Delivering the Project Status Report

Delivering regular project status reports is an important part of project management, as it helps to keep stakeholders informed about the progress of the project and any potential issues or concerns. Here are some best practices for delivering project status reports:

  1. Set clear expectations: Before you start delivering project status reports, it's important to establish clear expectations with stakeholders. This includes agreeing on the frequency of the reports, the format and content of the reports, and the audience for the reports.

  2. Use a consistent format: Consistency is key when it comes to project status reports. Use a consistent format for each report, and make sure that the report includes all of the necessary information, such as a summary of the project's progress, a list of completed tasks, a list of outstanding tasks, and any issues or concerns.

  3. Use visual aids: Project status reports can sometimes be dense and difficult to digest, especially if they include a lot of data and numbers. Consider using visual aids, such as graphs, charts, and tables, to make the information more accessible and easier to understand.

  4. Focus on key messages: A project status report should not be a comprehensive update on every aspect of the project. Instead, focus on the key messages that you want to convey, and provide just enough detail to support those messages.

  5. Be transparent and honest: A project status report is not a marketing document – it's a report on the current state of the project. Be transparent and honest in your reporting, and don't try to sugarcoat or downplay any issues or concerns.

  6. Follow up on action items: A project status report should not just be a static document – it should be a starting point for action. Make sure to follow up on any action items or decisions that arise from the report, and keep stakeholders informed about progress on those items.

In conclusion, delivering effective project status reports requires careful planning and attention to detail. By setting clear expectations, using a consistent format, focusing on key messages, and being transparent and honest, project managers can ensure that their project status reports are effective and useful to stakeholders.

For any project that is in progress, the project manager will create a weekly status report. The status report will have a summary status with one of the following:

  • Red - The project has outstanding issues that require immediate attention from the Project Sponsor.
  • Yellow - The project has outstanding issues that require the project sponsor's attention.
  • Green - The project has no outstanding issues that require the project sponsor's attention.

Status Report Details

In addition to the high-level status, the project status report will include the following sections:

  • Accomplishments - Deliverables that were completed and delivered in the past week
  • Planned Activities for Next Week - Deliverables that will be completed and delivered in the next week
  • Issues Needing Action - Issues needing action by the Project leadership or sponsor
  • Issues Resolved - Issues that were resolved in the past week
  • Budget - The state of the project budget includes approved scope changes.
  • Project burn rate - An accounting of the cost per week of the project team.
  • Schedule - Description of the state of the project schedule. Can also include a copy of the MS Project document, an HTML report from MS Project, or a link to the MS Project document on a server.