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Audience

Project managers and resource managers

Description

Many project teams have more projects than you have resources to perform the work. If you need an easy way to see what everyone on your team is working on, then this training is mission critical. Resource managers, project managers, executives, and even team members will find this session useful.

Benefits

  • Learn how to view your own workload and the allocation of other team members
  • Understand how to balance the workload across all projects
  • Leverage the suggest a resource function when needed
  • Forecast resource demand on upcoming projects

Key Points


Transcript

One of the key benefits of working with Project Insight, an enterprise project and portfolio management software is the ability to know what your resources are working on and when, how booked they are and to be able to adjust their workloads.

As all of your projects and resources are contained in one integrated database, this centralizes all of projects and tasks, enabling you to see what all your team is currently working on and what they are forecasted or planned to be working on.

Resource Managers can view over or under-utilized resources and balance workloads.

Project managers and schedulers can see what the resources are working on and know who is available to work on their projects.

When your team members are not overbooked, they become more self-sufficient. They see what tasks they are to work on and when they are due, without the stress of having too much on their plates.

The dashboard has an executive resource allocation chart which shows the overall capacity of the organization. The orange line on top indicates the number of hours your team has available for work or their total capacity.

The yellow line indicates what work is planned.

So at a glance, you can see that in this organization, the resources are under-utilized. Management can view this dashboard and know instantaneously what is going on in their organization with their resources.

This chart has even more data and functionality. Each color on the bar charts is showing is the data for a different skill set or resource type/role.

You can click on a resource type/role in the legend to toggle whether or not to include that on the bar chart.

You can also click on the Display Options icon on that chart to change some of the options.

Viewing Resource Allocations

First, let’s turn to how team members can view their work and resource allocation.

As a team member, you can login to Project Insight and hover on the My Insight menu option and click Home Screen.

The Home Screen is a very popular form that a lot of team members use.

Right from this form, you can see how many tasks you are assigned to, how many issues, to dos, approvals and so on.

Click on Work List to see a consolidated list of everything assigned to you, including tasks, issues, to dos and more.

That is one way to see all your work. It is also a best practice for each team member to be aware of your work assignments but also your allocation.

My Allocation

To do that, click the X icon to close this form.

Hover on My Insight and click My Allocation.

With our project management software, you are able to very easily see your own resource allocation.

Having access to this information enables you to more proactively manage your workloads instead of relying on the resource manager or project manager.

You will be able to be a more effective and active member of the team. This also increases the opportunity for issues or challenges to be exposed and addressed before it affects the project scope, schedule or budget.

You can view your allocation from anywhere in Project Insight with one click.

The My Project Resource Allocation form shows you what your work week looks like.

The first line on the report is a graph to visually and easily show you what your allocation is for the week.

The black line represents the amount of availability or capacity that you have for each day that week.

The availability data comes from your work calendar. Work calendars are covered in detail in another training session called, Setting Up Global and Resource Work Calendars. Essentially a work calendar sets up the number of hours per day you are available for work.

You can see that there is no black line on Sunday or Saturday.

This means your work calendar was set up so that you do not have work hours on those days. There is no black line on the graph for that day because there are no work hours available.

Hover on the black line for any of the other days. An information layer appears and the data elements that shows is the number of hours that you are available to work on that day, how many hours you are scheduled to work and your percent allocation.

The green part of the graph represents active project work.

Right below the graph is the number of hours of active project work.

You can see the active project work visually on the graph as well the actual number.

The cumulative amount of work over the week shows on the last line.

That way you can see as the total amount of work you are scheduled to perform as the week progresses.

This is the default view you will see when you first click on My Allocation.

It is recommended that as part of your daily or weekly process, that you view your allocation for the week and notify your project manager or resource manager if you are under-booked or over-allocated.

Normally, your project managers and resource managers will schedule you so that you are not ever over-booked. However, as you know, things happen on projects and tasks may slip or priorities may change. So this is a good way to see any over-allocations immediately so you can see problems and get them rectified.

View Projects on My Allocation

To easily see additional details about the work you are assigned to, click on the arrow next to your name.

All the projects that are active and that have tasks assigned to you this week will show.

You can click anywhere in the header column header, such as in the name, and drag the column right to make it wider or left to make it smaller.

You can see the project names.

Hover your cursor over one of the lines for a project.

The highlight color for the line changes so you know that you are looking at the data for this project.

