Project performance
Updated over a week ago

The project performance page shows at a glance how a project is performing – it shows whether you’re on track; both in costs and in time.

The project performance page builds on concepts from project management methodology – earned value management (EVM), which tracks how efficient you are with your time and money.

You can access the Project Performance page from either the organisation menu or the project menu.

If you access it from the:

  • Organisation menu > Planning board > Project performance, you will see how all your projects are performing.

  • Project menu > Plan > Performance, you will see how this selected project is performing.

The project performance page is only visible for assistant project managers and above.

Note: if you access the Project menu > Plan > Schedule, you will only see the schedule for this selected project.

What the main components do

The easiest way to interpret the information on this page is by having a look at the slider scale. The slider scale uses the same colour legend as the planning board – teal lines represent the project and phase levels and the dark blue line represents the stage level.

The slider scale shows you:

  • How far along you are into the project duration based on your start and end dates (grey bubble).

  • How much of the budget you have spent based on your transactions ie timesheets and expenses submitted and issued invoices (triangle).

  • How much work is registered as completed, as estimated by the project manager, set in the work breakdown stage progress bar or in the stage dropdown of the EVM (teal line).

The CPI (cost performance index) and SPI (schedule performance index) show as a value, the health of your project. It uses the project’s earned value in the calculation. The earned value is the value of work completed, estimated by the PM.

In both cases, a value of 1.0 means you are working to plan. Values under 0.7 are marked in red to highlight potential problems. You will see an additional red box around the value if it reaches 0.5 and you should revisit these.

Cost performance index (CPI)

CPI helps you analyse the efficiency of the cost utilised by the project. The CPI is an indication of how well the project is remaining on budget. A value greater than 1 indicates that you are under budget.

CPI = Earned value / Actual cost

Example: As in the previous example, the earned value is how much work you have achieved. Let’s say 50% again. The charges that your staff have put to your project is your Actual Cost (AC). Let’s say you had budgeted $40,000. You could say that, when you have done 50% of the work, you would have expected to accrue 50% of the charges - $20,000. To date, you only have $10,000 charged. So, you have delivered $20,000 of budgeted value for only $10,000 – that's great! Your CPI is 20,000/10,000 = 2.0 which is a simple way to see you are delivering the work at double-efficiency. You will complete this project well under budget!

Schedule performance index (SPI)

SPI indicates how efficiently you are actually progressing compared to the planned project schedule. An SPI value greater than 1 indicates that you have completed more than the planned work. Total Synergy uses the extended earned schedule formula, but for simplicity of documentation, we are using the earned value formula.

SPI = Earned value (EV) / Planned value (PV)

Example: Earned value is your estimate of how much work you have achieved. For example, you may estimate you are halfway through the Concept Design, so your EV is 50%. However, you have planned to complete this job in 40 days, and only 10 days have passed. That would mean your planned value (PV) is 25%. So, you have completed 50% of the work whereas you expected to have done 25% at this time. That’s great! Your SPI is 50/25=2.0 which is a simple way to see you are moving at twice the speed you expected. You will complete it ahead of schedule!

3. Updated

As a project manager, you should track your projects and keep the progress reporting up to date. The Updated column helps you do this by telling you if the data needs updating. If you are at the Project level and it reads Pending, this means there are stages that need updating.

The updated column is bound to rules set in the Settings > Organisation > Configuration page. Your administrator will set how old the data can be before it starts to show ‘pending’. By default, Synergy requests weekly updates.

Once updated, the cell will change to show a tick.

Filter (not shown)

At the organisation level, you can filter the projects shown, similar to the way you filter in other areas of Synergy. For example, you might want to filter by project manager.

How to interpret the project performance page

When you click on an arrowhead

This will expand to show the phases and/or the stages that make up this project.

The phases are a roll-up of its stages, and a project is a rollup of its phases.

When you click anywhere else on the row

This will open the slide-in panel. The panel shows the data behind the calculations for the slider and the performance index values.

You can identify which stage/phase/project you are viewing by the heading at the top of the panel.

The donuts are the main visual element in the slider and show how your budget and schedule are tracking compared to what you set out at the start of the project.

Left donut- budget:

  • The outside (teal) line represents how much you have spent – taken from your timesheets and expenses.

  • The inside (dark blue) line shows you your earned value - work completed as estimated by the PM.

  • If you have spent more than 100% of your budget, the extra spend is shown as dark-teal.

  • If you have spent more than 200% of your budget, the extra spend is shown as red.

