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Powerful Reporting Secrets

What do we frequently hear when it comes to generating Project reports or when other stakeholders attempt to read a Project schedule: “I can’t show all the data I need,” “I can’t get the Gantt Bar to fit on one page,” “I don’t like the appearance of the schedule,” “The reports are boring,” “There’s too much detail—I can’t tell what where I’m at,” “It’s too hard to read,” “It takes a lot of effort,” “I can’t share my project file with anyone because they don’t have Project.” Yeah, that’s a fair sampling. Does it have to be this way? No, it does not—and by now, you likely have a good feeling for how you can address many of these complaints.

The three primary keys to better reporting with Project are awareness of capabilities, clarity of audience needs, and creativity. A significant portion of this chapter has focused on “raising awareness” of Project capabilities and options, and we’ll revisit the ones that deal with reporting. Next, the more you understand about what your audience wants, the better. It will help you focus on where to invest your effort. What do they need to see? What level of detail are they concerned with? How will they read your report? If you combine the answers to these questions with your knowledge of what Project can do, you can develop a targeted approach to best share your Project schedule information. Let’s review the keys to improving your reporting efforts:


  

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