There are two rows by default: the Work and the Work Cumulative for each project.

The data for each project is added up to give you the information shown on the graph and the total Work and Work Cumulative for the week for you.

View Tasks on My Allocation

You can drill down one level further, to see all the tasks you have been assigned to within each project.

Click on the arrow next to the project name.

Tasks that you have scheduled for this week will show.

Hover on the task name.

The Work and the Work Cumulative appears for this specific task.

Again, if you had more than one task in the project scheduled for this week, the work from all the tasks will roll up to the total for the project.

In this training session, this user is a system administrator so they have this admin column and different options available on it. However, regular team members will not have these options. The Admin column would just be blank.

Click on the arrow next to the resource name to collapse all that detail.

Change Data on My Allocation Form

This Project Resource Allocation report is very flexible and each individual user can change the data that is displayed to do things like view your allocation farther out into the future than just this week or look at different data, such as your % allocation or work that may be scheduled for planning projects and not just active projects.

To change what information is displayed, click the Display Options icon.

Click on the drop down for the Dynamic Date Range.

Click Next Week instead of just Current Week.

Maybe you also decide that you do not need that cumulative column showing. If you want to turn that off, click on the Row Selections section to expand that out.

Click on Cumulative under Show Work Hours to uncheck it.

You can see in this section all the other types of data you could show on the report.

For now, keep it simple and only show the graph and work hours.

Click the Row Selections section to collapse that.

Click the Update Display icon.

Your allocation for next week now appears.

And it is showing only the work for each day and the graph.

Saving Changes to Your Default Allocation View

Project Insight will remember these display options settings and run the report settings the next time you select it.

However, any date ranges you set are not remembered. The My Allocation report was designed so a team member can see his or her allocation for the current week but as you saw, you can change it easily.

Over-Allocations

One thing you will notice that is different for your allocation next week versus this week is that there are red bars on the graph.

This indicates that this resource is over-allocated on those days that those red bars are showing.

Remember the black line indicates your capacity or availability according to your work calendar. Anything under the line is okay, it is green, anything over the line is over capacity and is shown in red.

Over-allocations could happen for a number of different reasons such as a task was delayed or is taking longer than planned, so it causes over-allocations.

There are also some settings in Project Insight that your Administrators can configure that specify whether or not to allow over-allocations when your project managers and schedulers are adding and editing tasks and resources.

Expand the left navigation.

Click on Administration.

Click on Projects.

There is a setting in here called Enable Error on Over Allocation.

If this is checked on, then whenever you are editing a task or adding a new task on the project task list or Gantt Chart view, and you assign a resource to that task who does not have enough capacity to do the work in the time period, then you will be presented with an error message telling you that the resource is over-allocated.

The next three options set whether or not the over allocation is allowed and if so, who can over-ride the message and create the over-allocation anyway.

You can read through those options and choose the one that is applicable to your organization.

If you do not want anyone to override resource allocation errors, then leave all those choices unchecked.

Just a word of caution, at least initially when you are implementing Project Insight, you should allow someone to override the allocation errors. As your use of the system and your process matures, then could turn it off if you require.

To see how that works, hover on My Insight and click the My Allocation option.

Collapse the left navigation.

Click on the arrow next to your name to expand it out and see the projects.

Click on the arrow next to one of the projects to expand it out and see the tasks.

Click the Edit icon for a task.

You are able to do this, because you are the project manager assigned to the project. Team Members are not able to edit this.

Click on Resources.

Increase the Work for your resource so that it exceeds your capacity of 8 hours per day.

Click Save.

You will see the red messages that appear indicating this resource will be over-allocated if you make those changes.

You do have an option, to override Allocation Conflicts, because your system administrator turned that option on.

Click on it and click Save to save that over-allocation.

That over-allocation now shows in red on the graph.

You may have to refresh the report to see those updates.

Whether or not you allow over-allocation is going to depend on your business process and rules.

Automatic Notifications of Over-allocations

You can also set up automatic notifications of over-allocations.

Expand the left navigation.

Click on Notifications in the Administration section, there is also an option to Enable Over Allocation Auto-Alerts.

If you check that on, then you are also able to set the over-allocation period. For example, if you enter 1 week, then you will receive a nightly email, if the total allocations for the entire week exceed the available capacity for the entire week. You could do it on a daily basis instead, but it is more common to manage over-allocations at weekly level or monthly level instead.

