Track project issues as they arise with this Excel template. Define priority of each issue, assign to key people on the team and check off when complete. Issues are problems, and with this issue tracking template, you have the means to solve those problems.
Why You Need Better Issue Tracking
When you’re talking about an issue in project management, you really mean a problem, but specifically a problem that is related to your project. This problem may be about to happen or is currently happening, but it must be resolved as quickly as possible or else risk the whole project.
An issue, however, is different from a risk in a project. A risk basically is something that hasn’t occurred, but may disrupt the project. An issue is imminent or occurring. It’s a somewhat subtle distinction, but one that demands attention. That’s why our free Excel issue tracking template is a great start to corralling and correcting issues as they arise in a project.
Once you download and create your own issue tracking template you can collect those issues. First you have to identify them, of course, and the template is where they go. Only after having identified them can you begin to create some plan of action. Use your project team to brainstorm ideas. Collaboration is a great tool for tackling a problem as it gives you many different perspectives and comes from experience and skills you may not have.
How you address the issue is as open-ended as how many issues may arise in a project, which is more reason you need a place to collect these ideas. The issue tracking template makes sure that everything you do is clearly documented.
How that action is going to resolve the issue could be a change of scope or requirements, but whatever that may be you’ll need to define it, negotiate it and have it approved. Then you can add it to your template.
You’ll want to implement that action quickly, and the risk tracking template allows you to do so systematically and clearly. The template is great, too, for multiple issues and keeping them all straight. You’re likely to have more than one issue in a project, so you need a document to keep track of them all.
How to Use ProjectManager.com’s Issue Tracking Template
Once you’ve got your free Excel template and have downloaded it, you’ll want to create one to suit whatever issues you’re having on your project. The first step is filling in the blank fields with the pertinent information.
Describe Issue and Potential Impact
This is where you list your issues, so you’ll want to number them first to keep them from getting confused. Then there’s a column in which you can note the potential impact of the issue. Describe the issue and how it can impact the project, be precise but not wordy.
What’s the Priority, Date and Owner?
Depending on the issue, the priority is going to be low, medium, high or critical. Here’s the place to determine that. Then you’re going to need to note the date the issue opens. When you close it, there’s a space to record that. Then, assign the issue to someone to oversee its path towards being resolved. If you don’t, the issue will undoubtedly be lost in the shuffle.
What Is the Department, Status and Notes?
It’s important to state which department is handling the issue. Then you need to have a place to note what the status of the issue is. Is it open or closed? That goes in this column. Finally, you’ll have a column in which to add notes that don’t fall under any of the already assigned columns.
Issue tracking works best when it’s part ofthe whole project management solution. By pulling in team members to not only raised the issue, but will lead the task to resolve them, you’re making it more likely that the issue will not fall through the cracks. When this part of your project tracking solution is part of a larger project management software tool, then you’re managing issues, rather than have the issues drive your management of the project.
How to Use Issue Tracking in ProjectManager.com
ProjectManager.com is a cloud-based, online software that offers project managers and their teams the tools they need to work together and get the project completed faster, better and cheaper. Not only does it have features to track issues, but there’s so much more. From planning, monitoring and reporting on the project, ProjectManager.com sees you through every phase in the project’s lifecycle.
You can create and view the issues on the kanban board, which makes it easier to track and resolve them. Individual tasks can also be tagged to help provide more context. This gives managers and teams more flexibility when controlling issues as they arise. Since you can filter by tags, it also supports the ability to let teams define issues and filter all tasks with the tag issues to see just those.
Issues must be assigned to someone on the team who owns them, which means they’re tasked to resolve them. A priority level for each issue can be created, along with a deadline. Then, track their progress on the issue with our project dashboard, which collects data in real time. The dashboard also gives you the functionality to filter data to see only what you need.
Issues are problems, but that’s merely a quick and easy why to describe them. There’s much more about managing and tracking issues, and if you want to take a deep dive into the topic, then there’s no better place than the ProjectManager.com blog. To get you started, we’ve selected the top three articles and tutorial videos on the subject, which are listed below.
- 7 Steps for Managing Project Issues
- Ultimate Guide to Project Tracking
- Ultimate Guide to IT Project Management
Our award-winning software has been rated #1 by Gartner’s GetApp in its project management app category, which is collected by actual users of the software. Why not see for yourself what ProjectManager.com can do for you and your team by taking this free 30-day trial.