management software you're using.
At this point, be realistic with your timelines, not optimistic . Refer back to your Gantt calendar to help with this. Save your optimism for team meetings to spur your project team on in working more efficiently and hitting deadlines. In the reporting part, you need to be honest with your timelines and deliverables, both with the goals you have or have not hit and those you expect to be on time with or not.
Many players further down the line will be working on the information you provided in this section of the project reports, it therefore needs to be accurate so they can manage their workload and be available on the predicted date.
This can radically vary but needs to be anything notable that's happened and is no longer abiding by the initial project plan. If you're using editable report samples for projects rather than a PDF, you can go back and edit your project plan to accommodate changes.
However, it's not recommended. You can't guarantee that your team will continuously be referencing the initial project plan once they've got a clear scope of what they need to do for the entire project.
Funding & budgets
The project manager should use the time dedicated to a project status report to reflect his or her budget. Accounting skills are vital for a project manager's success, and being able to handle a large budget will come in handy when it comes to managing the overall funding of a project.
In this part of the report, give a clear overview of expenses, predicted expenses, and visually highlights where you were over or under budget in real-time. The team can learn from this, not only for future projects but even for next month's project management status report.
Use goals and targets to quantitatively identify if the team is performing well. While doing this, it's essential to consider the hurdles they've had to jump along the way. Have they faced exceptional circumstances that were not planned? If so, how did they cope and react to these challenges?
This is the final part of the Project Status report and one of the most important skill sets for a successful project manager: Risk Management . A project manager needs to have a certain amount of hindsight at play in their everyday work and be able to give an executive summary of all risks.
In the project status report, give an overview of any predicted risks and try to display them tiered so that any reader has a clear overview of what the greatest risks are right through to very low-level risks, and what can be done to prevent them. Always have a Plan B and adapt it every time a project status report is created.
The risk management report is often best accompanied by a risk analysis meeting. Come out of your meeting with detailed meeting minutes and use your team's knowledge and perspective to give a comprehensive overview of all the risks at play.
Project Report Examples
There are several different types of project reports. Here are some project reporting examples of the most widely used types.
Project Status Report
A project status report is used to communicate the project’s progress and to ensure that all parties involved are kept in the loop. Project status report examples include updates to all stakeholders as the project progresses, amended project plans, and notifications of any issues or risks that have arisen.
Project Tracking Report
Project tracking reports provide real numbers, metrics, and other key indicators of the project's progress. Tracking project report examples include data concerning project status, tasks, team performance, completion rate and other metrics in a comprehensive report.
Project Performance Report
Project performance reports are a more specialized project status report. Examples include overviews of progress, resource allocation, and costs. Project performance reports help monitor the project's current direction and forecast its success. Using performance reports, the team can address issues that are holding the project back.
Project Health Report
Project health reports are an example of project management reports that help identify potential issues before they occur, saving the firm money, time, and resources. When project sponsors and supervisors are notified of risks, they can adjust strategy accordingly before problems manifest.
Project Summary Report
You are writing for busy people when you prepare a project management report. Examples of tasks completed and financials let them see important data quickly, then allocate their time to sections that directly concern them. A project summary report should highlight key milestones and point out upcoming tasks.
Project Time Tracking Report
Project time tracking reports can help project managers gauge their teams' efficiency and identify areas for improvement. For example, project reports can show which parts of the project are requiring more time to complete and reallocate resources from issues that are requiring less hours than expected.
Best practices when writing a project report
Wondering how to write a report on a project effectively? Look no further, we've got you covered!There are a few things you need to remember when putting together a project report to help ensure it's efficient and supports the project's success.
Knowing how to write project reports successfully is largely dependent on honesty.
There is no use in hiding deliverables or viewing the truth through rose-tinted glasses. You're not creating a presentation to win someone over here; you're creating a factual report to make sure everyone has as clear an overview as possible.
Stay honest throughout your reporting, give accurate numbers (don't round up or down), and don't make excuses. Remain critical.
Give as much information as possible
This comes at your judgment, but the more relevant information, the better. A project manager will have a fantastic overview of a project and the current status. For that reason, they're the best person to put together a project status report.
However, a project manager shouldn't be afraid to let team members fill in parts of the report if they have a better overview of a particular task within the project. Assign different areas of the project report to different team members and then review everything before the report is submitted.
Clear and concise writing skills are so crucial in making sure your project report is understood. Don't view the project status report as something you just need to get done and delivered.
Review it, make sure there are no spelling mistakes or grammatical errors. You'll be surprised at what the power of a comma can, do. See? Make sure the read of your report is as smooth as your project management skills.
For all of the faults, risks, and problems you report in your project status report, it's essential to document your successes. A project is a rollercoaster. There will be ups and downs and spirals and flips. Identify which of these are wins and celebrate them.
By celebrating success, you will lift the morale of the project team and remind the project manager of what has been achieved so far.
Write for aliens
A proper project manager report example will be accessible for a wide audience.You'll be writing a project plan for many people, many of whom will not have had direct exposure to your team, your company, or the task/s at hand. When we say write for aliens, we mean writing for someone who has no clue what's happening.
Even the simplest of abbreviations or presumptions can be interpreted as something entirely different by someone else. Leave no room for error or misunderstanding.
Don't be afraid to use visuals
Visual support is fantastic for getting your point across or displaying information more clearly in a project status report. Visual aids can break up the monotony of the report if there's a lot of copy, which will be a welcomed relief on the eyes of any reader.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words and for a good reason, if you're struggling to get your point across, then look for an example of it online. Use visuals as a supporting example of what you're saying.
Automate processes where you can
Despite each project having its own landscape, you can surprise yourself with the amount that you can automate in your reporting process. Learn how to make the most of excel spreadsheets and tool integrations to see how you can backfill or auto-populate data into your project report.
It's these small time-saving hacks that will make your project report more efficient and better looking in the future.
A Project Report Template
Use this project report sample as a starting point for your project reports. Adapt it to your company and project needs and share it with the right people to ensure your project stays on track.
Clément Rog is working in our Marketing team from Lyon, France. He loves geography, playing legos with his son, and sharing convictions about marketing or design.
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How to Write a Project Status Report [Template Included]
How do you tell the difference between a good project and a bad one?
Look at the project status reports.
- Bad project status reports – your team or client gets lost in pointless data, doesn’t know what work was done, and receives no insightful comments.
- Good project status reports – your team or client sees critical data summaries, easy-to-understand insights, and an overview of the work done.
Projects get complex fast, and the tasks stack up quickly. It’s challenging for PMs to keep on top of everything.
That’s where project status reports can help.
In this post, you’ll learn how to create a project status report that tells the true story of each project (template included).
Let’s get started!
What is a project status report?
Project status reports are timely updates on the progress of your projects. They are the best way to track, record, and review the ongoing status of a project.
At a glance, this might look like time tracking , but project status reporting goes deeper. It can include the scope of the work, the challenges, the team members involved, and the financial realities of the project.
Why is a project status report important?
Having worked at an agency, I know from experience that creating project status reports isn’t something project managers spend a lot of time on.
We often found projects would face issues all the time. But there was a noticeable difference in how projects were managed when we started creating project status reports for the more complex projects.
They were the best way to keep the team and clients aligned and in the loop as projects progressed. We could course-correct the project if we spotted signs the project was at risk of going over budget or not being delivered on time.
Reports were also helpful as a reflective tool to identify what went to plan and didn’t.
Other benefits of a project status report include the following:
What should a project status report include?
Project status reports will look very different depending on your industry, team size, and target reader.
They can be created solely for your manager, team, or client. Try to keep this in mind when introducing your project status reports. Everyone will need to be on the same page regarding their purpose.
Let’s look at the critical fundamentals of any project status report.
Let’s dive a little deeper.
Timelines and milestones
Every project is a collection of tasks that must be completed within a specific timeline. That’s why every one of those tasks, or group of tasks, can work as a project milestone — signaling if the project is on track.
For example, let’s say you are running a YouTube marketing campaign and must create 2 videos per month.
What do those videos involve?
- A meeting to schedule the day of filming
- Hiring the actors
In a project management tool , every one of these tasks can become a milestone with its deadline, time, and budget allocation. Hitting project milestones help prevent projects from going over budget, keep a project on track and deliver it on time.
