Project Reporting Dashboard Examples: Tracking Stages, and Key Dashboard Types

February 16, 2024
7 min read

If eyes are the window to the soul, then a project reporting dashboard is the window to the success of a project. Stick with me here: If a project tracking dashboard is bogged down with extra information, doesn’t reflect deadline status, or doesn’t help communication, it’s likely that the project itself is disjointed, delayed, not hitting KPIs, or otherwise off track.

This disjointed way of working may have been good enough in the past. But in today’s world of dynamic work with cross-functional, multi-stakeholder work that actually drives revenue, struggling to manage information or assets can grind progress to a halt. Project management for dynamic work requires more.

A well-organized project tracking dashboard allows teams to effectively track and report on a project’s progress. In this blog post, we’ll delve into best practices on how to track your projects, and keep dynamic work on the move. We’ll also share project tracking examples so you can see what success looks like.

What is project tracking?

Project tracking is key for dynamic teams. Simply put, project tracking is an aspect of project management that uses real-time data to assess productivity. This means that - critical for effective project tracking - you need to access real-time data in a reliable, centralized way.

Even in the hands of the most capable project managers, projects have a tendency to…not go according to plan. In fact, a 2023 Quickbase report found that 65% of people feel prohibited from easily sharing project information because of using multiple project management solutions.

Key Aspects of Project Tracking

There’s no right or wrong way to build out a project tracking dashboard. There’s only the way that works best for you and your team. As long as you focus on the use cases you need to drive success, you can create the project reporting dashboard that will enable the visibility and communication your team needs. Below, we’ll delve into four ways a project tracking dashboard can be utilized to promote organization and efficiency within your team.

Better track intake and approval processes

It’s no secret that Gray Work starts piling up at the beginning of a project. A 2023 Quickbase report found that 58% of people surveyed spend less than 20 hours per week on meaningful work that drives results for key projects.

Leading organizations use project tracking dashboards to automate and keep track of requests, progress, tasks, approvals, and milestones, effectively erasing hours of gray work. The right project management reporting templates keep information centralized, including KPIs, progress, and approval stage.

Allocate critical resources

Reducing gray work enables leaders to more easily match available resources to projects based on availability, skills, and requirements, ensuring projects are well-resourced. With Quickbase’s Gantt chart view, project managers are given a real-time view into the current timeline and status of a project, comparing goals with reality.

The manufacturing industry experiences this acutely. When trying to manage resources on the shop floor, you have to control challenges like scheduling, shift change, and scrap tracking. With the changing nature of the workforce, you need to keep track of what skills are available at what time, with a job skills matrix and a job coverage matrix. This way, organizations can maintain accurate skills and coverage, and assign the right workers to the right jobs at the right times.

This simplifies time-consuming, yet important project management functions including task oversight, development of efficient workflows, and automated review systems.

Manage data and documents

Centralizing project data encompasses more than CSVs and pivot tables. It also means that all project-related documents are centralized, organized, and accessible to all team members. Managing documents on a single, centralized platform not only increases productivity by reducing gray work but also creates additional avenues for collaboration at various stages.

When looking to collaborate with those in the field, you need to be able to manage documents from anywhere, at any time - even without connectivity. “If we don’t think mobile-first with our tools and with our processes, we’ll be behind the curve,” said Jeff Stay, CEO of FastField, a Quickbase Company about the need for mobile capabilities.

Plus, efficient project document storage also has cybersecurity benefits. Managing documents on a secure platform can increase data integrity and safety. Working with critical data across the business requires a strong governance and security approach. The right tools use governance to strengthen the IT-business partnership, grow confidence across the business, and leverage key security and reliability capabilities.

Control budgets

The bottom line is that, at the end of the day, it’s all about the bottom line. Project tracking dashboards enable leaders to effectively manage budgets in real-time with budget control, expense tracking, and financial reviews and approvals. As megaprojects expert Bent Flyvbjerg found, only 8.5% of megaprojects are delivered on budget and on time. Unless you manage budgets with all data in a central location, these costs can go out of control.

Report on key information

Project tracking also includes keeping tabs on any metrics. With automated project management software, project managers can build reports and dashboards tailored to various stakeholders based on real-time data.

Project Tracking Examples

Project tracking enables teams to customize solutions for dynamic work management. This goes across job functions and sectors. The following are examples of ways you can leverage project tracking dashboards for increased productivity and improved deliverables in fields like construction, human resources, and marketing.

Project Tracking Dashboard Examples: Project Management

  • Organization: Consolidate spreadsheets​ and gain visibility into project statuses including areas for potential delays​.

  • Communication: Break down siloed workflows with centralized views across your entire project portfolio​

  • Deadlines: Manage delivery timelines for complex projects using the Gantt view

Project Tracking Dashboard Examples: Construction

  • Project management: Manage complex buildout projects from concept to closeout by tracking milestones, budgets and resources. Pro tip: Use the Gantt view to keep tabs on the project timeline — and update it in real-time.
  • Policy creation: Set-up real-time incident reporting, track training completion, and centralize emergency response plans in one accessible location.

  • Facility Maintenance: Manage employee schedules, work orders, asset tracking, and issue resolution. Easily see opened, closed, and resolved tickets.

Project Tracking Dashboard Examples: Supply Chain

  • Organization: Proactively monitor shipments, address issues, manage returns, and guarantee timely & reliable delivery…all in one place. A well-organized project tracking dashboard allows users to easily track and manage purchase orders, inventory, and supplier performance to ensure stock control and delivery.

  • Financial compliance: Automate financial reporting, track tax compliance deadlines, and streamline auditing processes.

Project Tracking Dashboard Examples: Shop Floor and People Management

  • Intake: Simplify employee onboarding process from paperwork completion to training coordination and equipment provision.

  • Onboarding: Manage training & development materials, employee handbook, policies, or hiring and scheduling processes.

Project Tracking Dashboard Examples: Customer Information

  • CRM: Manage customer interactions, leads and sales pipelines — all in one place.

  • Organization: Use project tracking dashboards to prioritize and resolve content requests from colleagues.

Project Tracking Dashboards in Action: Henley Enterprises, Inc.

Henley Enterprises, Inc,. the largest national franchisee of Valvoline Instant Oil Change, was at a crossroads. Within five years, the company tripled in size. And while that looks like success on paper, it certainly came with growing pains. Namely, project leaders struggled with a lack of a central source of truth for projects, an inability to communicate with stakeholders, and ad-hoc solutions for establishing new stores.

Enter: Quickbase project management software. The Henley team uses Quickbase as a hub for all projects, ensuring all stakeholders are aware of the current status of any project and that workflows continue as intended. The Henley team now has integrated Quickbase across all areas of their company, including the rack construction progress, site selection and development details, corporate governance of their multiple entities, and managing their property portfolio.

Now, the Henley team can handle the number of projects they have in flight, each with their own unique processes and deadlines. Now, all of their project tracking information is in one place - a major relief to the entire team.

"We immediately noticed the benefits of having all your information in one seamless flow, being able to break down the process into specific tasks, and sending out notifications automatically to the various stakeholders," said Kelly-Ann Taintor, Associate Director of Corporate Development.