Blog Archives

Improving the UK’s productivity levels. Resource planning tools to the rescue!

Commentators continue to bemoan the UK’s poor levels of productivity. Improving it remains the key to economic growth and better paid jobs all round. Everyone agrees that more investment in infrastructure and technology is needed to make it happen, but recent history is littered with such projects over-running on time and cost and failing to meet their objectives.

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Run a virtual PMO with resource management software

We are implementing our resource management software in the IT dept. of a major UK food processor. Although they have less than 50 staff, their projects are at multiple locations across the country, so much travelling is required. Projects are managed along matrix lines, with project managers preparing plans and requesting resources from a number of team leaders.

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Skills database – a foundation for consistent project success

A skills database maintains details of each person’s skills, competencies and technical expertise. It is particularly useful in geographically dispersed project organisations, where locating suitably qualified staff can be far from straightforward. Managing a portfolio of projects with a limited pool of resources can be a lively ride. As competitive pressures build,

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Resource allocation software – matching staff with tasks

Successfully matching up staff with tasks is an important part of the multi-project resource management process. The overall goals are to maximise the utilisation of each team, whilst ensuring that every project is properly resourced. If it goes wrong then either team usage levels can become too low because there is too much spare capacity,

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Resource management software – building a business case

There is a proliferation of project management tools out there and making a case for resource management software as a separate investment  can look challenging. However, by focusing on the benefits of maximising the utilisation of your expensive skilled resources, building the business case can be quite straightforward.

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Effective collaboration between resource and project managers

Innate is currently implementing its resource management software with a major US based engineering services supplier. They have a wide range of engineering, environmental and construction projects, each of which require staff with particular combinations of skills and experience. Their President has challenged his resource managers to dramatically improve the project resourcing service that they provide to their project managers,

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Multi-project resource management – Do I need a central resource manager?

Senior managers in project-based organizations need to know their team’s current workload and the planned utilization of their staff. They also need to be sure that they have the capacity when committing to new project delivery dates. Suitable processes backed up with resource management software must be in place if acceptable multi-project resource management is to be achieved.

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Measuring project progress – maintaining a realistic baseline

No sooner is the new project plan signed off than something changes. A project plan is simply an estimate of the work required to achieve the project ‘s goals, spread over what is hoped to be a realistic timescale. Yet, for all but the simplest projects, progress is unlikely to go according to plan.

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Optimizing resource utilization – How Earned Value measurement helps.

Managing your multi-project workload with a limited pool of resources makes for an exciting ride. Whilst there must be sufficient spare resources on hand for emergencies, too many just sitting on the bench will quickly impact your utilization targets and can rapidly erode profitability. Indeed, the UK Association of Consulting Engineers found,

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Allocating resources across Business as Usual and projects

Most organizations have a mix of projects and business as usual work. But, whenever a major new project seeks to swallow all available resources, managers in charge of BAU work are vulnerable to having their resources stolen.

This arises because BAU work is often simply treated as overhead,

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