You should be reporting on project progress via milestones and look to see if they are being hit on time or not.
Project milestones can be tracked using either a project tracking spreadsheet or project task management software .
A project tracking spreadsheet is a useful visual tool to track each task’s progress against the original project timeline . The spreadsheet should include all tasks, their status, the task owner, and the project progress percentage.
Note: you can download our free project tracking spreadsheet below.
How does the spreadsheet work?
- Add your list of project tasks
- Assign a task owner for each item
- Set start and end dates for each task
- Track the progress of each task using the status dropdown menu
Once you’ve added all of your project tasks, you can start tracking how much time you or your team spend on each one via the ‘Tracker’ tab.
This will automatically update task actuals in the ‘Project’ tab and tell you if the project is over or under budget — based on the estimated hours you enter.
There is also a progress bar and percentage on the spreadsheet to let you know how close the project is to completion.
You can use a Work Breakdown Structure to better understand what tasks are required to complete for the project.
Spreadsheets are pretty good for managing projects — but only if you’re a spreadsheet wizard. 🧙
Alternatively, you can better track project milestones using project management software . Here’s how to do it using Toggl Plan .
- Click on a date in the header you wish to add a milestone to
- Add a name that’s easy to understand for everyone
- Choose a color to know what project the milestone belongs to.
This will make project milestones visible to everyone working on the project.
The goal here is to offer easy-to-understand signals of what has been completed and what has been delayed. Giving you the information you need to make project adjustments where required.
Check out this video below to start creating and tracking project milestones in Toggl Plan.
Note: skip to 3:18 to learn how to add a project (plan).
Getting the client to approve the project budget needed is the easy part. What’s harder is making sure you stay within budget.
This will typically mean keeping track of costs such as
- Labor costs
- Billable hours
- Project expenses
You may already be tracking similar costs using a project budget spreadsheet, or if you’re using the spreadsheet from above, you can add the ‘estimated hours’ for each task.
This will then give you the total cost for each task based on your hourly rate.
You or your team can start tracking time spent on each task within the ‘Tracker’ tab.
This will automaticity update the ‘Actual hours’ and ‘Actual cost’ columns in the ‘Project’ tab — letting you know if the task is coming in or over budget.
Alternatively, you can ditch the spreadsheets and use time tracking software to track project financials.
Toggl Track allows you to track your billable and non-billable hours and team labor costs to assess the profitability of every project.
You can easily find your billable and non-billable hours per project by looking at the Project Dashboard and viewing the Billing Amounts chart.
The Billing Amounts chart shows the project’s progress against the Fixed fee amount set for the project.
Below this chart, you will see a bar and a pie chart representing current data containing total clocked hours, billable hours, and remaining hours (based on the project estimate ).
There’s a good chance your project will miss key milestones and surpass the estimated timeline if your team spends too much time on non-billable work. So catching this early can be a lifesaver.
You can also look at the Insights Dashboard to get a glimpse into the profitability of your project and team.
You have options to view the total earnings made from each project and how your labor costs stack against that.
Reporting on this type of information will help you better understand and manage the costs associated with each project. Allowing you to make adjustments where necessary.
Resource management is one of the most demanding challenges for project managers.
With fewer people and tighter budgets, you have very little wriggle room to ensure that projects are delivered successfully.
To help keep the project on track, you may need to ask yourself:
- Do I need more resources for this project?
- Is each employee maximizing their time on the project?
The key ingredients here are your team’s capacity and billable utilization .
Let’s take a look at how you can get access to this type of information.
Knowing how many hours your team has available each day can help you to reallocate resources if someone is struggling or needs extra support.
This can be done by using a resource planning spreadsheet . Search ‘resource planning template’ on Google. You should be able to find one that works for you.
Alternatively, you can view your team’s available capacity inside Toggl Plan .
- Select your team under the Teams dropdown
- View the timeline to visualize your team’s workload capacity
This will give you a high-level view of your team and their available hours each day.
This is done by adding time estimates to each task and comparing that to the user’s daily working hours.
Note: working hours are set per day inside of workspace settings.
Billable utilization measures the percentage of available hours that employees spend generating revenue.
- Billable Utilization % = (Number of Billable Hours / Number of Available Hours) X 100%.
For example, let’s say an employee has 40 available hours to work in their week. That’s their available capacity.
But they’re only hitting 30 hours a week.
Their resource utilization is 75%.
But out of the 30 hours they work, only 10 are billable hours (client work).
Their billable utilization is 25%
What does this tell you?
The employee is only working 75% of their total available hours. And only 25% of their available hours are spent on work that generates revenue.
Here’s how to view a variation of billable hours utilization using Toggl Track .
- Go to the Reports Dashboard
- Filter by Team member
- Select time period
You will see a billable utilization percentage* next to the total billable hours for that team member.
*The percentage of billable hours in the screenshot above is based on the total hours worked. Not total available hours.
Reporting on your available resources will help you to
- Understand if you can allocate more work to a team member or if you need to hire more resources as your team is at maximum capacity.
- Identify areas where you can audit a team member’s time to see if you can get more billable hours out of them or if they need extra support.
Both of these will help you to make the proper adjustments to ensure the success of your project.
Toggl Plan has a native integration with Toggl Track .
The integration provides an easy way to start and stop timing your tasks from within Toggl Plan, and automatically pass the data through to your Toggl Track workspace. It’ll only take a couple of minutes to connect your accounts and get started.
Check out the video to learn more.
Changes and scope shift
Many things might cause your project to change in scope. Regardless of the why or how, documenting those changes is crucial.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Has the timeline changed?
- Has the scope changed?
If yes, then ask yourself why.
- Have you uncovered more work than you initially planned for?
- Has the client requested additional work outside the project’s scope?
You’ll be better equipped to make the best decision for the client and the project by getting the answers to those questions.
- Team performance
Monitoring team performance throughout a project’s lifecycle helps keep the project on track and boost team morale.
You need to know how well your team members are doing their job.
- Who needs help?
- Who is performing like an absolute superstar?
Perhaps the team member that is performing well deserves to be celebrated.
And the underperforming team member?
Perhaps they need extra training. Or maybe you’ve chosen them for the wrong task and need to reshuffle resources if you want to get the best out of your team.
The best way of monitoring performance is by analyzing the data first.
Some key areas to monitor include.
Keeping a close eye on this data will help you analyze your team’s performance. Giving you the information you need to make better staffing decisions for other projects.
We often plan a project with this overly optimistic mindset. We forget to consider X — or even worse, we knowingly sweep X under the rug, thinking it won’t happen to us.
Before you know it, you’re mid-project and starting to feel the heat.
The first step is carrying out a project risk assessment before a project starts.
But sometimes, not everything can be identified or planned for. So you may find yourself having to put out a few fires.
Reporting on any project issues will help you to better navigate through the project and help to prevent them from happening again in the future.
How to write a good project status report — the 4 N’s
The project manager’s paradox is knowing how to source and analyze data and when to ignore it.
How you report on each project is entirely up to you.
But remember to be clear on who the audience is with your project progress reports. This will help you to deliver them with the appropriate information and tone.
We’ve put together a project reporting template based on four key elements (the 4 N’s) we think you should be reporting on.
Grab it below!
Note: you will need access to the critical project metrics/data outlined above to write an effective report.
The 4 N’s of a project status report
Now let’s dive into what each one means.
Regarding numbers, there are two main elements to focus on:
You have to focus on your expenditure for every part of the project and compare it to the costs you planned at the beginning. Then you have to do the same with your scheduling plans.
Let’s say you’re working on a marketing campaign that will last two months.
Within the first month, you are expected to:
- Create ten posts
- Spend 60% of your budget
Examine and monitor your project metrics and determine how they compare to the project’s planning. When you find differences, you use the narrative to explain why the changes occurred and what they mean for the project going forward.
Let the numbers grab their attention and draw their interest. Then they will pay attention to the narrative of your project report.
You should also use charts and graphs to make the numbers more digestible.
Considering that a project report is supposed to be full of facts and numbers, focusing on the report’s narrative might seem like a vague tip.
But it isn’t.
Consider this statistic: only 5% of people attending a presentation remember statistics, but 63% of people remember stories.