You can also set how far out into the future you want Project Insight to check for over allocations, which is the future week’s setting.

You can also set auto-alerts for over-allocations.

Click on System-wide Auto-Alerts.

Scroll to the bottom.

You can see there are default auto-alerts set up for over-allocations on projects. The alerts get sent to the project manager and the project scheduler.

Even though you may choose not to allow over-allocations, in real life tasks may slip or take longer than expected, and as your team members update that information it can cause over-allocations inadvertently.

Resource Allocation Report

For project managers, schedulers, resource managers and executives, there is this same kind of resource allocation report but it will show all resources across your enterprise and has more options and more flexibility.

To access that, click on the Reports icon.

Click on Resource.

Collapse the left navigation.

This resource report option only shows if you are a project manager on a project, whether it is an active, planned project or some other kind of project state or you have been assigned the Resource Allocation Viewer role. It is not available to regular team members or to project schedulers.

If you do have access, you will see an option to create a project resource allocation report.

Click on that.

At first, this Display Options form will look similar to the Display Options from the My Allocation form, but on this enterprise resource management report there are additional options.

For example, these first three filtering sections, Resource/Team Member Filtering Options, Company & Contract Filtering Options and Specific Project Filtering Options are not available on individual My Allocation form.

You will see more detail on those options in a moment.

Changing Dates and other Filter Criteria for the Report Allocation Report

The first option for selecting dates is the same on both reports.

Click in the drop down for Date Range Type.

You can choose All Dates, Dynamic Dates or Specific Dates.

Normally, on an enterprise resource allocation report, you would not choose All Dates. All Dates would give you all data in the system and you would probably find that it would just be too much information to use reasonably.

Dynamic dates allow you to save this report and then when you run it later on, the date ranges for the report will change automatically based on the current date and dynamic date range option you chose.

For example, select the Next Week option.

If you save this report with this date range option and then run it later on, it will always know to display the data for the next week’s period automatically. You do not have to make any changes to the report. This saves you time and creates consistency.

Click in the Date Range Type drop down. You can also hard code in a specific set of dates that will not ever change by select the Specific Dates option.

You will see the display changed to allow you to enter in or select from a calendar what specific date range you want applied to this report.

Click in the Date Range Type drop down and select Dynamic Dates for now and set the dynamic date range to the current week.

More information on date range options on reports can be found in the Creating and Running Project and Portfolio Reports training session.

Click on the Row Selection header to expand that section out.

You can click on the header bar of the layer and drag it around.

This section identifies the different rows that display.

Show Graph By Hrs, Show Work Hours and Show Work Hours Cumulative are all checked.

That is the three default rows that display.

It is common to turn off the display of the Work Hours Cumulative.

Click on the check box for Cumulative to uncheck that row.

Another common type of data you may want to show is the Percent Allocation. Some of your management or executive will not care about the number of work hours. However, they will care about Percent Allocation. Let’s run that report.

Click on Show Percent Allocation.

Click the Update Display icon.

The Cumulative Work row has been removed and now the graph, work hours and percent allocation per work day displayed.

It is still showing for the current week, because that was the dynamic date range you entered.

However, instead of just your resource allocation showing, it is showing the allocation for all resources including any inactive resources or placeholder resources.

You can click on the arrow next to a resource to expand and see all the projects that resource is working on this week.

Click on the arrow next to a project to expand and see all the tasks that resource is working on.

To quickly collapse everything back to just show resource details, hover on the tools menu and click Collapse All.

Filter by Department, Company, Resource Type/Role or Project Manager

You can also choose to filter the data on this report by some other common options.

Click on the Display Options icon.

Click on the Resource/Team Member Filtering Options header to expand out that section.

This is where you can filter by the Departments, Companies, Resource Type/Roles, individual Resource or by Project Manager.

If you have a lot of users set up in Project Insight, then it is a best practice to run this report by a departmental or some other kind of filter to keep a limited date range. Otherwise, you may get so much data that it is unwieldy.

One common report is to show only data from projects that you are the project manager on.

In Project Manager drop down, select yourself.

Click on the white space of the form to exit out of that field.

Click the Update Display icon.

The report narrowed to show only resources on your projects, because that is who you are concerned with.

Run the Resource Report by Daily, Weekly, or Monthly Totals

Maybe you want to see the forecast of work for all your resources for the next quarter.

Click the Display Options icon.

