- How to Write a Weekly Status Report: Best Practices Part 1
- Weekly Status Report: 6 Awesome Free Templates Part 2
- Additional Resources Part 3
- How to dramatically reduce the time you spend creating reports Part 4
Weekly status report is a summary of all work done during a week and how these activities contributed to the completion of a task or a project, or how each one brings the team closer to the achievement of their targets.
It is also a helpful tool for the manager to monitor the performance and progress of his team. It enables management not only understand how they are doing, but also identify any strengths or weaknesses that may need improvement.
How to Write a Weekly Status Report: Best Practices
Some companies or organizations require a weekly activity report on a project or from its staff. It usually summarizes what has been done by the team during the week in terms of project implementation or development, and what individual contributors were able to achieve or accomplish during the week.
This weekly activity report helps the management understand how each employee performs and how well they are doing their jobs. It is helpful in identifying the strengths and weaknesses of an employee. Through the weekly activity report, the management is able to assess and make informed decisions in terms of the needed training and development interventions for each staff and in assigning responsibilities to each one.
Weekly status report does not have to contain too many details, just enough to make it informative to allow the management to have an overall picture of how the employee is performing.
Sometimes, the weekly activity report may also include a summary of the planned activities of the team and its individual members for the following week.
A weekly activity report allows employees to think about how their work will contribute to the overall progress of the project or to the achievement of the team and the organization. Instead of just reacting to an event, they will be able to establish a long-term perspective on their duties.
Most people are not used to writing brief summaries on things they’ve done over the past week. It’s an easy skill to learn though, so let’s go through the basics quickly.
Here are the best practices to make weekly report informative:
Plan What to Include in Weekly Report
Take the time to consider what the reader of your report might want to know. This is easier if the company provided a format or template for the weekly activity report. If there is none, defining the purpose and the readers of the report other than the management will help in determining what the report should contain.
Write for Your Audience and Keep it Brief
When writing a weekly status report, it’s important to think about your audience. Who will be reading these reports? Is it your boss, coworkers, or clients? Each group of readers will have different expectations and needs.
For example, if you’re writing for your boss, they’ll likely want to know what tasks you’ve completed, what still needs to be done, and any potential roadblocks you’re facing. However, if you’re writing for coworkers or clients, they’ll likely only be interested in the highlights – what were the biggest accomplishments over the past week?
No matter who your audience is though, always remember to keep your reports brief. Nobody wants to read a long, detailed essay on everything you did last week. Try to keep your reports to a maximum of one page. If you can’t fit all the necessary information into that space, then you either need to expand on some of it or shorten some parts.
Be Straightforward in Reporting
Use plain and simple language in reporting. Make the report brief and concise as most readers may not have enough time to read a lengthy report. Spend some time to review the report for typographical, grammatical, and spelling errors before submitting it to its recipients. Keep in mind that submissions such as reports reflect the attitude and the values of the person or the employee who made it.
Consider to keep a Journal of Daily Activities
It may not be possible to keep a mental note of everything which has been done throughout the week, so it will be helpful for an employee to maintain a log of his daily activities in the workplace. Though it may be time-consuming to do, creating one will ensure that all work of the employee has been accounted for, and acknowledged by the management through the weekly activity report.
A weekly report offers a number of benefits not only for the employee, but for the organization, as a whole, as it helps address expectations in the workplace and provides a comprehensive record of all efforts and contributions.
- Always provide a brief summary of what are the project or the team’s objectives in every weekly progress report, as top management may not be able to remember everything at all times. However, do remember to make it brief but concise, as the readers of the report might not have much time to ponder over a five- or ten-page report.
- Management, project owner, or the stakeholders, primarily, have interest in knowing if the project will finish on time and is still operating within the set budget. One of the best ways to make a weekly status report effective is to provide information on these things immediately. In addition, if things are going well according to plan, it will put them at ease.If the news is not good, it will get their attention and put their minds into discussing what is causing the delays and its possible solutions.
- Aside from the previously mentioned matters, the chunk of the weekly status report should present the accomplishments during the week, the issues and challenges encountered and the project variances, if there are any, and the objectives or planned activities for the next week.
- It may also include updates in terms of schedule and timelines, deliverables, resources, scope, and risks involved.
A good first step when writing a weekly status report is to spend 5 minutes and write out a high-level summary of everything you did last week. What were some of the bigger tasks on your plate? Did anything particularly memorable happen over those 7 days? A high-level summary gives a quick overview of what was accomplished last week as well as a few interesting highlights.
When writing a weekly status report, it’s important to remember to include:
– Your goals for the week
– What you accomplished over the past week
– Any potential roadblocks you are facing
Weekly Status Report: Free Download
You can also use the following templates on ProsperForms:
- How to Write a Weekly Sales Report + Free Template Download
- How to Write a Simple Weekly Progress Report + Free Template Download
ProsperForms is a cloud solution to dramatically reduce the time you spend creating reports
- Make 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 submit their reports because ProsperForms automatically 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.
- Quick sharing: Reports can be either - exported to files and printed, or sent by email; - shared with the manager online (in real time); - optionally shared online as team-wide status reports, i.e., all team members share their progress with each other to spend less time on meetings.
How to configure reports on ProsperForms:Step 1:
- Choose a form (100+ forms available) — 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.