It’s important to recognize that Microsoft Project is a powerful tool which helps project managers (PMs) keep their projects moving, but sometimes, we have to reach for more universal applications. There’s a couple reasons why you might want to pull Microsoft Project reporting out Microsoft Project. I’m going to cover them here.
What I mean by data democracy is providing data to everyone. This model understands that it’s not always beneficial to rely solely on specialized software, knowledge, or access. Providing the end user the ability to view or modify the data for their own purposes has its place.
Puts The User in the Driver’s Seat
Sometimes the consumer wants to control reporting by adding their own requirements and/or doing their own formatting. Perhaps they are unsure of what the final product should resemble, but they’ll know it when they see it.
Not everyone has the MS Project application, whereas Excel is a universal data manipulation tool. In fact, there are 750 million Excel users versus 4.6 million Project users. Excel is used for everything from to do lists to household budgets, from Gantt charts to general ledgers. It’s available in 91 languages and sold in 163 countries.
Like I said, as PMs, we sometimes have to reach for more universal tools to provide a little support and understanding. I think it’s important for project managers to:
- Know how to build basic custom fields in Project, which will generate an overall project report that is easy to access for all!
- Know how to export a project plan into Excel
- Know how to use basic query tools to generate a project report displaying key performance and status indicators
What do you think? Join me for my upcoming webinar, Microsoft Project Custom Reporting with Excel. It will be eligible for 1 PMI® PDU in the Technical category of the Talent Triangle.