Wikis and Weblogs
The original post entitled Status Reports 2.0 at the Rands in Repose blog is more than half a year old, but I only encountered it today.
The post essentially asks whether or not we need status reports, and recommends the use of Wikis and Weblogs to take the place of status reports.
I have to admit that the article made me stop and think. After all, my firm has used Wikis for over 4 years for a variety of purposes. We've used them internally for keeping company policies and various administrivia available online, and we've used them on projects as project repositories.
Despite the fact that our Wikis allow us to track changes to pages, our team members still turn in individual status reports via email. Granted, they're fairly short reports since they consist mostly of URLs to the relevant Wiki pages that had been updated during the reporting period. I guess our firm is still small enough that the status reports are not really that critical to progress monitoring and therefore can be terse and bulleted. [In fact, I personally find the status reports more critical as inputs to the regular performance reviews of team members!]
We've been talking a lot in the past couple of months about using blogging software. However, they've only been envisioned as communication tools targeted at our clients and suppliers. I'd never really thought of them as status reporting software. That's certainly worth thinking about.