We’re not suggesting that you flex your creative muscle and go all ‘once-upon-a-time’ on your project report. But you shouldn’t overwhelm people with numbers.
In your narrative, try to provide any necessary back-story or analysis behind:
Each of these elements depends on all the other elements of the project. They’re all interconnected, and that’s where narrative comes into play.
Let us give you two examples, focusing on an Instagram marketing campaign.
In the first, you focus only on the statistics, so you write in your project report:
- We’ve only booked 60% of the influencers.
- We only have 20% of the budget left.
Based on these two facts alone, it might seem like you’re not very good at your job. It might seem like the project is destined to fail.
But now, let us show you how narrative can change the entire perception of the situation.
We have booked 60% of the influencers because we decided to switch tactics and focus on creating content ourselves. The last option was less effective than anticipated.
The budgetary situation considers all our costs for the project’s duration—because creating content ourselves is cheaper, we expect to complete this project 10% under budget. This money will be used to buy more sponsored ads on Instagram.
Now, doesn’t that sound like an entirely different story?
Projects need people to succeed. So it’s worth spending time analyzing the team members chosen to bring the project to completion.
You can identify the underperforming team members and try to determine why. But you also identify the excellent team members and celebrate their successes.
But in your project report, depending on how often you report, you should also outline if you need to reallocate resources.
Is anyone sick? Is anyone going on vacation? More importantly, does anyone need a vacation?
Employees that are burnt out are of no benefit to anybody. You should take the chance to note who has been working the hardest and who will be taking a more prominent role in the project’s next stage.
Tracking time in timesheets is an option here. But manual timesheets aren’t always the most accurate.
Features like Toggl’s Summary Report can be helpful here. It can show you who’s been working the most and provide accurate weekly data on their working hours.
Features like Toggl’s Summary Report can be helpful as they can show you who’s been working the most and provide accurate data on their working hours every week.
You can also audit your teams time within this report. With a time audit , you no longer have to do a manual roll call to ensure everyone in the workspace has logged time for the week.
Note: You may want to keep reporting individual team members’ performance between yourself and your manager/team. But reporting on the other three elements for your client is a great way to build trust.
This is the section where you tell the story that the narrative and the numbers might have missed out on.
Which part of the picture might be missing out from the report? What kind of challenges might the team be facing that outsiders might be completely oblivious to?
Perhaps the team detected an opportunity, and you would consider expanding the scope of work. 💰
Or perhaps there are other external challenges out of your control. For example, a client is requesting work out of scope or taking an age to get back to you with critical documents or files.
These nuances need to be included in the report because as the project progresses, project managers and team members begin stumbling into unexpected factors that might impact the project’s overall success.
It is important to point them out, explain their causes, and suggest potential solutions to overcome those obstacles.
Project status report template
This project report template is meant to streamline the project reporting process. We want to ensure it’s used to highlight the critical elements described above.
This will help to ensure everyone keeps on track with what they need to be doing and to help you make adjustments before it’s too late.
Note: feel free to change the headings and the report’s overall structure. You may want to only report on projects internally or with your client — which may influence what you report on.
When should you write a project status report?
Honestly? It depends. 🤷♀️
There are two main factors to consider:
- The length of the project
- The size of the project
When it comes to the length of the project, we are mainly referring to the intervals at which project reporting has to be done.
A multi-year project might only require a status report every quarter or every six months. But a project that lasts six months? Monthly reporting is probably a good cadence.
While keeping management or your client informed of the progress is essential, project reports often take time. So creating them too often might be considered wasteful.
But then there is the second element to consider — the project’s size.
Straightforward projects like creating a one-page flyer probably don’t need much reporting.
But something as complex as a website build, mobile app, or branding campaign may require regular updates. So writing a project report every month or quarter is worthwhile.
But don’t go overboard with project progress reports. Too much project reporting can be problematic. You don’t want to drown yourself with admin work when your time could be better spent on profitable work. Try and apply some common sense.
Feel in control with project reporting
Don’t stress over creating project reports too much. It’s usually more straightforward than it’s thought to be. Consistent and accurate project reporting helps significantly if you regularly work on complex and lengthy projects.
They will also help you to manage better:
- Scope creep
Knowing how to write a project report and taking advantage of its information can be the difference between a successful project and a soul-destroying one.
Sean is a Content Marketer at Toggl. He's been involved in SEO and Content Marketing since 2017. Before working for Toggl, Sean ran SEO at a digital marketing agency—so he's all too familiar with time tracking and project management.
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Create a Project report
With Project, you can create and customize striking graphical reports of whatever project data you want, without having to rely on any other software. As you work on the project, the reports change to reflect the latest info — no manual updates required! See a list of all reports and how you can use them.
Click the Report tab.
In the View Reports group, click the type of report you want and then pick a specific report.
For example, to open the Project Overview report, click Report > Dashboards > Project Overview .
The Project Overview report combines graphs and tables to show where each phase of the project stands, upcoming milestones, and tasks that are past their due dates.
Project provides dozens of reports you can use right away, but you don’t have to let that limit your choices. You can customize the content and the look of any of the reports, or build a new one from scratch.
Work with your report
Change the data in a report, change how a report looks, make your own report, share a report, make a new report available for future projects, more ways to report project info.
You can choose the data that Project shows in any part of a report.
Click the table or chart you want to change.
Use the Field list pane on the right of the screen to pick fields to show and filter information.
In the Project Overview report, you could change the % Complete chart to show critical subtasks instead of top-level summary tasks:
Click anywhere in the % Complete chart.
In the Field List pane, go to the Filter box and pick Critical .
In the Outline Level box, pick Level 2 . For this example, this is the first level of the outline that has subtasks instead of summary tasks.
The chart changes as you make your selections.
With Project, you control the look of your reports, from no-nonsense black and white to explosions of colors and effects.
Tip: You can make a report part of a split view so you can see the report change in real time as you work on project data. To learn more, see Split a view .
Click anywhere in the report and then click Report Tools Design to see the options for changing the look of the whole report. From this tab, you can change the font, color, or theme of the whole report. You can also add new images (including photos), shapes, charts, or tables here.
When you click individual elements (charts, tables, and so on) of a report, new tabs appear at the top of the screen with options for formatting that part.
Drawing Tools Format tab. Format shapes and text boxes .
Picture Tools Format tab. Add effects to pictures .
Table Tools Design and Table Tools Layout tabs. Configure and tweak tables, like you would in other Office programs .
Chart Tools Design and Chart Tools Format tabs. Configure and tweak charts.
Say you decide that the % Complete chart in the Project Overview report needs a facelift.
Click anywhere in the % Complete chart, and then click Chart Tools Design .
Pick a new style from the Chart Styles group. This style removes the lines and adds shadows to the columns.
Give the chart some depth. Click Chart Tools Design > Change Chart Type .
Click Column > 3-D Stacked Column .
Add a background color. Click Chart Tools Format > Shape Fill , and pick a new color.
Change the bar colors. Click the bars to select them, then click Chart Tools Format > Shape Fill , and pick a new color.
Move the numbers off the bars. Click the numbers to select them, and then drag them upward.
Just a few clicks make a big difference. And we only scratched the surface of the formatting options.
Click Report > New Report .
Pick one of the four options, and then click Select .
Give your report a name and start adding information to it.
Blank Creates a blank canvas. Use the Report Tools Design tab to add charts, tables, text, and images.
Chart Project creates a chart comparing Actual Work, Remaining Work, and Work by default. Use the Field List pane to pick different fields to compare, and use the controls to change the color and format of the chart.
Table Use the Field List pane to choose what fields to display in the table (Name, Start, Finish, and % Complete appear by default). The Outline level box lets you select how many levels in the project outline the table should show. You can change the look of the table on the Table Tools Design and Table Tools Layout tabs.
Comparison Sets two charts side-by-side. The charts have the same data at first. Click one chart and pick the data you want in the Field List pane to begin differentiating them.
Any of the charts you create from scratch are fully customizable. You can add and delete elements and change the data to meet your needs.
Click anywhere in the report.
Click Report Tools Design > Copy Report .
Paste the report into any program that displays graphics.
Tip: You might need to resize and line up the report when you paste it into its new home.
You can also print the report to share it the old-fashioned way.
