Magnifying glass, looking at graphs, reportWhy make status reports?

Every project needs a status report , also known as progress report, in which the status of the project is clearly, accurately and objectively reported.

Start feeding your project status reports with live data on ITM Platform.

A project status report is intended to provide an evaluation of the progress and communicate execution details. Therefore, the development of the progress report is of great importance, since it is vital that it be carried out following a predetermined model. Only in this way will the users of the reports be able to compare them with each other:

  • Comparing status reports for different phases of the same project gives you a better idea of the distance covered, analyzing how far future projections from previous phases have been verified or denied
  • Comparing reports from different projects is crucial, especially among similar projects using Gantt charts, to understand where discrepancies between estimates and real data are

If you do not have a reporting model in your organization, you are missing out on the advantage of being able to compare reports. To make matters worse, homogeneous models allow users of such reports to find the information they need quickly, as they know how it’s structured. This is one of the aspects where by a Project Management Office can bring great benefits for internal communication in an organization.

A status report contains a brief description of the main elements of the report, establishing causes and explanations that justify and give context to the data. Metrics and graphics will allow the user to understand the progress of the project in a very short time.

The executive summary: Basis for monitoring a project

This section requires an objective description of how the project is running . The summary should present clearly and simply the most important results of the project, including:

  • Milestones fulfilled
  • Deliverables and quality
  • Risks or unforeseen events
  • Relationship between estimates and real, in at least three aspects: resource allocation, costs and deadlines
  • The difference between the estimated progress and the progress to date. If the date of delivery is considered unrealistic, this alarm signal is the first step to alert the customer and negotiate a new date with him.

On the other hand, the executive summary is very effective for a detailed follow-up of the unplanned challenges that arose during project development, as well as actions to be implemented in the short term , so that any eventuality can be mitigated.

The purpose is to ensure that the project continues on the path to success, delivering the project on time, with the expected quality.

Project progress reporting: steady progress assessment

The constant evaluation of a project is vital to know what countermeasures should be taken to make the project successful. Hence the preparation of this section outlines the most problematic areas of the project.

Likewise, suggestions and corrections can be advanced to solve a specific problem. As the project, often, cannot wait to receive feedback on these aspects, decisions are already taken, so this point can delineate already decided actions.

Registration Template: Project Control

The status report should generate relevant information about the risks recorded. It is advisable to start from a registry template by means of which you can retrieve useful information in an orderly way. This registry template will contain:

  • Project Risk Factors,
  • Probabilities
  • Project impact

You can visit ITM Platform’s free risk assessment matrix to compile this information quickly.

Know all about metrics: Promotes project tracking

Managing a project is only possible if you have the tools to quantify the different parameters involved, offering objective and comparable data. Thus, you can measure, for example:

  • Delivery times
  • Quality of the deliverables, based on the number of requirements included
  • Costs incurred to date
  • Percentage costs over total
  • Amount of unanticipated costs incurred
  • Hours worked, either per worker or by professional category

Result indicator

If the result is not a material product but a service, and the project covers the phases of implementation and marketing, there will be a large number of quantifiable aspects related to the result, such as the number of users, their average cost, and so on. These indicators will serve to measure the quality of delivery.

If you are interested in knowing which indicators you can use to manage your portfolio, you can continue reading these articles:


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ITM Platform has just released a brand new app for Slack focused on collaborative work management. With ITM Platform Teambot, ITM Platform users can:

  • Recall their projects and tasks
  • Report their hours
  • Report follow-ups in percentages
  • Add comments to tasks and projects

We really believe ITM Platform Teambot is an interesting case study on how to promote SaaS adoption with smart integrations targeted at improving the experience of our user base.


Enterprise software is the toughest of choices

One of the most common challenges for CTOs and enterprise technology owners lies in how to select a software vendor. Experience says technically great products do not necessarily perform better, while employees tend to stick to what they know.

I don’t think there’s an easy roadmap for choosing good software, nor even an adequate personality that solidly indicates a good decisor: the insightful CTO that evaluates dozens of options before selecting his technical champion can be exactly as wrong as the SME CEO that chooses a vendor based on his guts and contacts.

The secret is in the users

Very often, when a product doesn’t deliver what it promised the problem tends to lie in management, not in the technology: workers, workflows and technology are disconnected.

This is particularly important for project management solutions, that tend to have an asymmetrical use among different stakeholders: while project managers use the most advanced features, team members tend to be bugged down by boring and allegedly unnecessary reporting procedures that don’t add any value to their work. In that context, any friction will kill you. I can’t tell you a more common failure story in project management governance.

In other words: in a software-centric organization, you can’t escape treating your employees as users. The second step is to address user needs as that of internal customers: calculate software adoption as a major component of your technological ROI, as many experts are already doing:

  • 72% of CTOs consider adoption as the main driver for successful SaaS implementation (Sandhill)
  • 43% of CTOs recognize the threat of “shadow IT” and the use of non-validated software (Forrester)
  • 80% of users abandon enterprise mobile apps after a single use. (Boston technology)

So here’s our own experience for treating users as our major customers.

How to get your employees to use project management reporting tools

As any other SaaS company, at ITM Platform we know that if we rely solely on user’s good will for internal reporting purposes, any friction will disengage them. Neither we nor the company admins we work with want that to happen.

How ITM Platform Teambot solves the problem

  1. Go to where the user is

Instead of forcing the user to log into our system merely to report hours or progress, we have chosen to go where our users already are. In other words, we are choosing to support our standalone product with our own app for Slack, because we believe that it may turn into THE tool for enterprise communications and productivity.

  1. Make life easier

Once ITM Platform Teambot is authenticated, a team member will not need to enter into ITM Platform regularly: he or she will be empowered to execute all reporting actions directly from Slack.

By merely typing “/itmplatform list projects”, anybody can see what projects they have been assigned to on ITM Platform. The action takes abot 4 seconds and no browsing action.

What’s more, if you want to log in to ITM Platform to do more complex actions you can do so by merely clicking on the project or task names: they’re all functional hyperlinks!

  1. Productize user experience

The workaround that we have developed with ITM Platform Teambot has allowed us to productize user experience. In fact, what started as an improvement for our existing customers has become the most powerful project management app for Slack that we know of.

Visit Slack’s app directory to add ITM Platform Teambot now or request a demo to find out more on how to make ITM Platform work for your company!


Jaime González-Capitel
Senior Content Strategist
ITM Platform

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