The Comprehensive Guide to Project Communication Plans

By Kate Eby | June 30, 2021 (updated September 26, 2023)

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A good communication plan is vital to the success of any project. Experts share advice for creating your own plan and the benefits of doing so.

In this article, you’ll learn how to create your own communication plan . We also share a customizable template , a preferred communication style survey , and expert advice on best practices .

What Is a Communication Plan for a Project?

A project communication plan is a guideline for dispensing details of a project to invested parties. An effective plan includes what kind of information will be distributed, to whom, and how often they will be updated.

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What Are the Important Elements of a Project Communication Plan?

While individual communication plans differ by project, all effective communication plans include scope, contact details, and more. Consider adding the following information to a communication plan:

  • Type of Project: Name the project to make it easy to find and reference. Think about how long the project will take and the number of people involved when creating a meeting and update schedule. Larger projects will require more frequent and different meetings.
  • Identify Key Players: Determine who is communicating, the type of information they are sharing, and who they are responsible for updating.
  • Contact Information: Organize the contact details for stakeholders and team members to make communication easier and more organized.
  • Frequency of Communication: Create a schedule for how you will share specific kinds of information. Alyssa Griffin, Service and Communications Specialist at Royal Building Products , recommends a measured approach. “Project updates are usually once a week at maximum. You don’t want to create a deluge of emails that individuals can lose or that can overwhelm them. Short and sweet works the best.”
  • Types of Communication: You might find it advantageous to communicate types of information in varying ways. For example, some information may be best to share in real time through meetings or phone and video calls. In contrast, sometimes asynchronous methods such as email or company message boards are ideal. Read “ The Essential Guide to Asynchronous Communication ” to learn more about communication styles.

Kristen Bellomo

  • Communication Goals: Look at past projects for specific processes to repeat or improve. Make sure to consider your findings from past post-mortem and lessons learned to ensure that you are establishing and implementing best practices.

Preferred Communication Survey

With help from Bellomo, we’ve created a survey to help you identify your key stakeholders’ preferred methods of communication during a project. This survey helps you easily collect and store the communication preferences of clients, stakeholders, and team members for use in your communication plan.

  • First and last name:
  • Title and company:
  • Key areas of interest:
  • Email address:
  • Phone number:
  • Instant message (Skype, Slack, Discord, etc):
  • Video call:

Preferred Communication Survey

Download Preferred Communication Survey Template

Microsoft Word | Adobe PDF  | Google Docs  | Smartsheet

What Should a Communication Plan Include?

A communication plan is a series of documents that outline all formal communication shared throughout a project. Every successful communication plan should include details about stakeholders, meetings, and more. 

  • Key Stakeholders: These are the people who have a heavily vested interest in the project. They might be owners, clients, managers, or anyone else who needs regular updates on large-scale project developments. Read our guide to managing and communicating with stakeholders for more information.
  • Team Members: These are the individuals working on the project. This also includes the project manager.
  • Scheduled Meetings and Updates: Identify what’s important to communicate, including but not limited to deadlines, project phases, budget updates, and roadblocks. Consider the best way to share this information. For example, you might find that a weekly bulletin email update is more valuable for some items than a weekly meeting. If possible, create a meeting schedule early to ensure that people can attend. Utilize an online scheduling tool like Doodle to determine the best times for your team to meet.
  • Specific Updates for Individuals: Pick out particular items of concern for key individuals. For example, C-level executives and clients might require opportunities to provide feedback at critical points, or they might only want updates after significant milestones.
  • Evolve as the Project Progresses: Many projects suffer from scope creep or simply grow during the span of the venture. Be sure to account for any major changes in your communication needs as time goes on.

How to Write a Project Communication Plan in 6 Steps

Writing a communication plan doesn’t have to be a chore. Determine the communication needs of your team, identify the key players and what they need to know, and create a schedule that satisfies the needs of all parties. 

  • Determine Your Communication Needs Consider the size and scope of the project, as well as the needs of your stakeholder, your client, and your team. Keep information relevant to the phase of the project and your audience.Bellomo emphasizes that some requirements will change based on the project phase. “There is typically frequent client communication (calls, emails, and in-person meetings) throughout the preproduction phase of the project while working through design and engineering. Client communication usually slows down after approvals, and the internal shop communication will ramp up for the project kickoff meeting and through production. Minimal client communication may happen through this phase, except for providing progress photos and updates throughout the build. Once build elements move into finishing, client communications usually ramp back up as we work through logistics and install details.”
  • Determine the Communication Goals for Your Team Team cohesion? Early and ongoing feedback from stakeholders? Improved record keeping and ensuring best practices? These are just some of the goals you might set for yourself and the team. It is essential to consider your goals when outlining a schedule to create an effective plan.
  • Name the Project and Outline the Goals By including the project goals on the plan, it is easier to check for scope creep as time passes. You can also ensure that you’re not wasting time and the updates and information you’re sharing aligns with the project’s goals from the outset.

Communication Matrix

  • Consolidate the Information into One Document This document is your communication plan that you can share with the team. Go over the plan to give everyone an idea of what to expect and when to expect it.

Sample Project Communication Plan Template

Sample Project Communication Plan Template

Download Sample Project Communication Plan Template

Microsoft Excel | Microsoft Word | Google Sheets | Adobe PDF

You can use this example of a completed project communication plan as a reference when creating your own. This template highlights key stakeholders and their preferred contact information, types and frequency of interaction, and communication goals. Download and customize this template for use in your own projects.

In this article , we’ve compiled other most useful project communication templates to aid project managers with consistent messaging.

Best Practices for Writing a Project Communication Plan

The needs of every project vary, but all communication plans should be able to change throughout the process. Focus only on what is relevant to each individual, and take into account their preferred methods and frequency of communication.

  • Be Open to Change: Keep an eye out for scope creep and don’t be afraid to update communication plans as projects evolve.
  • Consider Preferences: Your clients and high-level stakeholders likely have preferences in their style and frequency of communication. Take those into account when sending updates.
  • Focus on What Is Important: Keep the minutiae in an accessible place, such as a team message board or cloud-based drive, but only send out specific, necessary information to individuals.
  • Consider the Needs of Parallel Teams: Bellomo highlights the importance of looking at the big picture: “I give the client and shop a written work-back schedule to outline when they can expect to receive information and what kind. This helps ensure everything is clear from the onset on what we need and when to achieve the established delivery schedule. For example, if I need vector files for a logo provided before engineering can commence, I would put the deadline for that unit earlier than the deadline for the rest of the artwork package that doesn’t impact the build and only involves the graphics finishing team.”
  • Determine Your Tone: “It is important when establishing the initial communication with clients and the shop to be friendly and casual for the small stuff, but super detailed and outlined for the big stuff,” advises Bellomo.
  • Delegate Clearly: Bellomo also suggests to “make sure action items are clear by breaking things down by element, action item, due date, and who is responsible for the task.” When someone is responsible for reporting updates, make sure they know it.

Importance of Communication Management in Project Management

A well-established communication plan is integral to managing the workflow of a project. By laying out the communication expectations from the outset, you can ensure that key stakeholders and team members stay in the loop. 

Griffin notes that “setting early expectations for individuals and teams allows for better collaboration” throughout the course of a project. A communication plan can also ensure that team members stay accountable for relaying their own progress and achievements and that you have adequate time to provide and implement feedback during each stage of a project.

“Sticking to a standard allows individuals to know that they can come to you with any question and that you will assist them. Keep in mind that individuals are complex and have their own responsibilities while working on projects. Establish a communication schedule and follow up with an individual if they do not come through. If a delay arises, that is also OK; just make sure if there is a hiccup it is communicated clearly,” explains Griffin.

Benefits of a Project Communication Plan in Project Management

The benefits of a good project communication plan are far-reaching. You will stay more organized, build trust with your team and stakeholders, and ultimately end up needing to hold fewer meetings.

  • Organization: At its most basic level, a communication plan will help keep you and your project schedule organized by plotting a course for upcoming meetings and check-ins.
  • Team Cohesion: Keeping everyone in the loop fosters trust and helps you manage expectations. Griffin also emphasizes that “strong communication is a must, allowing for teams to collaborate, excel, and deliver the same level of service even while remote.”
  • Stakeholder Input: When you have a communication schedule in place, you allow for early and ongoing feedback from key players attached to the project.
  • Accountability: With a well-written plan, you can ensure that individuals stay accountable for reporting their work status and create a “paper trail” of reporting for higher-ups.
  • Establish Confidence: Show the team and the higher-ups that you know what they need and when they need it.
  • Fewer Meetings: Meetings take up a lot of time and resources. With a good communication plan, you can share information more often and in fewer meetings. Best of all, everyone will know exactly when to expect updates from the outset.

How to Use a Communication Plan Throughout a Project

Creating a comprehensive communication plan helps teams stay focused. No team is immune to scope creep, but with a communication plan, you can easily see where you're starting and recognize when goals no longer align with an existing plan.

Make sure the entire team has access to the plan and knows who is accountable for delivering and when. Your team will be able to help you see gaps in communication when everyone has access to the larger picture.

Don’t be afraid to change your plan. As issues come up — they always do — you can adapt your communication strategy much more easily when you have a system to reference. Keep your plan updated with contact information for stakeholders, frequency, and desired forms of communication as situations evolve.

Communication Activities in Project Management

Communication comes in many forms. Consider what you are sharing and who you are sharing it with, as well as their preferred communication methods.

  • Formal Communication Activities: Email, meetings, scheduled phone and video calls, and bulletin updates can all be considered formal communication. Any kind of communication that is monitored or stored should be formal and professional.
  • Informal Communication Activities: Watercooler or desk-side conversations and spur-of-the-moment phone calls are informal communication. Any kind of off-the-record communication is informal; if you establish an important point during one of these meetings, one or both parties should follow up by email to ensure that the conversation can be referenced later.
  • Involuntary Communication Activities: Consider your tone of voice and body language when communicating with the team; these can both add emphasis to the words you say.

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How to write a project report: [templates + guide] 

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Writing a project report is an essential but often overlooked contributor to your project’s health.  However, without the use of automation and templates, it can be a little time-consuming to collect and organize the relevant data that the project generates.

In this post, we’ll explore the basics of project reporting. We’ve included some useful templates and tips to create clear and helpful project reports in less time.

If you want to start creating better project reports using, sign up today.

What is a project report?

A project report is a document where you share details about different areas of your project. Depending on the report type , your audience, and your intention, the details you showcase might differ.

Project reports can be broken down by time— daily, weekly, monthly, or quarterly— or a number of other factors like risk, budget, and project management style. Bottom line? They simplify the process of gathering and disseminating information about key information on the project. For instance, a typical report might include:

  • Resources you’ve used so far
  • How project time is being spent
  • How you’re doing against key performance indicators (KPIs)
  • Workload and team availability

What is the purpose of project reporting?

Reporting gives you, your team, and your stakeholders the ability to track project progress against the original plan. The main goal of a project report is to improve decision-making, to help you make sense of your project data, and decide what your next steps should be. This in turn can impact your budget, timeliness, and project success.

It also plays a vital role in your stakeholder engagement strategy, as it keeps everyone informed on the progress of projects they’re interested in. Those are just a few of the reasons why project reporting has become the most common activity among PMOs (Project Management Offices).

