A useful and effective approach for reporting multi-project, high-level status regularly to executives.
What this is
A multi-project, high level status format for visually conveying a quick look at the status of various on-going, soon-to-start or dependent projects. It was developed by a medium-sized telecom company as a way of quickly reporting project portfolio status to executive staff members. By design, it does not contain much detail! Instead, it provides a way for high-level managers to identify critical problems in the portfolio, and then focus executives on those issues.
NOTE: The Word file explains the status format; the template is in the related Excel file.
Why it's useful
Common project planning tools like MS Project have roll-up methods to report status on the on-going project portfolio. At this telecom PMO, an analysis revealed that it was more costly to do a complete roll-up of all the projects to get a summary status sheet on a weekly basis. Even when that approach was used, it was always modified for the executive staff meetings anyway, into something easier to read, fitting the preferences of the executive staff. The simple Excel status format was created to highlight problem areas and critical issues on projects and within the project portfolio.
How to use it
Project team leaders and project managers determine their weekly status from the project team and forward it to the PMO (Project Management Office), or whoever is creating a summary status for the executives.
Four status criteria are applied to technology, costs, and time:
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