Endings are important, especially in project management. Even after you’ve achieved your final milestone, you still need to make sure your work is complete, share results, and decide on next steps.
These key steps are easy to overlook in the afterglow of a successful project. But with a project closure template, your team can tie up loose ends without missing a beat.
A project closure template is a pre-built guide that lays out all the steps required to successfully complete projects. This template gives your team a roadmap to follow for every initiative, ensuring everyone checks key boxes like performing final tests, finalizing the project budget, and sending a final report to stakeholders.
Creating a template takes a bit of up-front effort, but it can save your team time and effort down the road. Instead of starting from scratch at the end of every project, you can just copy the template, fill it out, and move on.
The project closure process involves a lot of moving pieces, from securing approvals to performing final tests. With so much to track, a static project closure template can quickly become outdated—requiring constant updates to keep stakeholders in the loop about what’s going on.
Creating a digital project closure template means you can spend less time updating Excel trackers and more time doing important work. Your template lives in the same place work happens—so instead of switching back and forth between different tools, your entire team has a single source of truth to track the status of work.
With a digital project closure template, you can:
Help your whole team follow the same project closure process for every initiative.
See the real-time status of project closure assignments.
Track approvals, milestones, and tasks in one place.
Avoid jumping between different communication tools.
Easily share your project closure process with stakeholders.
Avoid creating a separate project closure report or project closure checklist.
Visualize your project closure process as a timeline, Kanban board, list, or calendar.
Attach key project documents directly to tasks—like your project charter or project overview.
Your project closure template should lay out all the steps required to successfully wrap up an initiative. Every team is different, but you can generally divide project closure tasks into these four buckets:
Testing plan: The steps you’ll take to measure and share results after your project is launched. For example, you may want to measure results after a week or a month.
Project sign-offs: Approvals required to confirm that you’ve completed your project and it meets the required specifications.
In your template, create a separate section for each of these four buckets. To fill in the tasks within each section, imagine what an ideal project closure process looks like for your team. What logistical tasks should you complete to make sure all loose ends are tied up? How are you going to test and share results? Who needs to sign off on your projects, and what leftover tasks need to be assigned to someone else?
To provide an extra layer of detail, create custom fields to track the status of each task (like “not started,” “in progress,” or “completed”). You can also create milestones to track key project accomplishments and use Asana’s approvals feature to make it easy for stakeholders to approve project completion with the click of a button.
As you create your template, remember that you don’t have to finalize every detail. You can always add and adjust tasks later to fit each future project.
Timeline View. Timeline View is a Gantt-style project view that displays all of your tasks in a horizontal bar chart. Not only can you see each task’s start and end date, but you can also see dependencies between tasks. With Timeline View, you can easily track how the pieces of your plan fit together. Plus, when you can see all of your work in one place, it’s easy to identify and address dependency conflicts before they start, so you can hit all of your goals on schedule.
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.
Milestones. Milestones represent important project checkpoints. By setting milestones throughout your project, you can let your team members and project stakeholders know how you’re pacing towards your goal. Use milestones as a chance to celebrate the little wins on the path towards the big project goal.
Custom fields. Custom fields are the best way to tag, sort, and filter work. Create unique custom fields for any information you need to track—from priority and status to email or phone number. Use custom fields to sort and schedule your to-dos so you know what to work on first. Plus, share custom fields across tasks and projects to ensure consistency across your organization.
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.
Salesforce. Remove bottlenecks by enabling sales, customer success, and service teams to communicate directly with their support teams in Asana. Share attachments and create actionable, trackable tasks for pre-sales needs. With Service Cloud, connect your implementation and service teams with supporting teams in Asana to deliver amazing customer experiences.
Hubspot. Create Asana tasks automatically using HubSpot Workflows. With HubSpot Workflows, you can use all the customer data in HubSpot CRM to create automated processes. This integration enables you to seamlessly hand off work between teams, for example, when deals or tickets close in HubSpot.
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.
If you regularly manage projects, a project closure template can help you standardize the final stage of each initiative and ensure you’re not missing any critical steps. Often, the long-term success of a project depends on how well you manage hand-offs and document your learnings. With a well-planned project closure template, you can build these requirements into your team’s standard project management process.
Creating a project closure template means you don’t have to write up a separate project closure document. Instead, your template is all you need to give stakeholders visibility into the completion of the project.
Even though you use a project closure template at the end of a project lifecycle, it’s best to create your template at the start of a project. That way, you can plan key details in advance—like which project sponsors need to sign off on work and which metrics you’ll use to measure project performance.
As a manager, you can share your project closure template with all of your team members in order to help them follow a standardized closure process for every initiative. In addition, project managers can share their template with the entire project team to give everyone full visibility into this final phase of the project.
Learn how to create a customizable template in Asana. Get started today.