How to Improve Your Project Dashboards

ProjectManager.com

In this video, Jennifer Bridges, PMP, discusses ways to improve reporting and monitoring on your project dashboards for better project management.

Here’s a shot of the whiteboard for your reference!

How to Improve Dashboards

In Review: How to Improve Dashboard Reporting

Dashboards, said Jennifer Bridges, PMP, can help project managers measure and track the ongoing progress of their work. But, like everything else, there are ways to improve how we use dashboard tools as well as the data that goes into the dashbaord.

As Jennifer noted, bad data in, equals bad data out. So let’s look at a couple ways dashboards can help you and ways you can improve them:

  1. Dashboards enable real-time data. With the freshest task updates at your fingertips, you can…
  2. Maintain accuracy and, in turn, your credibility. Sloppy project reporting is just not an option. So…
  3. By remaining relevant you can further engage your team, to then help you keep good data in and bad data out!

Dashboards are ways to help us measure scope, time and costs, which are the core quality measures of your project. Therefore, it’s really important to make any improvements you can to keep data current, accurate and relevant. The best way to do this is to keep your team looped in with the latest project updates, so they can help keep their own tasks and timesheets up to date as well.

Pro-Tip: There are dashboards… and then there are real-time dashboards showing live project analytics on a variety of metrics. You want a tool that can helps you save time in your reporting, as you don’t need to actually spend time manually creating dashbaords with Powerpoints and spreadsheets.

Take it further: Read 5 Reasons to Switch to Online Software Tools.

Thanks for watching!

Transcription

It’s seems today we measure and track everything. And now the good news is we have dashboards that can help us as project managers. So, today we want to focus on a few things that will help us improve our project dashboards.

So, why would we want to improve our project dashboards?

Well, we know that data in equals data out. Bad data in is bad data out. So, if we have bad data in our project system, then the reports that we provide to our team and our stakeholders are going to be bad as well. It’s not going to be helpful, so those are the reasons why. We want to keep our data real time and when we do that it keeps our project agile. So we know what’s happening, and we know as a project manager how to use that in order to get things back on track.

Accuracy is also your credibility as a project manager. If the data in your project report is bad, then you’re going to lose the confidence of your team, and the trust from your stakeholders.

Relevancy also keeps our team engaged. By having relevant data that the individual or the team member needs to see again, keeps them engaged. And the benefit of all of this is, it allows more collaboration with not only your team members, but also your stakeholders. It gives you better data for better decisions. And also keeps everyone on the same page of exactly where you are on the project.

So what are we measuring when we measure our project data? We’re measuring the scope, the time, the cost, and the quality. What do we see when we’re actually looking at a dashboard? So, a project dashboard lists all the projects. So, in some cases people may only have one project in their dashboard, but most times project managers are dealing with multiple projects. And with that, we have the dashboard that shows the project and the status of the time, the cost, the resources, the progress, and efficiency. So the red indicates something is off track, the green is everything is good, and the yellow is just kind of like a warning of things to look at.

So how would we improve this? So, again, we studied multiple teams. So we’ve looked at, you know, big teams you would think might not do a good job at this, or agile, maybe they don’t take the time. But actually they’re two of the best ones to study, and we found something that big projects and agile teams do well.

And with using the timesheets here are some components, three things: They keep the data current in real time by updating daily. When you have your team members update daily, or upon completion of a task instead of waiting to the end of the week or the end of the month, again, you as a project manager, and the team and the stakeholders can get a better glimpse into the project, and what’s happening.

Keep the data accurate by requiring each team member to estimate their own work and track their own time. Some organizations where they don’t do it at all, or maybe someone else estimates the work, or maybe someone else logs the time, for a project team member, again it’s less accurate.

And the third one is keeping data relevant by customizing dashboards by who needs to see what. By allowing our team members to get a glimpse into their own task and their own activities, helps them to maneuver and prioritize their work, so they can get it done efficiently.

So if you need a tool that can help you improve your project dashboards, then sign up for our software now at ProjectManager.com.

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