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Six Ways to Know You Should Pay More Attention to Resource Management

Six Ways to Know You Should Pay More Attention to Resource Management
By Nicholas Holmes

Resource management is the lifeblood of a consultancy business and of good project management. If you can’t get the right people in the right place, you’re dead in the water. But it’s surprising how many projects get into trouble when the warning signs were there long before anybody realized there was a problem.

So what should set alarm bells ringing for project managers when it comes to resource management?

  1. Unknown, uneven or low utilization

    Utilization is a metric most project managers should be paying attention to as closely as financial controllers do – but for slightly different reasons. While under-utilization is seen as a financial problem, over-utilization often results in a resource squeeze, significantly reducing the agility of project teams, and it can also lead to demotivated, exhausted employees. So PMs need to be able to see areas of concern early and work with a resource scheduler or manager to iron out issues before they become a problem that can affect project delivery.

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Economies of Resource Over Allocation

Economies of Resource Over Allocation
By Carl M. Manello

“I am not worried about the deficit. It is big enough to take care of itself.” –Ronald Reagan

What the former President expressed in jest brings attention to a long-standing issue. We are decades past Regan’s time and you still cannot listen to news for long without hearing a story about the national deficit, the growing deficit, or reducing the deficit. You do not need an economics degree to understand that a deficit means that spending is in excess of what one has. In other words, the government is committing to do and spend more than it has the capacity to do. And no matter what side of the political spectrum you sit on, all can agree that a large deficit is a bad thing.

The same idea applies to the management of resources within a company, specifically its people. An organization uses a mix of employees and contractors to complete work to meet its commitments. Read the Complete Article

Work Leveling Your Lubrication Excellence Project

Work Leveling Your Lubrication Excellence Project
By Jason Kopschinsky, Noria Corporation

Recently I have written about the challenges we face when implementing a program of any kind. Lubrication excellence programs are especially difficult to plan for implementation. This is because most of the equipment involved in the program will need to be pulled off-line to do necessary work like minor modifications, oil or grease changeouts, etc. One of the best ways to plan the implementation phase is to level the workload.

Resource Leveling

In project management, when we plan for initiatives like program implementations, we attempt to level the work based on the resources available. Resource leveling, as described by the Project Management Institute, is “any form of schedule network analysis in which scheduling decisions are driven by resource management concerns such as limited resource availability.”

Most of us are trying to accomplish more with less these days, and limited resources are just another hurdle to jump over. Read the Complete Article

A Project Management Primer – Basic Principles – The Mythical Man Month

A Project Management Primer – Basic Principles – The Mythical Man Month (#4 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

In 1975 during the pioneering days of software development a man named Frederick Brooks penned a number of books and articles on the subject. His most famous is “No Silver Bullet”, in which Brooks pointed out that software development could expect no thunderbolt solution to its various problems of quality, cost and complexity other than to adopt rigorous methodology. Only slightly less famous than “No Silver Bullet” is another Brook’s paper, “The Mythical Man Month”. The papers are no less valid today than they were when written, but they receive a lot less attention.

In “The Mythical Man Month” Brooks argues that adding people to a project doesn’t speed it up. While it is true that more resources can speed up the delivery of a software product, the increase in speed is not directly proportional to the amount of resource added. Read the Complete Article