Project Dashboards should offer real-time analytics to show project managers or project stakeholders the health of a project. Thus, enabling them to make swift and informed decisions.
Dashboards are composed of widgets that can take many forms: indicators, calculated indicators, charts, histograms, sectors, etc. In short, project dashboards are a series of data, charts and gauges of your project's performance.
So, what does an ideal project dashboard look like? An ideal project dashboard is what you make of it according to the needs and challenges of your projects and organization. An ideal dashboard is something customizable.
Here are 5 ingredients your project dashboard should at least possess:
Activity tracking widget
This widget gives an overview of project-related activities, upcoming deadlines, upcoming events…etc. It mentions the activities of individual team members or the teams involved.
Progress reports & status widget
A project report and status widget allows anyone involved in the project to view at a glance the project progress, its status, the workloads and the budget. It also provides real-time information about the resource allocation.
Milestone tracking reports
The milestone tracking reports provides a global view of the milestone the project has reached and the milestones the project has to reach in the future. The milestones include a description, start and end dates and the name of the person who is responsible for getting things done. It gives a precise and quick picture on where a project is in its life cycle.
Personal To do list widget
A personal to do list widget is a simple check list of the accomplished tasks and the tasks to be executed. This widget helps the concerned team member to be productive by executing one task at a time.
Task status widget
This widget is something in between the activity tracking widget and the project progress widget. It just provides a quick status of each or the important tasks of a project. If the activity tracking widget and the project progress widget provides global information, the task status widget provides specific information on each task.
Team workload status
The team workload status provides information about the team workload by period and by tasks. It provides a detailed information on the assigned tasks, the due dates, the man hours required and if a team is overloaded with work
Resource allocation widget
This widget is similar to the team workload status but can be different at the same time depending on the criteria and indicators you use to customize it. It provides a global overview of the resource commitments. It shows how, where and to what task the resources are allocated.
This list is not exhaustive. Again, as mentioned above, your project dashboard should be customized according to your needs and requirements. So, you can include any reporting feature or widget that allows you to know the project status to make sure that things are on track. The main goal of a project dashboard is to provide real-time and precise information that you can act on to make good decisions to ensure that your projects are on the right track.
Orchestra offers a unique tool for graphical dashboard design. It allows administrators to create functional models of dashboards that are then made available to all users of the application. On each project or landing page, users have the option of configuring the default dashboards according to the angle of analysis that suits them.