PLANNING THE PROGRESS REPORT
Consider the Audience
Most readers are not fully informed about all aspects of the project. They may have walked through the laboratory or visited the construction site, put they probably did not see the whole project or understand everything they did see. To understand the progress made to date and the problems that are anticipated, readers must fully grasp what the project involves. If the report goes only to your immediate supervisor, you can assume that he or she probably knows technical terms related to the project. The supervisor, however, does not know the details – of what has been done and what still needs to be done – so you will have to supply those. If the report goes a greater distance from you, you should assume that the readers do not know the technical details and perhaps not the technical concepts. In other words, you must go into as much detail as necessary to inform your specific audience.
Research the Situation
To plan the project, you must select the categories that you need to use to discuss the project. Usually two major categories are budget and schedule, but many other categories are possible. Sometimes those categories can reflect criteria explained in the original proposal or report. Sometimes you will have to devise additional categories, depending on your audience’s knowledge and interest in the project.
Use Visual Aids
Visual aids are as effective for progress reports as for any other type. If you need to use a table, graph, or illustration, do so.
Follow the Usual Form for Progress Reports
Progress reports usually follow the form shown in the outline below. You need to provide three sections: Introductory, Work Completed, and Work Scheduled, Sometimes you will have· to add special sections .
I . introduction
A. Purpose of report
B. Purpose of project
II. Work Completed (July I-July 31)
A. Installation of cut-to-Length line
1. Conveyor system
B. Installation of banding line
1. Hydraulic system
2. Expansion of banding area
III. Work Scheduled (August I-August 31)
Same second- and third-level heads as in Work Completed section.