The ultimate guide to project status report- Definition, steps and template

Status reports are like updates on a project that are sent to customers and investors at regular intervals to keep them informed about current happenings related with the company’s product. This article contains steps and template to write an effective report.

Nov 21, 2023
The ultimate guide to project status report- Definition, steps and template

What Is a Project Status Report?

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Status reports are like updates on a project that are sent to customers and investors at regular intervals to keep them informed about current happenings related with the company’s product. Regular status reports serve an important purpose for management because not only does it hold teams accountable but it also helps management understand where the certain project stands and if any additional work or teams will be required to meet their end of month or quarter goals.
It consists of three parts:
1. The current status of the project,
2. A list of tasks that need to be completed in order for the project to be finished, and
3. A schedule detailing when these tasks will be completed and how much time they will take.

How to Write a Project Status Report

A project status report should address the following:
  • When do you anticipate that this project will be finished?
  • What are all of the tasks required to complete this project, and how much time span is needed for each one?
In order to compose a proper report, first list out potential gaps in projects by addressing when they’re expected to finish, who's responsible for completing them and what needs to be done before then.
  • What are the current happenings in this project so far?
  • What is your team’s most recent progress on these tasks, and what gaps need to be addressed going forward?
After exploring the status of different projects by listing out problems with each one and key milestones that need to be achieved, write a standardized report describing how they all fit together. Putting together a uniform report makes it easier for your team to be accountable and ensures that deadlines are met.
Surveys often require bullet points. Include the following information in each:
  • project name
  • deadline date
  • tasks needed
  • estimate of time span required

The benefits of effective project reporting

The report detailing how all the projects are interconnected and what needs to be done in order for them to be finished. It will also tell readers when each project is expected to complete and provide information on why they're taking so long, which will help identify where there are problems with priority or resources.
Every member of the company appreciates being kept up-to-date by a proper status report that can guide important decisions like deadlines being met and resources being allocated properly.
Effective project reporting can help you to gain a deeper understanding of your project and see the progress you have made.
It is also important to get feedback from your team members on what they think about the report, especially if it is not part of their daily routine.

Elements of a Project Status Report

Various aspects of a project status report arrange the various components into a unified whole. Of course, the purpose of a status report is to keep stakeholders informed and to highlight areas of the project that require further organisational assistance.
When writing your project status report, be sure to include all of the following to effectively express these points.

General Project Information

To start, keep it simple. What’s the name of your project? Who’s leading the project? How many resources will be required to get started? All this information is essential when conducting your paperwork and in the long run comes in handy for any future projects you happen to work on. Incorporate all of this into a document you store for future reference and use to help complete future assignments or work with other groups!

General Status Information

For the project, you can build a foundation by including what date the report was generated, who the author is and so on. This will distinguish your report from the vast deluge of reports that will be streaming into the project paperwork.

Milestone Review

Milestones are like mini celebrations that mark your project’s progress throughout its life cycle. The milestone review is a great way to scrutinize your project’s accomplishments and look at the little details. This is a good time to gather together all those who have been involved in the planning process, make adjustments and improvements, celebrate a job well done, and move on to the next stage in your project development cycle!

Summary of the Project

The purpose of the project plan is to communicate with stakeholders and make sure the project’s progress isn't going off track. As a project manager, you need to keep tabs on everything going on so that you can forecast when it will be complete. Be sure to include challenges in your report which might arise due to running short of time, manpower or budget for example. Explain what you plan to do about these challenges and how it will affect that part of the project as well as its outcome.

Risk Management

When it comes to taking on a project, chances are you’ll be faced with many risks and other factors which can severely affect your ability to deliver the project within a given timeline or budget. In order to overcome these obstacles, it helps to know what exactly is affecting you the most - whether it's one issue or many - and how you intend on taking care of things moving forward; this is where good risk management plays an important role in helping anyone increase their odds of delivering successful results.
As long as you keep track of all potential problems which may occur (even if they aren't sure to arise), you can avoid any unnecessary delays or drastic changes when things get complicated later down the road.