A graph representing the most popular activities undertaken by PMOs

( Image Source )

5 steps to create a useful project report

Project reports can be useful – or they can end up as a 20-page PDF that lives in a drawer somewhere. To put together a report that your project stakeholders can use to gain insights, make decisions and optimize processes, take the following systematic approach to writing your project reports:

1. Define the purpose and scope: Clearly establish the goals, objectives, target audience, and information needs of your project report. 2. Gather and organize data: Collect and organize all relevant data, ensuring its accuracy and reliability. 3. Structure and outline: Create a clear and logical structure for your report and outline the key points you want to cover. 4. Present information effectively: Use clear and concise language and visual aids like graphs or charts to present the information in an easily understandable, visually appealing manner. 5. Review and revise: Proofread your report for any errors or inconsistencies, ensure that it addresses the defined purpose and scope, and revise as necessary to improve clarity.

The different types of project management reports [with templates]

You can split project reports into different types and categories. Here are five different types of project mangement reports, with templates you can customize for your unique project and team set-up.

1. Project status report

Probably the most frequently used, a project status report offers a general overview of the current status of your projects. A project status report answers the question: “How likely is it that we’ll complete this project on time without overrunning costs?”

These reports analyze whether you’re meeting project goals and key performance indicators. With our single project template , creating a status report is easier than ever.

How to write a project report: [templates + guide] 

2. Resource workload report

Resource workload reports help you visualize what your team’s working on, when they’re working on it, and how much work is left. These also reports help you understand how your assets are being used and make sure your actions are aligned with the overall objective.

Our resource management template helps you organize all your assets, locations, and people into one place and track every action with accuracy. You can also manage your resource allocation initiatives and make sure you don’t assign the same resource twice in multiple tasks.

resource management screenshot in

3. Portfolio report

Portfolio reports take a look at all your projects and consolidate all the data into a single document. These reports capture high-level milestones, status, progress, and highlights of your portfolio strategy.

With our portfolio management template , you can track unlimited projects on a single board and get a quick snapshot of their health and profitability.

Portfolio management screenshot

4. Task list/Time-tracking report

Time-tracking reports, also known as timesheets, help you measure how your team is spending their time and spot potential bottlenecks.

With our team task list template , you can bring in your entire organization, assign tasks to peers, track time and measure the project progress at a glance.'s team task tracker screenshot

5. Expense report

A project might seem healthy – until everyone starts reporting expenses  at the end of the time period. With our expense tracking template , you can proactively manage your cash flow regardless of your accounting skills (or lack thereof!)

expense report in

Want to try out these templates – and much more? Check out today.

FAQs about Project Reports

What are the benefits of a project report.

A project report provides a comprehensive overview of a project’s objectives, progress, and outcomes, serving as a valuable documentation and communication tool. It allows stakeholders to assess your project’s effectiveness, identify areas for improvement, and make informed decisions based on reliable data.

What are the main types of project reports?

The most commonly used types of project reports include:

  • Progress reports
  • Resource management reports
  • Project portfolio reports
  • Time-tracking reports
  • Evaluation reports
  • Final reports

What are the main components of a project report?

This will depend on the project and the type of report you’re using, but project reports might include:

  • Project objective
  • Project scope
  • Project milestones
  • Project expenses or budget
  • Project schedule and timeline
  • Project progress
  • Resource management
  • Risk assessment
  • Stakeholder communication
  • Financial summary

How to create insightful project reports with makes it easy to create effective project reports. Try it for yourself and see:

Business operations

Here’s why can make your project reporting better:

  • Track project data in a centralized location, so you have all the information you need to make useful reports.
  • Use’s customized visualization tools to visualize and summarize project data the way you want to see it.
  • Set up dashboards to see all of your projects at a glance.
  • Take advantage of’s reporting functionality . You can choose between built-in report templates or customized reports if you have more specific requirements.
  • Share your reports with project stakeholders , team members, or even clients directly from
  • Our embedded communication tools let you collaborate on your reports in real-time, gather feedback, and address any questions or concerns.

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Best practices for project communication in Project Online

As the project manager, you communicate with many project stakeholders—from the team members carrying out project tasks to organization executives and project customers. Because communication is so crucial to the success of your project, and because you communicate different types of information to different types of stakeholders, you need a solid project communication plan. You can use Project Web App through your Project Online subscription to implement many aspects of your communication plan and to exchange the right kinds of information with the right people.

In this article

Why is project communication so important?

Best practices for communication in a project, post the communication plan in project online, show team members how to access the project schedule, identify and set up the right reports.

With so many people involved in a single project, large or small, communication has a tremendous role in project success or failure. When communication is lacking, your project might experience missteps like assumptions, duplication of effort or its opposite, gaps in effort. In addition, stakeholders might feel that they’re in isolated silos, unheard and unsupported, which can lead to poor morale and declining productivity.

On the other hand, when communication is good, your project can experience efficiencies in process, identification and prevention of problems and risks, innovative problem-solving, and decision-making based on sound facts. Fostering good communication in a project improves the likelihood of your project staying on schedule and within its budget.

What is good communication, anyway? It’s exchanging the right information with the right people. Ensuring that stakeholders at all levels are being heard. Having channels in place for formal as well as informal conversations that move the project forward toward its goal.

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The right time to think about project communication is when you’re in the planning phase of your project. In fact, adding communication process development among the first few tasks of your project can signal to the team that communicating effectively is the job of every team member and is key to the project’s success.

The following sections detail four questions to consider about how communication will be handled through the life of your project and how to compile your answers into a communication plan that works for everyone.

With whom do you need to communicate?

You need to communicate with everyone who has an interest or holds a stake in the success of the project, that is, the project stakeholders. Think about who those stakeholders are. They’re likely to be at various levels in the organization, and some might be external to your organization. Here are some possible project stakeholders:

Project team members . These people are doing the actual work of the project.

Project portfolio manager . If yours is a larger organization that runs a lot of projects at once, you might need to communicate with a portfolio manager.

Resource manager . As with a portfolio manager, if your organization is largely project-based, you might need to work closely with a resource manager who ensures the people with the right skill sets for the various projects are available.

Executive management . Upper management typically needs to know how the project is going, especially in terms of schedule and cost.

Sponsor or customer . There might be a sponsor or customer who’s different from management and who’s paying for the project.

End user representative . This person represents the ones who the project is likely to benefit or otherwise affect when it’s completed.

What kinds of information do they need?

Because the first rule of communication is to know your audience, you get the most return on your communication investment when you tailor your communication to what each set of stakeholders need to know.

For example, project team members need to know the tasks they’re assigned to and who is depending on their tasks to, in turn, do their work. They probably also need to occasionally see the full project schedule to maintain a good sense of scope and focused direction.

Unlike team members who need the vital details, executives or project sponsors require a very high-level summary of how the project is going. They are most concerned with performance against the project schedule and budget, and want to know whether the project is on track to fulfill its goals.

Look at your list of stakeholders and think about the project from their points of view. This will help you determine what information to exchange with them, and what form that communication should take. Also, talk with your stakeholders and find out what and how they prefer to communicate.

How often do the different kinds of communication need to happen?

Try to strike the right balance: too little communication and the project risks more mishaps than it should; too much communication and annoyed stakeholders feel the efforts are busywork which interfere with the time to implement or oversee the project.

Weekly status reports and timesheets are something of a standard for project team updates to the schedule, although often 20-minute daily “stand-up” meetings are preferred. Likewise, sponsors and customers might also want a weekly summary of project schedule and cost performance. If you’re checking in with a portfolio manager or an end-user representative, maybe the communication can be monthly or even quarterly.

Every project and its communication needs are different. Carefully consider the frequency of communication with the different stakeholders on your project. Again, talk to your stakeholders about what they need and be willing to make adjustments to fit the project and its people.

What technology will be used to exchange information?

Understand the organization’s technology resources available to you and your stakeholders. Periodic face-to-face meetings and exchanging information by email are often the norm. But meeting with a tool like Skype for Business might be essential for geographically dispersed stakeholders and can include audio, video, screen-sharing, and a virtual whiteboard. Instant messaging (IM) can be more immediate and to the point than email, and can help stakeholders more quickly get the information they need. With a tool like Yammer, your team can connect with each other in a private social network. You can share information, chat about process, solve problems, and make decisions.

Whatever you decide, try to use the technology tools that everyone is comfortable with. But don’t be reluctant to try a new technology if it fits the needs of the project and the team, or to return to an “old-fashioned” method of communication if that’s best. The point is to facilitate better collaboration in your project team.

Create a project communication plan

After you’ve identified your stakeholders and determined what types of information exchanges are needed with them and how often, you’re ready to create the project communication plan. It doesn’t need to be elaborate. It can just be a one-page summary or a simple table which distills what you’ve learned and sets the stage for good communication throughout the project lifecycle.

Post the communication plan with your project so that all stakeholders have access to it at any time. Revisit it periodically. Changing conditions in the project might warrant a change to your regular communication strategies. Moving between project phases, for example, from planning to execution or from execution to closing, might also call for different communication needs.

You have many choices for facilitating good communication when working with Project Web App in Project Online. To start, you can add the communication plan—as well as any other documents associated with your project—to the document library for the project.

In the Quick Launch, choose Projects .

In the Project Center , choose the name of the project to which you want to add the communication plan.

Choose the name of the project.

In the Quick Launch, choose Documents . The Documents page for the project opens.

The Documents page for the project opens.

On the menu bar, choose Upload .

Navigate through your file system to find and choose the communication plan, and then choose Open . Your file is added to the document library for the project.

The file is added to the document library for the project.

Your team members mostly use Project Online to submit their timesheets or enter progress toward tasks. But they can also access the complete schedule—essential to seeing the big picture of the project as well as understanding who is waiting for their tasks to be completed.

In the Project Center , choose the name of the project. The project opens and shows all tasks, who’s assigned to the tasks, when they’re scheduled to start and finish, which tasks are dependent on each other, and more.

The project opens and shows all tasks.

A major aspect of project communication is reporting. You identify, set up, and periodically run reports needed by team members, the portfolio manager, resource manager, upper management, customers, and other stakeholders.

Project Web App comes with a set of sample reports to get you started with some reporting basics. These sample reports are:

Project Overview Dashboard

Project Overview

Resource Overview

To see the sample reports, on the Quick Launch, choose Reports .

In the PWA Reports page which appears, choose your language. The three sample reports are listed.

In the PWA Reports page, choose your language.

To open the report in Excel for the web, click a report name.

Set up timesheets

What can team members do in Project Online?

Sample reports in Project Online

What reporting tools can I use with project data?

What is Skype for Business

Say hello to Yammer


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Project Management

How to write a project report (with steps & templates).

Sarah Burner

ClickUp Contributor

June 22, 2023

Juggling all the different components of a project can be quite a challenge. If that weren’t enough, you also have to write a project status report to update key stakeholders on the project’s progress. The struggle is real.

So where do you start? Fortunately, we have the answer. And that’s precisely why we put together this guide—to walk you through the process so you have a clear path from start to finish.

Learn more about creating project reports and different types of project status reports. Plus, you’ll walk away with five free project report templates, carefully crafted to streamline your project management workflow, save you time, and impress your stakeholders. 🤩

What is a Project Report?