The software remembered what sections you had expanded the last time you ran this report.

In Project Manager drop down, click on yourself to remove that.

You want to see all Resources.

Click on the Resource/Team Member Filtering Options to collapse that section.

In the Dynamic Date Range drop down, select Next Quarter.

You could just run the report like this, showing allocations by individual days but just for the entire quarter instead of the week. However, it may be more valuable to view a larger date range like quarter, month or week to view totals at a higher level.

To set that, click on the Other Report Options header to expand that section out.

You have options to show Daily Columns, Weekly Columns, Monthly Columns and even a Report Total.

You could actually check all these and show all that data on the same report if you wish.

In this scenario though, you only want to see monthly totals.

Uncheck the Show Daily Columns

Check Show Monthly Columns.

Also, you want to see totals for the entire quarter so check the Show Report Total.

Click the Update Display icon.

The report shows the total values for the next three months.

And the total for the period, which is the quarter.

Now if you hover your cursor over the black line on the graph, it is showing the data for that entire month instead of by individual day. The graph becomes a monthly graph instead of a daily graph.

Changing the Graph

You will notice on the graph that the line indicating availability is not completely even across the months. That is because the line is an indicator of the number of hours of availability in the time period.

The number of work per hours in a month will vary from one to the next. First of all, different months have a different number of working days, which will affect the number of work hours in the period. Resources may also have holidays, vacations or other time off in the month, so the work hours for that month will be fewer than the next month.

The black availability line reflects those differences because it is based on hours.

One month may have more availability than the next and that is shown visually on the graph.

You can change that.

Click the Display Options icon.

Click on the Row Selection header to expand that section out.

You have the option to show graph by hours checked.

Uncheck that.

Click on Show Graph by %.

Click the Update Display Options icon.

When you do that, the graph now represents percentages rather than work hours.

The black line represents 100% and becomes consistent across all the months, because you are measuring in percent values versus work hour values.

This gives you the flexibility to decide which visual presentation style best suits the needs of your audience.

Resource Allocation Display Options

To go over a few more common settings for this report, click on the Display Options.

Click on the Row Selections to collapse that.

Click on the Other Report Options header to expand it.

There is a Rollup By option here.

Click on the drop down.

By default, you are viewing resource allocation by Resource and then by Project and then by Task.

There are other ways you can roll up data and view it and they are listed here.

A common one is rollup by Department.

Click on that and click the Run Report icon.

Now you are seeing monthly totals rolled up by department.

Another common rollup is by Resource Type/Role Default.

Click on the Display Options.

Click in the Rollup By dropdown, and select Resource Type Role/Default -> Resource -> Project -> task.

Click on the Run report icon.

Now you are seeing the resource report rolled up to the Resource Type/Role. This is the default Resource Type/Role assigned to the user in their user profile.

Resource Allocation Display Options – Row Selections

You can also include other data on the row.

Click on the Row Selections header to expand that out.

These are all the rows you can view on the report.

Click Capacity.

And click % Allocation.

Click the Update Display icon.

The report is showing totals by Resource Type/Role.

It is also showing Capacity and % Allocation.

You can click on the arrow on a Resource Type Role and drill down to individual resources and projects and tasks.

Balancing the Workload

Project Managers can view allocations in various ways with this report. This is not just a report, it can be used to easily balance your workload.

This is a quick and easy way to view allocations and quickly make adjustments to address any issues right from the same form.

Click the Display Options icon.

Click in the Rollup By drop down and select Resource -> Project -> Task again.

Uncheck Show Monthly and Columns and Show Report Total.

Check Show Daily Columns again.

Click the Other Report Options to collapse that section.

In Row Selections, uncheck everything except the Show Graph and Show Work Hours option.4

Click the Row Selection to collapse that section.

Click on the Specific Project Filtering Options section to expand that section out.

There are various options in here. If you want to see how planned projects are going to impact your current resource workload, you can also include Planning Phase projects by clicking on Include Projects in the Planning Phase.

Click the Update Display icon.

Now you will see a gray bar on the graph.

The green bar on the graph represents active project work.

The gray bar represents that planned projects.

You can see that if you initiate some of the planned projects with the current dates and resources, you will have some over-allocations.

This is where you can start to use the load balancing.

Saving a Report

First, save this report so you can easily run it again.

Scroll to the bottom of the report and click Save Report.

Enter the report name such as Resource Allocations for next quarter.

Click Save.