Use the Organizer to copy a new report into the global template for use in future projects.
See a list of all reports and how you can use them.
Compare actual work against your estimates with burndown reports .
Create a timeline of key tasks and milestones.
Set the status date for project reporting.
Visual reports allow you to view Project information graphically using enhanced PivotTables in Excel 2010. Once Project information has been exported to Excel, you can customize the reports further with Excel 2010 enhanced PivotTable features, such as filter slicers, searching within PivotTables, sparklines within PivotTables to show trends instantly, and OLAP write-back improvements.
Available visual reports
The report templates in Project 2010 are divided into six categories in the Visual Reports - Create Report dialog box, which you can access by clicking Visual Reports in the Reports group of the Project tab. The following sections provide descriptions of the visual reports in each category.
You can also create your own custom reports. Custom reports will appear in the category for the type of data used.
Task Usage category
The following table describes the visual reports in the Task Usage category. These reports are based on timephased task data.
Note: Timephased assignment data is available in reports in the Assignment Usage category.
Resource Usage category
The following table describes the visual reports in the Resource Usage category. These reports are based on the timephased resource data.
Assignment Usage category
The following table describes the visual reports in the Assignment Usage category. These reports are based on the timephased data, similar to the data found in the Task Usage and Resource Usage views.
Task, Resource, and Assignment Summary categories
The following table describes the visual reports in the Task Summary, Resource Summary, and Assignment Summary categories. Summary reports do not include timephased data.
Create a visual report by using a template
In the Visual Reports dialog box, on the All tab, click the report that you want to create.
If the report that you want to create is not listed, select the Include report templates from check box, and then click Modify to browse to the location that contains your report.
Tip: If you know which category contains the report, you can click that category's tab to view a shorter list of reports. If you only want to list reports that open in either Excel or Visio, select or clear the Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Visio check box.
To change the level of usage data included in the report, select Years , Quarters , Months , Weeks , or Days from the Select level of usage data to include in the report list.
Note: By default, Project sets the level of usage data to what it recommends for your project's size. For most projects, this will be weeks. If you choose to include data at a more detailed level, report performance may be decreased. For best performance, if you are viewing multiple reports for the same project at one time, refrain from changing the data level. If you change the data level, the temporary reporting database stored locally must be recreated. If you don't need to include usage data in your reports, set the data level to Years for best performance.
Click View to generate the report and open it in Excel or Visio.
Edit an existing visual report template
In the Visual Reports dialog box, on the All tab, click the report that you want to edit.
Tip: If you know which category contains the report, you can click that category's tab to view a shorter list of reports. If you only want to list reports that open in either Excel or Visio, select or clear the Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Visio check boxes.
Click Edit Template .
On the Visual Reports - Field Picker dialog box, click the fields that you want to add or remove from the report, and then click Add , Remove , or Remove All to move fields between the Available Fields and Selected Fields boxes, or between the Available Custom Fields and Selected Custom Fields boxes.
Fields in the Selected Fields and Selected Custom Fields boxes are included in the report.
Click Edit Template to create the report with the modified list of fields.
On the Visual Reports - Field Picker dialog box, some fields are identified as dimensions. It is important to select fewer than six dimensions for your report. If you select more than six dimensions, report performance is significantly decreased.
Not all fields are available in all reports. Some fields are only available in Visio reports, but not in Excel reports.
If you are unable to locate the field you want to include on the Visual Reports - Field Picker dialog box, it may be stored in a different category of data. For example, many fields that you might think of as Task Summary fields are actually Assignment Summary fields.
Create a new visual report template
In the Visual Reports dialog box, click New Template .
In the Select Application section, click Excel to create an Excel template, or click Visio (Metric) to create a Visio template.
In the Select Data Type section, select the type of data that you want to use in the report.
To include timephased data, select Task Usage , Resource Usage , or Assignment Usage from the list in the Select Data Type section.
Click Field Picker .
On the Visual Reports - Field Picker dialog box, hold CTRL and click the default Project fields that you want to add to the report in the Available Fields box.
Click Add to move them to the Selected Fields box.
Hold CTRL and click the custom fields that you want to add to the report in the Available Custom Fields box.
Click Add to move them to the Selected Custom Fields box.
If you have the English version of Office Project 2007 installed, you have the option to create a Visio template that uses U.S. units.
To remove a field from the report, on the Visual Reports - Field Picker dialog box, click the field in the Selected Fields or Selected Custom Fields box, and then click Remove . To remove all default or custom fields from the report, click Remove All in the Select Fields or Select Custom Fields section.
Not all fields are available in all reports. Some fields are only available in Visio reports, and not in Excel reports.
When you have finished creating your visual report, you can choose to save it to the default template location (c:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Templates) or to another location on your computer or your network. Templates saved in the default template location automatically appear on the Visual Reports - Create Report dialog box.
If you begin using a different language pack after saving a custom visual report template, the template remains available but is not populated. The original field names are not recognized in the new language and are not included in the report.
Export report data
You can select specific data to export within a category (OLAP cube), or you can export all project data as a reporting database.
Export data as an OLAP cube
In the Visual Reports dialog box, click Save Data .
In the Save Reporting Cube section, select the category that contains the type of data that you want to save.
Click Field Picker to modify the fields included in the list of data to export.
On the Visual Reports - Field Picker dialog box, click the fields that you want to add or remove from the list of data to export, and then click Add , Remove , or Remove All to move fields between the Available Fields and Selected Fields boxes, or between the Available Custom Fields and Selected Custom Fields boxes.
Fields in the Selected Fields and Selected Custom Fields boxes are included in the exported data.
Click OK on the Visual Reports - Field Picker dialog box, and then click Save Cube .
Browse to the location where you want to save the cube data, and then click Save .
Cube data is saved as a .cub file.
When accessing cube data with Visio, the .cub file cannot be stored on a network share.
Export data as a reporting database
Click Save Database .
Browse to the location where you want to save the database, and then click Save .
The data is saved as a Microsoft Office Access database (.mdb) file.
Project for the web offers two main options for reporting: Excel and Power BI Desktop. Excel reporting comes with Microsoft 365, while Power BI Desktop is licensed separately.
When managing a project in Project for the web, export your project to Excel allows you to:
Create reports and visuals
Send a file containing project details to external stakeholders
Archive copies of your project data for audit and compliance
Print copies of your project
Here's how to export your project:
Go to project.microsoft.com and open the project you want to export to Excel.
In the top right corner, select the three dots ( ... ), then select Export to Excel .
When you see the message " All done! We've exported [your project name]. " at the bottom of the screen, you can look for your new Excel file where you store your downloads.
When you open the Excel file containing your project, you'll see a worksheet named "Project tasks" that contains a summary of project-wide information at the top, including its name, project manager, and the start and finish dates, duration, and percent complete for the whole project. You'll also see what date it was exported. Under that, you'll see a table of all the information for your project.
More about Excel Report options
Import and analyze data
Create a PivotTable to analyze worksheet data
Ideas in Excel
Power BI Desktop
To get started, connect to Project for the web data through Power BI Desktop , then open the Project Power BI template and explore the reports it includes.
Important: You'll need a Power BI subscription (and a Project subscription in many cases) to use this reporting tool. See the following section for details.
To use Power BI reports on Project for the web data, you need to be a licensed user of Power BI Desktop or Power BI Pro. See Power BI Pricing for more information.
To build or customize Power BI reports on Project for the web data, you'll also need Project Plan 3 (formerly Project Online Professional) or Project Plan 5 (formerly Project Online Premium).
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How to Write a Project Management Report
Last Updated: April 28, 2023 Approved
This article was co-authored by Ksenia Derouin . Ksenia Derouin is a Business Strategy Specialist, OBM, and Artist based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. With over ten years of professional experience, Ksenia works with wellness and social impact sector solopreneurs and organizations to support their business strategy, operations, marketing, and program development. Her mission is to support business owners in building thriving businesses and creating impact so that they can achieve a sense of purpose, career fulfillment, and financial independence. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 100% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 186,284 times.
A project management report is a document that describes a business project and the steps a team should take to complete it. The report is shared with the project's key players. When everyone is on the same page, everyone can work together to complete the project's goal. The report typically contains the project plan, the team's responsibilities, a projected timeline, and a budget. With organization, clarity, and the input of your team members, you can easily create an effective project management report and work toward completing its goals.