1. project status report, 2. project progress report, 3. project cost benefit analysis report, 4. project time tracking report, 5. project resource report, 6. project risk report, 7. project variance report, 8. project performance report, 9. project completion report, benefits of making a project report, how to make a project report, 5 project report templates for straight-a project managers.

A project report is a document offering a comprehensive overview of a project’s objectives, progress, team performance, and milestone accomplishments. It also gives an account of the challenges faced during a project’s execution , solutions devised to tackle them, and the lessons learned during the process. 

Project managers create these reports to communicate with other project stakeholders—including team members, sponsors, clients, and other interested parties—to ensure everyone’s on the same page. The document also serves as a foundation for further evaluation and analysis to ensure the project says on track and achieves its goals. 🎯

9 Types of Project Reports

Project reports come in diverse formats, with each serving different use cases. Here are nine of the most commonly used types of project reports.

A project status report is a document that gives a snapshot of where your project stands at any given moment. It’s like answering the question, “How’s the project doing?”

But instead of just saying “The project is fine,” you actually dive into the project goals, tasks completed, milestones achieved, challenges faced, lessons learned, potential roadblocks, and next steps. 

Define the Statuses depending on your team in ClickUp

Whether it’s a weekly project status report or a monthly status report, this documentation eliminates the need for status meetings while giving stakeholders the most recent status of the project.

A project progress report is slightly similar to a status update report, as they both discuss task progress. However, the progress report is more quantitative and zooms in on individual tasks and project milestones . 

It’s like taking a magnifying glass and examining the progress of each task, one by one. For example, it could include in-depth information on the percentage of completion and current status of each task (completed, on track, delayed, etc.). 

The cost-benefit analysis report is usually prepared before a project is put into motion. Of the various project reports, this one aims to answer a simple question: “Is it worth pursuing this project?”

To answer this question, the report first assesses all project costs like operational expenses, materials, salaries, equipment, and potential risks. 

It then considers the projected benefits, such as increased profit margins, cost savings, improved efficiency, or happier customers. Finally, the report compares the costs to the benefits to determine if it’s time to move forward or explore other options.

A project time-tracking report is a document that records and summarizes time spent on project activities. Each project team member contributes to writing this report—they track and record the amount of time they’ve spent on tasks and submit it to the project manager. ⏰

Thankfully, the rise of project management tools has eliminated the need for paper-based time-tracking submissions. They make it easy for team members to submit accurate and detailed time reports to the project manager—while reducing the administrative burden of manual report compilation. 

Project managers can see how time is spent and the overall productivity of team members. As a result, they’re able to make informed decisions, such as redistributing workload (aka workload management ), reassigning tasks, and providing feedback and support to team members. 

A project resource dashboard offers a bird’s-eye view of how resources (e.g., labor, equipment, materials, budget, etc.) are allocated in a project. Think of it as a comprehensive resource inventory, listing every project task, the responsible party, and the resources being used. 

workload view in clickup

Project reports like this help project managers keep track of resource availability, identify potential resource constraints or shortages, and make informed decisions about resource allocation and optimization.

A project risk report offers a comprehensive analysis of potential risks, their likelihood of occurrence, their potential impact on the project, and recommended mitigation strategies. 

Rather than waiting for future events to derail the project, project reports like this one allow project managers to take a more proactive approach to risk management—thereby boosting the chances of overall project success.

A project variance report reveals the gaps or deviations between project plans and the actual performance or results achieved. It compares various factors—like budget, time, resources, and scope—and their planned values with their actual values, then computes the differences (or variances). 

By analyzing these variances, project managers and stakeholders can discuss the possible reasons behind them, identify areas that need attention, and take corrective actions where necessary.

A project performance report evaluates the overall performance and achievements of a project against predetermined metrics and objectives. It includes information on project deliverables, key performance indicators (KPIs) , and stakeholder satisfaction.

This report helps project managers assess project success, identify areas for improvement, and communicate the project’s performance to stakeholders.

A project completion report marks the end of a project journey. It summarizes the entire project lifecycle, from initiation to closure. This report contains an overview of the project’s objectives, deliverables, milestones, challenges, and recommendations for future projects.

Writing project reports may initially seem redundant and time-consuming. However, it plays a crucial role in achieving project success. While a few benefits were hinted at earlier, let’s get a better picture of why project reports should not be overlooked.

More clarity

Creating a project report allows you to step back and reflect on the project’s progress. As you record the milestones, successes, and challenges, a wealth of insights begin to unfold—strengths, weaknesses, and areas that need attention.

milestones in clickup

This holistic view of the project’s health helps you steer it toward the desired outcomes and ensure it stays on track.

Encourages evaluation and analysis

Project reports allow you to evaluate and analyze the different aspects of a project in a systematic way—gathering relevant data, analyzing them, and evaluating their significance. By giving your project a critical analysis, you can uncover valuable insights, identify patterns, draw meaningful conclusions, and take strategic action. 🛠️

Enhances communication and collaboration

Creating a project report challenges you to present the project’s progress and results to stakeholders in a clear and coherent manner. A well-written report promotes project transparency and ensures everyone is on the same page.

It also facilitates collaboration by providing a common reference point for discussions, feedback, and decision-making.

Boosts professionalism and credibility

When you present a comprehensive and well-structured report, it shows that you have conducted thorough research, followed a methodical approach, and can effectively communicate complex information. This, in turn, boosts your reputation, enhances your credibility, and showcases your expertise among peers, colleagues, and potential employers.

Knowledge preservation

A project report serves as a valuable reference for future research or projects. By documenting your process, methodologies, challenges, lessons, and results, you create a resource that can be consulted and built upon by others.

This contributes to the cumulative knowledge in your field and fosters a culture of collaboration and innovation.

Creating a project report doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Follow these three simple steps to create your first project report with ease.

Understand the purpose of the report

Before you create a project report, you need to understand the purpose of the report (the “why”) and know your target audience (the “who”). This will guide the content, structure, and tone of your project report.

Gather and organize the relevant information

At this point, you need to gather project information relevant to your project report. Make sure your data is accurate, reliable, and up-to-date. Organize the gathered information in a logical and structured manner.

  • Executive summary : As its name suggests, this project summary gives readers a quick overview of the whole report. It’s a snapshot that highlights the most important parts of the project. While it’s placed at the start of the report, it’s often written last. It covers the project’s objectives, methodology, major outcomes, and conclusions. 
  • Introduction: This sets the context and expectations of the entire report. It includes the project’s purpose and scope, project schedule, the problems it aims to address, and the methodologies to get there. It also outlines the structure and organization of the rest of the report. 
  • Body: Typically, this is the longest part of project management reports because it dives into in-depth details, including project progress, data collection, analysis reports, constraints, and limitations. Remember that whatever you include here should reflect the purpose of your project report and the preferences of your target audience. 
  • Conclusions & Recommendations: Based on your findings and analysis, identify opportunities for improvement, suggest strategies for addressing them, or propose avenues for future research. 

Format and proofread the report

Ensure that your project report follows a consistent formatting style—headings, subheadings, and bullet points will make it easier to read. In addition, scan your report for spelling or grammar errors and typos.

Sure, you could write project reports from scratch and spend countless hours formatting and structuring them. But why would you when you can use free project report templates? They provide a structure and format for your report so you can simply plug in your data and customize the design to fit your needs. Not only do project report templates speed up the report creation process, but they also enhance the overall quality of your reports. 

Let’s jump right in to explore our top five project report templates. 📈

1. Final Project Report Template

Final Project Report Template

A final project report is the perfect finishing touch to conclude a project and highlight its achievements. ClickUp’s Final Project Report Template provides a solid structure to help you put it together with the following key sections:

  • Planned vs. Actual: A quantitative breakdown of how the project deviated from the original plan with regard to its start date, completion date, duration, and budget
  • Management Effectiveness: A SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis evaluating how the project was managed
  • Project Learnings : Share the important project lessons learned by the team throughout the lifespan of the project
  • Contract Terms Checklist : A simple table listing the various contract terms, whether they were completed, and any remarks you have 
  • Overall Performance rating: A 1 out of 5 rating of the different aspects of the project, from planning and execution to leadership and communication

This template is built in ClickUp Docs , which means you have unlimited flexibility for customization—add extra sections and tweak the appearance to suit your taste. And guess what? The table of content updates in real-time as you add, edit, or delete multiple headers.

If you want to wow your team and clients, this project status report template will help you get the job done. 

2. Project Status Report Template

Project Management Status Report Template by ClickUp

Writing a project status report is fairly straightforward. But staring at a blank document and worrying about crafting perfectly manicured sentences can make this process last a lot longer than it should. 

Thankfully, ClickUp’s Project Status Report Template is here to save the day! Built inside ClickUp Whiteboards, this template provides a hassle-free method to quickly capture key project details in a visually engaging way.

  • General information: Cover general project details (e.g., project name, objectives, project timeline , reporting period, etc.) which you’ll need to fill in only once
  • Progress details: Use color-coding to share in-progress, at-risk, delayed, and completed tasks
  • Support and resources: List out assets (e.g., labor, money, etc.) needed for a smooth operation 
  • Highlights and takeaways: Share key lessons learned and other noteworthy highlights
  • What went well/What needs improvement: Use this opportunity to reflect on the project’s progress and share the areas that performed well and what needs attention
  • Next steps: Highlight the key action items that need to get done to keep the project on track

Enter the details under each of these sections onto sticky notes, which’ll help you quickly pour down your thoughts without worrying about writing perfect sentences. It’s also very helpful for stakeholders as the information on sticky notes is short and straight to the point. 

This template removes the pressure of creating a status report and saves valuable time—all while keeping key stakeholders informed and up to date.

3. Digital Marketing Report Template

Digital Marketing Report Template

After running a digital marketing campaign project, you need to gather key metrics from the campaign and present it to key stakeholders for evaluation, performance analysis, and notes for future improvements. 

Sharing this info across multiple digital channels can get overwhelming but there’s no need to worry. ClickUp’s Digital Marketing Report Template has you covered with everything you need. Plus, it’s neatly broken down into the following sections:

  • Digital Marketing Performance: This section lets you summarize the overall performance of your campaign by capturing key details like project budget allocations, actual expenses, cost per acquisition, total impressions, and total clicks across multiple campaigns
  • Web Analytics Report: This section analyzes website performance during and after the project’s completion. It captures metrics like page views, bounce rate, traffic sources, and overall conversion rate
  • Social Media Campaign Performance: This section analyzes social media performance by measuring metrics like impressions, followers, and engagement rate—all in a simple table for each social media platform 

Use this template to present the performance of your digital marketing project in a simple and visually engaging way. This makes it easy to identify trends, analyze the impact of your campaign, and make informed decisions regarding future marketing initiatives.

4. Employee Daily Activity Report Template

Project report: Employee Daily Activity Report Template

A key way to stay on track and guarantee overall project success is to engage team members in the process.

The Employee Daily Activity Report Template by ClickUp has a simple tabular layout that makes it easy for team members to record and keep track of: 

  • Completed tasks and the time spent on each
  • Ongoing tasks and their due dates
  • Upcoming tasks and any support they’ll need

This template encourages each team member to get work done and ask for support when needed—while allowing you to keep the project on track by providing support and maximizing team performance.

