Overview with tools, software, best practices and alternatives
What is Project Reporting?
Project reporting is the process of giving information and updates to the members, leaders, and affiliates of a team or an organization. The reporting process is highly structured, as this will be the foundation of the team’s future activities and performance.
Who is doing Project Reporting?
Project reporting is done by the business team, which includes the members of the team and the team leaders. While team members are usually the ones who do project reporting, the team leaders like the project managers and supervisors can also generate one, which will be addressed to higher level superiors, like lead managers and supervisors.
Why do people do Project Reporting?
Business teams do project reporting in several reasons.
First is communication. Teams use project reports as channels of communication with other members of the team. By doing project reporting, team members, leaders, and affiliates will be able to know the current status and progress of the team and the project itself.
Another reason why people do project reporting is the likelihood of the team to adjust their activities in the future. With the data coming from the project report, the team will be able to relate current data from previous data in previous reports. Also, team members, leaders, and associates will be able to make conclusions, as well as rational decisions that will benefit the team and the project.
How to do Project Reporting / Ways to do Project Reporting
Project reporting involves provision of important information on the undertakings, routines, standing, and development of the management team and the project itself.
In order to yield a well-written report, the information entered should be factual, complete, updated, and accurate. This is important as data in the report are the bases for the team’s future plans, strategies, actions, and evaluations.
The team’s achievements and issues are also take account of when doing project reporting. The team’s accomplishments help the team determine their competence level in the market and it also motivates and inspires the team members to perform better. In addition, the team’s achievements allow prospect investor and affiliates to engage with the company. The issues faced by the team, when identified early, allow the team to discuss possible ways to solve or prevent them.
Aside from the team’s feat and concerns, team members and leaders can also include other essential information, such as the open opportunities that the team can embrace to help them reach their goals easier and faster. Also, they can take in the strengths and weaknesses of the team in the report, which can help them when they formulate plans for the team.
Advantages of doing Project Reporting
Project reporting is beneficial to the business team for the following reasons.
Doing project reporting facilitates effective communication among team members, leaders, and business affiliates. The process enables them to be informed and updated about the status and development of the team, its activities, and the project itself.
The inclusion of the team’s accomplishment in the report reflects the team’s capacity in the long run. The team’s feat also indicates how well they do in the business and the market, allowing them to be recognized by potential business affiliates. In addition, the issues that challenge the team can be identified by team members and leaders, allowing them to brainstorm ways to give solution and prevention to the issues identified.
Overall, project reporting helps the business team, whether a stable team, a startup team, or a virtual team, make significant conclusions and logical decisions, which can help members and leaders, succeed in the business.
Disadvantages of doing Project Reporting
While project reporting can be advantageous in a number of ways, there are also times in which it can be a disadvantage to the business team.
For start-up teams, doing project reporting can be costly. The cost of printing the report, in case it is paper based, requires paper and ink, which will be added to their expenses. Some start-up teams may not be ready in adding expenses to their business, which rules out the conduct of project reporting.
Another con of project reporting is the tediousness of the task. Project reporting has to be detailed and organized that it may consume the time allocated for doing other tasks and responsibilities of the team members. As a result of the divided time, the team may not be able to complete other tasks for the day or within a specified time frame.
Some teams, such as virtual teams, can send project reports online, using the internet as their tool. With sending project reports via e-mails or online reporting applications, team members and leaders will be able to send and receive reports to and from other members of the team. However, poor or absent internet access will not allow the team to carry out this function.
Best Practices for doing Project Reporting
Project reporting helps team members, team leaders, and affiliates to become fully informed, updated, and aware on the standing and development of the team and the project.
Organization is important in project reporting as this allows the readers facilitate effective comprehension and assimilation of the information inculcated in the project report. This can be ensured by using headings and sub-headings, which will serve as guide to readers as they read the report. Another way is by using bullets in presenting information, which can help the readers locate salient points in the report with ease and speed. Important details can also be typed in bold or italics for emphasis.
To maintain completeness of data, team members and leaders may have a small notebook at which they can record important information that transpired within the day. This way, they will not forget information when they make the report. This also facilitates accuracy of information in the report. Another good practice is verifying the information in the report. Data should be checked for errors and these should be corrected once identified.
Quantitative information can also be presented in the report to present numbers and figures, such as sales figures or the gross income of the company within a specific time frame. Such information can be presented using various tools, such as tables, graphs, charts, and diagrams. For better comprehension, these tools should be properly labeled.
In project reporting, language should also be taken into account. Members and leaders should utilize a kind of language that the people in the team can comprehend effectively. In line with this, team members and leaders should limit or reduce the use of jargons and acronyms as these other readers may not be familiar with these.
How to do Project Reporting with Teamreporter
Teamreporter is an application, that uses scheduled report mails to reduce the number of status meetings a team has within a specific period of time.
Teamreporter saves time as it helps the team send and receive information easily to and from other members of the team. With its automated and user friendly interface, the application sends e-mail notifications to the members of the team, asking them to send essential information like their accomplishments, problems, and plans. Based from their reports, Teamreporter will generate a data summary, which will be sent to the team the next day.
Team leaders can also gain benefit from Teamreporter, as they will be able to have a clear oversight of the team’s status and progress. Based on Teamreporter’s information, team leaders will be able to gauge the team members and determine who need further assistance and who perform well. Leaders can also use data from Teamreporter when they make their reports or training modules.
Teamreporter is flexible that team members and leaders can use it in any work flow and environment. Users can modify the questions and the schedule of the report mails in the application’s interface. In addition, the list of members who will receive the report and those who need to submit reports can also be modified. Teamreporter blends well to other existing applications the team is using, along with its functionality using web browsers and e-mails.
Alternatives to Project Reporting
While project reporting can be helpful to the business team, there are other alternatives that the business team can take into account when doing project reporting.
First is using e-mail reports and updates. Such reports serve as an easy method in disseminating important information to the members of the team. Sending one just needs a desktop or a laptop, or a smart device, and a stable internet connection. With the internet in the team’s arsenal, members and leaders will be able to report their accomplishments, issues, and plans to other member with ease and speed. Nonetheless, poor or absent internet connection will disable them from sending information online.
Another option is the conduct of status meetings. While such meetings require the presence of the members and leaders, these facilitate quick discussion of new or corrective information and updates within the team. The issue in doing status meetings is in virtual teams, as they cannot conduct live meetings secondary to having dispersed team members in various locales. For virtual teams, they may conduct virtual meetings.
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