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Status Reporting Plan

Status Reporting Plan

Author: Jeff Carroll

This lesson provides an overview of planning status reporting throughout a project.

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Source: Image of traffic light, 3D arrow, file folder, Images by Video Scribe, License held by Jeff Carroll; Image of female project manager, male project sponsor, Creative Commons, Kelly Eddington; Image of top secret stamp, Public Domain,

Video Transcription

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Hi, I'm Jeff. And in this lesson, we'll discuss the plan for status reporting. Status reports are a common aspect of communication plans. And they are used to cover overall project progress. So let's look at an example.

It's the project manager's responsibility to communicate regularly with stakeholders and team members about the project status. The minimum information that should be included in a status report is current status of work completed since the last status report, the focus of the work during the current time period, any risks that have occurred since the last status report, or the status of any ongoing risks, steps to mitigate the risk should also be included, and what project team members are currently involved in the project. If the project team is large, then only key events by team members should be noted. The status report is an excellent way to highlight contributions from the team.

Another method to communicate progress is a project dashboard. This can be part of the status report or it can be its own method of reporting. The dashboard contains a list of activities and high level tasks worked on during a particular time period. It also includes the status of the work.

The work status on dashboards is often color-coded. Green on work that is complete. Yellow on work that is ongoing. And red to indicate work that has slipped when compared to the project schedule.

When work is marked as read, then the dashboard should also contain details about how the issue will be addressed. It's the project manager's role to manage those issues. The dashboard should focus on high level tasks or activities since its intended as a summary of the project schedule status, not as a replacement.

When project statuses are communicated, it's important for the project manager to remember the levels of confidentiality needed with each piece of information. It's their role to determine who should and who shouldn't receive each update, especially when there are issues with the team as a whole, individual personnel, or with vendors. It's important to restrict those comments to those who need to know this information, not the entire team. This also helps reduce the noise that can come when too much information is communicated about project status.

If there is a question about confidentiality, the project manager should start with the project sponsor. Then determine, either with the project sponsors advice or their own, if any other stakeholders or team members need the information. Also, be sure not to waste the project sponsors time with low level information that doesn't require their attention. And that's how status reports are handled.

Nicely done. In this lesson, you learned to plan on status reports, what should be included in status reports, what should be included in project dashboards, and that project managers should always be careful when communicating confidential information. Thanks for listening. And have a great day.

Terms to Know
Project Dashboard

A technique for providing high-level overview of the progress being made in a project's scope.