More information on saving a report is available in the reports training session.

Suggest a Resource

Another way to perform resource balancing is to utilize Suggest a Resource.

Click the Suggest a Resource icon.

Project Insight analyzes the task information, looking at the Start and End Dates, the number of Work Hours and the Resource Type/Role required.

The Resource Type Role is an important column in Project Insight. You identify the Resource Type/Role that is required to do work on a task, then that information is for resource management. It can also be used for forecasting and planning. Remember, you ran a resource allocation report by resource type/role.

If you have different team members doing different jobs in your organization, this is an important feature for your project and portfolio management system to have.

You can also view the Current Task Resource Assignment details for that entire period.

Among other details, it shows the work information for each individual day.

Scroll to the bottom of the form.

After analyzing that data, Project Insight shows you the resources that have that same Resource Type/Role that the task requires.

They are listed in order of availability.

Resources that are available or have the most availability in that time period are listed first.

Click on one to re-assign the work to this resource.

Scroll back to the top.

Click Save.

That work is now re-assigned.

Drag and Drop

Another way to re-assign work is to drag and drop it right on this form.

To do that, click on the Move icon next to a task.

Drag it to the resource that you want to assign it to.

Drop it.

Click Ok to the confirmation message.

The drag and drop is a really quick way to re-assign or even assign tasks in the first place.

The visual display lets you very rapidly identify problem areas and correct them.

Drag and Drop by Resource Type/Role

Another way to full utilize the Resource Type/Role feature is to do resource management based on a specific resource type/role.

For example, maybe you are the PMO director and you need to assign work to all your project managers.

Click the Display Options icon.

Click on the Resource/Team Member Filtering Options to expand that section.

In the Resource Type/Role drop down, select Project Manager.

Click on the white space of the form to exit out of that field.

Click the Update Display icon.

You can see all the project managers.

Click on the arrow next to a resource to see the projects.

Click on the arrow next to the projects to see the tasks.

Click on a task and drag and drop it to re-assign it from one project manager to another.

Project Score

One challenge that project managers and resource managers often run into, is which project should be given priority.

If you do not have enough resources to complete the required work in a certain time frame, how do you decide which project gets the resources and which project may have to get rescheduled.

Project Insight has a scorecard feature that enables you to assign a score or priority to each project based on pre-defined criteria.

Creating and using a scorecard is covered in detail in another training session, called Prioritize and Score Your Projects however, that score becomes important on the resource allocation report.

You need to see that score so you know which project to give resources to and which projects to reschedule.

Click the Display Options icon.

Click on the Column Selection Options header to expand that out.

In the available columns, scroll down to the column called Project Scorecard Score.

Double click on it.

Click the Update Display icons.

Click on the Project Scorecard Score Header to drag it wider.

You can see that score and use that as your guideline to assign resources.

Resource Allotments

Project Insight also has the concept of Resource Allotments. What this allows you to do, especially if a project is in a planning state, is to assign a number of hours to resources associated with this project for a given time period without assigning them to specific tasks.

You can use this to estimate how much work you think a resource is going to work on a project at a very high level and then measure that against the planned work that you determined with your detailed work break down structure and the available work.

To see how that works, click on the Software Development project.

Hover on the Resources and select Resource Allotments.

You can enter in the allotment scale. Typically, you enter allotments on a weekly or monthly basis.

If you have done some detailed planning on your project, then you can click on the Allotment Scale drop down and select the Month – Project or Week – Project, and Project Insight automatically sets the Allotment Range based on the dates in the project schedule.

If you have not done your detailed planning, you can select month or week and manually type in the range based on how long you think the project will run.

Click Month – Project.

Now you can enter in time you want to allot to each resource to work on the project.

For example, enter 70 hours for Andrea for a few months.

Click Save.

Hover on My Insight and click My Allocation.

Click the Display Options icon.

Click the Row Selections option to expand out that section.

Click on Show Allotted Hours

Show Work v Allotted

Show Allotted v Available

Click the Row Selections option to collapse that section.

Click in the drop down for the Dynamic Date Range and change it to Current Quarter.

Click in the Other Report Options section to expand that out.

Uncheck Show Daily Columns.

Check Show Monthly Columns.

Click the Run Report option.

Now you can see those allotment values and compare them to your scheduled work and any availability.

That covers the resource allocation and management functions of Project Insight.


Online 5/19/2015
Updated on: