Have you ever managed your workforce without any setbacks?
Maybe not! When it comes to resource management, many companies fall short.
The question is, what is the reason behind these roadblocks? Why is it not as smooth as it seems?
Resource management consists of several processes that involve planning, forecasting, scheduling, and optimizing the entire resource lifecycle. The onus is on managers to follow each process diligently. However, they tend to unknowingly make mistakes like inaccurate resource estimation, improper allocation, etc.
This may result in schedule or budget overruns, compromised quality, dissatisfied customers, hampering business profitability and sustainability. Therefore, it is imperative to identify these mistakes head-on and implement measures to avoid them.
This blog highlights the most common resource management mistakes and how modern resource management software can help combat them. Let’s begin:
How Does Resource Management Impact a Project’s Progress?
Resource management has become a part of every organization’s DNA and is included at every step of a project lifecycle, from planning and execution to its completion. Thus, it plays a significant role in the profitability and sustainability of the business.
When a project is in the pipeline stage, resource management helps predict and estimate the number of resources and skillsets required. In addition, it also identifies the excess or shortfall of resources and prevents any last-minute firefighting and hiring of resources. It also ensures the allocation and scheduling of competent and cost-effective resources.
Once a project is in the execution stage, resource management helps tap into the maximum potential of the workforce. It also prevents under/overutilization of resources, ensuring employee productivity and engagement. In addition, it also helps mitigate any resource-related risks like unplanned attrition, absenteeism, etc., in advance.
Thus, resource management is instrumental in the completion of every project stage. But unfortunately, the mistakes made in resource management steps often become a major setback for the project’s progress. The following section entails the most common errors:
7 Common Mistakes in Resource Management
Certain mistakes while managing resources can affect their productivity, performance, and engagement. It also derails project progress and completion. Below listed are a few common ones.
2.1 Inaccurate Estimation and Last-Minute Resource Requisition
Resource estimation is one of the fundamental steps in resource management. Failing to correctly assess resource requirements in terms of skills, competencies, availability, etc., will lead to an inaccurate resource plan. It will, in turn, result in suboptimal resource productivity. Thus, leading to client dissatisfaction, delivery delays, and project overruns.
In addition, if project managers raise the resource request at the eleventh hour, resource managers will not have enough lead time to identify suitable resources. Therefore, it will lead to last-minute firefighting, causing delayed or incompetent allocation, etc.
2.2 Not Forecasting Future Project Demands
Managers need to forecast the future project demands in advance to plan projects proactively. If it is not done on time, managers will face difficulty identifying shortfalls or excess resources in advance. This will lead to last-minute firefighting resulting in wrongful hiring.
Further, the lack of clarity on the project resource demand led to eleventh-hour hurdles and further delays. As a result, managers hire high-cost or under/over skilled resources. This affects the project’s budget, quality, and output.
2.3 Improper Resource Allocation and Scheduling
Not assessing resources’ skills, competency levels, availability, etc., meticulously before assigning tasks may lead to wrongful allocation and scheduling. In addition, it can directly impact employee productivity, project budget, and other aspects.
However, double booking any resource or assigning employees with mismatched skill sets is one of the significant mistakes in resource management. It lowers workforce morale and causes burnout. This also causes delays and reduces project quality.
2.4 Inadequate Resource Utilization and Tracking
An essential step of resource planning is to ensure that your employees are not overburdened or sitting idle on the bench. When managers fail to track and monitor resources’ utilization rates at regular intervals, it leads to the resource over/underutilization.
Over/underutilization of resources can lower workforce productivity and performance. The underutilized employees exhibit disengagement as they are not tapped into their maximum potential. Similarly, overutilized employees face burnout.
2.5 Absence of Resource-related Risks Mitigation Plan
Managers often fail to implement suitable mitigation plans for resource constraints like unplanned attrition, skill shortages, prolonged absences, etc. As a result, they turn into severe issues. Further, the lack of proper succession planning and hiring strategies can result in skill gaps leading to last-minute firefighting and wrongful hiring.
Thus, failure to assess resource-related risks and create a mitigation plan in advance can be added as one of a resource manager’s significant mistakes. This will negatively impact the project resulting in delays and affecting the organization’s bottom line.
2.6 Ineffective Ramp-up and Ramp-down Management
Managers need to balance ramp-up and ramp-down activities for successful project execution and maintaining resource health index. However, project managers often skip informing the resource managers about ramp-up & ramp-down activities. As a result, it causes numerous consequences.
Ineffective ramp-down management can increase the bench size. Since benched resources are non-billable and do not bring any revenue to the organization, it deters their growth and lowers their morale. On the other hand, when managers fail to assess the sudden ramp-up, it can lead to last-minute firefighting and billing losses.
2.7 Failure to Future-proof Workforce
One of the significant tasks of managers is to prepare the workforce to meet future project demands and market trends. However, when managers fail to future-proof the workforce, it hinders the employees’ chances of diversifying their skillset and exploring their true potential.
As a result, it can lead to employee turnovers, increased overhead costs, benched resources, etc. In addition, without proper future-proofing methods, organizations will not be able to remain competitive in the market, affecting their profit margins and sustainability.
Now that you are familiar with common resource management mistakes and their impact, let’s understand how resource management software can help combat them and achieve exceptional results.
How can Resource Management Software Help?
Here is how Saviom’s robust resource management software can help overcome the pitfalls effectively,
- Provides 360-degree visibility into pipeline projects to predict future resource requirements ahead of the curve.
- Helps identify resource shortages or excess by performing the demand vs. capacity gap analysis and implementing corrective measures.
- Facilitate the tracking of resource utilization levels using heatmaps, forecast vs. actual reports, etc., and ensure optimal and productive utilization.
- Provides project vacancy and bench reports to ensure effective bench management.
- Help managers schedule training, reskilling, and upskilling programs to future-proof the workforce
“To Err is Human.” Even though mistakes are inevitable, they can be prevented to a certain extent by taking measures proactively. Using advanced resource management software will help organizations be aware of the most common resource-related mistakes, rectify them and ensure the project’s success.
What measures do you follow to avoid these mistakes?