April 25, 2023

Top Benefits of Project Management Dashboards (2024)

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Key takeaways

  • Dashboards can help teams make data-driven decisions, view project progress in an at-a-glance format, and manage various facets of the project.
  • Dashboards can also be used as a client-facing tool.
  • They can cover a wide variety of metrics and details and be tailored to specific teams or projects.

Effective project management is vital for organizations to achieve their objectives, and it can involve many moving parts. Understanding, coordination, and collaboration are all necessary components of a successful project management approach. 

For this reason, many project management software systems have begun to feature dashboards, which provide higher visibility for project managers and team members. These dashboards are designed to streamline project management processes by providing real-time representations of project data, insights, and metrics. But are dashboards really that beneficial for use in project management?

If you’re curious about the benefits that project management dashboards can provide, read on. This article will take a deeper look into the top benefits of project management dashboards and how they can revolutionize project management practices throughout multiple areas of the project’s life cycle.

By understanding the advantages of these powerful tools, organizations can harness their benefits and enable their teams to deliver successful projects on time and within budget. 

What is a project management dashboard?

Project management dashboards are typically accessed through project management software tools and enable teams to improve the organization and execution of their processes. These dashboards visually represent project information in a consolidated view within a project management software system. 

Generally speaking, dashboards are designed to provide project managers, team members, and other stakeholders with an at-a-glance overview of the project’s status. They commonly feature critical project data and metrics, which may be represented using visual elements like graphs, charts, and tables that indicate project metrics. 

By including metrics like budget, utilization, resource allocation, milestone achievements, and task completion, these tools enable viewers to quickly and easily determine which areas may require attention or action. 

Project management dashboards can facilitate communication across all involved members and improve decision-making based on data-driven insights, significantly impacting project outcomes. In addition, the enhanced transparency and visibility provided by these tools are valuable assets for project management and contribute to the team’s overall success. 

What are the benefits of project management dashboards?

There are a wide variety of benefits that can apply at any given time, and we’ve gathered a robust list. Not all of these may apply to your business or team, but you can at least get a glimpse of what’s possible.

Enhanced visibility and transparency

Team members and stakeholders can gain a real-time, centralized view of project data and metrics using project management dashboards.

This can provide stakeholders with enhanced visibility into project progress, performance, and status, and it promotes transparency among team members and stakeholders, allowing them to quickly and easily assess the project’s overall health. Furthermore, centralized data can enable team members to quickly understand all the crucial factors in their project processes.

Improved data-driven decision-making

Project management dashboards can improve data-driven decision-making by providing at-a-glance information regarding key project metrics. Project managers and team members can easily analyze and interpret data from the dashboard to reach informed decisions quickly, identify potential risks or issues, and take corrective actions to support the project’s success and avoid delays.

By reviewing performance metrics, data trends, and patterns, teams can identify areas for improvement and manage task statuses. In addition, project teams can take actionable steps to continuously refine their processes, leading to successful project outcomes.

Additionally, project management dashboards can visually represent resources allocated to projects, tasks, and team members. This enables project managers to easily understand the resources used for specific activities and make informed estimates of which resources are necessary for future projects.

Efficiency and productivity

Project management dashboards streamline project monitoring and reporting processes. By consolidating project data within a single, accessible location, this automation eliminates the need for manual data gathering and reporting.

This can save organizations costs for hiring manual labor, save team members time and effort, and allow teams to focus on their core tasks. Altogether, automatically consolidating data within dashboards can increase efficiency and productivity and minimize human error and compliance issues.

Better risk management

Risk assessment and tracking features make it easy for project managers to identify and mitigate potential risks proactively.

When included within project management dashboards, these features offer a clear visual representation of potential risks and issues so project teams can take preventive measures and manage risks before they impact project outcomes. Tracking features can also inform teams of existing problems so they can resolve them.

Communication and collaboration support

Project management dashboards can contain features that facilitate communication and collaboration among team members and stakeholders. Features may include status updates, messaging, commenting, change requests, and tools for project data sharing. 

By providing a centralized platform for communicating and sharing project data, project dashboards promote effective communication, encourage collaboration, and reduce confusion throughout the project life cycle. They can act as a single source of truth, ensuring all viewers’ understand the project scope.

Project management dashboards can also serve as a visual communication tool for stakeholders and promote transparency and understanding. Team members, clients, and executives can access current, accurate, and centralized data to help them reach decisions together. Team members can also use this data to create reports on current information, forecasts, and historical data for clearly communicating concepts to external individuals.

Real-time project monitoring

Project management dashboards provide real-time updates on project progress, allowing viewers to monitor them closely. This capability supports decision-making and ensures that any delays or issues are promptly identified and addressed to improve team performance, promptly resolve areas of improvement, enable timely project delivery, and prevent potential delays or cost overruns.

Targeted data views

Customizable project management dashboards allow users to select and customize the data and metrics they want to monitor, allowing stakeholders to focus on the information most relevant to their roles and responsibilities.

This flexibility brings users’ attention to areas they need to see, ensuring that the dashboard supports their needs. Additionally, this flexibility supports scalability for organizations, as users can adjust their dashboards based on the KPIs and other aspects necessary for achieving growth.

