Without resources, a project is like a car without fuel. Learn what project resources are and how to classify them.
As you set out your project plan, you realize that there is one key element that affects your project's success: resources. These resources include people, equipment, facilities, information, materials, and financial capital - and they are all vital if your project is to be completed successfully.
In other words, resources are what your project needs to ensure its success. Exactly what those resources are will differ depending on your project. For example, if you manage the construction of a building, your resources will include architects, skilled laborers, cement mixers, tractors, etc.
On the other hand, if you manage a wedding, resources will consist of cooks, event planners, sound equipment, chairs, tents, flowers, renting a garden or halls, food, etc.
Planning, allocating, and scheduling resources is known as resource management.
Project resources can be classified into human, financial, as well as time and materials resources.
Human resources go beyond the people managed by the HR department. They include all people involved in completing the project, such as:
Material resources are all items key to project success, including:
Financial resources are usually defined before the project begins, and are designed to cover the project costs. They include:
Project resources are key to moving the project in the right direction. After all, with fewer resources, you will have to put in a lot more effort to get results. Project managers should track resources for several reasons.
One of the most common problems faced by project managers is resource allocation. You need resources for every task on your schedule, but they may not always be available at the right times.
The best way to plan for excellent project execution is by checking resource availability and managing resources professionally. Resource availability is crucial to getting your project done by mapping resources on hand and avoiding gaps by identifying them earlier on.
It’s essential to plan and ensure that your members have enough time, appropriate expertise, and suitable skills to complete their tasks within limited time constraints.
One of the most critical tasks in resource management is to track the availability of project resources. The best way to do this is by using a resource calendar. Project resources can be scheduled, planned, and controlled using resource management software like Runn.
By giving you an overview of the work schedule of individual team members across multiple projects, resource calendars help you manage resources and start resource capacity planning. You can use resource calendars in conjunction with task calendars to specify project team members' working and nonworking times.
Resource scheduling software tools allow you to plan ahead and take control over the availability of project resources. These software tools help monitor which resources are under-or over-utilized and create a way to help you diversify resources across multiple projects and department boundaries.
When you base your project schedule on resource calendars, you will have more accurate estimates of when tasks will be completed. In addition, you'll be able to quickly identify which resources you need to assign to certain tasks to ensure the project is completed within the deadline.
As a project manager, you are responsible for resource management and ensuring that all items necessary for the entire project are available when needed. In fact, it is one of the most important management skills you can have. In addition, you must understand how human resource planning and project resource management fit together, to ensure you reach your business goals.
Project resources are the means you need to produce a project deliverable - whether a physical or digital service or product. Aligning your resources with optimized project portfolio management will not only centralize all the methods used in analyzing project processes but also maximize the value of your equipment, financial, and most importantly, human resources.
By properly identifying and allocating personnel resources and using the appropriate resource management software tools to monitor their availability and capacity, you are on your way to completing a project successfully.
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