Keep your project on track with this Executive Status Report Template.
Executive status reports are one of the most effective ways to inform upper management of project progress.
Executives need regular updates on your company’s progress toward a final business objective. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about writing an executive project status report with high-level insights and lowlights—quickly and effectively.
What is an executive status report?
An executive project status report is a written update on the progress of a project.
They’re typically distributed to upper management—but any stakeholders with a vested interest in the project will likely see the report, too. Executive status reports are a vital part of project management and business strategy.
An executive project status report aims to inform upper management of your team’s progress on a project.
Most companies use project status reports to keep track of the following:
- The overall status of a project
- How close it is to completion
- The degree to which a project is on-schedule, over-schedule, or behind
- The degree to which a project is on-budget, over-budget, or behind
- Any risks that a project is facing
- How much work is left until the project is complete
- Any other factors that are important to upper management
Who should write an Executive Status Report?
A project manager or team should write an executive status report. They are best positioned to summarize the project’s status, highlight problems, and make recommendations.
The person who writes an executive status report should regularly be involved in the project. Ideally, they should be involved in the project every step of the way and be in the room when essential project decisions are made.
Before you write your first project status report
Before you write your first project status report, you should:
- Meet with your team to discuss what’s happening with the project
- Make sure everyone is on the same page about key project decisions and the general direction of the project
- Review the project plan. Make sure that you’re following the plan and that the plan is reasonable
- Review the project budget and make sure you’re spending the allocated funds wisely
- Review the project’s existing risks.
- Make sure that you’ve adequately addressed any risks you’ve identified
- Review the project’s overall goal.
- Make sure that you’re pursuing the right business objective
- Practice your writing. Write a few draft reports and get feedback from your team.
How to write an executive project status report
Step 1: Summarize everything that’s happened since your last report
Start your report with a summary of everything since your previous message. You can’t assume everyone reading the information has followed your project from the beginning. It would be best if you caught them up to speed.
Here are some items to include in your summary:
- A brief description of your project
- Make sure to include the project’s overall goal — and why it’s vital to the organization
- A list of all activities that have occurred since your last report
- A list of any milestones that were met since your last report
- Any issues that have been resolved since your last report
- Any issues that have arisen since your last report
Step 2: Highlight any problems you’re currently facing
Next, highlight any problems you’re currently facing on the project. What issues are keeping your project from progressing smoothly? Keep in mind that you’re not writing to solve these problems. You’re writing to inform upper management that they exist.
Here are some items to include in your problem section:
- A brief description of each issue
- An explanation of how each issue is affecting the project
- An estimate of how long it will take to resolve each issue
- An assessment of how the issue will affect your project’s overall goal
Step 3: Summarize what you expect to happen next with your project
Finally, could you summarize what you wish to happen with your project next? What are your plans for resolving current issues? What’s your plan for moving forward?
Here are some items to include in your conclusion:
- A brief summary of the project’s overall goal
- A brief summary of the progress you’ve made toward that goal
- A brief summary of the issues that have arisen
- A list of the plans you have for moving forward
- A list of the steps you’ll take to resolve issues and meet your goals
What is a project status report?
A Project Status Report is a document that provides stakeholders with an update on the progress and status of a project. It typically includes information on project goals, timeline, budget, and significant achievements and challenges. The report is intended to keep stakeholders informed and engaged with the project and to facilitate communication and collaboration between team members.
To make the report engaging and impactful, it is essential to present the information clearly and concisely, using graphics and charts to illustrate key points. The report should be tailored to the specific audience, focusing on the most relevant information, and avoiding technical jargon or overly complex details.
Finally, the report should include a clear call to action, outlining the following steps and critical decisions that need to be made and inviting stakeholders to provide feedback and suggestions for improvement. This will help ensure that the project remains on track and that stakeholders are fully engaged and invested in its success.
Executive Project Status Report Conclusion
Project status reports are critical. They let upper management know what’s happening with their projects and keep stakeholders informed about progress. Without project status reports, people in large projects would not understand what’s happening.
But project status reports don’t have to be a slog. With the right approach, they can be exciting and easy to read. Following these steps, you can write a report that keeps your readers engaged—even if they don’t care about your project.
If you follow these tips and use our template, you can write an executive project status report that is concise, interesting, and useful. You’ll be able to keep your readers informed without sacrificing the substance of your reports.
Also, please take a look at our How to Write an Effective Executive Summary blog post and template to make your next project successful.
Executive Project Status Report Template
in PowerPoint and Google Slides format
Executive Project Status Report Example:
What should be included in a project status report?
Our Executive Project Status Report Example has the following structure:
- Project Description: Introduction, Scope, Project Manager, Timeframe
- Project Overview: Status, Target Dates, Completion Rate, Time, Costs, Risks
- Project team: Steering Committee, Project Organisation
- Status Report: Activities, Achievements, Challenges, Decisions required, Next steps
- Highlights / Lowlights-Reporting
Project status reports provide a consistent view and timely update to stakeholders. You can improve your productivity by leveraging our multiple project templates and have more time to deliver a successful project.
This template is ideal for weekly status reports to present a summary of all the activities done during a week and how these activities contributed to the completion of the project. It can be used as a standalone presentation to analyze and present the status of your projects.