Project Issue Log

  WHAT

A Project Issue Log is a method of documenting and logging issues (i.e., project situations that have already occurred and can affect project success; Piney, 2012). Issue logs provide visible verification that the situation has been heard and will be addressed properly rather than overlooked or dismissed (Love, 2002), and provide a space for teams to communicate and remain up-to-date on issues in their project.

To use our Project Issue Log:

1. Identify issues in your project & tag each issue by priority (high, medium, low), status (open, pending, late, complete), and owner.
2. In the comments section, provide ongoing status updates until the issue is resolved.

  WHO

The Project Issue Log can be used by project managers and team leaders.

  WHY

Not only do Project Issue Logs provide a practical method of documenting and logging issues, they also help project managers easily monitor the progress of the project and issue resolutions. They can also provide a simple way to focus team meetings and conversations through exception reporting, by focusing attention on the items requiring further discussion rather than items the team is already in alignment on (Love, 2002).

Tracking, documenting, and updating the status on project issues allows the project manager to easily monitor progress during the project, and to later revisit and re-examine their past decisions as a decision audit trail (Love, 2002). Project managers can confidently move forward knowing when, why, and how they resolved their issues, with everyone on the same page from start to finish.

Issue logs also play an important role in risk management. If the source of an issue is tracked and known, project managers are able to easily determine whether the issue occurred from an identified risk. For issues that were not previously identified as risks, project managers can analyze how they were overlooked in the first place and ensure their inclusion in the risk identification process (Sankararajan & Shrivastava, 2012).

  HOW

1) NOODLE & TAG: Identify the issues present in your project, then tag each issue by priority (high, medium, low), status (open, pending, late, complete), and owner.

2) COMMENT: Provide status updates via dated comments and tagging.

  RESULTS

  • Log of project issues stating their priority and up-to-date status

  • Team-wide understanding and discussion of present and previously-resolved issues

  • Log of decisions and resolutions made for future clarity and understanding

  BENEFITS & IMPACT

This model will enable:

Quality  Keep an up-to-date status and priority log of issues in the project and allow for candid discussion among team members and project managers.  A record of how each issue was resolved will be retained.

Efficiency – Eliminate confusion and misunderstandings by having a consistent method of logging project issues for the whole team – enabling focus, clarity, and uniformity.

Engagement – Easily involve your entire team in the issue identification and resolution process, keeping everyone on the same page and consistently documenting project issues.  Anonymity ensures team members are not afraid to raise issues.

Agility  Focus your team’s attention on the most important issues and their resolution, saving time and resources for your team and project.

  RELATED MODELS

  REFERENCES

Love, M. L. (2002). Risks, issues, and changes—help, I’m drowning in logs! Paper presented at Project Management Institute Annual Seminars & Symposium, San Antonio, TX. Newtown Square, PA: Project Management Institute. https://www.pmi.org/learning/library/risks-issues-changes-forms-logs-1078

Piney, C. (2012). Integrated project risk and issue management. Paper presented at PMI® Global Congress 2012—EMEA, Marsailles, France. Newtown Square, PA: Project Management Institute. https://www.pmi.org/learning/library/integrated-project-risk-issue-management-6303

Sankararajan, D. & Shrivastava, N. K. (2012). Risks vs. issues. PM Network, 26(6), 28–29.