The punch list process is a common project management tool that originated in the construction industry. The idea is that a general contractor would walk through the final build and see if there were any final touches that needed fixing before closing out the project. Each of these final touches would become a “punch list item” and the general contractor would punch a hole in a piece of paper to mark that item as complete.
Now, there’s no need for a paper list or a hole punch. Creating a digital punch list template is the best way to keep your team organized and on track during the final stages of your project. With a digital punch list template, your team will be able to access the same information in real time, so wrapping up a project will be a breeze.
A punch list template is a duplicatable framework that allows you to add whatever tasks you need to complete the final phase of your project. While it is often used in construction project management, a punch list template can be used for any type of project workflow.
A punch list template helps your team stay organized and ensures that the final touches of your project get done with the quality that your team expects. Create a modern day punch list using a digital project management tool—not a piece of paper—so team members can update tasks simultaneously. Punch lists are best used when everyone knows who is responsible for what item, and that information is updated in real time. This helps maintain accountability for those responsible for specific tasks, and prevents stakeholders and other collaborators from accidentally referencing old or out of date information.
Punch list templates are a great tool to use for any team—not just construction industries. Here are a few situations where it’s a good idea to use a punch list template:
As a final check list: Punch lists are a good way to check for quality assurance at the end of a project. Use a template to ensure your team checks all the relevant details, no matter which project your team is working on.
Ensure consistency for a final product: If your team is creating multiples of the same product, using a punch list template can help ensure consistency. Every product will go through the same workflow, which ensures that all final products are the same with little variation.
To test new processes or workflows: Construction teams often use punch lists because their final walkthrough of a project is consistent every time. If your team is going through some changes to a QA process, using a punch list is a good place to start tweaking your workflow. If you find that the new process doesn’t work, you can easily swap back to your standard punch list workflow.
Punch list templates help ensure that the right information is shared with the right people. Here’s the most common information you might find on a punch list template.
Location of the task: In construction, this is often designated as a specific room or area of the build where the task is located. For other types of projects, this could mean what part of the project you’re working on, or what phase of the project the task is in.
Task detail or description: This is a brief description of what work needs to be done to complete the task. A good best practice is to start task names with a verb so your team knows exactly what action to take.
Task priority: This is how important this individual task ranks in comparison to other tasks. This is especially useful if there are task dependencies. That way, the right task gets completed first.
Team member responsible: This is the designated team member who is assigned for this task. If anybody has questions about this task, this is the person to contact.
Task due date: This is the date (or deadline) that the task needs to be completed by.
Status of the task: This information indicates whether or not the task is currently in progress. The most common statuses are “Not started,” “In progress,” and “Completed.” While these are the most common statuses, your team can use more detailed statuses to indicate a tasks position in your workflow.
List View. List View is a grid-style view that makes it easy to see all of your project’s information at a glance. Like a to-do list or a spreadsheet, List View displays all of your tasks at once so you can not only see task titles and due dates, but also view any relevant custom fields like Priority, Status, or more. Unlock effortless collaboration by giving your entire team visibility into who’s doing what by when.
Dependencies. Mark a task as waiting on another task with task dependencies. Know when your work is blocking someone else’s work, so you can prioritize accordingly. Teams with collaborative workflows can easily see what tasks they’re waiting on from others, and know when to get started on their portion of work. When the first task is completed, the assignee will be notified that they can get started on their dependent task. Or, if the task your work is dependent on is rescheduled, Asana will notify you—letting you know if you need to adjust your dependent due date as well.
Approvals. Sometimes you don’t just need to complete a task—you need to know if a deliverable is approved or not. Approvals are a special type of task in Asana with options to “Approve,” “Request changes,” or “Reject” the task. That way, task owners get clear instructions on what actions they should take and whether their work has been approved or not.
Project status updates. Say goodbye to sorting between multiple tools to find project status information or sitting through another meeting that could have been an email. Project status updates in Asana aren’t just easier to use—they’re also directly connected to the work your team does. This makes it easy for team members to access additional project information, like your project plan, communication plan, project goals, milestones, deliverables, and more. Ultimately, project status reports reduce your manual work, centralize information, and keep everyone up to date.
Google Workplace. Attach files directly to tasks in Asana with the Google Workplace file chooser, which is built into the Asana task pane. Easily attach any My Drive file with just a few clicks.
Zendesk. With Asana's Zendesk integration, users can quickly and easily create Asana tasks directly from Zendesk tickets. Add context, attach files, and link existing tasks to track work needed to close out the ticket. The integration also provides continuing visibility across both systems, so everyone is kept up to speed regardless of which tool they use.
Jira. Create interactive, connected workflows between technical and business teams to increase visibility around the product development process in real-time—all without leaving Asana. Streamline project collaboration and hand offs. Quickly create Jira issues from within Asana so that work passes seamlessly between business and technical teams at the right time.
When creating your punch list template, each item should have important information to give both the person completing the task and the project manager some information. Make sure that your template has a section for an actionable task name, the person who is responsible for said task, a due date, task status, and priority. That way, you can duplicate your template and have it ready for new punch list items whenever you’re about to wrap a project up.
A punch list template can be used for any easily repeatable workflow. For example, you could use a punch list template for quality assurance for a product. As soon as a project is complete, duplicate the punch list template, and double-check if there’s any issues with the product. If something needs to be changed or fixed, add that as an action item for your punch list.
A project punch list template should have the right amount of information to provide collaborators with enough context to complete the task. It should also include information that will help the project manager understand what needs to be completed at a glance. Commonly, punch list templates will include: task location, task detail or description, task priority, the team member responsible, a due date, and the status of the task.
No! While punch lists were originally on a piece of paper, that functionality is outdated and not as useful as a digital punch list template. When you use a digital punch list template, your team is able to access that information in real-time, so everybody has the most up-to-date information when they need it.
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