Many project managers know the pain of getting right resources at right time. And, when the necessity is for bulk requirements, then the problem increases to manifolds. Even on some occasions, due to resource crunch, the project gets delayed, and managers have to face the music from the customers. So, it is important to give appropriate attention to resource planning by accurately assessing the project’s scope to estimate the number of resources required to complete the work.
Though, many companies have dedicated resource pools which provide an opportunity to directly acquire the required resources from there. But that may not be the same case in all companies, there may not be a resource pool or very few resources are in the pool. In such organization, the project manager has to run pillar to post knocking the doors of various departments to get the required resources internally. The problem increases, even more, when it is a matrix-based organization where the department heads have the complete authority over the resources working under them.
Initially, a project starts with few pre-assigned core members, but after the planning stage, more resources are required to carry out the project’s work. Depending on the size and budget of the project the number of required resources may vary up to a larger extent.
Let’s discuss the scenarios when additional resources are needed in the project.
While adding the required resources, you need to carefully handle the following risks associated with it.
As we discussed, it is crucial to have additional resources when needed. But resource acquisition is not a cakewalk, especially in the matrix-based organizations, where proper negotiation is the key to getting the required number of resources.
Negotiation is the art of bargaining effectively to get the required resources as per the requirement. The level of negotiations depends on case to case basis.
In the case of a matrix-based organization, you have to negotiate with the functional managers, while in other cases you may need to negotiate with your sponsors.
Let’s discuss, as a project manager with whom you need to negotiate.
Functional Managers – For a Matrix-based organization, you need to negotiate with the functional managers. Discuss on the number of resources and the period in which they are going to utilize in your project. Take the approval to authorize the resources to work on your project until they are released from the responsibilities.
Selecting the right candidate is one of the crucial tasks to do. The decision has a great impact on the project’s success; few bad choices can put your project at risk. There are many important criteria which need to be taken care while selecting a resource for the project.
Let’s discuss those criteria which require utmost care while selecting the resources.
Apart from the above criteria, you may consider some other factors while selecting the candidates. You may require some resources having knowledge and experience of working onsite. Also, look for the candidate’s having experience in any particular tool as per the requirement.
Once the resources are selected, keep a close tab on the process until they joined the team. There are many instances observed where the finalized candidates changed their plan to join the team at the last minute, which surely affects your ongoing project’s work.
At times, you may not get the required number of resources physically available to work with your existing team. In that case, you can obtain virtual resources available from another location. The availability of latest communication technologies such as e-mail, phone, video calls, web meeting and much more helps you to easily manage the virtual team. These days, many companies prefer their employee to work from the comfort of their home.