How to Write an Effective Project Report in 7 Steps (+ examples in Microsoft 365)
By: Shubhangi Pandey | Published on: Nov 3, 2023 | Categories: BrightWork 365 , Microsoft 365 , Project Reporting | 0 comments
In an age where remote work is becoming the new every day and data-driven decision-making is more crucial than ever, project reporting has become more than a managerial obligation. It’s an art and a science that combines traditional project tracking with modern metrics and advanced data visualization.
This guide will walk you through seven essential steps to craft a project report that informs and engages your stakeholders. We’ll explore the role of AI in project management, delve into the importance of remote work metrics, and discuss cutting-edge data visualization tools that can make your reports more insightful.
Whether you’re a seasoned project manager or just getting started with project management basics , these steps will help you write a project report that adds value to your organization’s knowledge base for future projects.
Why are Project Management Tools Vital for Report Writing?
The importance of robust project management tools for effective report writing cannot be overstated. Here’s why:
- Centralization : Project management tools are a central hub for all your project data, streamlining project management and reporting processes.
- Efficient Tracking : These tools make it easier to monitor work progress during the monitoring phase of project management , helping you stay on top of tasks and milestones.
- Risk Identification : Advanced features enable you to spot potential risks early, allowing for proactive management.
- Stakeholder Communication : Keep all stakeholders in the loop with real-time updates and comprehensive reports.
- Data Visualization : Utilize features like Power BI to transform raw data into insightful visuals, aiding in better decision-making.
- Custom Reports : Depending on organizational needs, create specialized reports that offer in-depth analysis and recommendations upon project completion.
The Evolution of AI in Project Management Tools for Report Writing
When crafting an impactful project report, your tools can be a game-changer. And let’s talk about the elephant in the room: Artificial Intelligence. AI is no longer just a buzzword – it’s a reality transforming project management and reporting.
According to a systematic literature review published in MDPI , AI’s role in project management is increasingly significant, offering advanced capabilities like predictive analytics and risk assessment.
The Power of Predictive Analytics
These advanced AI tools centralize your project data and offer predictive analytics, risk assessment, and automated insights that can be invaluable for your report. Like Power BI revolutionized data visualization, AI algorithms can sift through massive amounts of data to highlight trends, predict risks, and recommend actions.
Making AI Accessible for Every Project Manager
Imagine reporting on what has happened and providing stakeholders with insights into what could happen. It’s like giving your project report a crystal ball. And don’t worry – embracing AI doesn’t mean you have to be a tech wizard. Many modern project management tools benefit from built-in AI features.
A thesis from DiVA portal explores the implementation of AI in project management and its impact on working personnel, indicating that AI is becoming more accessible and user-friendly.
The Future of Data-Driven Decision Making
AI’s capabilities equip stakeholders with data-driven insights for strategic decisions. It’s not just about tracking work and identifying risks anymore – it’s about forecasting them and offering actionable solutions. Welcome to the future of project reporting.
Types of Project Reports and Their Formats
Understanding the types of project reports you need to create is crucial. Whether it’s a project summary report, a project health report, or a project completion report, each serves a unique purpose and audience.
Knowing the format, whether a pie chart, bar chart, or complete chart, can also help present the data effectively. Writing a report is a valuable opportunity to evaluate the project, document lessons learned, and add to your organization’s knowledge base for future projects.
Data Visualization: Modern Tools and Techniques
Data visualization has come a long way from simple pie charts and bar graphs. With the advent of AI, we now have tools that can display and interpret data. Think of AI-powered heat maps that can show project bottlenecks or predictive line graphs that forecast project completion based on current trends.
Techniques for Effective Data Presentation
Modern data visualization techniques like interactive dashboards, real-time data streams, and even augmented reality (AR) representations are making it easier than ever to understand complex project metrics. These aren’t just for show; they offer actionable insights that can significantly impact project outcomes.
Making Data Visualization Accessible
The best part? These advanced visualization tools are becoming increasingly user-friendly. You don’t need to be a data scientist to use them. Most project management software now integrates seamlessly with these tools, making it easier than ever to incorporate advanced data visualization into your regular reporting.
The New Normal of Remote Work
In today’s digital age, remote work is becoming the new normal. As project managers, adapting our reporting techniques to this changing landscape is crucial.
Critical Metrics for Remote Teams
When it comes to remote teams, some metrics become even more critical. Think along the lines of ‘Remote Engagement Rate,’ ‘Digital Communication Effectiveness,’ and ‘Virtual Team Collaboration.’ These KPIs offer a more nuanced understanding of how remote teams are performing.