Project Metrics

During the project planning phase, establish the metrics that will be used for status reporting so you know if your project is succeeding or needs attention. It’s not possible to know if your project is working properly unless there are measurable goals set in advance. These metrics are what demonstrate whether a proposed business venture will make money - and track how revenue is doing compared to business expenses for example!

9 steps to write a great project status report

1. Identify the project goal

What are your goals for this project? What is it you want to accomplish by the end, be that completion of a custom widget or selling enough widgets to pay back a loan, etc.?

2.Name your report

Put the name of the project in bold at the beginning. If you'll be reporting on this regularly it's good to have a date so people can have an idea when you wrote the blog post or scheduled it for publication.

3.Set goals and metrics

What are some measurable outcomes using key performance indicators (KPIs) that you hope to achieve by the end of this project/project phase? Will there be any dates involved where records will have to be kept?

4. Create an outline of what’s been completed so far

This will help you keep track and decide if there's anything more assigned in between now and when the report comes out, as well as keep your readers in mind.

5. Point out failing metrics

Key numbers here are the money you’ve made, the money it’s taken to complete this project so far, and what percent of starting expenses has been corrected - i.e., if something costs too much but makes no revenue or vice versa; also include any other factors that may have caused a lower-than-anticipated performance shown by these metrics.

6. Report on the big picture for your project

Move through what justifies this project’s completion and any effects it may have had, both positive and negative; explain why you believe these benefits are worth investing time in - i.e., a new type of widget that saves customers more money or helps children be healthier. Don't neglect to mention other factors here, like side impacts (if there were others) which could play into why you're pushing forward this project!

7. Include possible obstacles

There's always going to be an obstacle wherever we take this project; while summarize these key factors before revealing them - including if any delays would result from this obstacle or not.

8. Summarize the key points

This is the bread and butter of your report: a summary of what was given so far which will help your reader make sense out of what's been reviewed in detail earlier on, explain all next steps that come with working towards completing each task, and finish up by summarizing how close to gaining said goal - or what it would take for failure to happen.

9. Highlight next steps

Depending on what articles are outlined in the project outline, there may be some actions that need to happen next. If so, you’ll want to write out a quick note about how one can go about completing them and when they'll have finished.

Template for creating your project status report

Project Name: Name of your project
Project Status: Is the project on track or delayed?
In general, your project update should contain a brief description of each key milestone that your team is tackling - or any major events or challenges they may be experiencing. Keep in mind that stakeholders likely won't have the time to read through your entire project update, but they will want to know if anything is blocking them from releasing their product sooner rather than later!
Concept, content and design:
Add detailed information about progress, milestones, and prospective projects in bullet points. Make it clear and presise.
Are there any difficulties you're dealing with? How are you going to deal with them?
Is there anything else your team should be aware of? What are the most key aspects to take next?

Disbug: The best bug reporting tool

Disbug is a web-based bug reporting tool and project management platform. We specifically designed it for developers and project managers. Disbug can help you create comprehensive software bug reports with ease. You can also monitor the bug fix status and bring transparency to the process.
  • Visually narrate software bugs with screen-cast and screenshot annotations
  • Capture console and network logs, local storage, user clicks, and much more with ease.
  • Get technical logs straight to your preferred tools with a link
  • Integrations for Jira, GitLab, Trello, Slack, and more to streamline the process.
In short, you don't have to pick your head about the template or the screenshot and also save a ton of time from back and forth calls.

Wrapping up

You’ll want to include your report in every stage of assessment. Like I mentioned, you should send an interim status report as the project begins and once it’s reached its halfway point - where all objectives are met. But your final report is a chance to review the project in its entirety and to do so formally. After the project has completed, this report gives you the opportunity to officially share what happened according to your expectations (which could have changed since submitting brief at the outset) by providing stakeholders with an executive overview of how things turned out instead of updating each one every step of the way as they are done since there will be many stakeholders involved (especially if it involves a big company) and this keeps everything streamlined – trimming out any redundant decisions or actions.