Communicating progress of a project or goals to an executive is a pretty challenging task. As a highly busy individual, they do not have time to analyze details or to process how a small detail impacts a bigger picture, but they want to know how the organization is doing in terms of projects or accomplishments’ progress.
More importantly, an executive status report contains just a few essential items such as the percentage of work completed, the percentage of budget spent, next significant milestones, and outstanding issues affecting the project or a particular unit’s workflow.
- Tips for Writing a Successful Report Part 1
- Executive Status Report: 2 Free Templates Part 2
- How to Make Project Status Reporting 10x Easier Part 3
- Additional Sources Part 4
Tips on Writing Effective Executive Status Report
Understand the Difference Between Senior and Regular Progress Reports
The key is to keep in mind that the readers of this report might not have time to indulge themselves with operational details and would be more than happy to zero in on how close the project to its completion or the organization to its targets.
Use Bullets to Itemize the Report
This will allow the readers to make a quick scan of the report and read only those points which are of interest to them.
Make each point brief but comprehensive by including key points and important details.
Point out the most critical update, overall project status, and current issues.
Keep the Report Simple and Avoid Jargon
In writing an executive report, the most important consideration is the reader. He may not be an expert on the subject matter, that’s why he might not have an idea about these terms, but he needs to know the status of the projects or the targets.
Report on How These Issues Were Managed
Indicate also if there is a continuing problem that is being resolved at the moment. Highlight also any outstanding matters or risks that require the attention of other stakeholders or the executives themselves.
Get to the Point About What Readers Need to Know
It is helpful to find out if there is a standard form which can be used in presenting status reports to the senior management. Also, find out what their preferred reporting style is.
Are they more visual?
If so, you may submit your report using graphs, charts, and tables. Do they prefer figures over text? Then, the report should be more quantitative.
Provide Accurate and Updated Data
Make sure to get these from credible sources or that these data are indeed generated through the execution of the project. Make sure that estimates are close to the actual figures or situations.
Computations should be accurate.
Executives might not have the time to pour over minute details, but some of them are so keen when it comes to the small print.
One error could completely crush the integrity and credibility of the status report. Have someone reliable to check on grammar and spelling, or use available tools to make sure that the report is flawless before handing it out.
Executive Status Report: Free Download Section
Free online tools for work:
1. Fluxes.com — Free Project and Task Management Software
2. Status.net — Software for Daily and Weekly Status Reports
How to Make Project Status Reporting 10x Easier
How to configure status reports on status.net:
- Create a “Executive Report” applet — customize our preset forms or easily create a new form in minutes.
- Setup reminders if you want your team members to receive automatic reminders when their reports are due.
- Configure who will submit reports by choosing the “Participants” tab.
Step 2: Users will click the “Open Submission Form” button to fill in and submit the report.
Data such as the report type, date and name will be added automatically.
As soon as a new status report is added, participants with “View” rights can view it in real time.
- Set the applet as “Team-wide” if you want all team members to view each other’s status reports.
- Alternatively, you can make every participant to view his/her own reports only. Manager/stakeholders will view all reports.
- Add, remove, and assign new team members at any time.
Step 3 (Optional): Generate a report and export it to PDF.
(Skip this step if you share status reports online and don’t print them.)
Click “Generate Report”.
- Make project reporting easier with auto-fill:
Fields such as date, name, report type, and formatting are inserted automatically by software.
- Consolidate reports automatically:
Reports created by your team members can be consolidated easily.
- Save time with auto-layout:
No need to spend hours in Word or Excel perfecting the report’s layout because it exports your updates into a beautifully crafted file with a couple of clicks.
- Peace of mind with auto-reminders:
No one forgets to fill in their status reports because status.net sends timely reminders according to the schedule you chose.
- Decrease time and effort spent on monthly, quarterly, and yearly reporting thanks to powerful filtering and export features.
- Optionally, enrich reports with the latest updates automatically added from web apps your team uses (such as popular free task management software Fluxes.com, and other project management tools, version control systems, support systems, financial applications, etc.) by connecting these apps to your status applet.
- Quick sharing:
Status reports can be either
– exported to files and printed, or sent by email;
– shared with the manager online (in real time);
– shared online (in real-time) as company-wide or team-wide status reports, i.e., all team members share their progress with each other — spend less time on meetings.
Sign up now to make status reporting easier for your team.