Tools for Tracking Remote Work Metrics
Fortunately, modern project management tools have features specifically designed to track these remote work metrics. From time-tracking software to virtual “water cooler” moments captured for team morale, these tools make remote work measurable in ways we couldn’t have imagined a few years ago.
Project Timeline and Milestones
A well-defined project timeline and key milestones are essential for any project. They not only help in keeping the project on track but also provide a basis for decision-making.
Project management software can automate this process, ensuring that reports are always up-to-date. Try the steps outlined below 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
Writing an effective project report is crucial for evaluating the project’s health, keeping stakeholders informed, and setting the stage for future projects. Here are seven steps to guide you through the process.
1. Decide the Objective
Take some time during the project management initiation phase to think about the purpose of the report. Do you need to describe, explain, recommend, or persuade? Having a clear goal from the outset ensures that you stay focused, making engaging your reader easier.
Understanding the objective is the cornerstone of effective project reporting. Whether crafting a project summary report or a detailed project performance report, aligning your content with the aim will make your report more coherent and actionable.
This is also the stage where you decide the key milestones and metrics to highlight in the report.
2. Understand Your Audience
Understanding your audience is crucial for crafting a report that resonates. Whether you’re writing for stakeholders or team members, the language, data, and visuals should be tailored to their preferences and needs.
- Language & Tone : Consider the communication style of your audience. Is a formal or informal tone more appropriate? Tailoring your language can build rapport and make your message more impactful.
- Data & Graphics : Choose the types of data and visual aids that will most effectively convey your message to your specific audience.
- Personal Preferences : Pay attention to how your audience typically communicates, whether in emails or other documents and try to mirror that style.
- Report Format : Different stakeholders may require different levels of detail. A project manager may want an in-depth analysis, while a sponsor only needs an executive summary.
- Audience Personas : Utilize audience personas to guide the tone, style, and content, ensuring your report caters to the diverse needs of all project stakeholders.
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 project management templates are available within the organization.
Checking these details can save time later on!
Different types of project reports serve other purposes. A project status report provides a snapshot of where the project is, while a project health report dives deeper into metrics.
Make sure to consider the medium – will this report be a PDF, a slideshow, or an interactive dashboard? The format can significantly impact how the information is received.
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.
To build a compelling case in your report, start mining your collaborative project site for crucial metrics like project milestones, resource utilization, and project health. Supplement this with additional data from external sources like articles and case studies.
Utilize data visualization tools like pie charts or bar graphs to make complex information easily digestible. Ensure the data is current to maintain the report’s credibility and remember to cite your sources for added reliability.
5. Structure the Report
How you arrange your report is pivotal in how well your audience can digest the material. A logically organized report improves readability and amplifies its impact in delivering the core message.
Your report should have a natural progression, leading the reader from one point to the next until a decisive conclusion is reached. Generally, a report is segmented into four key components:
- Opening Overview: This is the first thing your reader will see, and it’s usually crafted after the rest of the report is complete. Make this section compelling, as it often influences whether the reader will delve deeper into the report.
- Introduction: This section sets the stage by offering background information and outlining the report’s cover. Make sure to specify the report’s scope and any methodologies employed.
- Body: Here’s where your writing prowess comes into play. This is the meat of the report, filled with background, analyses, discussions, and actionable recommendations. Utilize data and visual aids to bolster your arguments.
- Final Thoughts: This is where you tie all the report’s elements together in a neat bow. Clearly state the following steps and any actions the reader should consider.
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 text sections.
Readability is not just about the text but also about the visual elements like pie charts, bar colors, and even the background color of the report. Use these elements to break the monotony and make the report more engaging. Also, consider adding a table of contents for longer reports to improve navigation.
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 it or ask a colleague to review it.
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 pretty tricky.
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! If you’re considering SharePoint, check out our build vs buy guide.
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. If you’re still using excel for project management , here’s why you should consider switching.
- You can access configurable and filterable reports based on the audience by leveraging the available reporting mechanisms in Power Apps, Power BI, and Excel. Everyone can see the information in the way they need.
- Linked into the 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 document version!
5 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 are five ways you can leverage BrightWork 365 and Microsoft 365 for more efficient project reporting:
1. Capture Project Status Reports in a few minutes
BrightWork project sites have a “Status” tab where the project manager can capture what is happening. This is not a status report but a place for the PM to log the current status.
2. Track the project schedule with Gantt
3. 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.