Collecting the Information
- Ask yourself, “How will this help my company, our client, or our community? Will this project possibly have a positive impact in other areas?”
- Understanding the overall scope may help you appreciate how this project may be useful to you and others.
- Some audiences may not be familiar with the language, terms, and jargon often used in your working environment.
- If you are writing a report for a client, for example, avoid using technical jargon that requires lengthy explanations.
- Instead, plan to write in a voice that easily describes your project scope and timeline.  X Research source
- Perhaps an investor is reading the report to review the budget. Showing where the budget is in the table of contents will help them find what they need fast.
- Your supervisor may also explain how long the report should be and if there are particular formats that your company requires for these types of reports.
- Ask your supervisor about what to include in the report. Your supervisor will appreciate the opportunity to give you feedback early in the process.
Formatting and Writing the Report
- Concisely summarize the importance of the project and its main objective. “This project will expand our client's impact in their market by fulfilling this unmet need in this field.”
- Be as succinct as possible without sacrificing necessary details. Try to convey your message in a couple of sentences or bullet points instead of lengthy paragraphs.  X Research source
- If you are publishing a book, for example, list significant information such as “book tour slated to begin in September” and "holiday sales expected to increase by 15%."
- If your project goal is to help a company open a fashion store in a particular area, for example, provide data that describes the nearby competition.
- Data on the market and competition can help the reader understand that there is an opportunity to meet a particular need.
- If necessary, attach documents or other resources that might be useful to interpret the report information.
- If you are in the middle of a project, include a percentage that describes the project's completion and whether or not you are ahead of schedule.  X Research source
- If there is an anticipated delay, state it in this section.
- You might say, “Construction on the new building may slow significantly during January as the frigid temperatures may create unsafe working conditions.”
- Let your reader know that you have adjusted the timeline to account for such anticipated delays.
- Remind your reader what is needed going forward.
- You could write, “With the timely support of our donors, the project should be completed on time and under budget by next May.”
- Highlighting the needs can help ensure that the project is completed on time.
Polishing Your Report
- Save the reader some time and place the figures alongside relevant portions of the text instead of at the end of the report.
- The reader will be able to easily review both the text and the chart without having flip through the pages.  X Research source
- Revise the report to include contributions from team members. Use your judgment regarding which details to include.
- Discuss the project with your teammates as you write the report. Considering the perspectives and views of others, their needs, and their targets may help influence some of the details that you choose to include in your project management report.  X Research source Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
- If your company has a particular format or template for project management reports, be sure to adhere to those guidelines. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
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Thanks for reading our article! If you’d like to learn more about writing a project management report, check out our in-depth interview with Ksenia Derouin .
- ↑ http://www.brighthubpm.com/monitoring-projects/6034-typical-project-management-reports/
- ↑ http://www.brighthubpm.com/templates-forms/93013-ten-tips-for-creating-effective-project-reports/
- ↑ https://www.projectsmart.co.uk/how-to-report-status-on-a-project.php
- ↑ https://www.teamgantt.com/guide-to-project-management/how-to-plan-a-project/
About This Article
A project management report describes a project and the steps your team should take to complete it. Start your report by outlining the purpose of the project and what it seeks to achieve. You’ll then need to list the resources needed to finish the project, including manpower, tools, and products. Provide a projected budget to show how much it will cost and if you need to secure any extra funding. Include a timeline to show how long the project will last and when you’re likely to hit major milestones. You should also detail any challenges the project is likely to face and how you will solve those problems. When you’ve finished drafting your report, ask for feedback from your major team members in case there’s anything significant it’s missing. For more tips, including how to format your project management report, read on! Did this summary help you? Yes No
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How To Write a Report for Work (With Examples)
If you’ve been asked to write a report for work, you may be wondering how to go about it. After all, reports are typically associated with academia. However, workplace reports can be just as important, and are often used to communicate findings or recommendations to a boss or team. The key to writing a good report is to be clear and concise. Start by understanding the purpose of the report and who will be reading it. Then, organize your thoughts and information into an outline. Once you have your outline, you can start writing your report. Be sure to proofread and edit your work before you submit it. With a little planning and effort, you can write a great report for work.
Work report template
You can format a work report using the following example:
[Project name] [Date] [Prepared by: your first and last name] [Company name]
Use this section to list any conclusions or suggestions you have for the report’s executive summary or abstract. Include the most crucial concepts covered in the report as well. You do not need to include this section if you are writing a daily work report or progress report. ].
[Body: You should concentrate on describing the information you wish to convey in the body of your report. You can list project-related findings, conclusions, and findings that were made. Include your accomplishments or tasks that you have completed in daily or progress reports. ].
[Recommendations: In this section, you should list your suggestions that will address a specific problem or are based on the findings or results of a project. As an illustration, you might suggest that the company “spend one hour each week training employees on the new handbook.” Your upcoming objectives or tasks can be listed in this section of a daily or progress report. ].
[Conclusion: Reiterate the most crucial recommendations and sum up the findings or results discussed in your report. ].
What is a work report?
1. identify your audience.
Knowing who will be reading your report is crucial for choosing how to format it, what to include, and what voice to use when writing it. Establish who will be reading your report and tailor it to these specific people, for example, if you are writing a sales report for your manager, will anyone else be reading the report? Likewise, if you are writing a business analysis report, will your higher-ups be reading the report, or just your immediate supervisor?
2. Decide which information you will include
You should concentrate on determining the purpose of your report to decide what details should be included after determining who your audience is. You could inquire about what they anticipate seeing if you know who will be reading the report. Choose to include details that will help people understand your message the most.
For instance, if you’re writing a report on sales, it may be necessary to include details on whether sales targets are being met, the goods and services that are selling the best, the difficulties you or your team are currently facing, and your team’s sales projection for the upcoming month or quarter.
3. Structure your report
You should format your report when writing it so that it is simple to read and comprehend. Although the sections you should include in each report will vary, you can use the following list of report components as a general outline when writing your report:
4. Use concise and professional language
When writing your report, make an effort to use language that is clear and concise. Use straightforward language while remaining professional to convey your message as quickly and clearly as you can. Avoid using “fluff” or wordy sentences when possible. For instance, you could say, “Regularly refresh your inbox,” as opposed to, “You might find it helpful to regularly refresh your inbox to stay up to date on emails.” “.
5. Proofread and edit your report
Put your report aside after you’ve finished writing it for at least an hour before you proofread it. This will enable you to view the report with fresh eyes and identify errors you might not have noticed before.
Work report example
You can use the following work report sample as a model when creating your own report at work:
November 5, 20XX Prepared by: Sally Smith ABC Company
An update on the XYZ project, which is due on December 5, will be given in this report. An updated employee handbook with approved increases in paid time off and updated rules and regulations will be produced as a result of this project. By providing them with information about the new benefits that have recently been implemented and workplace expectations, this handbook will try to make employees more aware of those things.
Summary of work completed:
I have finished the following for the XYZ project as of this date:
Tasks to be accomplished by November 12, 20XX:
The XYZ project will be finished by the target date as planned. There are currently no glaring problems or obstacles in the way of this project, but if any do arise, they will be quickly resolved.
report writing format 7 tips and how to write an effective report
How do you write a report at work?
- Identify your audience. …
- Decide which information you will include. …
- Structure your report. …
- Use concise and professional language. …
- Proofread and edit your report.
How do I write a report to my boss?
- Focus On the Why. Understand why you are writing the report.
- Decide What Information to Include. assemble the data you require, such as financial information, charts, and graphs
- Decide How to Present Your Recommendation. …
- Add an Executive Summary. …
- Format the Report. …
- Check and Proofread.
How do you write a report example?
- Decide on terms of reference. Many formal reports contain a section that describes the “terms of reference” for the document.
- Conduct your research. …
- Write an outline. …
- Write the first draft. …
- Analyze data and record findings. …
- Recommend a course of action. …
- Edit and distribute.
How do you start writing a report?
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Scope of work: Creation and management strategies
If project management is a complex dance of timelines, resources, and objectives, the scope of work (SoW) is the choreography that keeps everyone moving in harmony. It minimizes risks, fosters collaboration, and ensures all stakeholders align in their understanding of the project objectives and expectations.
