Join Bonnie Biafore for an in-depth discussion in this video Planning resources at a high level, part of Project Management Foundations: Schedules.
If your project needs more than a handful of people. A Staffing Plan can help you line up the right folks. To build a staffing plan, you need to know the skills required to perform project tasks. And a high level estimated schedule of when tasks occur. One way to build a staffing plan is in a Spreadsheet. You estimate how long you expect big sections of the project to take, and the skills needed for each of those sections. With this information, start by listing the skills needed in the cells in the first column.
Next, use the rest of the columns for time periods. Typically weeks or months, depending on the overall length of the project. Finally, you can fill in the cells at the intersection of a skill and time period, with the number of people you need with that particular skill during that time period. Another way to build a staffing plan is with a scheduling program. With this approach, you set-up resources based on the required skills you identified. With the employee orientation project the skill based resources include an Instructional Designer, Content Developers, an Editor, Web Developers, and so on. Then you assign these skill based resources to the tasks in your schedule. You can look at the schedule to see how many people you need with each skill, during each time period.
For example, this view, shows the number of hours of work allocated, per month, for each skill based resource. You can use a staffing plan to determine how many resources you need to find. You can also use it to determine where to get your resources and when you need to start the procurement process. First, review the staffing plan to look for potential resource shortages. For instance, in the sample project, if you expect to get two content developers.
But the initial staffing plan shows that you need three of them, you can adjust the duration of tasks to reflect the resources you expect to get. Next, review the skills and timing in the staffing plan to determine whether you can use resources in your organization, or have to go outside the company. Third, work back from when resources start their assignments to figure out when you need to start the procurement process. A staffing plan is a work in progress. As you get commitments for resources, you can add details like pay rate and availability.
Then you can use these details as you fine-tune your schedule. A staffing plan provides a high-level view of a project's resource requirements. This gives you the information you need to develop a realistic project schedule.
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- Identifying the work that needs to be done
- Adding milestones
- Delaying or overlapping tasks with lag and lead time
- Assigning resources
- Balancing workloads
- Adding buffers and baselines to the schedule
- Uncovering and correcting out schedule problems<br><br>
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