4. Surface Risks and Issues across all projects
One of the most critical elements for senior executives and project stakeholders is being aware of the project risks, especially understanding any issues that arise quickly.
5. 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.
Spend less time on your project reports with BrightWork 365
Streamline your project reporting process with BrightWork 365, a tool to centralize and automate your project data. Whether you prefer real-time dashboards or scheduled email reports, BrightWork 365 adapts to your needs, eliminating the tedious aspects of project reporting. Consider the following:
- Centralization : BrightWork 365 consolidates all project information into a single platform, making it easier to manage and report.
- Real-Time Reporting : As data is updated, reports are generated in real-time, ensuring you always have the most current information.
- Flexible Access : Reports can be accessed through various methods, including logging in to view customizable dashboards or receiving scheduled email summaries.
- Efficiency : The tool automates the reporting process, freeing time and reducing manual effort.
Conclusion: The Future of Project Reporting
Project reporting has undergone a significant transformation, thanks partly to technological advancements like Microsoft 365 and BrightWork 365 . As we’ve discussed, it’s not just about tracking tasks and milestones anymore.
Today’s project reports are data-rich, AI-enhanced documents that offer predictive analytics and actionable insights. They also cater to the unique challenges and KPIs relevant to remote teams.
As we look to the future, we can expect even more advancements in project reporting technology. However, the core principles of clear objectives, a deep understanding of your audience, and a well-structured format will remain constant.
By adhering to the steps outlined in this guide, you’ll be well-equipped to adapt to new tools and technologies, ensuring that your project reports remain valuable for decision-making and strategic planning.
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 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 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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Table of Contents
Managing a project is by no means an easy feat. Many moving parts can make it complicated to stay focused on the tasks and keep stakeholders up to date on the project status. This is why project reports are a useful tool for project managers .
These project reports can be used to provide direction for team members, offer status updates for partners or management teams, and successfully manage risk mitigation – to name just a few!
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Let’s take a closer look at how to create a project report including its many objectives, components, and examples of project reports.
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What is a Project Report?
A project report is a comprehensive document that provides detailed information about a specific project. It typically outlines the project's objectives, scope, methodology, progress, findings, and outcomes. A project report often includes details about the project's goals, activities, timelines, resources used, challenges faced, and the results achieved. It serves as a formal record of the project's lifecycle, serving both as a documentation of the work done and as a communication tool to convey the project's status and outcomes to stakeholders, sponsors, or interested parties. Project reports are commonly used in various fields such as business, engineering, research, and academia to assess the effectiveness and success of a project.
5 Steps to Create a Project Report From Scratch
Creating project reports is an integral part of evaluating project success. Documenting the lessons learned and sharing them with a larger team in an organized way can help with future projects. You can use different tools to put together your project report. Here are 7 basic steps involved in creating a project report -
1. Know Your Objective
Sit down, evaluate your objectives, and understand what you want to describe, explain, recommend, and prove with your report. Having set goals will not only help you proceed with your project report but also help readers understand your point of view.
2. Recognize Your Audience
Your audience plays an essential role in making your project report a success. A formal annual report differs from a financial report: the language, representation of data, and analysis changes per your target audience .
3. Data Collection
The chances of you having a solid report is when data supports it. Data plays an essential role in making people believe in your derivations. Also, support your claims by citing sources such as case studies, surveys, interviews, etc.
4. Structure the Report
A project report is further divided into certain sections. These 4 are the most common divisions of a project report:
- Summary: The summary gives the reader a download of all covered in the project report. Even though a summary is placed at the beginning of a project report, you can only write it once your entire report is complete.
- Introduction: Mention the outline of the report, give context and mention the scope and methodologies used in the report.
- Body: This is the lengthy section of the report as it contains background details, analysis, data, and graphics.
- Conclusion: This section brings the entire project report together.
5. Edit and Proofread
Once your project report is ready, read it multiple times with some time gap. You can ask your co-workers to review it.
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Project Report Objectives
Every project report starts with a solid project report objective. Your objective should provide precise direction for the rest of the report. Consider what purpose you want your project report to serve. Are you describing new risks or explaining project delays? Or will your report focus on persuading management teams or stockholders to invest additional funds into the project?
A thorough understanding of your objective will help guide you in writing the report and make the purpose of the report clear to all stakeholders.
Here are a few examples of project report objectives:
- Requesting approval for a new project
- Tracking the progress of the project
- Identifying and managing risks
- Managing costs and budgets
- Requesting financial assistance
Project Report Components
Your project report will be bursting with essential information about your project. Although the content of your report will differ depending on the type of report you’re creating, keeping your report organized will make it easy for the reader to follow along without missing any critical points. Organize your data and content into sections that allow all stakeholders to quickly reference.
