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Developing Effective Processes
We need to measure the effectiveness of resource planning, scheduling, and utilization so that lessons can be learned before moving on to future projects.
To determine if resources have been planned effectively, we need to compute the planned versus the actual metrics for each of the resources. The following formula may be used:
1. Planning Effectiveness = quantity of planned resources / quantity of resources actually utilized
The above metric should be close to 1. If it is more than 1, then the project was over-planned, and, conversely, if it's less than 1 then the project was under-planned. By the same token, we can infer that the project execution was excellent if the above metric was more than 1, and if the metric was less than 1, the project execution was poor.
A similar formula works for scheduling various stages of the project:
2. Scheduling Effectiveness = total number of resources / number of resources released according to schedule
Again, if the result is close to 1, you did well. If it is more than 1, the project was not effectively scheduled. As before, we may also infer that the project execution was poor if the above metric is more than 1.
We can measure resource utilization using the formula:
3. Utilization Effectiveness = total clock hours available for project execution / total hours actually utilized
Clock hours are calculated by taking the number of resources, multiplied by the number of shifts worked, multiplied by the number of hours per shift.
The above metric should be close to 1. If it is more than 1, the project did not effectively utilize the resources, and as before the project execution was poor. Of course, it is impossible to utilize 100 percent of the clock hours available during the period of a project execution due to absenteeism, equipment breakdown, and so on. Normally, the organization would have a norm for this metric and the result can be compared with that norm in order to draw meaningful conclusions.
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Resources are always limited. They need to be planned, scheduled, and utilized carefully. We also need to measure the performance of the resources and resource management effectiveness so that lessons can be learned and preventive actions implemented for future projects. You also want to take advantage of the best practices unearthed during the project execution.
For more information on resource planning tools, read Ronda Bowen's article Easy-to-Use Resource Planning Tools.
Resource Management in Software Project Management
- Managing Your Resources Throughout Your Software Project - Part I
- Resource Management Planning For Software Projects
- Resource Management in Software Project Management - Part III
- Resource Management: Utilizing Your Resources Effectively, Part IV
- Resource Management in Software Project Management - Part V
- Performance Measurement of Resource Planning and Utilization - Part VI