Optimized scheduling and prioritization

Project management teams can optimize their scheduling of tasks and deadlines through the project management dashboards. Viewing schedules can enable them to identify scheduling conflicts, prepare for upcoming events, keep track of deadlines, and optimize resource availability.

Easier time and activity tracking

By viewing the completion status of multiple projects, users can ensure their timely completion and identify which projects require prioritization or extra attention. Milestone tracking through project management dashboards is another way to quickly determine the health of a project based on its progress.

Smarter project spending

Financial and budgeting data provided within project management dashboards can tell viewers a lot about the project’s spending activity. For example, users can track spending to avoid going over budget before the project’s completion and view KPIs to reach valuable insights about the project’s profitability, rate of growth, and sales forecast. This way, teams can budget wisely and practice more innovative financial planning in the future.

What should a project management dashboard contain?

A project management dashboard can contain a wide variety of key data and metrics. However, teams should seek out project management dashboard tools that contain necessary information and provide a comprehensive overview of the project’s real-time status and success. These are just some elements that a project management dashboard could include that may be necessary for your team.

Descriptions

Descriptions that outline the purpose of the project may be included on project dashboards. This can briefly explain why the project is being implemented, the business objectives and goals, and how the project is being executed.

Project progress status indicators

The status of the project can be represented through visual indicators that represent a general overview of its real-time status. For example, charts or progress bars can indicate whether the project is on track, delayed, or completed, providing an at-a-glance view of its status. Some software solutions allow users to include details or files regarding the project status within this section for easy reference.

Key performance indicators

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are measurable metrics that indicate the project’s performance, provide insights into the project’s overall health and help identify areas that require improvement. Some of the features included within this list, like resource allocation, task completion, and budget utilization, can be represented by measurable KPIs.

Milestones and timelines

Dashboards should display projects with tasks, sub-tasks, and milestones necessary for their successful completion. A timeline or chart can help team members and project managers to visualize the project’s schedule, including milestones and deadlines. These should also provide the start and end dates of each project, task, sub-task, or milestone.

Dependencies and impacted metrics

Projects, tasks, and sub-tasks should all be displayed in relation to one another and their linked objectives. This can also include information about delayed deliverables due to dependencies. 

Resource allocation and estimates 

Dashboards should include a visual representation of the resources allocated to different tasks or team members. This can consist of estimates of those resources and the time necessary for task completion. Information regarding the task’s owner should also be communicated so viewers can see who is in charge of which project.

Budgets and financials

Project management dashboards can also display budget information and real-time data tracking of project spending activity. This information can be shown in various ways to indicate the percent budget spent, percent complete, and the forecasted total project cost. In addition, some project management dashboards can include tools for tracking financial KPIs, like the Net Present Value, Internal Rate of Return, and sales forecasting.

Risk status and issues

Viewers should be able to access information about potential risks and issues identified throughout the project via the project dashboard. This section should indicate the severity and status of these risks and their impact and likelihood of occurring.

Custom views and features

Customizable dashboards enable project team members to customize their dashboard views based on the information that is most relevant to them. Additionally, some software can allow users to create personal to-do lists. 

Collaboration tools

Project management dashboards can include communication and collaboration tools like commenting, messaging, and update-sharing features. For example, Smartsheet allows team members to collaborate on shared sheets. Project dashboards can also store change request information for users to view the transformation of projects as they have been adjusted over time.

Choosing a project management tool

A project management dashboard should clearly and concisely represent critical project data and metrics that enable effective monitoring, decision-making, and stakeholder communication.

When choosing a project management dashboard software, teams should identify their goals to stay competitive within their business environment. This will help them determine the KPIs and features they should seek in a project management dashboard solution. 

From enhanced visibility to optimizing data-driven decision-making, the right project management dashboard can offer many advantages that positively impact project outcomes and overall organizational success.

Many general project management tools include dashboards that can pull information from project boards and individual tasks. If you’re shopping around for project management software, review our list of top project management tools to see which fit your needs.



Featured project management partners

1 monday.com

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monday.com Work OS is the project management software that helps you and your team plan, execute, and track projects and workflows in one collaborative space. Manage everything from simple to complex projects more efficiently with the help of visual boards, 200+ ready-made templates, clever no-code automations, and easy integrations. In addition, custom dashboards simplify reporting, so you can evaluate your progress and make data-driven decisions.

Learn more about monday.com

2 Quickbase

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Big ideas aren’t simple to execute. So we’re here to help you tackle any project, no matter how complex. We’re Quickbase.

Quickbase helps customers see, connect and control complex projects that reshape our world. Whether it’s raising a skyscraper or coordinating vaccine rollouts, the no-code software platform allows business users to custom fit solutions to the way they work – using information from across the systems they already have.

Learn more about Quickbase

3 Wrike

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Wrike’s top-notch workflow management software allows you to easily visualize priorities, boost collaboration, and maintain control of your projects. Bonus: you can move seamlessly between apps, without logging in or out. Wrike has more than 400+ integrations with popular platforms such as Google, Dropbox, Microsoft Office, and many more. Automation and AI features strip away time-consuming admin tasks so you can do the best work of your life.

Learn more about Wrike

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