Consider including some of the following project report components:
The first section of your report will likely include an executive summary. The brief overview should provide all the essential takeaways from the report, allowing the reader to understand the report's contents without having to read through all of the project details.
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This component includes real metrics that track your project’s progress. It offers an overview of the project's status and budget while identifying risks or issues that may have emerged. Helping project management and other stakeholders reflect on the project schedule and make amendments as needed.
Risks and Risk Management
What risks have developed that may affect the quality, timeline, or budget of your project? How will you control these emerging elements? It’s inevitable that all projects will face risks, so it’s how you intend to manage those risks that’s important to the project team and stakeholders. Include a detailed analysis of the risk, your proposed solutions, and how these new elements will affect the project as a whole.
Are your financials where they need to be for the current status of your project? Will more capital be required to reach your goals effectively? Provide a detailed overview of the allocation of your budget including materials, labor, and operating costs.
Reflect on your project goals. Is the project behind, ahead, or on schedule? How will any changes to your timelines affect your budget or resources? Include an overview of tasks that have already been completed and a comprehensive schedule of remaining tasks.
Resources may include materials, machinery, or even funding required to complete your project. Provide a detailed summary of your current resource allocation. What are detrimental resources for your project running low? Are there any excess amounts?
Is your team completing tasks efficiently? Are there any skill or knowledge gaps that need to be addressed? Compare your team’s performance to your initial goals to identify the group’s progress.
Common Project Report Types
A project report is a simple and detailed description of the essence of the project and its aims and aspirations. The business management team and stakeholders are kept updated on every development regarding the project; based on that, they prepare their strategy. This vital information keeps the communication line open between the management team and the stakeholders, providing them with a complete picture of every action concerning the project.
A project report includes the necessary recommendations for all types of businesses, established and start-ups. Moreover, organizations use project reports to procure financial help from institutions. Project reports can be of various types that help everyone complete a project successfully. Based on the report, your team can take up any activity that benefits the project.
It talks about the progress going on with a project. It also states various significant activities associated with the project. This status report organizes the communication medium between the team and the stakeholders. It summarizes the finished tasks on the project at hand. It includes the budgetary details and the timeline of the project. It also helps identify the risks related to the project and measures to tackle them beforehand. The status report also keeps track of the events or actions or any activity taken in the past. Status reports are carried out weekly, daily, monthly, or quarterly. They help collect and distribute information about crucial activities in a project in a smooth manner.
While executing a project, a progress report is inevitably carried out to update everything about the project. It usually includes things like if the project baseline is fulfilled. It indicates the initial plan you prepared along with your stakeholders about a project regarding the expectations, schedules, cost, deliverables , and scope of it. A progress report informs your stakeholders how much progress has been made in the above directions.
You should prepare this status report in a specific manner by stating the project title, contact information, a summary of the status, and providing all the information about the budget, timeline, and expected completion date of the project. You can take the help of several such free templates available online to make the status report.
This type of report explains the risks associated with the project in a documented form. It covers details about risks that are managed already and the emerging ones. It includes the overall risk profile of the project. Risk reports identify and state potential risks that could alter the duration of the project and tips to manage them.
Board Executive Reports
An executive report is a summary of the business plan of an organization for lending partners. It enables the team members to collect and combine the results of numerous research studies to help them decide on the project. It is the starting point of arranging a dialogue with the investors. It should be written in such a way that it creates the best impression in the minds of the lenders. It should be short and precise and comprehensively analyze the project.
Cost Benefit Analysis Report
This kind of report helps organizations know if a particular project is possible or not. It will show you how much the project will benefit your organization against the investment. It will help you decide if a project is worth taking on for your organization and how much business profit it will get you at the end of the day. Alternatively, it will also help your organization better utilize its resources while progressing with the project. You can monitor your project expenses and spending to manage your funds better.
This report highlights the distribution of resources according to the project tasks. The team members and the investors get the necessary information by reading this report on how well the resources are distributed in the project. It will give detailed narration about which team is assigned to which task according to the date wise. This type of report is beneficial for an organization to know if there is over allocation of resources as this could harm the project. Overall allocation happens when there are insufficient resources to complete all the crucial activities of the project.
This report helps you compare your overall project plan with the project's end result. It uses metrics to inform you if your project is running according to the timeline, ahead of time, or running late. Moreover, it will streamline the data based on the comparisons you have made on the project. With the availability of various project management tools , preparing this kind of report has become easier now. It cuts down your hard work by creating the project activity report and conveying it to the stakeholders.
