What is Performance Reporting in a Business?

Performance Reporting

When it comes to running projects or being a manager of any sort, there are some situations that are easier to contend with than others.  Along the way, we need to be attuned to the goings on of our team and for the projects as a whole.  Achieving that is certainly easier said than done.

That’s why performance reporting is such a big deal, no matter what type of organization we’re part of.  Now, if you’re not sure what that is, don’t worry – we’re here to explain what it is, how it works, and some of the tools we can use to make sure the process goes as smoothly as possible.

For those curious, make sure to stick around.  You can find some background information here, https://monday.com/blog/project-management/guide-to-project-management/, but don’t worry – we’ll be covering what you need to know as well!

Performance Reporting: What is it?

Before we go any further, it’s of course going to be important to establish what we mean by performance reporting.  After all, there are several ways to interpret it, and each has its own merits.  For our purposes today, we’ll define it as a part of project management that involves providing details on how a project is progressing in a way that can also be shown to shareholders.

How it Works

Depending on your business, you might have a different process for filing and submitting performance reports.  However, no matter what, there are certain things that are relatively the same between organizations.  One example of that is an overall business objective as well as any goals related to that.

Five-year plans are another staple, and they’re pretty useful most of the time.  Often, those aforementioned goals and objectives will play into the five-year plan, which might give you a sense for how they work in tandem.  There are even universities that cover these things in their courses, like you can see on this page.

Another interesting metric is called “KPI,” or important performance indicators.  These vary across businesses.  They can range from work performance to risk assessment and beyond!  Determining how often KPI is calculated is also important.

How can we establish a baseline, though?  As you’ve probably guessed, there are a few ways.  For one thing, you’ll probably want to ask for a general performance report from a trusted employee that details total progress on the project in question.  From there, you can get into specifics like what changes have been made along the way, what tasks are still pending, and how risk has been assessed throughout.

These are just a few examples of what we can look for or expect out of a report, though.  The goal here is to provide anyone who looks with a comprehensive and information-packed look at how the project is progressing, when the anticipated finish date is, and a general overview once it’s completed.

Why is it Useful?

Admittedly, none of this may seem all that revolutionary at first glance.  However, there’s really no denying how useful performance reporting in project management can be for organizations and businesses across the world.  They create a level of open and transparent communication that is hard to reach otherwise, for one thing.

One way that these reports achieve that is by laying out any objectives and goals right away, before tackling anything else.  Ideally, this is a way to establish expectations up front, so that both employees and shareholders will have an idea of whether or not they’re being met.

From there, it’s also a good idea to explain and define what your KPIs are.  Key performance indicators are a big part of any performance report, but everyone involved has to know what they are in your organization.  Otherwise, further reports might be inaccurate.  Additionally, it doesn’t hurt to set expectations as far as how often reports should be submitted as well!

The last point we’d like to make here is that no matter the circumstances or reasonings behind the reports, it’s key to be transparent and honest with the whole team.  Project managers have a lot on their plates, and sometimes it can be hard to stay transparent if things go wrong.  However, it will benefit everyone involved in the long run.

Now, is any of this sounding overwhelming?  Don’t worry if that’s the case.  There are external programs that can help us organize any information and data that we input.  They can also help to automate parts of the performance report process so that we can be free to analyze the data rather than just plug it into graphs.

This also gives employees an easier way to submit their own reports to you – you may be able to compile the data submitted and have it displayed on graphs, too!  Explore your options and see what might work for your organization.

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