5. Campaign Report Template

Campaign Progress Report Template by ClickUp

Remember the Digital Marketing Report Template we looked at earlier? You can choose to further analyze the marketing performance section, with elements from this Campaign Report Template by ClickUp . 

Dive deeper into how each marketing channel contributed to overall ad cost, ad revenue, and ad conversion rate. You can further break down each channel’s performance by analyzing the metrics from each individual campaign on that channel.

Create Polished and Professional Project Reports in Less Time With ClickUp

There you have it—your secret sauce for creating an effective project report in a fraction of the time. And that’s only scratching the surface … working inside ClickUp unlocks a lot more perks. 

Not only does ClickUp make project reporting easy and quick, but it also gives you access to free project management templates to enhance your workflow. Quickly assign tasks to your team, keep track of progress, discuss updates, and collaborate on documents and whiteboards—all in one place. ✨

Did we mention the integrations? ClickUp plays nicely with other apps, allowing you to seamlessly connect your favorite tools to supercharge your team’s productivity. And let’s not forget about the time you’ll save using ClickUp’s automations—a feature that lets you breeze through repetitive tasks that used to eat up valuable time across project management reports.

Just imagine what you can do with those extra hours—maybe enjoy a cup of coffee or catch up with your team about how best you can support them. Make project reporting a blast with ClickUp and boost your chances of a successful project. 

Get started by signing up for free on ClickUp today … Ready? Set? Report!

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Project Central

How to Create a Project Communication Plan?

Communication is vital to the success of your project. In order to successfully collaborate with different stakeholders, you (as the project manager) have to make sure everyone is on the same page – all the time.

However, projects can also be incredibly hectic; there are tasks to complete and changes to approve.

It’s impossible to make it up as you go along.

And that’s why you should create a project communication plan. 80% of high-performing organizations have one, and it facilitates their high project success rate.

In this post, we’ll show you how to create a project communication plan , as well as project management communication plan examples to help you make sure everyone’s in the loop.

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What Is a Project Communication Plan?

A project communication plan is a document vital to the success of every project, especially if you have to communicate with different stakeholders .

For example, let’s say you were working on an IT project.

You’d have to communicate changes and progress to your:

  • Top management
  • Vendors and independent contractors.

Project communication management helps you keep everyone in the loop by creating a plan on how, when, and what you’ll communicate to different stakeholders.

For example, your plan may stipulate that you should notify clients only of important changes, your top management of weekly progress, and your team of current tasks and progress every day.

Additionally, project communication management will help you:

  • Establish roles and responsibilities
  • Outline communication processes
  • Get stakeholder approval
  • Get feedback.

When you’ve established and implemented a good communication plan, you’ll find avoiding problems later on in the project life simple.

Project Life Cycle

Source: Project Management Institute

Additionally, good communication improves job satisfaction and increases retention rates .

Having a plan will help you get rid of a headache or two.

After all, you’ve got a plan.

All you need to do is stick to it, and keep your focus on the things that truly matter.

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How to Create a Project Communication Plan

While it may sound daunting, creating a project communication plan is quite simple.

You can follow our project communication plan checklist to make sure you’ve covered everything:

1. Outline Project Communication Plan Objectives

Before you start creating your plan, you need to know what you want to achieve with it.

For example, you may want to improve stakeholder approval.

You may also want to improve the collaboration on your team.

You can choose as many objectives as appropriate but it’s important that you do choose them.

They will guide your strategy.

Project Communication Plan Example

Source: The Digital Project Manager

2. Identify Communication Requirements and Preferences

When you’ve outlined your project communication plan objectives, it’s time to think about the prerequisites for achieving them.

To put it simply: your second step should be understanding who needs which information :

  • Team members may need real-time information on everything related to the project
  • Clients may need monthly progress reports
  • Top management may need weekly progress reports.

It all depends on the level of stakeholder engagement in your organization.

However, you can determine it by responding to the 5 Ws and 1 H :

  • Who needs to be communicated to
  • What needs to be communicated (e.g. the graphic design department needs to get information on audience research, the product department on usage, etc.)
  • When the information should be communicated
  • Where it should be communicated
  • Why the communication of the information is important (e.g. for obtaining stakeholder approval, for improving team performance)
  • How the information should be communicated (e.g. in a meeting, through a tool).

The 5 Ws and 1 H

Ideally, you’ll have a project communication management tool at hand that you can use to keep everyone in the loop.

If you’re using Microsoft 365 for project management , it comes with plenty of side tools you can use to share information with not only your team but with external stakeholders, as well.

However, you should ascertain whether all the stakeholders know how to use the tool, and are comfortable with that mode of communication .

  • Are they already used to receiving information through the tool?
  • Is there a communication process you have been following?

Different stakeholders’ preferred modes of communication

Project Communication Plan Example 2

Additionally, you may need to manage both synchronous and asynchronous communication :

  • For example, you may work with a remote team that lives and works in different parts of the world. If you need to organize a call with them, you should be mindful of time zones
  • However, scheduling a call with a client may not be necessary if you can communicate with them asynchronously through email or status reports.

Finally, be mindful of your communication frequency .

You don’t want to inundate your team or other stakeholders with numerous, uncalled-for emails. They may develop a habit of ignoring or skimming over them.

Types of communication

Project Communication Plan Example 3

Make sure you take a look at historical data to understand which modes of communication have worked well in the past.

3. Make a Project Management Communication Plan

Finally, it’s time to create your project management communication plan.

Having obtained all the information on your stakeholders and the requirements of the project, you can structure it as a document to reference .

However, make sure you’re also tracking the success of your project management communication plan so you can tweak and optimize it in the future.

The following is a simple project management communication plan example:

Project Communications Plan


This example clearly summarizes:

  • The type of communication
  • Delivery date
  • Frequency of your communique.

While it may seem bare-boned, it stems from the previous documents in which you’ve researched and defined preferred and necessary modes and types of communication for different stakeholders.

Your end result – your actual project management communication plan – should be simple, and a direct result of your previous research.

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Best Practices: Project Change Management

If there are changes stipulated in the project charter, your communication plan should also reflect your change management process .

For example, you may be developing an app for an external client.

What happens if you or they need to make a change to the project?

  • Who should you communicate these changes to?
  • When should you communicate changes?
  • Whose approval do you need to obtain?
  • In what format should the changes be communicated?

Consider this communications and change management plan.

You can notice that this project manager has planned for common changes such as cut-over.

You can make a plan for changes commonly occurring in your projects (e.g. going over budget).

Make a list of people who need to be notified, what they should be told (pay attention to the example and how the author states “Be sure to highlight minimum disruption to the end user”), and how to communicate it.

Additionally, you can make room for change management in your standard project communication plan by noting how the change can be escalated :

3 Communication Matrix


This plan stipulates that the communication should be escalated to the C-suite in most cases.

Finally, you can also make a separate change management plan in which you’ll describe:

  • Nature of change
  • Type of change
  • Initial response
  • Risk to employee engagement
  • Primary owner
  • Primary involvement mechanism.

Change table

Source: Change Consultants

Later on, you can simply reference it in your communication plan, be that through a separate section titled “Possible changes” or making a note on which stakeholder should be notified of the changes.

With a communication and change management plan, you’ll have covered everything you need to succeed on your next project.

Happy managing!

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Tactical Project Manager

How to Create a Project Communication Plan (with template)

  • by Adrian Neumeyer

Do you know what’s your most important job as a PM?

I’ll tell you., it is to make communication happen. because communication is the all-cure for every project..

Why is that? Think of a project as a complex network of inter-dependent activities. Whatever one team does (e.g. write a concept) has implications for another team (e.g. the developer or the end-user). If these people don’t talk to each other, this will lead to misunderstandings, which again can lead to delays.

Read also: What are stakeholders?

How you can avoid embarrassing project delays .

The best way how you can ensure communication is to set up a communication plan right from the start. If you do that, you’ve already eliminated a big risk from your project. (Perform a  project risk analysis  to identify other risks.)

What’s a project communication plan?

A communication plan defines how information and updates are shared within a project. To be more precise, it sets out how often stakeholders and the project team meet or communicate with each other to resolve issues or to get status updates.

A good project plan must define the communication inside the project, but it must also address the information flow to stakeholders not directly involved in the project.

Examples of what could be defined in communication plan

  • Your software team should meet with key users once per week for some testing of the user interface.
  • You want to have a weekly status meeting with your core team to share updates.
  • Internal accounting would like to get monthly updates from you on project costs.
  • The supervisors of the people in your team often come to you asking for status updates. You propose to send out a weekly email update.

These are all examples of “planned” communication happening in a project. And this is exactly what you want.

You don’t want to worry  “Uuh, I hope the developers will speak to key users soon. Maybe I should set up a meeting.”

You want to be able to say: “No worries. The issue will be discussed in the key user meeting next Thursday.”

See the benefit of a communication plan?

Creating your project communication plan

Step 1: identify the stakeholders of your project.

What are the different sub-teams in the project? What are the stakeholders — both internally and outside the project? Make a list of all the teams/stakeholders.

Hint: It’s useful to look at your project org chart.

Some groups you may want to consider:

  • the project team
  • different sub-teams (e.g. development, accounting, sales and others)
  • supervisors
  • the steering committee (Read more about  steering committees )
  • management (usually the Head of  people)
  • your CEO and other C-level guys

Step 2: Create the project communication plan

Take one hour and make yourself comfortable in a quiet meeting room.

Next, open a blank Excel spreadsheet or download my template below.

Start with the easy stuff: How often do you want to hold a project team meeting? Every two weeks? Great, put it into your project communication plan.

What about steering committee meetings? They have already been agreed to be held once every 2 months. Boom, put it in the communication plan.

Note: A good communication plan shouldn’t just be a list of meetings. Communication can also be done via email in the form of a status update.

Now we have to look closer:

  • What further meetings make sense for your project?
  • What email updates are required to share information in about the project?
  • What people have specifically asked to be informed on a regular basis?

Some tips to guide you:

OVERCOMING DISTANCE: Teams may be based in different locations. Example: IT is based in Nevada but the project is based in Minnesota. Instead of hoping that collaboration will work out well, you can simply schedule a bi-weekly meeting with IT to get an update or to discuss current IT issues.

BRINGING PEOPLE TOGETHER: Some departments in a company may be more used to working with each other than with others. In a manufacturing business, engineers are usually used to working closely with designers. Communication happens organically.

With engineers and marketing people the situation is completely different. The tech guys have very different personalities than marketing people. The groups won’t communicate as well with each other. A great reason for setting up a common meeting to facilitate communication.

RISK: As a PM you can’t care about everything. That’s why I like to put my focus on the areas with the biggest risk. If team A doesn’t communicate with team B, what could happen in the worst case? Am I willing to accept that risk or will it fuck up my project? For high risk I definitely set up a meeting in order to funnel and manage the communication.

KEEP IT FLEXIBLE: A communication plan isn’t written in stone. It can be changed according the needs of a project. You can either reduce or increase the frequency of meetings. Or you can add further meetings to the plan if you notice communication isn’t happening in the way it should.

Here’s our finished communication plan:

project communication report

Step 3: Send out meeting invites and book conference rooms:

For all recurring meetings I like to book meeting rooms in advance. It’s just such as hassle to find meeting space on a short term.

