What's Hot (and What's Not) in Project-Process Reports - dummies

What’s Hot (and What’s Not) in Project-Process Reports

By Stanley E. Portny

Preparing the project-progress report gives you an opportunity to step back and review all aspects of your project so you can recognize accomplishments and identify situations that may require your early intervention. Be sure to include some or all of the following information in your project-progress report for each performance period:

  • Performance highlights: Always begin your report with a summary of project highlights, such as “The planned upper-management review was successfully conducted on schedule” or “Our client Mary Fisher approved our training outline according to schedule.” (Just remember to keep it to one page!)

  • Performance details: Describe the activities, outcomes, milestones, labor hours, and resource expenditures in detail. For consistency, identify each activity by its Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) code.

  • Problems and issues: Highlight special issues or problems that you encountered during the period and propose any necessary corrective actions.

  • Approved changes to the plan: Report all approved changes to the existing project plan.

  • Risk-management status: Update your project risk assessment by reporting on changes in project assumptions, the likelihood of these updated assumptions occurring, and the effect of those updated assumptions on existing project plans. (Chapter 8 covers the basics of dealing with risk and uncertainty.)

  • Plans for the next period: Summarize major work and accomplishments that you have planned for the next performance period.

Following is an example of a project-progress report format. Although you can expand each section of information, depending on the nature of your project, remember that the longer the report is, the less likely your intended audience is to read and understand it.