This article answers the question of “What is scope of work?” and shares how to create an SoW step by step (hint: use a project plan template ). It will also discuss how having a scope of work can minimize risks and improve communication.
Understanding scope of work
In project planning , an SoW indicates what tasks are and aren’t part of the project. It points everyone working on the project in the right direction. An SoW brings clarity when developing a project plan by setting expectations and boundaries, ensuring alignment among project stakeholders.
Key components of a scope of work
An SoW discusses the overall goals the project will achieve, what the project will produce, and when the appropriate parties will produce it.
The following key components of a Scope of Work provide the granular details and specifications essential to the project's success. They outline the overall goals, specific objectives, deliverables, roles, responsibilities, and timelines that guide the project's execution.
Project objectives and deliverables
Project objectives and deliverables are the specific aims and tangible outcomes the project intends to achieve. They provide a clear purpose and direction for the project. Defining these ensures everyone on a team understands the project's goals and expected results. Use a scope of work template to streamline this process. Suppose the project is a website redesign. The objective is to improve the user experience. Deliverables could include a redesigned website layout and structure, updated content, and improved site navigation.
Inclusions and exclusions
To prevent scope creep, specify what the project includes—such as expectations around tasks, responsibilities, and necessary resources. Also, explain what the project does not include. This clarity eliminates ambiguity and keeps the project on track. For this hypothetical project, inclusions could be mobile responsiveness, content creation, and quality assurance testing. Exclusions could be ongoing content updates or domain registration.
Project boundaries and constraints
The SoW should define limitations, such as budget, resources, and brand guidelines.
For example, the website redesign must not exceed a $30,000 budget. The team—a project manager, web designer, developer, and content writer—must use specific color schemes and messaging.
Projects often rely on certain assumptions about the environment, resources, or conditions. State these assumptions to manage expectations and reduce risks associated with unforeseen changes.
When redesigning a website, common assumptions could involve:
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Timeline and milestones
Establish a project timeline with key milestones and deadlines to keep the project on track and aligned with its objectives and deliverables. Milestones are progress markers, helping the team monitor their journey toward project completion.
Here’s an example of a timeline with milestones for a website redesign:
- Weeks 1–4: Kick off the project, and design and develop the website layout.
- Weeks 5–8: Create and develop content.
Weeks 9–12: Test, debug, and launch the website.
How to create a scope of work
Request input from key stakeholders as you create the SoW. Remember, collaboration is the glue that holds everything together. It provides clarity and transparency, ensures alignment with business goals, and enhances a shared understanding between stakeholders.
Here’s how to create a robust SoW:
- Gather information : Seek input from various team members and stakeholders—from clients to project managers—about essential project details, requirements, and objectives. Insider tip : Create a Confluence page with a pre-configured template for collecting client requirements. Clients can fill it out, and Confluence automatically organizes the information for the project team to access. Teams can also design their own templates around the ways they work together. Confluence pages also integrate with Jira Software and Jira Work Management, making it easy to promote document control and stay aligned as a team throughout the entire process.
- Define objectives and deliverables : Ensure alignment among team members and stakeholders. Insider tip : Define project objectives by breaking them into user stories and tasks within Jira Software . In this Agile project management approach, user stories can represent high-level project objectives, and tasks can represent specific deliverables. Assign these to the appropriate team members, and use Jira boards to visualize progress.
- Specify inclusions and exclusions : This helps prevent misunderstandings and scope creep during the project. Insider tip : Create tasks in Jira Work Management or Jira Software to track changes and updates to the project scope. Log out-of-scope feature requests as tasks in Jira.
- Set boundaries and constraints : All stakeholders should know about budget limitations, resource constraints, and other external factors. Insider tip : Create a dedicated Confluence page or section to document the project's budget and resources.
- State assumptions : Discuss how assumptions might affect the project's scope. This clarity avoids potential issues down the road. Insider tip : Link Confluence pages that document assumptions to the corresponding Jira issues.
- Create a timeline : A shared timeline helps keep the project on track. Insider tip : Create issues for project milestones and individual tasks in Jira Software or Jira Work Management. Assign owners, due dates, and dependencies. Use a roadmap tool like Jira Software that includes features to create Gantt charts for your projects.
Benefits of a well-defined scope of work
A well-defined scope of work serves as the project's cornerstone and offers a host of benefits that include:
- Minimized risks by offering clear documentation : The project team can proactively address challenges, reducing the likelihood of unexpected issues that could derail the project.
- Improved communication among team members and stakeholders : A detailed SoW is a central reference point for all project-related information.
- Enhanced project team collaboration : The team can align their efforts, work cohesively, and contribute their expertise with a clear sense of purpose.
- Efficiently allocated resources : Project managers can assign the right team members to specific tasks, allocate budget resources, and easily manage timelines.
Clear boundaries that avoid scope creep : Prevent unauthorized changes or additions, helping the project stay on track and within budget.
Scope of work examples
Here is an example SoW for the hypothetical website redesign project discussed throughout this article:
Sample project: Website Redesign for XYZ Corporation
Project objectives and deliverables:
- Objective: Redesign XYZ Corporation's website to improve user experience.
- Redesigned website layout and structure
- Updated content, including text and images
- Integration of a user-friendly content management system (CMS)
- Implementation of responsive design for mobile compatibility
- Improved site navigation and user interface (UI)
- Website redesign and development
- Content creation and migration
- CMS integration
- Mobile responsiveness
- Search engine optimization
- Quality assurance and testing
- Any additional features not specified in this Statement of Work
- Ongoing content updates post launch
- Hosting and domain registration (handled separately by the client)
- Timeline: 12 weeks from project kickoff to website launch
- Resources: A project manager, a web designer, a developer, and a content writer
- The website must adhere to the client's existing branding guidelines.
- The client will provide all necessary content and images.
- The client will not make any major changes to the project scope after it approval.
- The client will perform user acceptance testing (UAT) before launch.
- Weeks 1–4: Project kickoff, design, and layout development
- Weeks 5–8: Content creation and development
Weeks 9–12: Testing, debugging, and website launch
Here’s another example for a team in charge of a software development project. The following scope of work would guide the software enhancement project, ensuring all stakeholders clearly understand the project's objectives, boundaries, and expectations.
Sample project: Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software Enhancement
Project overview : The project aims to enhance and expand the existing CRM software to improve customer relationship management, streamline processes, and boost efficiency. It includes both front-end user interface improvements and back-end functionality enhancements.
- Develop a user-friendly dashboard with data visualization features for better user engagement.
- Implement automated email notification functionality for customer follow-ups.
- Create a mobile application version of the CRM for field sales teams.
- Integrate with external data sources for real-time updates.
- Enhance user access controls and security features.
- Design and development of the user interface and features
- Testing and quality assurance
- Documentation of the new features and functionalities
- User training and support during the rollout
- Any hardware procurement or upgrades
- Major infrastructure changes
- Complete the project within the allocated budget and timeline.
- The project must be compatible with the existing IT infrastructure.
- The project team must work with the current CRM database structure.
- The current CRM software license covers the enhancements.
- Availability of the necessary server resources for the software expansion
- Availability of the required user data for integration.
- Project kick-off: January 1
- User interface design completion: February 28
- Mobile app development completion: April 14
- Integration testing: June 12
Project completion and rollout: July 7
Manage scope of work with Jira Software
A well-crafted SoW is essential for successful project management. It minimizes risks, enhances communication, and promotes efficient resource allocation. Jira Software, Jira Work Management, and Confluence can further streamline the project management process with robust task tracking, collaboration, and reporting features.
- Task tracking : Jira Software enables project managers to create, assign, and track tasks related to the SoW. Team members can easily update the status of their tasks, ensuring real-time visibility into project progress. Task tracking minimizes the chances of missed deadlines and helps keep the project on schedule.
- Collaboration : Collaboration is at the core of these tools. Jira Work Management and Jira Software allow team members and stakeholders to communicate, share updates, and discuss project-related matters on a centralized platform. Confluence also offers a collaborative environment for creating and sharing project documentation.