Next, send out meeting invites for the meetings in the communication plan.

Step 4: Share the plan with the project team and stakeholders

Send the communication plan to all concerned people.

It shows that you’ve considered their role in the project . It’s a way of saying: “Hey, I know you’ve got some stake in the project, so here’s how we plan to involve you.”

Also, people see that there’s a place (i.e. a meeting) where they can ask questions about the project and share their concerns.

A simple project communication plan template

Here’s a simple communication plan template for Excel. It’s the one I use for my projects.

A simple communication plan template is all you need.

Download the communication plan for Excel

Adrian Neumeyer

Hi! I'm Adrian, former Senior IT Project Manager and founder of Tactical Project Manager. I created the site to help you become an excellent project leader and manage intense projects with success!

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  • Project planning |
  • Why a clear communication plan is more ...

Why a clear communication plan is more important than you think

Julia Martins contributor headshot

More often than not, clear communication can make or break successful projects. Clear communication in project management isn’t just about where you should be communicating—it’s also about which team members should be receiving which types of messages.

The good news is, creating an effective communication plan isn’t difficult. All you need to do is define your communication channels and align on when team members should use each. In this article, we’ll walk you through how to set up a communication plan and show you a template so you can create your own.

What is a communication plan?

Sharing a communication plan can give your team clarity about which tools to use when and who to contact with each of those tools. Without a communication plan, you might have one team member trying to ask questions about work in a tool that another team member rarely checks. Rather than being able to clearly communicate and move forward with work, each team member would end up frustrated, confused, and disconnected from the work that matters. Then, if they don’t have clear insight into who is responsible for each channel, they might end up reaching out to an executive stakeholder with questions that person can’t answer. What started out as a simple miscommunication has spiraled into three frustrated team members—and all the while, work isn’t moving forward.

What should a communication plan include?

Your communication plan is your one-stop-shop for your project communication strategy. Team members should be able to use the communication plan to answer project questions like:

What communication channels are we using? What is each channel used for?

When should we communicate in person vs. asynchronously?

What are the project roles? Who is the project manager ? Who is on the project team? Who are the project stakeholders ?

How are important project details, like project status updates, going to be communicated? How frequently will these be shared?

What shouldn’t be included in a communication plan?

A communication plan will help you clarify how you’re going to communicate with your project team and project stakeholders—whether these are internal team members that work at your company, or external stakeholders like customers or contractors.

A communication plan in project management is not a PR plan. This plan will not help you align on your social media strategy, identify a target audience, or establish key messages for different demographics. If you need to build out those plans, consider creating a  social media content calendar  or a  business strategy plan .

The benefits of a communication plan

Obviously  clear communication in the workplace  is a good thing. But do you really need a written communication plan to do that?

In a word: yes. A good communication plan can help you communicate the right information to the right project stakeholders. Executive stakeholders don’t need to be notified about every project detail—similarly, every project team member might not need to be on a conference call with your external partners. By clarifying where and how you’ll be communicating, you can reduce the guessing game and unblock your team.

Less app switching

We recently interviewed  over 13,000 global knowledge workers  and found that the average knowledge worker switches between 10 apps up to 25 times per day. Instead of focusing on high-impact work or even collaborating effectively with their team members, knowledge workers are sinking hours into simply trying to figure out where they should be communicating.

A communication plan can eliminate this guessing game. For example, if your team knows that you only communicate about work in a  work management tool , they can search for key information there—instead of digging through document folders, Slack messages, and multiple email chains. Similarly, when you know that a team member is only tangentially working on the project—and is only being looped in during high-level status reports—you won’t bother them with a question about when the next  project deliverable  is due.

quotation mark

We have created communication guidelines around what software or what tools are best for what. Asana is for action, Slack is for quick responses or answers to things that are floating around. Email is more official and mostly external facing. By doing that, and creating the proper communications guidance, it really helps reduce the noise.”

Increased collaboration

Team collaboration isn’t an effortless process that happens by itself—it’s a skill that you and your team have to build. One part of creating effective  team collaboration  is clarifying your team’s communication conventions. That’s because a big barrier to effective collaboration is feeling comfortable communicating—especially if you work on a  remote or distributed team . If your team feels unsure because they’re still trying to figure out how or where to communicate, they won’t be fully comfortable talking to one another.

Your communication plan is a chance to clarify where team members should be communicating. Depending on the level of detail, you can also include when team members should be communicating—and clarify team conventions towards setting “Do not disturb” mode or snoozing notifications.

By providing these guidelines, you’re effectively removing one of the biggest barriers to easy communication and collaboration between team members. When team members know where to communicate—and just as importantly, where not to communicate—they can be confident they’re sending the right message at the right time.

Less duplicative work

Currently, knowledge workers spend  60% of their time on work about work  like searching for documents, chasing approvals, switching between apps, following up on the status of work, and generally doing things that take time away from impactful work. Part of this work about work is not knowing where things should be communicated.

If team members don’t have a clear sense of where information is shared—things like your  project plan  or  project timeline —then they’ll have to dig through multiple tools or ask several team members just to find the right information. As a result, team members who are unclear about where they should be communicating about work also have a harder time simply finding existing work.

Work about work leads to more manual, duplicative work and less clarity overall. In fact, according to the  Anatomy of Work Index , we spend 13% of our time—236 hours per year—on work that’s already been completed. By sharing your communication plan, you can give your team clarity into exactly where work lives, so they don’t have to spend all that time finding it themselves.

How to write a communication plan

A communication plan is a powerful tool—but it’s also relatively easy to create. You can create a communication plan in four steps.

1. Establish your communication methods

The first step to creating a communication plan is to decide where your team will communicate—and about what. This includes when to use which tools and when to communicate live vs. asynchronously. Live, synchronous communication is communication that happens in real time. Conversely, asynchronous communication is when you send a message without expecting someone to reply right away. We all use asynchronous communication every day without realizing it—most notably, every time we send an email.

As you define your communication plan, identify what to use each tool for. For example, you might decide to use:

Email to communicate with any external stakeholders.

Slack for synchronous communication about day-to-day updates and quick questions.

Asana to communicate asynchronously about work, like task details, project status updates , or key project documents.

Zoom or Google Meet for any team meetings, like project brainstorms or your project post mortem.

2. Align on communication cadence

Now that you know where you’ll be communicating, you also have to identify how frequently you’ll be communicating. Your communication cadence is your action plan for updating different stakeholders about different project details.

For example, you might decide to schedule:

Weekly project status updates posted in Asana to all project stakeholders and sponsors.

Monthly project team meetings to unblock any work or brainstorm next steps.

Asynchronous project milestone updates in Asana as needed.

3. Add a plan for stakeholder management

Running a successful project often depends on getting stakeholder support and buy-in. At the beginning of the project, you’ll do this during the  project kickoff meeting —but it’s also critical to maintain stakeholder support throughout your project.

Take some time as you’re drafting your communication plan to detail when to communicate with each project stakeholder, and about what. Some people, like your key project team members, will be communicating about this project regularly—maybe even daily. Other project stakeholders may only need to be looped in during project status updates or maybe just at the final readout.

By listing out how you’ll be managing communication with stakeholders, you can ensure they’re being contacted at the right time about the right things. The communication they recieve should answer questions at their level of detail and with a focus on business results and overall, high-level impact.

4. Share your communication plan and update it as needed

Once you’ve created your communication plan, it’s time to share it with your project team. Make sure your communication plan is accessible in your central source of truth for all project information. We recommend using  Asana  to track all project communication and work, so you can talk about work where you’re working.

If any changes impact your project communication plan, make sure you update it and communicate those changes. That way, team members always have access to the most up to date information.

Example communication plan

[inline illustration] Communication plan for brand campaign in Asana (example)

Communication plan template

Description of communication.

What type of communication is it?

How often will you be communicating?

Which tool will you be using? Is this synchronous or asynchronous communication?

Who is receiving this communication?

Who is in charge of sending out this communication?

Good communication starts with a communication plan

Clear communication can help you send the right message at the right time. Empower effortless collaboration while also ensuring every team member is being looped in at the right times. That way, your team can spend less time communicating about work and more time on high-impact work.

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SMART Goals: How To Write Them and Why They Matter


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What Is Project Communication Management?

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Introduction to Project Communication Management

Project communication management is a crucial aspect of project management as it ensures all stakeholders are kept informed about the project’s progress, issues, and changes, thereby facilitating effective decision making and collaboration.

In this article, we will dive deep into project communication management, exploring everything from the creation of a project communication plan to strategies for achieving success in its implementation.

Before we begin, you can unlock a free trial with Wrike right now to communicate and collaborate effortlessly in real time.

What is project communication management?

Project communication management is a collection of processes that help make sure the right messages are sent, received, and understood by the right people. 

Project communication management is one of the 10 key knowledge areas in the PMBOK (Project Management Book of Knowledge). The processes included in this area have changed over the years but, in the current version, there are three primary project communication management processes.

  • Plan communications management
  • Manage communications
  • Monitor communications

How to create a project communication management plan

Project managers need to clearly outline how they will manage communications across their projects. This is done by creating a project communication management plan.

When creating a plan, project managers should follow these five steps:

  • Decide your objectives: What will be the purpose of your communication? You may use some communication tools for awareness, such as a status report. Others may require action, such as requiring a sponsor to authorize spending or a customer to approve project testing.
  • Determine your audience: Who are the stakeholders in this project? You should make an extensive list of everyone involved. Consider anyone impacted by the project or who influences its success. This list should include team members, sponsors, customers, and other interested parties.
  • Write your message: What will the message be for each type of communication? This is the actual content that will be shared. Key components to be communicated include scope, schedule , budget, objectives, risks, and deliverables .
  • Choose your channel: How will the message be delivered? Will it be a formal report emailed out to all stakeholders? Or will it be an informal verbal debrief during a team meeting?
  • Set a timeline: When will you deliver your message? Do your stakeholders require weekly or monthly reports? Is there a deadline to meet? Consider varying time zones and employee schedules here.

Your project communication management plan should be detailed enough to lay out why you’re sending a message, who you’re sending it to, what specific information will be sent, how you’re going to send it, and when.


Involving your stakeholders in the creation of this plan is important. You need to understand their communication preferences and expectations. If you over-communicate, they may stop paying attention. But, if you under-communicate, it can lead to misunderstandings and issues.

The golden rule here is that, to be a good communicator, you need to be a good listener. It may seem obvious, but Harvard Business Review points out that listening is an overlooked leadership tool . Pay attention to all the factors and take every opinion into account before creating your project communication management plan.

Manage project communication

Once the project communication management plan has been created and approved, it’s the project manager’s job to ensure it’s carried out successfully. This means the plan needs to be reviewed and updated on a regular basis to reflect any changes to the project or its stakeholders. 

The project manager also has to manage the execution of the project communication management plan. This includes:

  • Collection and analysis of data
  • Creation of messages for communication
  • Transmission or distribution of communications
  • Storage of any communication reports, files, or documents
  • Retrieval of any stored communications
  • Disposal of any old communications upon project closure or a set date

Monitor project communication

This process used to be called ‘control communications,’ but was updated in the sixth edition of the PMBOK. Despite the title change, the process is the same. It involves monitoring and controlling project communications throughout the entire lifecycle.

