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Yes i think the reports are essential once a month to the Project Steering committee or Board as a project progress tracking mechanism and to enable the Board to make decisions if a project is set to exceed it's tolerances of Budget, Scope , Quality or Schedule .
The Reports also help highlight dependencies on other projects or activities.
And by Report , I don't mean just the documents but someone talking the Board and Steering committee through the actual project progress.
And some formal decisions like decisions on Change Requests are best tabled at a Steering committee and minuted appropriately and are best reflected through these project progress reports and the corresponding minutes.
The onus is on the PM to produce accurate, easy to understand and truthful account of the project in those reports. The Organization will miss out on key achievements , progress made by the project or blockers to the project success if those reports were not produced regularly.
A lot tends to change in a month, especially where you are running Agile Projects . Two sprints tend to achieve significant progress.
If there is something the PM will communicate in the progress report which cannot be pulled by stakeholders from existing information radiators or repositories, I'm okay with that, but then the focus should be on minimal sufficiency as I've seen immense effort wasted in tuning & tweaking such reports to put the right "spin" on the current state of a project.
It depends on the audience. My program governance group meets and gets a status once a month. Other project working groups, it's once a week.
Agree some reports take more than a week person to produce.
If information is not available otherwise the report must be produced.
Do the information is compiled some way or it is just verbal, then forget when people change? not leaving any record of some history on the project.
The pace of some other projects is really slow compared to an Agile Sprint.
Could the reporting period be longer?
I would recommend monthly at minimum. Ideally, live data available to anyone/anytime, but if a manually created report, monthly works. Depends on the audience, project, expectations, etc.
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