Reporting features : Reporting is crucial for monitoring project health and performance. Jira Software and Jira Work Management provide built-in reporting capabilities that allow project managers to generate various reports, including progress reports, burndown charts, and sprint summaries. These reports provide valuable insights into how the project aligns with the SoW, helping to identify potential issues or areas for improvement. Confluence enables the creation of comprehensive project documentation that teams can access and share for reporting purposes.
Scope of work: Frequently asked questions
How can you manage scope creep.
Scope creep results from unapproved changes, additions, or features introduced during the project's execution. These changes lead to timeline delays and increased costs. To manage scope creep:
- Clearly define project expectations in a SoW.
- Implement a change control process.
- Maintain open communication with stakeholders.
- Document all changes and approvals.
What are the risks of not having a clear scope of work?
Some common risks of not having a clear SoW include:
- Scope creep . Without a well-defined SoW, there is no clear reference point to assess the impact of changes on the timeline and budget.
- Confusion among team members . Without a precise definition of who is responsible for which task, team members may overlap in their efforts, waste time on unnecessary work, or miss essential deliverables. This can disrupt the workflow, hinder collaboration, and lead to frustration among team members.
Delays in project completion . When new requirements or expectations emerge, they expand the project's boundaries. This expansion often results in delays in accommodating the additional work within the timeframe designed initially.
What are some challenges in managing the scope of work?
Managing the scope of work presents several challenges throughout a project's lifecycle.
- Aligning stakeholders on project objectives: Differing perspectives and expectations can complicate the process.
- Gathering complete requirements with meticulous attention to detail: Missing or unclear information can lead to misinterpretations and errors.
- Managing resource constraints: The project manager must be flexible and reallocate resources when needed.
A robust change control process helps control scope changes by maintaining open communication. This process helps prevent misunderstandings and foster collaboration among team members and stakeholders.
How to Manage Scrum Remote Teams
Learn about what scrum remote teams are, as well as how to manage them. Read about benefits, challenges and helpful tools to use.
Distributed Teams: Strategies for Success
Do you work on a distributed team, maybe remote or virtual? Learn how to manage, structure and build culture with a distributed agile team.
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Your deadline won’t meet itself. how to make a roadmap for your writing projects.
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When you’ve got something to write, don’t just work hard and hope you’ll make your deadline. Sure, you might end up finishing in time that way, but you’ll feel stressed doing it, and the end product may not be up to your standards.
Instead, after an initial observation period—when you analyze the pace at which you typically write , edit, and research—you need to make a plan that will help you maneuver calmly through the project and finish with ease. Having this plan will give you confidence and keep you on track when inevitable challenges arise.
This is the second article in a series covering tools to help you complete ambitious writing projects.
Work Backward From Your Deadline
Instead of hoping for the best, make a proactive plan for finishing your article, proposal, or white paper. Start by assessing how many days you have between now and the deadline, subtracting any days that you have other obligations and won’t be working.
If you can’t work on weekends—or if you’ve only got weekends to work—take that into consideration. If you know you’ll be busy with meetings or family commitments on a particular day, don’t set yourself up for failure by saying you’ll write two pages.
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Identifying the days you’ll work, and the days you won’t, will help you navigate the time you spend on your project more peacefully. You won’t feel guilty for skipping a day when it was part of your plan to skip that day all along.
Make A Roadmap
Because you’ve been tracking how much writing, editing, or researching you can get done in short, consistent increments , you’ve got the information you need to create a realistic work plan.
List out the days you plan to work, and starting with the broad strokes, divide up the project into realistic chunks each day. For example, I might determine that I need to write two pages per day for the next five working days to finish my first draft, so I can spend the following three days editing it.
Keep in mind that a long, complex writing project will likely have sections, and you’ll probably move from section to section and back again as you’re writing. Most people, even experienced writers, don’t write a project straight through from beginning to end.
And, contrary to popular advice, you don’t need to start with the hardest part. Take this as tacit permission to save the most difficult parts until you’ve built momentum and confidence with the project—more on this in the next article.
Make Regular Adjustments To Your Plan
You’ve also got to build in time for the unexpected. While the key to finishing a complex project on a deadline is being scientific about it , you need to remember that not everything will go as planned. Sometimes distractions come up that you didn’t account for, or you’ll discover a new idea that alters the trajectory of your project—and therefore your project plan.
Each day when you finish working on the project, compare your original plan for the day to what you actually accomplished. Did you finish what you thought you would? Is there anything you need to adjust for tomorrow’s plan? Where do you need to begin the next day? This will only take a few minutes and will set you up for success tomorrow.
Knowing exactly where you’re beginning each day and exactly what you plan to accomplish will help you feel that you’re in control and experience less chaos, less anxiety, and less stress.
In the next article, I’ll discuss how to write faster and get more done in each work session. Hit the blue follow button next to my byline to keep an eye on the rest of the series.
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Bug Report: Example, Template & Best Practices
Developing software, like any project, is complicated and littered with roadblocks. One of those roadblocks is a bug. A bug is a problem with a feature or the functionality of the software, which needs to be fixed before it can be shipped to customers. A bug relies on a bug report to get that process started.
Before we dive into how to make a bug report, let’s go deeper into the definition of a bug report and why it’s so important to software development. We’ll also explain some best practices, provide an example to better illustrate what a bug report is and let you download a free bug report template to get started.
What Is a Bug Report?
A bug report is a document, log or diagnostic information that identifies a bug or problem with the software and provides a clear, step-by-step description of how to replicate that bug so developers can find and fix it. A software tester will usually create the bug report and pass it on to the development team so they can understand and resolve the problem.
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Bug Report Template
Use this free Bug Report Template for Excel to manage your projects better.
The bug report not only explains how to reproduce the problem but can also include a screenshot and details of the device and environment in which the bug occurred. The more information, the better for the developer to debug the software so it doesn’t happen again.
There are often many bugs when developing software, but a bug report focuses solely on one bug. For each new bug, a new bug report is created. That’s why bug reports also have unique IDs to differentiate them from one another and make it easier for developers to find the specific bug and track it throughout the bug’s life cycle.
Project management software can help manage the process of identifying and fixing bugs. ProjectManager is award-winning project management software that has customizable kanban boards that can mirror the debugging process so developers can collaborate and managers can track progress. Bugs can be captured on kanban cards, which have unlimited file storage to hold screenshots and documents. Users can set a priority and add tags, descriptions and more. The kanban columns mimic the stages of debugging and cards show the percentage complete. All this is done with our online tool so developers and testers can collaborate wherever they are. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.
Why Is It Important to Use a Bug Report In Software Development?
The main reason a bug report is important is that software developers don’t want to send a product to customers that doesn’t work. Identifying and fixing bugs ensures greater customer satisfaction, which leads to greater sales and a stronger brand.
The bug report is a powerful tool in this process as it captures and details the bug so developers can replicate it and discover the cause of the problem. It does this by being a thorough container for data surrounding the discovery of the bug, from the environment it sprung up from to the device used when it occurred. All of this can pinpoint the origin of the bug, which is crucial in fixing it.
The identification and repair of bugs will save time and money in software development. Yes, a bug means that there will be more time to go back to fix the bug. But that’s preferable to having to release a new version because a bug was sent out with the product and wasn’t discovered until it was caught by a customer. It’s always better to catch the bug before the software goes into production as it saves time and money.
How to Write a Bug Report
A bug report can be created in many different ways, from paper to digital, but however it’s delivered, the data tends to be the same. Here’s an outline of the process for testers to capture all the pertinent information that developers will need to remedy the problem.
1. Start With General Information About the Bug
To begin, you’re going to need to identify the bug. Remember, there will likely be plenty of bugs so you’ll have to make sure you differentiate between them. There’s other general information that’s going to be important to capture, which is listed below.
Give each bug a unique number, according to whatever system you use to track bugs. You can also add a name, if that’s helpful, though there will be space to describe the bug in detail later on in the bug report.
The tester is usually the person who discovers the bug, but it’s the developer who’s responsible for fixing it. Therefore, a developer must be assigned to the bug report to route it to the right person. The developer will take ownership of the bug and be accountable for the process of resolving it.
Submit Date & Due Date
You’ll want to capture the date when the bug was discovered and add a due date for the bug to be fixed. Having a deadline is always preferable to keeping the task open-ended.
