M & C

Project Status Report

The project status report (sometimes known as a performance report or progress report) is filled out by the project manager and submitted on a regular basis to the sponsor, project portfolio management group, project management office (PMO), or other project oversight person or group. The information is compiled from the team member status reports and includes overall project performance. It contains summary-level information, such as accomplishments, rather than detailed activity-level information. The project status report tracks schedule and cost status for the current reporting period and provides planned information for the next reporting period. It indicates impacts to milestones and cost reserves as well as identifying new risks and issues that have arisen in the current reporting period. Typical information includes:

  • Accomplishments for the current reporting period
  • Accomplishments planned but not completed in the current reporting period
  • Root causes of accomplishment variances
  • Impact to upcoming milestones or project due date
  • Planned corrective or preventive action
  • Funds spent in the current reporting period
  • Root causes of budget variances
  • Impact to overall budget or contingency funds
  • Planned corrective or preventive action
  • Accomplishments planned for the next reporting period
  • Costs planned for the next reporting period
  • New risks identified
  • Issues
  • Comments

The project status report is an example of a work performance report, an output of 4.5 Monitor and Control Project Work in the PMBOK® Guide – Sixth Edition. This report is submitted at predefined intervals throughout the project.

Tailoring Tips

Consider the following tips to help tailor the project status report to meet your needs:

  • You can add a field for escalations to identify those areas that need to be escalated to the sponsor, program manager, or other appropriate individuals.
  • Some reports include a field to record decisions These would be transferred to the project decision log.
  • If there were any change requests that were submitted during the reporting period you may want to summarize them and refer the reader to the change log.
  • If your organization has a robust knowledge management process you might consider adding fields for knowledge transfer or lessons learned. These can then be transferred to the organization’s knowledge repository or lessons learned register.
  • In addition to tailoring the content of the project status report, you can tailor the Many PMOs have reporting software that transforms the data into dashboards, heat reports, stop light charts, or other representations.

Alignment

The project status report should be aligned and consistent with the following documents:

  • Team member status reports
  • Project schedule
  • Cost estimates
  • Project budget
  • Issue log
  • Risk register
  • Variance analysis
  • Earned value status report
  • Contractor status report
Document element Description
Accomplishments for this reporting period List all work packages or other accomplishments scheduled for comple- tion for the current reporting period.
Accomplishments planned but not completed this reporting period List all work packages or other accomplishments scheduled for the cur- rent period but not completed.
Root cause of variances Identify the cause of the variance for any work that was not accomplished as scheduled for the current period.
Impact to upcoming milestones or project due date Identify any impact to any upcoming milestones or overall project schedule for any work that was not accomplished as scheduled. Identify any work currently behind on the critical path or if the critical path has changed based on the variance.
Planned corrective or preventive action Identify any actions needed to make up schedule variances or prevent future schedule variances.
Funds spent this reporting period Record funds spent this period.
Root cause of variance Identify the cause of the variance for any expenditure over or under plan. Include information on the labor variance versus material variance and whether the variance is due to the basis of estimates or estimating assumptions.
Impact to overall budget or contin- gency funds Indicate the impact to the overall project budget or whether contingency funds must be expended.
Planned corrective or preventive action Identify any actions needed to recover cost variances or to prevent future schedule variances.
Accomplishments planned for next reporting period List all work packages or accomplishments scheduled for completion next period.
Costs planned for next reporting period Identify funds planned to be expended next period.
New risks identified Identify any new risks that have been identified this period. These risks should be recorded in the risk register as well.
Issues Identify any new issues that have arisen this period. These issues should be recorded in the issue log as well.
Comments Record any comments that add relevance to the report.