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I was given a task of presenting management with a dashboard for multiple projects. Please suggest to me a suitable template. What are the main parameters that should be showcased on this dashboard?

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Ask them.

There's no possible way for us, strangers on the internet, to be able to know with certainty what information your management needs.

So, ask them. I suggest compiling a list of all possible types of information you could provide them (just the types (e.g. estimated time, actual time, team members, process, etc.), not the data themselves (5 weeks, 3 weeks, 4 members, 7 members, etc.)). Then ask them which information they're interested in seeing on the dashboard.

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  • Question is what are the best practices around the PM dashboards... – Sayan Jun 16 '18 at 3:24
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Although I agree with Sarov, I think that the process should be as follows: you shoud first understand what they want and then create a scope based on your experience and what you think it's valuable.

It's similar to what Henry Ford said: “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”

In my experience, having a big overview is always helpful. With Ontime it's possible to create custom views and show: average number of tasks per sprint, milestones to be completed, tasks in the backlog, along with other metrics and plots. This allowed the board to do informed decisions about priorities.

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Usually top management want to see such main project parameters like being on time and on budget, and some evidence around that. Especially for Fixed Price projects or similar.

To represent the params you can have a couple of charts similar to Fever Portfolio Chart

Portfolio Fever Chart

but representing both remaining schedule and budget buffer. This is extremely visual.

You dont need to implement Theory Of Constraints for that fully. Just have some estimates and actual spent time for your tickets. Then cut the estimates, say, on 30% and call them "project buffer".

For T&M projects top management is usually interested in following: do we spend all dedicated budget or not? And you can provide some info on how much you have already spent, how much you should have spent on the moment, and forecasting of the things for the end of the contract.

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Consider representing Risks (not the same as Opportunities) in a dashboard.

But first

Start with familiarizing with the four states requiring action.

Then

See the sample dashboard, presented as an example for a Risk (one of the four states in a project), and refer to the risk matrix graphic.


Action vs. Action Item - What's the difference?

What is an Action?

The process of doing something in order to achieve an aim, or meet an objective.

An Action is the highest common factor and central component of an element of project requiring response or attention in Project Management.

What is an Action Item?

An element of a project that pops up during a project and requires action.


Four States in a Project Requiring Action

1) Issue

Something that has already happened (realized risk) and will have or already has a negative impact on the project, requiring corrective action

  • Timeframe: Present
  • State: Unhealthy (-)
  • Action Aim: Correct

enter image description here

2) Action Item

Element of a project that pops up during a project life cycle and requires attention and action

  • Timeframe: Present
  • State: Healthy (+)
  • Action Aim: Maintain

enter image description here

3) Risk

An uncertain event or condition that has a negative effect on a project’s objectives.

  • Timeframe: Future
  • State: Potential for Loss (-)
  • Action Aim: Prevent

enter image description here

4) Opportunity

Possible action that can be taken, that requires one or more actions to be completed, having a potential for gain, or benefit for a project, if pursued.

  • Timeframe: Future
  • State: Potential for Gain (+)
  • Action Aim: Pursue

enter image description here


Risk Matrix

(Courtesy of https://www.juliantalbot.com/post/2018/07/31/whats-right-with-risk-matrices)

enter image description here


Sample Dashboard (Risk)

enter image description here

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