This may include the confirmation of the following:

  • Communications went out as planned
  • They were received by the proper stakeholders
  • Messages were understood
  • Any relevant feedback was provided to the appropriate project members

The actual type of monitoring, including method and frequency, should be a part of the project communication management plan.

Manage and monitor communication effortlessly in one platform

How to be successful at project communication management.

Excellent communication is a critical component of project success. In fact, poor communication is one of the main reasons a project can fail . Project communication management ensures that does not happen.

Successful project managers use formal and informal communication methods across various channels. This helps increase the chances that messages are received. Use simple language, stick to relevant topics, keep messages concise, and include all information in one place to reduce your chances of communication failure .

The following communication management skills can also increase a project manager’s chances of success:

  • Strong active listening skills
  • Proficient writing skills
  • Excellent speaking ability
  • Asking questions and probing for more information
  • Setting and managing expectations
  • Motivating people to become and stay engaged
  • Conflict resolution skills
  • The ability to summarize and recap what you’ve heard

Why use Wrike for project communication management?

Wrike’s project management platform is a powerful tool for project managers. It is intuitive, easy to use, and versatile enough to be tailored to your specific project needs. Wrike also has a variety of features that can help project managers increase and improve communication throughout their various project stages. These include:

  • Custom request forms : By automating requests, project managers can efficiently communicate task requirements in seconds, and add extra information in custom fields.
  • @mentions : Tag a team member to send a notification directly to their Wrike inbox. This ensures that no messages are lost in unread emails.
  • Integrations : Keep all your project communication on one platform by integrating Wrike with your favorite messaging apps, including Slack and Microsoft Teams.
  • Live Editor : With this tool, you can edit task descriptions in real-time, meaning several people can communicate changes quickly with each other. This is especially useful for remote teams working together on a group project. 
  • Calendars : Share updates in team calendars, so that everyone is kept in the loop. Edit project deadlines and due dates easily.

Take a tour of Wrike’s work management platform and find out how you can boost your project communication management.

So, why not embrace the principles of project communication management and harness the power of Wrike? Doing so can significantly enhance the success rate of your projects, leading to satisfied stakeholders, a motivated team, and a thriving business. After all, effective communication is the cornerstone of any successful project, and Wrike is here to help you achieve just that.

Further reading:

  • 4 Reasons Why Communication Fails (And What To Do About It)
  • 6 Strategic Ways to Keep Your Team Communication Streamlined
  • 5 Most Common Mistakes in Managing Multiple Projects: Communication Breakdown (Part 5 of 5)
  • 5 Ways to Save Your Team from Communication Breakdowns
  • The 5 Ws of Virtual Communication

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Project Status Reports

This guide to status reports is presented by projectmanager, the project management software trusted by 35,000+ users. make a status report in minutes.

ProjectManager's project status report page

What Is a Project Status Report?

What is the purpose of a project status report, types of project status reports, status report vs. progress report, how to write a project status report, project status report template, project status report example, what should be included in a project status report, what is project reporting software, benefits of project reporting software, must-have features of project reporting software, how to make project status reports in projectmanager, best practices for presenting project status reports, other types of project management reports, try our project reporting software for 30 days.

A project status report is a document that describes the progress of a project within a specific time period and compares it against the project plan. Project managers use status reports to keep stakeholders informed of progress and monitor costs, risks, time and work. Project status reports allow project managers and stakeholders to visualize project data through charts and graphs.

Project status reports are taken repeatedly throughout every phase of the project’s execution as a means to maintain your schedule and keep everyone on the same page. The status report for a project generally includes the following:

  • The work that’s been completed
  • The plan for what will follow
  • The summary of the project budget and schedule
  • A list of action items
  • Any issues and risks, and what’s being done about them

Related: 6 Free Project Report Templates for Excel & Word

The true value of a project status report lies beyond its use as a communication channel. It also provides a documented history of the project. This gives you historical data, so the next time you’re planning a similar project, you can avoid any missteps or bottlenecks.

Because project status reports cover so many topics, they were historically time-consuming to create. Fortunately, modern project management software like ProjectManager expedites the all-important status reporting process. Try our automated project reports and simplify your project reporting.

ProjectManager's project status reports page

Create a project status report with just a few clicks with ProjectManager— Learn more.

There are several reasons why project managers create status reports. Here are some of the most important.

  • Help the project management team keep track of costs, tasks and timelines
  • Compare the budget and time forecasts with the actual costs and task duration
  • Improve communications across the organization
  • Simplify the communication process
  • Keep stakeholders informed
  • Deliver key messages to the intended target audience
  • Improve organizational support for your projects or your team

If you’re reporting to stakeholders, you don’t want to bog them down with unnecessary details. Keep your status reporting presentation light and to the point.

You might create daily, weekly, monthly or quarterly status reports depending on your project management requirements. Here’s a quick overview of when it’s best to use each of them.

Daily Status Report

A daily status report captures what each member of the project team has worked on over the course of that day. It not only highlights what they’re working on currently but addresses any issues that are preventing them from completing their tasks. It includes a summary of today’s work and what was accomplished the day before.

Weekly Status Report

A weekly status report is like the daily status report except it covers a full work week rather than just one day. It includes the name of the project, the date of the status report, a summary outlining what work was done over that time period and the action plan for what to work on for the next week. There will also be a section to list any challenges, risk and mitigation plans to respond to them.

Monthly Status Report

A monthly status report provides a similar update on a project or projects but over a period of a month. It provides leadership with relevant information to better manage the project or projects. As with other frequencies, the team reports on what they’ve accomplished, the month is recapped and the next month’s activities are outlined.

Quarterly Status Report

A quarterly status report is a short and easily digestible snapshot of the project over a period of time, in this case, four months or a quarter of the year. It covers the same territory as the other status reports and is likely to include graphs and other visuals to make all the data easier to grasp.

There are many different types of reports you can generate when managing a project. Some of them are more for the project manager and others for the stakeholders, owners or clients to keep them updated.

We’ve been talking about a status report, but it shouldn’t be confused with a progress report. While a status report has data on the progress over the period of time which is being reported, there’s a wealth of other information beyond the mere progress of the project.

A progress report , on the other hand, details the specific tasks and milestones that have been completed to show that the project is making progress in sync with the project schedule. Like a status report, it’s used to keep managers and stakeholders updated.

Writing a project status report is an essential project management task. Whether you generate one weekly, monthly or quarterly, the steps are essentially the same. Here’s how to write a project status report:

  • Determine the objective
  • Target your audience (Clients, team members, sponsors, etc)
  • Choose the format and type
  • Collect your data
  • Structure the report
  • Make sure it’s clear

Because a project status report follows a basic outline, it can be helpful to use a project status report template. However, a project status report template is only a static document. Using project status reporting software integrates with all your project management tools for greater efficiency.

Free status report template for Excel

ProjectManager’s free status report template for Excel— Download now.

To better understand the process described above, let’s take a look at a project status report example. For this simple example, we’ll create a weekly status report for a home construction project using our free project status report template.

Imagine a construction contractor who is in charge of building wall frames, installing the insulation, electrical wiring, drywall and interior painting of a brand-new house. A status report example, following our free status report template, would begin with basic project planning information, such as the project name, new house, reporting period would be between Jan. 1-7, the report dated Jan. 9, project manager Joe Johnson and project sponsor Jack Dell.

project status report example, general information part

Next is the summary, which highlights the key accomplishments. In this case, it would be the installation of wall frames. The section after zooms into the progress of the project. It starts with smaller action items that are needed to build the wall frames.

These action steps also include the date when they were done and a RAG status. That is a red, amber and green indication of the level of confidence and control over that part of the project. The owner, or team member who did the work is named and any comments not already addressed can be added.

project status report example, showing key accomplishments and action items

Following that is a section on upcoming work. Here you can add the action items related to electrical wiring, such as marking locations for cable boxes, electrical outputs and threading cables through the wall frames. The section following that will list project deliverables , which in this case will be the wall frames, which are the tangible output that’s been completed during the reporting period.

project status report, showing project deliverables part

The next section is on the project’s health. It notes the budget spent over the period and what percentage that is in terms of the overall budget. There’s also an overview of the project schedule , scope and quality control and assurance.

project status report, project health section

The section after that lists the risk management issues. It lists the risk, its severity, response and owner. Maybe there’s a possibility that the materials or equipment required for electric wiring won’t be delivered on time. This risk would likely be high in terms of severity as it’ll impact the project schedule. To mitigate this, another company may be contacted to see if they’ll deliver on time. You’ll also note who on the team is watching over this risk.

You’ll conclude and add any recommendations if needed. This will provide stakeholders with a clear picture of the status of the project.

project status report example, showing risk management overview

How Do You Ask for a Project Status Report?

A project status update is usually distributed on a regular schedule, but sometimes people want to see a status report immediately. You can ask for a project status update via email, but you don’t want to come across as rude. To request a project status report, you should ask in a professional manner and place your request through the proper channels.

A friendly reminder is never a bad idea, as it maintains a connection, especially if you can offer something of value in return. If you’re using project management software , then you can always get an instant status report by checking the project dashboard that tracks various metrics.

The ProjectManager dashboard delivers your project status instantly. Pull from schedules, budgets, resources and more without the possibility of human error. Then, customize your display and filter information to show only what you want to see, such as remaining resources, project health, tasks and costs. A dashboard can be an excellent alternative to the traditional project status report.

ProjectManager's project dashboard is a visual tool to reflect your project status report

Get real-time project dashboards that you can easily share with stakeholders— Learn more.

The different elements of a project status report organize the different parts into a cohesive whole. The objective of a status report, of course, is to keep stakeholders informed and expose areas of the project that need greater organizational support.

To better communicate these things, be sure to touch on all the following when you compose your project status report.

General Project Info

To start with, you’re going to need to just put down the basics. What is the project name? Who is the project manager? What is the number of resources? All this information is essential, if obvious, to track the paperwork. Don’t assume your stakeholder is familiar with all this information. It’s especially useful when you’re doing historical research for future projects. Roll it into your status report template , if you have one.

General Status Info

Again, you’re going to want to stamp the report with data that will distinguish it from the other project management reports . So, here you want to include what date the report was generated, who the author is and so on.

Milestone Review

Milestones are the major phases of your project. They’re a good way to break up the larger project into smaller, more digestible parts. The milestone review lets you note where you are in terms of meeting those milestones (against where you planned to be at this point) in the project’s life cycle.

Project Summary

One of the main purposes of the status report is to compare the project’s progress with the project plan estimates. To do this, include a short summary of the forecasted completion date and costs of the project . This allows project managers to control the project’s execution and measure success. Be sure to include the activities that are facing issues and how those problems might impact the project’s quality, resources, timeline and costs. Explain what you’re planning to do to resolve these issues and what the results will be once you have fixed the problem.

Issues and Risks

Risks are all the internal and external factors that are a threat to your project. They become issues once they affect your project budget , timeline or scope. List the issues that have arisen over the course of the project to date. What are they? How are you resolving them? What impact they’ll have on the overall project? Apply the same questions to the risks that you’re aware of. Have they shown up? If they have, what are you doing to get the project back on track?

