How can a business stay profitable? Only as long as the company’s pooled resources optimally utilized can a business show an upward trend. You might have all up-to-date technologies and streamlined processes, but what truly makes you stand out is how you manage your resources. So, what is resource optimization? It is a set of systems and processes that match your available resources (human, systems, financial) with the organization’s requirements to achieve the set goals. Optimization also means achieving the results within a pre-decided timeframe and budget while ensuring that resources are used minimally. And how can you achieve this optimization? Resource management tools work wonders in this aspect. Read on to see how.
How can Resource Management Tools Help?
The first step is to opt for the right resource management tools for your business. The old method was to use multiple or shared spreadsheets to maintain data about resources and various processes. But as the organization scales up, it is not feasible to do this. Resource management tools can help optimize both your company’s resources and processes and offer you profitability.
- All resources can be seen in a centralized directory: Nowadays, as most businesses are going global, organizations have teams spread across locations and even in multiple countries. Usually, the resources are categorized under several departments, teams, or projects. This can lead to various challenges. One is that the management finds it tough to get a bird’s eye view of the overall resources. However, a resource management tool helps in maintaining a centralized directory which includes all your organization’s resources. In addition, you can organize them easily by using several parameters like skill-set, qualifications, experience, availability, etc. The centralized directory is a blessing as you can easily look for the right people for right projects, even if they are located in different cities, countries, or teams.
- Classify the resources in short supply and focus on them
We are talking of the 80/20 rule here. It says that about 80% of the resource limitations result from only 20% of the resources. In other words, these 20% of the resources are the people who are actually your best people and are in high demand for different projects. So, you must fosuc on those 20% resources. Plan their availability and align them on projects in such a way that all bottlenecks, challenges, and delays are taken care of.
- Predictable and steady project deliveries
A good resource management tool offers features such as efficient scheduling, measuring and optimizing, strong process automation, and process governance. This enables you to implement streamlined processes and most successful project plans into reusable templates for any upcoming work. You can also easily eliminate manual processes, redundant tasks, and data silos, which results in saving time and money.
- Real-time and accurate resource utilization reports
Tracking and managing resource utilization helps in preventing any overloaded or under-utilized resources. It also helps in distributing work equally and in fair proportion to all resources. A resource management tool measures utilization across multiple projects, teams, and locations. What’s more? If you need to show the resource utilization to the top management, just pull out easy-to-read reports. Also, the information is always updated in real-time, meaning it is updated when any resource becomes free, or is allocated to a project, etc.
- Organizing projects efficiently
Resource planning helps in organizing several aspects of a project and plan effectively and complete it on time. Resource management tools also help in defining the project requirements, or its scope very clearly. The next step is to determine the time and effort needed to do all those tasks. That time could be total number of hours, days, or months needed to complete a project, and people needed for it. You also need to determine if you see any challenges or constraints and plan for them.
- Amend any project deviations right away
There are projects which go beyond their timelines or decided budget. Reasons could be unexpected challenges or issues. To ensure that such deviations are managed effectively and quickly so that the project does not fail, it’s important to evaluate the risks proactively. Resource management tools help in pulling out comprehensive reports, details dashboards, which can help to spot any deviations or risks. The faster you identify and handle such deviations, the better it is for the success of your project.
- Enhanced Communications
Resource management tools also offer project managers with a better and clearer understanding of status and events happening around. There are many good resource management tools nowadays that provide collaborative features and shareability options. This helps the teams to have clear communication and collaborate more effectively. The flow of work also become simple and smooth.
- Accurate time reporting for smooth resource management
Many teams don’t feel comfortable in sharing their login or log out time or their timesheets. But reporting time precisely is a necessity for optimal process and resource management. With the help of resource management tools, project managers can ease this process to a large extent. This will automate time reporting and you can also fetch various important reports for resource availability and utilization whenever you need.
- A common approach to prioritize the assignments among shared resources
Resource management tools help project managers in designing an effective evaluation process that supports in decision-making. They can examine and monitor any unplanned work that could put a burden on your capacity and people and cause timeline delays. Always remember, if ou overburden your resources, there could be quality issues in the final product and the customer satisfaction levels can also go down.
- Controlling project complexities
Who would mind if tracking resources, their availability, utilization, and calculating productivity becomes easy? Imagine getting comprehensive reports, graphs, and visual representation in some easy steps. And if you could do calendar integration for planning your projects ahead? The resource management tools are designed to take care of all such complexities in a project lifecycle. It helps to respond to unplanned and sudden leave requests and arrange the right replacement instantly without risking the timelines.