Gap Analysis Report
This report will examine the project's current status in the context of schedule, cost, and labor and, subsequently, compare the targeted status. It discovers and examines the gap between these two aspects and prepares a strategy or action plan on how to do the needful to reach the targeted objectives. Every business, whether a budding one or an established one, will need this kind of gap analysis report to perform better in terms of projects. This report will tell you how to take the successful step to graduate to the next level of your business. This will tell you whether you are fulfilling your business objectives and using your resources carefully.
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Project Report Use Cases
There are several common use cases for project reports in project management. These include:
Project Status Report
A project status report is used regularly throughout a project to communicate the project’s progress in conjunction with the original project plan. The status report of a project provides all stakeholders with updates on the project’s development and performance. Your status report may cover issues or risks that have emerged and include your amended project plan.
Project Tracking Report
A project tracking report offers real numbers, metrics, and other key indicators that measure the project’s overarching progress. This comprehensive report covers all aspects of the project, including project status, tasks, project team performance, and how much of the project has been completed.
Project Performance Report
Performance reports provide an overview of the project’s progress, a breakdown of resource allocation, and costs to date. Your performance report will help monitor the project’s current direction and forecast how well it will perform.
Project Health Report
A health report offers an analysis of any problem areas or risks within your project. Completing a project health report can help identify any potential issues before they occur, saving you time, money, and resources.
Project Summary Report
A project summary report provides a quick snapshot of the project’s status. Along with tasks completed and a summary of financials, the brief report should include any key highlights or milestones and a glance at upcoming scheduled tasks.
Project Time Tracking Report
Project time tracking reports help the team and all stakeholders better understand the time allocation for each task. It’s a useful tool for project managers to gauge their teams' efficiency and identify what areas need improvement.
Project Report Examples
Not sure where to start with your next project report? Consulting the right project report example can help you gain the direction you need.
Click here for a status report example.
Opening and Viewing Reports With Microsoft
Using Project, one can easily create new reports or customize them for various types of project data without relying on any other application or software. MS Project offers dozens that you can use right away. You can also customize any report’s content and look or build a new one from scratch.
- Click the Report tab and then click the View Reports group.
- Select the type of report you need.
For instance, if you have to open the Project Overview report, navigate Report > Dashboards > Project Overview.
Reports Dashboard Option
Change Data in Your Report
Reports are customizable. So, you choose the data that MS Project will show in any part of a report. Follow the steps below to change the data in your report:
- Click the chart or table you would like to alter.
- Use the Field list pane present on the right side to select fields to filter and show data.
- Also, clicking a chart displays three pop-up buttons on the right-hand side of the chart. You can opt for the Chart Elements or Chart Filters button to select elements and filter chart data.
For instance, take the previous Project Overview report as an example. You can change the % Complete chart and display critical subtasks rather than top-level summary tasks using the below-mentioned steps:
- Click anywhere in the % Complete chart.
- Now, in the Field List pane, navigate to the Filter box.
- Select the Critical option.
- Next, pick level 2 in the Outline Level box. Let’s suppose that this is the first level of the outline with subtasks rather than summary tasks.
- The chart will reflect the change as you make your selections.
Changes in the % Complete Chart
Change the Report Format
Using Project, you can go from monotonous black-white to vivid effects and colors. With the Split view, you will be able to view the real-time report changes while you make the changes. To change the report format, take the following steps:
- Click the report (you can click anywhere).
- Now click Report Tools and click the Design tab. It will display options for changing the look of the entire report.
- Using this tab, you can alter the color, font, or theme of the entire report. You can also include images, charts, shapes, or tables here.
Report Tools Options
- Clicking on individual elements such as tables, charts, and others of a report will display new tabs at the top of the screen for formatting that part.
- Use the Drawing Tools Format tab to change shapes.
- The Picture Tools Format tab will help you add picture effects.
- You can configure and tweak tables using the Table Tools Design and Table Tools Layout tabs.
- The Chart Tools Format and Chart Tools Design tabs help tweak charts. Also, clicking on a chart displays three buttons on the right side of the chart. You can use the Chart Styles button to modify the chart color or style.
Suppose you plan to change the % Complete chart in the Project Overview report. Click anywhere in the chart and tap on the Chart Tools Design.
% Complete Chart
- From the Chart Styles, pick a new style for your chart. The option selected in the following image adds shadows to the columns and removes the lines.
