Resources are vital for the success of any project. They carry out specific project tasks and ensure they are completed within the stipulated time and budget. Therefore, it is crucial to manage them efficiently.
However, many businesses use spreadsheets or legacy tools to manage and schedule resources. Unfortunately, these are incredibly time-consuming and may even create challenges like – double booking, overutilization, improper planning of pipeline projects, and so on.
Therefore, managers need to adopt an efficient resource scheduling process that maximizes their team’s efficiency and ensures the project’s success. Furthermore, it also enhances business profitability and sustainability.
This post elucidates how Saviom’s resource management software helps with effective scheduling.
Let’s begin with the basics,
1. Resource scheduling: definition and its significance
Resource scheduling involves identifying and assigning the right resources for a specific period to various types of project and non-project activities. Using this process, the project manager gauges the availability and capacity of the resources based on which they are assigned tasks.
Every project has a definite timeline, and the onus is on the project manager to ensure the project is delivered on time. They can schedule the resources by taking a systematic approach. First, they can ascertain that the resources’ skills align with the project requirements. Second, they can assess if the resources are utilized as per their capacity.
Besides, modern resource scheduling solutions provide insights into metrics such as – utilization, capacity vs. demand gap, availability, and more. Based on this, managers can implement the right measures to mitigate resource risks and prevent over/underloading resources.
Thus, it is clear that with ever-changing project demands, resource scheduling is vital for agile planning.
Now, let’s see how resource management software helps streamline the work process.
2. How modern resource management software helps with effective scheduling?
Resource management software provides project managers with a more innovative and efficient way to assign tasks to their teams based on their expertise and availability. In addition, it helps managers systematically get an overview of resource skills, projects, location, and availability before scheduling.
Below are the key benefits of implementing advanced resource scheduling software.
2.1 Gain real-time visibility of all resources
Many organizations have resources spanning across geographical boundaries. Therefore, they need complete visibility for multidimensional scheduling of resources. For instance, if the manager has to book a resource for multiple projects, he needs to understand the capacity and availability of the resource. Else, it creates double bookings, over/underutilized resources, low staff morale, and results in low productivity.
Resource management software provides 360-degree visibility into work types like – project/non-project activities, vacations, BAU/admin, etc. It also gives information on the employee’s vacation, leaves, unplanned job flows, travel time, public holidays, etc. In addition, the software maintains up-to-date competency information to match the skillset with the right task. It enables managers to be informed of all the resources and helps prevent double bookings.
2.2 Deploy competent resources to suitable tasks
Having the right resource with the right skill set is essential to finish the project within time and budget. Resource scheduling methodology helps managers to identify and allocate a competent person. Without resource scheduling, managers may assign over or under-qualified resources to tasks that can cause budget or schedule overruns.
Using Saviom’s resource scheduling solution, managers can assign competent resources to suitable opportunities. The advanced filters such as qualifications, skills, availability, cost, and other selection criteria help managers to distribute resources across all projects instead of deploying them on high-priority tasks. It also helps replace high-cost local resources with cost-effective global resources from low-cost locations.
2.3 Maximize billable & strategic resource utilization
Billable and strategic utilization are some of the critical KPIs that ensure the profitability and sustainability of organizations. As a result, critical and valuable resources cannot be assigned to lesser or low-priority projects or activities.
The resource management software helps managers forecast resource utilization ahead of time to mobilize employees from non-billable or low-priority work to billable or high-priority projects. With insights into short-term or long-term workforce utilization, managers can foresee the information required to make the right decisions. This helps them prevent over/underutilization of resources and improve the health index of the organization.
2.4 Helps optimize resource schedules to boost productivity
Every project comprises multiple tasks that require specific skills to produce tangible results. The onus is on managers to ensure the right resource is working on the right task at the right time. If the resources are not scheduled on time (before the project initiates), it will be delayed, and in the worst case, it will bring the project to a halt.
Using a resource schedule solution, managers can form a balanced project schedule in two ways. For example, one can adjust the project deadline according to the resource capacity, known as resource-leveling. Conversely, one may pull in additional resources to redistribute the tasks without compromising on the timeline, also known as resource smoothing. This ensures enhanced employee productivity and the successful completion of projects.
2.5 Facilitates timely project delivery
Resource scheduling is not limited to simply booking the resources against projects. It is imperative to eliminate potential bottlenecks and unnecessary delays. First, managers need to form a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) to create task dependencies and schedules per competency. Once the required information is in place, managers can schedule resources with the right competencies for project tasks.
Modern resource scheduling software facilitates the proper assigning of resources at different stages. It allows the project manager to schedule the resources for critical tasks in advance. This ensures no resource falls through the cracks and enables project managers to allocate cross-functional resources and ascertain seamless project delivery. When the right resources give a head start to the project at the right time, the projects can be executed on time without any delays.
Resource scheduling software helps assign the right resources to meet the resource demands. Once the project starts, managers can monitor their performance and track their utilization levels. An ideal resource scheduling tool will substantially reduce project costs, beat market volatility, increase billable/strategic utilization, and more. It will also help implement the best practices as per the requirement of the organization.