One of the most common roadblocks for projects is resource availability. In the HCM technology world, when we say “resource” we don’t mean budget or physical materials. Rather, “resource” refers to the people involved with the project at hand. On almost every HCM technology project, the Project Manager is faced with the question, “How much time does a resource (a particular person) need to be allocated to this implementation?”. There is not always a simple answer, but there are ways to improve resource management. Here are 3 of our top tips.
- Assign tasks based on skill
First and foremost, make sure the right people are assigned to the appropriate tasks. Just because someone may have the availability to help with a portion of the project does mean they have the right skill set or experience for the tasks at hand. Project Managers understand that everyone needs to be fully occupied but they also need to be assigned to tasks that play to their strengths. After all, you wouldn’t hire an exterminator to paint your house just because he or she was free that day, right? So, if we are gathering requirements for pay rules, an Integration Architect may not be the best person to represent your company on this topic – you’d want to bring your Payroll Manager in to this conversation.
- Ensure all resources have support
Some project team members may have more experience in a specific area than others. But regardless of their experience levels, all resources need to have additional support. Most individuals aren’t working on just one project, so making sure you have more than one contact for a specific task is vital to staying on target with the timeline. That way your project is not brought to a standstill because a key project leader went on vacation, is out sick, or needs to spend time working on another concurrent project. If a less experienced person is the only one with availability, use this as an opportunity for training and development for that person, so he or she can be a key resource in future projects.
- Continually consider the scope of project
Knowing the full scope of project tasks greatly impacts resource allocation. A clear picture of the project’s deliverables and timeframe for those tasks helps the Project Manager predict a realistic target for the number of resources needed. It is much easier to determine any potential blockers to meeting deadlines once the project plan and resources have been established. Every Project Manager knows the scope of a project is a forever moving target. Because of this, it’s important to ask resources to track their efforts so that you can review estimated time versus actual time it took to complete a task. This way, all resources have transparency and won’t get bored or over allocated.
There are many factors that come into play when a Project Manager is assigning project tasks to team members. Project Managers do it so often, it’s probably done unconsciously. Keeping these 3 tips in mind when allocating resources to staff projects helps Project Managers overcome the common obstacle of resource availability during implementation projects and helps ensure your project is a success.
HRchitect has worked with many different sized clients, industries, and systems, which gives us an expansive knowledge of best practices in resource allocation to help your organization. If you are ready to start an HCM implementation project, a qualified external project manager is a key component to a successful project to help ensure you maximize your ROI for your organization.
About Lauren Battaglino
Lauren Battaglino is a Project Manager at HRchitect with more than 3 years of Project Management experience in the HCM space. Prior to joining the HRchitect team, Lauren spent 6 years working as a Senior Implementation Consultant responsible for the implementation of Time and Attendance and Revenue Cycle Management Software.