Chart Styles in Chart Tools Design
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- Next, you can click Chart Tools Design > Change Chart Type to add some depth.
- You can change the columns by clicking Column > 3-D Stacked Column.
- To add a background color, click Chart Tools Format > Shape Fill. Now pick a new color. You can explore more color options by clicking on more fill colors.
Color Options for Chart
- Alter bar colors by selecting the bars and then click the Chart Tools Format > Shape Fill option. Pick the color you want.
- You can drag the numbers upwards to get them off the chart.
The above-stated changes will be reflected as follows.
% Complete Chart on Making the Changes
Make Your Report
Take the following steps to create a new report.
- Click the Report tab and then click New Report.
- Pick from the four options:
- Blank: Provides a blank canvas that you can use to add charts, text, tables, and images using the Report Tools Design tab.
- Chart: It is suitable for comparing Actual Work, Work by default, and Remaining Work. Using the Field List pane, you can pick different fields for comparison or use the controls to alter the format and color of the chart.
- Table: It displays tabular information. Using the Field List pane, you can select what fields are to be displayed in the table.
- Comparison: It gives you two charts side-by-side. Initially, they will have the same data. You can click on the chart and choose the information of your choice in the Field List pane.
Types of New Report Styles
- Name your report and start adding information to it. All charts are fully customizable. You can easily add or delete elements to meet your needs.
- You can make your new report available for future projects by using the Organizer to copy this new report into the global template.
Share Your Report
- Click anywhere in the report.
- Navigate Report Tools Design > Copy Report.
Copy Report Option
- Now paste the report into any program of your choice. You might have to resize or align the report when you paste it elsewhere. You can also opt for the printing option for sharing hard copies.
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1. What is a project report and its significance?
A project report summarizes a project's key aspects, including its goals, timeline, budget, progress, and outcomes. It provides project managers with critical information to monitor and evaluate the project's performance, identify potential risks and challenges, and communicate progress to stakeholders.
2. What is the format of a project report?
A project report format is completely customizable depending on the project requirements and your choices. However, it should focus on the specific objectives of the project, its methodology, major findings, and progress.
3. How do you prepare a project report?
Preparing a project report is simple. Click Report > New Report and choose from the four options. Now, give a suitable name to the report and start adding information.
4. What is a project report with an example?
A project report is a document providing detail on the project’s overall status or specific aspects of its performance. Irrespective of the report type, it contains project data based on economic, financial, technical, managerial or production aspects. For example, a Cost Overview report tells the current cost status of the project. It also reveals planned costs, remaining costs, cumulative costs, actual costs, and percentage of completion to help understand if the project is within budget.
5. How do you write a complete project report?
Writing a complete project report entails a proper start and closure, including
- Labeling the document and writing the project overview
- Including a section for the project’s scope
- A well-formulated project performance analysis.
- Highlighting the project’s accomplishments, results, and outcomes.
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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 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 prepare a project management report
A project management report is an essential project management tool.
It provides a summary overview of the project’s status that you can share with stakeholders, clients and team members. Ideally, the project report is just a page or two long. And it ensures everyone can quickly assess what’s on schedule, and what’s lagging behind or is overdue.
Good communication, management, and organization are central to effective project management . Regular project management reports help to ensure your project stays on track. And you can also use project reports to manage risk, as well as monitor budgets, and timelines.
Furthermore, the project report can double up as a record-keeping tool for past decisions and actions.
The frequency of your project management report depends on the project’s size and complexity. Monthly reporting is a minimum requirement for most projects, and many produce weekly status reports.
It’s also good practice to produce project management reports throughout the entire lifecycle of the project.
What information needs to be included in a project management report?
The report’s purpose is to update all project stakeholders on progress and identify any major issues that might have arisen..
The detail may vary from project to project, but all project management reports should include the following information:
Latest project update
Current project health
The aim is to provide a high-level snapshot of where things are at. Project stakeholders want to be able to see at a glance the project’s status. Make sure your project report clearly identifies the following:
An assessment of the project’s progress against the project plan: Is the project ahead or behind schedule?
A rundown on tasks completed and what’s next in the pipeline: Is overall completion of tasks on track?
A summary of actual costs against budget: Is the budget over or underspent?
An overview of project risks and any issues identified: Has the project’s risk profile changed requiring action?
Plus, any action points or to-do items that need attention.
Tips on how to write a project management report
Keep it short and simple. Project stakeholders don’t want to get bogged down in too much detail. The report should provide an accessible overview of the project’s status. A weekly 20-page document will simply go unread.