Project Metrics

It’s important to back your report up with hard numbers to prove the statements you’re making. You should have established the metrics for status reporting during the project planning phase .

It’s impossible to know if your project is succeeding without measuring its effectiveness. These metrics are a way to show you’re on track and evaluate what, if anything, needs attention.

Project reporting software is used to automatically collect project data, analyze it, and display the results to help project managers make better decisions when managing a project. The software gathers information from different sources within the project and converts them in spreadsheets, graphs and charts.

Depending on the software, reporting data can be filtered to highlight areas of the project that you need to see at that time. Reports can be generated on various aspects of the project’s progress and performance, such as time, cost, workload, etc.

Reports are also used to keep key stakeholders, such as sponsors and clients, updated on how the project is doing, and therefore, should be shareable.

Having a quick and easy to use tool that instantly pulls up important project data, organizes and displays it simply and clearly helps you keep stakeholders updated. With all the information at your fingertips, you can also make better decisions.

Not all reporting software is the same. To get more bang for your buck, make sure that whatever tool you choose has the following features:

  • Converts complicated data into useful reports
  • Filters to show only what information you want
  • Allows you to create reports on specific time periods
  • Share reports and keep stakeholders updated
  • Update instantly for greater accuracy
  • Monitor actual progress against your plan
  • Report on program or portfolio of projects

Project status reports are just one of many reports that are offered by project reporting software, but you’ll also want to make sure the product you choose has the following features as well.

Dashboards icon

Get Instant Status Reports

As important as reporting software is, you also need to regularly check on the progress of your project as it occurs. A dashboard will provide that high-level view, collecting data and displaying it in graphs and charts to show a variety of project metrics.

Dashboards image

See the Most Current Info

Dashboards and reports capture the project at a particular time, and like a snapshot, capture a past point in time. However, if you’re working with an online reporting tool, the data it collects is displayed in real-time—and the decisions you make will be more informed.

Real-Time Data image

Generate Reports on Every Aspect

A status report is a key gauge of how your project is performing, but it’s only one perspective. For the full picture, you need to measure progress and more for many angles. Seek out reporting software that also measures task progress, workload, timesheets and more.

Diverse Reports image

Easy Export With Stakeholders

Creating reports is only the beginning. You need to share them with stakeholders, who need to have a broad strokes picture of where the project currently is. During presentations, you want to be able to easily print out a copy or export a PDF to email them.

Shareable image

Fast and Easy Reports

Making reports shouldn’t be time-consuming. It often means complex equations to figure out progress, variance, workload, etc. The best reporting software automates these functions, so you don’t need a math degree or even a calculator to manage your project.

Automated image

Gain Details for Actionable Insights

Dashboards are great for high-level views of the project, but reports must provide a deeper dive into that data in order for managers to make the critical decisions to steer the project towards a successful end. You want reports that are in depth and cover the entire project.

In Depth image

Project reporting software is a tool to monitor and track project metrics in real time and then collect that data in a report that’s easily shared with project members.

ProjectManager is an award-winning tool that organizes projects and teams by monitoring and reporting on progress and performance. Watch this video to get a better idea of how to create project status and other types of project management reports with ProjectManager.

Project management training video (nu29tru9qg)

Using the reporting feature of ProjectManager allows you to see the status of project milestones and summary tasks if you filter the report to include them. Reports can be previewed before being exported to a PDF, Excel, CSV or printed. Every report can be customized by selecting the data and columns you want to include.

Here are some of the reports you can create once you have the project management software.

Project Status Report

As mentioned above, the project status gives an overview of where your project currently is, and lets you determine if the project is on time and under budget . It shows the tasks that are due on the week it has been generated, and which are overdue.

Here’s a quick rundown of the options when generating a status report in ProjectManager.

Get the key elements of your project condensed in short to capture the high points in your schedule, budget and costs for stakeholders. You can provide project updates at any time for your team, clients and sponsors.

See which tasks are overdue and when their deadline is to never lose track of your progress and stay on schedule. ProjectManager allows you to assign activities to your team members and communicate with them in real time.

Milestones & Summary Tasks

Note which milestones have been completed to better track the project’s progress. View where you are in terms of completing summary tasks or subtasks on your schedule.

Planned vs. Actual

Know your project variance by tracking the actual progress on the status report, which is compared to where you planned to be at that point in your schedule.

Portfolio Status Report

A portfolio is a collection of projects that one manages. They must work together in alignment with the overall strategy of the organization.

See the health of your full portfolio, and if they’re meeting their schedules and budgets. Get lists of your project managers, team and tasks to better determine your portfolio’s overall health.

ProjectManager's portfolio management dashboard, ideal to communicate project status report

Project Plan Report

The project plan is the map that guides your activity when managing a project. This report lets you know whether that plan is being met by your actual progress.

Keep your project on track, within budget and know how far you are from completion. Get an overview of your schedule and a list of all the tasks and when they should be done.

Project Dashboard

Different from the previous reports, which are static documents that are exported as a snapshot of a project, a dashboard can serve as a contemporaneous look into the project.

Get real-time status reports using our project dashboard . Every facet found in a status report is automatically updated across the six metrics of the dashboard for a high view of your project’s performance.

ProjectManager’s dashboard view, which shows six key metrics on a project

Portfolio Dashboard

Much like the project dashboard, the portfolio dashboard serves as a real-time view, except for a collection of projects rather than a single one.

Set up a portfolio dashboard by creating a folder in the overview projects section. Add projects you want to measure and your portfolio dashboard will track their costs, workload and more.

Whether you’re presenting your weekly status report in a meeting, or sending a weekly email update, it’s a good idea to know the best practices when reporting on a project’s progress before jumping into a presentation of your report.


Project status reports are only a single facet of your communication plan . Don’t rely on it fully to communicate everything, but use it to deliver the right data to the right party at the right time.

Know Your Audience

Project status reports are vehicles for communication, but if you’re unsure of the destination, then you’re not going to deliver the goods. Stakeholders such as clients and sponsors want to know the big picture, while team members will be more interested in specifics.


Use the same format, distribution cycle and method. Don’t mix things up. That only disrupts the effectiveness of the communication aspect of the report.

Establish Metrics

When planning for the project, figure out how you’re going to measure its progress, and then stick to this method as you report on the project throughout its life cycle.

You want the report to be effective, so don’t obscure it with unnecessary details. Stay to the point, and just report on what needs reporting.

Your audience doesn’t want opinions or unsubstantiated facts. Do the due diligence, and make sure that you’re giving only what your audience wants.

Like consistency, keeping standards of a process and a template for reporting makes sure your report is clear.

There are project management tools that incorporate these best practices, streamlining the reporting process thanks to dashboards and automated reporting features.

Status reports are just one of the many reports project managers use to keep updated on the progress of their projects. Status is more general, while others focus on specific aspects of the project. Some of the more common status-reporting alternatives follow.

Tasks Report

Every project is made up of tasks, often lots of them. You need a report to keep track of them all.

Get all your project tasks collected in one place. Filter the report to show the status of each task to see if there are any roadblocks or bottlenecks holding up progress. You need to take care of issues before they affect your project’s timeline.

Timesheets Report

Teams log their hours on timesheets to submit to managers for payroll. Timesheets are also another way to track progress on a project by monitoring the hours logged on tasks.

View the timesheet of selected team members and know the hours they worked over a range of time using online project management software.

ProjectManager's timesheets are a perfect complement to project status reports

Availability Report

Keeping track of when your team can work when they have paid time off or there’s a holiday is critical to scheduling and workload management.

Know instantly who has too much work on your team and if they’re available to work. Team members are listed in this report with utilization rates. This data helps you reallocate tasks.

Workload Report

The workload is the number of tasks your team has been assigned. Keeping their workload balanced, so no one has too much on their plate, is how you increase productivity and morale.

See your entire team with the number of tasks they’ve been assigned. Know if someone has too many or too few tasks and balance their workload to get more done and not burn people out.

ProjectManager's workload management report

Variance Report

The variance is the difference between what you planned for the project and where you actually are in its execution. This is how you know if your project’s on track or not.

Set the baseline on the Gantt chart tool when planning and get data on your current schedule. Then, compare it against where you planned to be at this point in the schedule.

ProjectManager is a cloud-based software with one-click reporting that seamlessly integrates with planning, scheduling and tracking features. Get real-time data that can be filtered and shared across eight different project reports. With us, you can use one software for all your project management needs.

Companies such as the Bank of America, and organizations such as NASA and the US Postal Service, have used us to manage big and small projects. Over 10,000 teams worldwide get more control over their work and become more productive using our software.

If you want to simplify the reporting process and are looking for a tool that with online Gantt charts , kanban boards to visualize workflow and a dashboard for a high-level view of project metrics, then try our tool free with this 30-day trial .

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Status Report Resources

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  • Project Dashboard Software
  • Free Project Report Templates
  • Status Report Template
  • Communications Plan Template
  • Project Dashboard Template
  • 5 Lifesaving Project Reports
  • How to Track and Report on Projects
  • What Are Project Deliverables?

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How to Write a Project Report In 5 Easy Steps (Template Included)

Last updated on 31st January 2023

In this article we’re going to teach you how to write a project report in 5 easy steps.

Did you know that only 64% of projects meet their goals ? That means 36% fall short. And when projects don’t meet their goals it can result in a lot of headaches for your company.

The reasons why projects fail are plentiful but it typically comes back to poor planning or a lack of organisation. 

A solid project report can eliminate these issues and ensure you stay on track to complete your goals.

So, let’s take a look at how to write a project report in 5 easy steps…

Article Contents

What is a project report?

A project report is a document that contains helpful information so that teams can ensure their project stays on track, runs successfully, and completes on time. 

There are different types of project reports that are used at different periods throughout a project’s lifespan, but they all contain similar data that covers things like progress, tasks, roadblocks, stakeholders, and financial information. 

Why is a project report important?

Project reports are important for many reasons. A project report gives your project a sense of direction that can help you maintain consistency throughout the project, even as it passes between different people and teams. Your project report will also be a great document to refer back to if things get difficult, so you can stay on track. 

Even in the first instance, before your project kicks off, a project report can help you to manage your budget, workload, and any foreseen risks. It can also give stakeholders insight into the specifics of the project to help manage expectations from the start. 

Types of project report

There are many different types of project reports that will help you manage different aspects of your project. For example, a resource report will help you to understand the resources you’ll need for the project, how much resource you have at your disposal, and will also help you to predict when your resources will need to be replenished. 

Other examples include: risk assessment reports (to identify potential risks), board reports (to update investors/board members on project progress), and cost-benefit analysis reports (to help you measure benefits against the costs associated with them). 

Now, let’s dive into 3 of the biggest, most important types of project reports.

1. General project report

This is your first project report. It should cover predictions and plans for how you expect the project to go, and give you a clear sense of direction when it comes to things like budget, timelines, and everything else you need to keep track of in order for your project to be considered a success. 

2. Progress report

A progress report – as you may have guessed – comes in the middle and helps you document your progress. It’s important to keep reassessing your project to see if you are where you expect to be and to help you make adjustments along the way. 

A progress report is also very useful for managing stakeholder expectations and keeping them informed on how the project’s going.