2. Describe the Bug
At this point, you’ll want to describe the bug in detail. If you added a title in the previous section, it should have been short, but now you’ll be able to provide all the information about the bug to help the developer replicate and resolve it.
This is where you write an exhaustive but clearly written description of the bug. You want to make it easy for the developer to understand without neglecting any details that will be important to the developer when replicating and repairing the bug. This can include the URL where the bug occurred and other details.
Expected Results vs. Actual Results
The expected result is what should have happened if the functionality or feature was working as designed. This will help the developer know what’s expected. The actual result is the bug or what happened that wasn’t supposed to happen. This should be short and clear.
Screenshot or Image
It can be helpful to the developer if the tester is able to add a screenshot of the bug or some image. Writing about the bug is important, but having visual reference is often clearer or at least will add to the clarity of the written documentation and help the developer understand the bug.
Steps to Reproduce
In order for the developer to replicate the bug, the tester should outline the steps they took that led to the discovery of the bug. Again, these steps should be detailed, but clear so as not to be confusing. You don’t want to prevent the developer from doing their work or have to prolong the process by reaching out to the tester for more information.
Bug Severity & Priority
Not all bugs are created equal. You want to further define the bug by noting its severity and prioritizing it. Severity is how much it impacts the functionality of the software, from critical to enhancement. The former is of the utmost importance and the latter is minor, such as a typo. Priority is used to tell developers which bugs need their attention first and is ranked from high to low priority.
3. Describe the Bug Environment
Finally, you’ll want to describe the environment in which the bug occurred. This goes beyond the URL or screenshot. It helps developers rule out all but the one cause of the bug.
This is the device used when discovering the bug, such as a computer, tablet, phone, etc., and what kind of device: Mac, PC, etc.
Not just the device, but the operating system it uses needs to be noted, such as Android, iOS, Windows, etc.
If the bug was found online, then the browser used will have to be identified, whether it’s Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Foxfire, etc.
Bug Reporting Best Practices
We’ve outlined the basics when identifying and reporting on a bug, but there’s more that can be done to make sure the process proceeds as efficiently as possible. Here are a few helpful tips.
Use a Standard Bug Report Template Throughout Your Organization
Consistency is important in bug reporting. It creates a more efficient system , which means that bugs are resolved faster. Therefore, using a bug report template or making sure that your bug reporting system is consistent will help you report and resolve bugs. It’ll also help when archiving them to use for future reference.
Keep Your Bug Reports Simple but Descriptive Enough
We’ve already mentioned the importance of a detailed, but clear bug report, but it’s worth stressing as it’s so critical to the smooth running of a bug reporting system. That’s because bugs need to be thoroughly detailed to help developers replicate and repair them, but if they’re not simple and straightforward enough, they can prove confusing, which will slow down the process.
Establish Channels of Communication for Testers & Developers
For a bug report to work, there must be a clear communication channel between the tester and the bug developer. In a sense, the bug report is acting as that bridge, but as detailed and clear as a bug report should be, there still might be cause to speak with the tester. Therefore, developers and testers shouldn’t be siloed, but work collaboratively.
Bug Report Example
There are endless possibilities when it comes to bug report examples. We’ve already gone into detail about the reporting process , but we haven’t highlighted what the bug that initiated that process might be. Here are a few examples of bugs in software testing.
- The login doesn’t work
- Add to cart button doesn’t add the right item
- The search box doesn’t respond to the user’s query
The best way to understand a bug report is to do one. ProjectManager has a free bug report template for Excel that you can download right now to use when testing your software. Our site has dozens of free project management templates for Excel and Word that address every phase of a project. Use our free bug report template to streamline your bug reporting and keep it consistent for greater efficiency.
How ProjectManager Helps With Bug Reporting & Tracking
Our free template is a great tool to capture the details of your bug, but tracking the process of fixing it will require project management software. ProjectManager is award-winning project management software that manages and tracks your bug reporting in real time. Once you’ve filled out the bug report it can be attached to the software, making it easily accessible for everyone involved who needs to access it.
Plan How to Fix Bugs With Multiple Views
Different teams use different tools. Our software gives everyone the opportunity to work on the project view they’re comfortable with. Developers can use our kanban boards to visualize their workflow while testers can add bug reports to their task list as they go through their assignments. Managers can schedule bug reporting with the larger software development on robust Gantt charts, while stakeholders can stay informed on progress with calendar views that show due dates and milestones.
Track Progress and Costs in Real Time
Once you have the right tool to work on your bug report, then you’ll need to monitor its progress to make sure it is resolved on schedule. Our software captures real-time data and displays it on easy-to-read graphs and charts that show time, cost, workload and more to help you track your team’s work. There’s no time-consuming setup required as with lightweight tools. It’s ready when you are. Plus, our customizable reports go into greater detail and can be shared to keep stakeholders updated.
Those are just some of the features that can help you identify, manage and track bugs in real time. There are also task management tools to keep teams productive and working at capacity, resource management tools to give them what they need when they need it and risk management tools to stay prepared for the unexpected.
ProjectManager is online project management software that connects teams whether they’re working in the same office or different countries. Teams can share files, comment at the task level and more to foster better collaboration. Join teams at Siemens, Avis and Nestle who are using our software to deliver successful projects. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.
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ENGRC 3350 Organizational Communications for Engineering Managers
Course information provided by the Courses of Study 2023-2024 .
Like ENGRC 3500 in that students write various types of documents (e.g., letters, memos, executive summaries, progress reports), give talks, and incorporate graphics in both their oral and written work. However, ENGRC 3350 focuses on understanding communication within engineering organizations and within student teams. Students work in project teams throughout the semester to write reports and deliver talks. The focus of the project teams depends on instructor, but might include analyzing case studies of engineering organizations, studying organizations on-site, and analyzing concepts in organizational communication and behavior.
When Offered Fall, Spring.
Permission Note Enrollment limited to: EN and BEE seniors or permission of instructor. Prerequisites/Corequisites Prerequisite: two (2) First-Year Writing Seminars and major affiliation.
Distribution Category (CE-EN) Course Attribute (CU-CEL) Satisfies Requirement Satisfies the College of Engineering's engineering communication requirement. This course also fulfills a liberal studies requirement or the Organizational Behavior requirement for ORIE students.
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Regular Academic Session.
Credits and Grading Basis
3 Credits Graded (Letter grades only)
Class Number & Section Details
8807 ENGRC 3350 SEM 101
- TR 2:55pm - 4:10pm To Be Assigned
- Jan 22 - May 7, 2024
To be determined. There are currently no textbooks/materials listed, or no textbooks/materials required, for this section. Additional information may be found on the syllabus provided by your professor.
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How to Determine Your Work Style as a New Manager
- Claire Hughes Johnson
Are you a director, an analyzer, a collaborator, or a promoter?
Self-awareness in the workplace is always a superpower, but when you’re new to management, it’s even more important. You need to understand and communicate how you do your best work. Here are two exercises first-time managers can use to develop self-awareness:
- First, identify your work style: Are you more introverted or extroverted? Are you more task-oriented or people-oriented?
- Ask yourself: Do I do my best work in collaboration with others or by myself? Do I tend to place more value on doing things quickly and efficiently or on bringing people along in the process and generating consensus for the path forward? Where you fall will determine which of four work styles you fall into: the analyzer, the director, the collaborator, or the promoter.
- Then, articulate your values. Imagine yourself late in life, reflecting on your career. In the end, what was most important to you? Write down 10 values that represent your ideal of that fulfilled life. Narrow the list down to five values, then three. Then, write down activities that embody each value. If your value is excellence, for example, an activity might be that you never deliver a project unless it’s nearly perfect.
- As a last step, be open with colleagues and direct reports about your work style and key values so they can understand what motivates you and how best to work with you — and provide feedback on the unconscious biases your values will inevitably create. You can even create a “Working with Me” document that clearly outlines how you like to work, your management style, your communication preferences, and more.
When I was an executive at Google, I worked with a talented manager who had one big flaw: He told his team everything.
- CJ Claire Hughes Johnson is a corporate officer and adviser for Stripe, a global technology company that builds economic infrastructure for the internet. Prior to Stripe, Claire spent 10 years at Google leading a number of business teams. She is the author of Scaling People: Tactics for Management and Company Building .