While you may have planned your project meticulously, derived a perfect WBS, sequenced the activities wisely and organized the whole plan every effectively, you need to allocate resources that can make the plan a reality. Had these resources been machines you would have estimated their skills, productivity etc very accurately and you would not have to worry about motivating anyone. However, we deal with human beings and skills, productivity and motivation levels can vary widely. How well you are able to apply resources and how well they produce results will determine the quality of your outcome and will determine the time and money consumed by the project.

Allocate wisely

So allocate wisely- that’s an obvious advice! How do you do that! It take both hard and soft skills. You need to be aware of the technology to be used, the implications of design choices that are made as also the implications of sequencing and organizing the tasks. On the soft skills front you need motivating skills. The ability to assess skill levels of personnel and the productivity levels you can expect from a resource. Besides the need for being accurate about the resources, you may have to do jugglery acts about resources that may not be available to you full time.

If you are involved in an multidisciplinary and/or inter-departmental project, you are going to need heavy duty negotiating skill to recruit the right resource from the other department for your project. You may need influence through the project life-time if the person is not allocated full-time to you. Quite often such projects work on the skunk works set up. It is basically a task force that works in a separate area for the project duration.

During the monitoring periods you have additional tasks and corresponding corrective actions in addition to what is required by the project otherwise. You have to keep the motivation levels up and hence constant monitoring of motivation. Besides take frequent look at if the resources applied are the right type in terms of their skills, productivity levels and motivation level. You will need to be very hard headed here. The outcome of your project is your topmost priority. If that calls for a change in resources so be it. Move quickly and get the necessary act done. Communicate effectively so that such moves do not have an adverse effect on the moral of the team. Communication will be a constant burden you will have to bear. Starting from getting the buying-in, estimating, defining success criteria and the intermediate outcomes, the job never stops.

Be realistic

As a project manager you have to be very pragmatic. Be very realistic in assessing who are the right resources. Be realistic in estimating skills, productivity and motivation levels. And that’s just the starting phase of the project. During the lifetime of the project never let sentiment or personal liking colour your judgment about who needs pep talk, who need public appreciation, what results to be communicated to the higher ups and what you need from them. You may have to be demanding but be able to talk in their terms.

While you may have planned your project meticulously, derived a perfect WBS, sequenced the activities wisely and organized the whole plan every effectively, you need to allocate resources that can make the plan a reality. Had these resources been machines you would have estimated their skills, productivity etc very accurately and you would not have to worry about motivating anyone. However, we deal with human beings and skills, productivity and motivation levels can vary widely. How well you are able to apply resources and how well they produce results will determine the quality of your outcome and will determine the time and money consumed by the project.

Allocate wisely

So allocate wisely- that’s an obvious advice! How do you do that! It take both hard and soft skills. You need to be aware of the technology to be used, the implications of design choices that are made as also the implications of sequencing and organizing the tasks. On the soft skills front you need motivating skills. The ability to assess skill levels of personnel and the productivity levels you can expect from a resource. Besides the need for being accurate about the resources, you may have to do jugglery acts about resources that may not be available to you full time.

If you are involved in an multidisciplinary and/or inter-departmental project, you are going to need heavy duty negotiating skill to recruit the right resource from the other department for your project. You may need influence through the project life-time if the person is not allocated full-time to you. Quite often such projects work on the skunk works set up. It is basically a task force that works in a separate area for the project duration.

During the monitoring periods you have additional tasks and corresponding corrective actions in addition to what is required by the project otherwise. You have to keep the motivation levels up and hence constant monitoring of motivation. Besides take frequent look at if the resources applied are the right type in terms of their skills, productivity levels and motivation level. You will need to be very hard headed here. The outcome of your project is your topmost priority. If that calls for a change in resources so be it. Move quickly and get the necessary act done. Communicate effectively so that such moves do not have an adverse effect on the moral of the team. Communication will be a constant burden you will have to bear. Starting from getting the buying-in, estimating, defining success criteria and the intermediate outcomes, the job never stops.

Be realistic

As a project manager you have to be very pragmatic. Be very realistic in assessing who are the right resources. Be realistic in estimating skills, productivity and motivation levels. And that’s just the starting phase of the project. During the lifetime of the project never let sentiment or personal liking colour your judgment about who needs pep talk, who need public appreciation, what results to be communicated to the higher ups and what you need from them. You may have to be demanding but be able to talk in their terms.

Resource Allocation

August 25, 2009
By

While you may have planned your project meticulously, derived a perfect WBS, sequenced the activities wisely and organized the whole plan every effectively, you need to allocate resources that can make the plan a reality. Had these resources been machines you would have estimated their skills, productivity etc very accurately and you would not have to worry about motivating anyone. However, we deal with human beings and skills, productivity and motivation levels can vary widely. How well you are able to apply resources and how well they produce results will determine the quality of your outcome and will determine the time and money consumed by the project.

Allocate wisely

So allocate wisely- that’s an obvious advice! How do you do that! It take both hard and soft skills. You need to be aware of the technology to be used, the implications of design choices that are made as also the implications of sequencing and organizing the tasks. On the soft skills front you need motivating skills. The ability to assess skill levels of personnel and the productivity levels you can expect from a resource. Besides the need for being accurate about the resources, you may have to do jugglery acts about resources that may not be available to you full time.

If you are involved in an multidisciplinary and/or inter-departmental project, you are going to need heavy duty negotiating skill to recruit the right resource from the other department for your project. You may need influence through the project life-time if the person is not allocated full-time to you. Quite often such projects work on the skunk works set up. It is basically a task force that works in a separate area for the project duration.

During the monitoring periods you have additional tasks and corresponding corrective actions in addition to what is required by the project otherwise. You have to keep the motivation levels up and hence constant monitoring of motivation. Besides take frequent look at if the resources applied are the right type in terms of their skills, productivity levels and motivation level. You will need to be very hard headed here. The outcome of your project is your topmost priority. If that calls for a change in resources so be it. Move quickly and get the necessary act done. Communicate effectively so that such moves do not have an adverse effect on the moral of the team. Communication will be a constant burden you will have to bear. Starting from getting the buying-in, estimating, defining success criteria and the intermediate outcomes, the job never stops.

Be realistic

As a project manager you have to be very pragmatic. Be very realistic in assessing who are the right resources. Be realistic in estimating skills, productivity and motivation levels. And that’s just the starting phase of the project. During the lifetime of the project never let sentiment or personal liking colour your judgment about who needs pep talk, who need public appreciation, what results to be communicated to the higher ups and what you need from them. You may have to be demanding but be able to talk in their terms.

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