Be concise, and avoid technical jargon. Not all stakeholders will be familiar with the project’s acronyms or technical terms. Make it an easy read for everyone by using everyday language.
Make it visual. Charts, graphs, and diagrams will bring the data to life, making it much more accessible. In Teamwork.com, project management reports are color-coded to show the status of whether it’s completed, active or late. This makes it easier for project stakeholders to see at a glance where things are at.
Be honest about progress. If the project is behind schedule or is over budget, it’s best to be upfront. After all, the sooner a problem is identified, then the sooner it can be resolved and the project can move forward.
Highlight any action points. Make it easy for project stakeholders. If a client, team member or stakeholder needs to do something, then clearly identify what’s required, by who and when.
Project Management Reporting: Conclusion
A well-prepared project management report is an excellent tool for keeping everyone updated. Plus, it will help you to effectively manage the project and keep it on track.
For more information and advice on project management, check out our project management workbook .
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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).
( Image Source )
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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Project Report: What is it & How to Write it?
We all know – the struggle of creating project reports is real! It is a complicated process that can either build or destroy your entire project.
No matter how extraordinary your project idea is, or how wonderfully one of your projects performed, creating a compelling project report isn’t easy.
The risk of analyzing the wrong data, taking the wrong path, or drawing up the wrong conclusion – it’s always, always lingering upon you.
So, if you’re standing on the edge, knowing you need to craft a project report, but also feeling a little uncertain about how to begin – you’re at the right place.
In this article, we will tell you what a project report is and the things that you need to include in it. We will also tell you about a tool that will help you write one in no time. Let’s roll!
What Exactly is a Project Report? (Definition)
A project report is a written document that encapsulates all the essential information related to a particular project – from goals and objectives to analysis and recommendations.
This report helps you transform a business idea or plan into a productive venture, without any confusion or chaos. Along with defining the strategies for project execution, it helps you implement them properly.
You should always create a well-detailed project report. Why? Because you can’t dive into starting a project without giving much thought to your goals, your plan of action, your strategies, and the big picture.
Still not convinced? Well, let’s explore a few more reasons why you need to spend your valuable time creating this one report.
Reasons Why You Should Create a Project Report
Yes, creating a project report is a crucial part of starting or managing a project, but not for the reasons you might think. Most people assume that a project report is meant to raise money for a particular project, or get a sponsor. It is true, but that’s not the only use of a project report!
In short, it’s not just about the funding. The process of writing a project report and putting it together is much more valuable. When you’re writing a project report, you discover and understand what it’s going to take to make your project successful. It gives you clarity about your ideas.
After all, before you can explain your ideas and strategies to your friends or investors, you should be able to explain the idea to yourself!
Secondly, spending a little time on planning and creating a project report would drastically reduce the risk of losing money and making silly mistakes. Of course, you could jump right in and start the project without a plan, but you’d be more likely to waste time, money, and resources.
Lastly, creating a project report increases the chances of your project being successful. Over the years, several studies have proved that companies who plan are much more likely to be successful, get funding and achieve their goals – in comparison to the companies who don’t plan.
Excited to create project reports? We know you are! So, without further ado, let’s learn how to actually create an amazing project report.
Read more: Project Timeline: What is it & How to Create it? (Step By Step)
How to Create a Good Project Report? Follow these Steps!
Step 1. set the objective.
First things first, you need to figure out why exactly why you’re writing the report and what’s your end goal. Do you want to describe something to your team or do you want to persuade the upper management?
Once you set a clear purpose and objective, it would be easier for you to stay focused while writing the project report. The result? You would be able to write a much better and more engaging report!
Step 2. Understand The Reader
A formal annual report would be very different from a status report, right? So, while writing your report, always keep the reader in mind. This way, the reader would become more receptive to your ideas.
Basically, tailor your language, data, and graphics according to your audience. Don’t forget to consider their communication style, for instance, how they write emails and structure their documents.
Step 3. Know The Format
Before you start writing the project report, don’t forget to check the format and type of the report. Is it a formal, informal, technical, annual, financial, or fact-finding report?
Also, confirm if any project report templates are available within your organization, or if there is a specific structure that you need to follow while writing the report. This would save you a lot of time in the long run!
Step 4. Collect All The Facts & Data
By backing up your arguments with facts and data, you can solidify your project report. Moreover, you should also cite sources such as case studies, interviews, and articles.
Including data, facts, and figures in your project report is most crucial when you are writing it to persuade someone about the project, or when you’re giving a status report.
Step 5. Structure the Report
Once you are done with understanding the nitty-gritty of the report and collecting all the data, it is time to structure it. Generally, a report has four elements:
Executive Summary: Even though this is the first part of the report, it’s written once the report is finished. As the name suggests, this part comprises a brief about what’s written in the report.
Introduction: In this section, you need to provide a context for your report and the scope. In addition, you also need to outline the structure of the contents and mention all the methodologies you’ve used.
Body: In this part, you have to put your writing skills to work. This is undoubtedly the longest part of your report and it should include everything from data & analysis to recommendations.
Conclusion: This is where you need to compile all the elements of the report in a clear and brief manner. You should also mention the next steps and actions that you want the readers to take after reading the report.
Step 6. Edit & Review
Spend some time formatting your report and making it enjoyable to read. No one likes to read long blocks of text, so use formatting, visuals, and lists to break them up.
Remember, the first draft of the report can’t be perfect! So, do not forget to edit and revise the content until you’re sure that it is error-free. You can also ask a colleague for a review!
So, now that you know the basics of what a project report is and how to create it, let’s check out some really cool use cases of project reports.
Read more: Performance Report: What is it & How to Create it? (Steps Included)
A Few Use Cases of Project Reports
1. project health report.
A project health report outlines the problem areas or any other risk involved with your project. It helps you find out any problems before they happen – which ultimately saves you time and money.
2. Project Summary Report
As the name suggests, a project summary report gives you a quick peek at your project. It’s a concise report that covers all the key highlights of the project, including completed and upcoming tasks.
3. Project Status Report
A project status report can be used to share the status of your project, in line with the original project plan. This report gives the stakeholders information about the project’s performance, updates, and developments.
4. Project Time Tracking Report
This report helps your team and all the stakeholders to understand the time allocated for each task in a more efficient manner. It’s a useful report to gauge your team’s efficiency and the areas that need improvement.
5. Project Tracking Report
This report gives you all the numbers, metrics, and other data that you can use to measure your project’s progress. It also covers your project’s status, team performance, and more.
6. Project Performance Report
A project performance encapsulates the progress of your project, the budget, and a breakdown of allocated resources. It helps you monitor the status of your project, and whether it’s headed in the right direction or not.
Phew! Creating project reports can be a complicated and cumbersome process. Luckily, we have something to make your life easier. Whether you need need to create basic project reports or super complicated ones, Bit.ai is just what you need.
Create Project Reports & All Other Documents On Bit.ai
Bit.ai is the easiest, most convenient way to create project reports and every other kind of document that exists on Earth. With Bit, you can create project reports in no time. Just focus on the content because Bit is going to handle every other aspect of your report – from designing to formatting.
1. Stunning, Fully Responsive Templates: Whether you want to create a sales project report or an annual report – there’s a beautiful template for that on Bit. With over 90 pre-built and fully responsive templates , Bit has turned the painful task of creating reports a walk in the park.
2. Design Automation: Writing projects reports isn’t easy. It takes so much effort that you end up having no energy to make the report look appealing. Luckily, Bit solves that problem for you with its design automation feature. With just one click, you can change the look of your entire document, its layout, and color too!
3. Interactive Documents: Bit lets you add PDFs, charts, videos, maps, surveys/polls, charts – basically all kinds of rich media in your documents. Right now, there are over 100 rich media embed integrations on Bit! So, why give someone a boring, static project report they’ll never open when you could turn it into something much more engaging?
4. Real-Time Collaboration : Project reports are important documents, and creating one on your own is a little difficult. That’s why this feature of Bit is the best. Using Bit, you and your team can collaborate on the reports in real-time, no matter where everyone is located. You can co-edit, make inline comments, access version history, chat via document chat, @mentions, and much more!
5. Smart Workspaces : Organizing and managing all your project reports can be a pain, but Bit is here to take the pain away. Bit lets you create as many workspaces as you want around different teams and departments, invite guests into the workspace, and manage everything much more efficiently!
6. Tables: It’s better to show all the data and figures in your project reports via tables. This way, everyone who reads your report would be able to grasp the complex figures in a quick glance. On Bit, you can create wonderfully designed and fully responsive tables with the click of a button. The colors of these tables automatically change according to the colors of your document’s theme!
Creating project reports is at the core of every business. It is essential for evaluating the feasibility of your ideas and plans, and for proving that your strategies are working.
Yes, we know you have a thousand other things to do when you are running a business, but creating project reports should always be one of those things.
Got anything to ask related to creating project reports or using Bit.ai? Just hit us up on Twitter @bit_docs. We would be happy to help you out. Cheers!
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