3. Project completion report

As you wrap up your project, a project completion report can be a great way to reflect on what went well and what went wrong. This can not only help you wrap up the current project neatly, it can also inform future projects and ensure you don’t make the same mistakes twice.

How to write a project report in only 5 steps

There are many different types of project reports. So, of course, the writing of each one will differ slightly depending on who they are aimed at and what the content of the project report is. 

However, there are still some core steps to follow for each. Let’s take a look at how to write a project report in 5 steps. 

1. Start with the basics

At the very top of your project report should be a simple table that includes all of the core information for the project. Here’s an example: 

Project report table

The table for your project will probably vary slightly to this, but hopefully this gives you an idea of the most important top-level information to include. 

Underneath this table you should have a short summary of the project. This can be just a couple of sentences that sum up the objectives and goals. Think of this kind of like an elevator pitch for the project. 

2. Cover your objectives

Now it’s time to go into more detail. List out each objective for the project, including what you need to do to achieve each one. 

For example, let’s pretend our project is to create a brand video. There are many objectives, such as: 

  • Write a script
  • Storyboard the video 
  • Record a voiceover
  • Shoot the video
  • Edit the video
  • Come up with a plan for promotion 

Each objective will need to be completed in order to go on to the next. And each objective requires different resources and skill sets. All of this should be recorded, in detail, in your project report. 

3. List your obstacles

Next, list any predicted obstacles or risks. This may feel like a waste of time because of course you’re going to be avoiding risks and obstacles as often as you can. However, it’s important to be aware of the potential roadblocks that might appear so that you are prepared to handle them without slowing down. 

Some example obstacles for the brand video project could be: 

  • Equipment breaks
  • Weather ruins a shoot
  • Editing takes longer than planned

Next to each obstacle, jot down a quick plan for how you would solve this issue if it happened. For example, for “weather ruins a shoot” your potential solution could be to “choose a backup location”.

4. Create a project timeline

With any project, it’s important to know how long everything’s going to take. This is the best way to estimate how much time, money, and resource is required. 

A project timeline will help plot a path forward. To create a project timeline all you need to do is break down each objective into tasks and add a deadline for each task. It also helps to add an owner to each task, so you know who the point of contact is for each section of the timeline. 

This can be tricky to manage but becomes so much easier with a project management tool, like . When you create a project on, all of your clients and team members can see everything that goes on with the project in one centralised place. This includes tasks that can be allocated to team members, assigned a date, and a status – so everyone involved in the project can see how it’s progressing: 

project communication report

You can also add comments, attachments, priority tags, and more. 

Plus, it’s easy to keep track of several tasks at once by using the calendar view: 

project communication report

Other views available are kanban, list, and scheduler. 

5. Cover project communication

Somewhere on your project report you should include a link to your communication guidelines . This will help everyone involved on the project to understand what’s expected of them when it comes to communication, for example what tools to use and how to communicate. 

This can help your project run more smoothly and create a better result for everyone. According to our Communication Statistics 2022 , 95% of people feel that the businesses they deal with could improve when it comes to communication and project management . 

Writing a project report: 7 top tips 

1. Be clear

The perfect project report is clear and concise. Try your best to leave no room for errors or misunderstandings, and write in short definitive sentences. 

Being clear is especially important when it comes to timelines and targets. It can be helpful to plot out your tasks in a visual way, like a kanban view . This will make your project timeline easy to scan and understand.  

2. Be thorough

While it’s important to be clear and concise, it’s equally important to be thorough. Try to include as much relevant information in your project reports as possible.

One of the main functions of project reports, particularly project status reports, is to inform stakeholders on the progress of the project. So the more thorough you can be, the better. 

3. Be appropriate

A project report is an internal document that’s likely going to be shared between many different departments or teams in your business, so it’s important to make sure your language is appropriate. 

Keep the culture of the business in mind when writing your report. Use the same kind of tone and language that you would in other internal communication documents. This is especially important when you consider more than a third (35%) of businesses have lost an employee because of poor internal communication . 

4. Be honest

Your project report is not the place to sugarcoat anything. You should be honest, and brutally so. This means giving accurate and realistic figures, deliverables and deadlines. 

A project report should be a factual account so that everyone has a clear understanding of the data and knows exactly what to expect from the project. 

5. Be quick

It may seem contradictory to tell you to be thorough and quick with your project reports, but this just means don’t overload people with unnecessary information. Be succinct and to-the-point with every aspect of the report, from points of contact to resources and any potential roadblocks. 

The idea is for your project reports to be as easy to digest as possible, especially if you’re supplying busy stakeholders with a steady stream of ongoing status reports. 

6. Be prepared

No project runs perfectly, so it can be helpful to be prepared for bumps in the road. You might want to leave an ‘other’ or ‘notes’ section at the bottom of your report where you can jot down anything that’s changed along the way. 

It can also help to leave room for slight adjustments in your timeline. Just a couple of buffer days here and there can really reduce stress for your teams, and also help ensure your deadlines are more realistic. 

7. Be proud

When you’re carefully documenting things like risks and problems, your project report can become pretty gloomy. So it’s important to even it out by also celebrating your team’s achievements. 

Every project has ups and downs, and by giving as much attention to the ‘ups’ as you do the ‘downs’ you can boost team morale and this can be reflected back on your project. 

Free project report template

As promised, here is your free project report template ! 

To use this document, make sure to hit File > Make a Copy to save it as your own. This way you can make edits and personalise it to perfectly fit your needs. 

Final thoughts

A solid project report can act almost like a map that clearly directs you towards your end goal, helping you to avoid risks along the way and take the best route to success.

In addition to a project report, a project management platform can also help you to maintain your focus and manage your project with ease, thanks to centralised communication and complete visibility of all your work. Click here to get started for free .

It only takes 45 seconds to create an account, then…

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Your Guide to Project Management Best Practices

4. Reporting communication performance

The process of reporting performance includes collecting, analyzing and distributing performance information to compare the baseline and actual data for the purpose of communicating the project progress and performance and forecasting the project results. During the process, both simple and detailed performance reports may be created and submitted to the concerned and permitted audience on a regular or exceptional basis. Performance reports can show percentage complete; analysis of past performance; current status of risks and issues; work completed or to be completed; summary of changed applied; etc. Complete performance reports should include actually completed project work and forecasted project completion.

If to be more specific, the following components should be included in the final performance report on the project communications management plan :

  • Current deliverables status with reference to the schedule progress and costs incurred.
  • Comparisons between actual and planned values related to technical performance, cost performance and schedule performance.
  • Performance report formats and templates.
  • Policies and rules applied to creation of the performance report.
  • Measures and indicators to be used in the report.
  • Communication methods and techniques used during the project managing process.
  • Variance analysis that allows identifying the difference between the baseline and actual performance. Variance analysis includes information on the project quality, the resources consumed, the working time spent. The analysis also lets define the impact of the variances.
  • Forecasting methods that allow considering time, casual metrics, intuitive judgment and other information to estimate future outcomes.
  • Reporting system for capturing, storing and distributing performance reports.

Performance reports are used to generate change request and analyze lessons learnt. The process of reporting performance may cause changes to the project, and it is used to make recommendations, as such as:

  • Recommended corrective actions include solutions to take into account actual project performance and add changes to project documentation to achieve the performance stated in the project management plan.
  • Recommended preventive actions include solutions to be used to reduce the likelihood of incurring negative project performance in the future.
  • Identifying project stakeholders
  • Planning communications and distributing information
  • Managing stakeholder expectations
  • Reporting communication performance

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A project’s success heavily relies on stakeholder interaction and communication. Effective communication practices can help foster a healthy, collaborative environment that will serve as a foundation for effective project management. 

Better communication and excellent reporting provide more transparency in a project. This reduces the likeliness of misunderstandings and helps eliminate conflicts that could otherwise arise and cause distrust in project delivery. 

project communication report

The Four W’s 

Whether working with government bodies on a civil project or as a general contractor for a developer, all project environments depend on human interaction. For that interaction to be successful, it’s important to set some guidelines for your communication which are appropriate to the different audiences with whom you will communicate.

Taking the time to plan for the project’s communication needs will help make sure the stakeholders receive only the information that they need, in a format that is easy for them to understand and, as a result, use.

When it comes to both reporting and project communications, there are four questions that you need to keep in mind:

  • What information do you need to communicate?
  • Who is it intended for? 
  • What is the most appropriate method to relay that information?
  • What is the frequency required for the communication?

1. What information do you need to communicate?

The level of detail a high-level executive on the project board needs about a project differs from that of a project manager working on site. Too much information or complexity can delay how quickly or thoroughly it is understood and delay any decision-making.

It is therefore critical to identify which reports need to go to which stakeholders. Some reports may focus on specific pieces of detail like cost variances, while others may be graphical representations of overall progress to date, if the project board or sponsor needs to know the status of a project at a glance. The key point is to develop a clear understanding of what information needs to be communicated, and then ensure that the information is available in an appropriate format.

2. Who is it intended for? 

On-site project managers will have different needs from executives. To be effective with their work, they need unit prices, detailed schedules, and action items on their reports. Project managers need frequent updates from their superintendents, subcontractors, and suppliers. Without that information, they cannot effectively manage risks or ensure their team members are focused on the right objectives. 

What is valuable to one stakeholder may be irrelevant to another; presenting a project manager with quarterly reports aimed at financial directors will not be helpful, for example. It will most likely consist of a simplified project status overview or irrelevant data, which wouldn’t give the project manager enough detail to act upon.

project communication report

3. What is the most appropriate method to relay that information?

Knowing who will need what type of information, and in what format, will also enable you to collect and present the information more effectively. Defining these parameters early on allows for easy adjustments based on who the information is being shared with.

Determining the project communication goals will allow for flexible repurposing of information. A report that includes various delivery timelines and projections can be adjusted or simplified by omitting or including certain data. This type of customization and repurposing of information will save your project team time and help tailor the report to the appropriate audience. 

For example, a detailed project schedule can be easily converted into a simple line or comparison graph showing the project’s progress against preliminary predictions. The information is the same but depending on the stakeholder, one format will be more valuable than the other. 

Also, modern technology has revolutionized the way that information is consumed. With people relying more on mobile phones and handheld electronic devices, a whole new world of possibilities has opened up whereby apps or alerts can be used to share information about a project in real-time. 

4. What is the frequency required for the communication?

Quality of communications is more important than quantity. Unnecessary or excessive information-sharing often results in disengagement, and involving more people doesn’t necessarily mean better communication. It is much harder for project managers to stay on top of their tasks when their inbox is overloaded with irrelevant information, or they have to attend every meeting – even those with little to do with their work. 

Whether conference calls, emails, presentations, or reports – all project communications can benefit from meaningful but straightforward messages. The less is said, the smaller the risk for misinterpretation, miscommunication, or disengagement.

project communication report

We understand the value of excellent project communications and reporting

Clear, concise communication tailored to the right audiences helps clarify objectives, roles, and responsibilities, both within the organization and with its external stakeholders. Ensuring everyone involved has the information they need is a vital element of a well-managed project. 

At DRMcNatty, we have experts that can provide professional practical advice specific to your project’s communications and reporting needs. Reach out today and let us develop a communications plan catered to your project using industry best practices, to help you achieve project management success. 

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  1. Project Communication Plan Templates, Examples & How-To

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