What Should Be Included In A Project Dashboard
Thanks to the project dashboard, you are able to control the development of your activity by following the gaps between forecast and reality. The dashboard occupies a central place in the management tools of any leader, manager, executive, team leader.
Whether for your own needs or other collaborators, you may wonder what should be included in a project dashboard.
What is a Dashboard
Let's start with the definition. The function of the "dashboard" is to allow the visualization, monitoring, and easy use of relevant data. They are usually in the form of figures, ratios, and graphs. These indicators (also called KPI) are linked to objectives to make decisions.
Example - A car dashboard is a perfect illustration of what this is about. In your vehicle, you view the main metrics: speedometer, fuel gauge, low water alert. These are essential and important information for driving (piloting) your vehicle.
For management, the principle is the same. A set of indicators alerts you to critical deviations. Also it
- Helps you assess a situation,
- Guides you in your decisions,
- Supports you in communicating facts and
- Directs you in motivating your teams around monitoring objectives.
What should be included in a project dashboard
The following features should be in every project status dashboard that wants to function smoothly.
Resource distribution tool
This is a widget that allows you to check available resources and allocate them to your team. You can check who has what resource and what are available. You can also check the project status, statistics, and details with just a click.
Task status widget
As the name suggests, it allows you to see the status of the tasks of the members. It does not work for the overall status but the individual's position.
To do list widget
It is a rather personal feature for you. When you have a load of work to do, this widget will organize the worklist. Thus, you can check which jobs are done and which ones are yet to finish.
Progress reports and status widget
This is like an all-in-one widget but for everyone. Every team member can check progress, status, milestones, and even resources allocated.
Activity tracking widget
It is a project-related widget that shows what is happening with a project. For example, it will show if there is an event or a deadline or something like that.
How to choose the indicators for a project management dashboard
We choose an indicator according to its usefulness but also according to its quality,
This depends on the following characteristics:
Simplicity: It is useful when it is understood by the people who use it. And it allows forming an opinion for decision making.
Accuracy: It describes reality sufficiently precisely and comes from a credible source. It is also realistic and verifiable.
Exhaustiveness: The information provided must be complete, even if it means providing several additional answers.
Validity: It must be up-to-date, valid, and relate to the period studied.
How Many Indicators in My Dashboard
From experience, you must know how to keep a reduced number of KPIs. Some managers are responsible for around twenty KPIs each.
This is the perfect recipe for creating endless meetings where participants get bored. They end up being more interested in their cell phone than the progress of different parts of their business.
The correct number of indicators for a manager is between 5 and 9. By keeping your KPIs within this range, you will ensure that you have a relatively straightforward overview of your business. And you can see your goals at a glance. It will always be necessary to rely on “metrics” to refine the analysis of your KPIs.
The list of the features can go on and on. There are vast numbers of gadgets, characteristics, and indicators available. But you should implement only those which you need. Every project is different, and so is the need for the features too. Choose accordingly.
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