The values in the circle show:

  • Top line: Your actual budget

  • Middle line: Your estimate charge at completion

  • Bottom line: The difference between the two values

Right donut - Schedule

  • The teal line represents how far along your project managers think your project is – based on how far they dragged the blue slider or how they rated their progress in the work breakdown structure.

  • The dark blue line shows you how far you are into the project based on the original project end date.

  • If any part of the line is in red, you are now past your end date.

The values in the circle show:

  • Your original project end date in dark blue.

  • Your estimated project completion date in teal.

  • The number of days difference between the two dates.

Line graphs

These show a percentage because it divides your actual values by your planned value.

  • Planned (actual duration / planned duration) – based on the approved schedule of work to be completed in a given time.

  • Earned – is the value of the work actually completed to date, as estimated by the project manager.

  • Actual charge (actual charge / planned budget): This is how much you have spent.

EVM calculations summary


You can see how each of the values are calculated by clicking on the question mark when you hover over the calculation.

  • Performance – shows the data related to this project’s health including the invoice performance index (IPI) which is how much you have invoiced compared to your WIP. The IPI has the same weighting as CPI and SPI in your star rating.

  • Charge – looks at how you are tracking vs your planned budget. In EVM practice, the C stands for cost. We renamed this to charge for two reasons: Costs are already defined in Synergy are as the charge-out value to clients, when a rate is set. Project Managers are not usually able to see the actual costs. They are usually shown ‘standardised costs’. Using this would have made the EVM statistics more difficult to understand.

  • Revenue: looks at the income generated.

  • Duration - looks at where you are vs your planned schedule.

Project/phase level

You are unable to edit this row. This row shows the totals of the underlying stages.

The values in the CPI and SPI are different to the project level because it only includes the values of the stages contained under it.

Grey bubble
This is the elapsed time or how many days have passed since the stage began.

Example: If the stage runs for 40 days and 10 days have elapsed, you will see the grey bar a quarter of the way through the line


This is how much of the budget you have spent – taken from timesheets and expenses. Ideally, the triangle should not overtake the grey bubble because this means you have spent more than projected

Example: If you have spent $5000 of your planned $10000, you will see the triangle halfway through the length of the line.

Red line - partial schedule achievement

Sometimes projects are close to finishing and on time, but one or more of their stages have passed their end-date. In this case, we will show both the earned value (SPI) and the earned schedule value (TPI).

  1. SPI is shown as partially blue and partially red.

  2. TPI is displayed in blue - the later a stage is past its end date, the larger the red line.

Red triangle
This means you have used all your planned budget.
You can hover over the red triangle to see more details or click anywhere on the row to show the slide-in panel for the full details

Example: If you have spent $20,000 on a $12,000 project, you will see a red triangle at the end of the row.

Red line
This means you have gone over your scheduled time.
You can hover over the red line to see more details or click anywhere on the row to show the slide-in panel for the full details

Example: If you are 15 days in on a 10-day stage, you will see a red line at the end of the row.

Stage level
Bullets: If you see a red bullet, this means something in this stage needs your attention – either you are over budget or behind schedule. The bullet correlates with the values in the CPI and SPI columns. If you see a black bullet, this stage is progressing as planned.

Earned % and dark blue line

This is how far along you are – or how much work you have completed. The value in the complete field and the dark blue line mirror one another and are linked to the progress bar in the WBS.

The length of the line represents the total duration of the stage. Once you reach the end of the line, you should have completed the project or are now late in delivering – see the red line below.

Progress is essential in calculating EVM, so keep this updated.

You can manually input your progress as a percentage in the free-text field in the Complete% column or click the arrows to increase or decrease the amount.

The dark blue line is a visual representation of the stage progress. When you scroll over the dark blue line at the stage level, you will see a circle appear. You can click on the circle and drag it to where you think you are in the stage. Click the arrows to increase or decrease the amount.

Example: If the stage runs for 10 days and you think you are about halfway through the work, you can either drag the slider approximately halfway or enter 50 in the Earned % cell

Note: When you move the slider to 100%, no more calculations take place. The budget triangle in the slider is also locked. Staff can still register time to this stage but you will not see this reflected in the slider. See the article here for more information about what to do in this instance.

Triangle - This is how much of the budget you have spent – taken from timesheets and expenses. Ideally, the triangle should not overtake the grey bubble because this means you have spent more than projected.

Red line - A red line means you have reached the stage/phase/project end-date.
Red triangle - A red triangle means you have spent all the budget allocated for the stage/phase/project.

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