How much time do you spend on your status report at what-ever-job-or-business-you-work-with?
Per day, per week, per fortnight, per month, per year?
What is the value add? Who is the audience? How often is it reviewed? How many of those reports are looked back?
When started few years ago, I was a report junkie where I wanted provide the information nitty-gritty activities that goes on. Try to gather some numbers from the tools, formulate the charts, make them colorful, provide the risks and potential mitigation plan, etc etc…
I know the reporting makes it more meaningful provided it has the relevant information, at the same time, we also need to think about the cost involved.
When you look at the Project Management Hierarchy there are several cross functional teams, several levels of management, several applications, and several people of course, and few leads. There are reporting requirement involved at each every level in some way or the other. If you each one is preparing a report towards the same project, where the common goal of every individual, every element involved in the project is towards the project deliverable (you may add any number of factors to it viz., quality, complete functionality, etc etc etc), then think about the amount of time each individual puts in to create that report. Well, most times the specification of what the report should convey might be lacking in many situations, when you do have the expected format or certain expectations, every individual need to adhere to it.
Let’s assume there are about 20 people involved in a project and his/her own skilled areas. each one spending about 30minutes for “so-called-report” –> that makes it to 600minutes of your project time went into reporting and this repeats every week – even if it is 20minutes per individual – translates it to 400 minutes – and that’s about 8 to 10 hours of work.
In my mind, we need to come up with Tools to do such mundane repetitive tasks like gathering the numbers, consolidating the issues etc. Let our human brains do creative work.
Agreed, specially talking about road blocks and attempting towards removing them from the project individuals is what the project management should be looking at. and that would help keep the project healthy, but it is interesting to see the amount of time most projects put into merely status reporting.
borrowing this book from the library to understand what the author has to say about project risk management.
What is your opinion about reporting and how much time do you think would a project spend on such activity?