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How to Write a Project Plan 5/5 - Resource Type & Quantity Required

01.How to Write a Project Plan 1/5 - Long or Short?
02.How to Write a Project Plan 2/5 - Milestones & Tasks
03 How to Write a Project Plan 3/5 - Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)
04.How to Write a Project Plan 4/5 - Detailing Dependencies
05.How to Write a Project Plan 5/5 - Resource Type & Quantity Required

Assuming you have followed the previous 4 parts of this How to Write a Project Plan section, you will now have a good idea of Milestones and Tasks, Dependencies and Work Breakdown Structure. Now it's time to move onto determining what Resource Type and Quantity will be required.

This is an important part of any plan because if you can't get hold of the right resources at the time needed, the project will be undeliverable. Therefore not only does the plan highlight to resource managers when your project will need resources, it also illustrates where the resourcing conflicts are. This is absolutely vital to know at the beginning of a project if possible, because it gives you the time to either recruit, start de-scoping functionality or else escalating the matter upwards for resolution and prioritisation.

Determining what resources will be required and when can be relatively simple if you have experienced Workstream Leads. Often in fact they will point out resource types you will have completely missed, such as DBA's (Database Administrators) or Environment Resources. That is because, even if you have not delivered a project of this nature before, it is highly likely that from their perspective they have seen it all before. Therefore use them to determine what resources and how many they will require to deliver their tasks, rather than you deciding for them.

Once you have an idea of how many resources each workstream will require and for how long it is time to put this into your project plan. As you will see below this is extremely simple to do in Microsoft Project. Simply go to the Resource Names column and type in the names required. This should be in the format of, Name-Comma-Space Name-Comma-Space.

As you will see in the example below this does not have to be specific named individuals. Instead you can put in Contract BA 1. Permie BA 1, as shown. This basically means that you are expected to utilise 1 Permanent Business Analyst and 1 Contract Business Analyst. It is important to make this distinction at this stage as the usually the difference between Contract and Permanent resources are huge and will have a big impact on your project budget.

Write Project Plan, write a Project Plan, an example of how to detail resources in a Project Management Plan

You will also see the following in the example above: Contract BA 2{50%}. This basically means that you will require one Business Analyst only 50% of the time stated. It is important to state this as it will help the resource managers and workstream leads to properly plan their resourcing requirements. Remember these streams will not only be delivering your project, but usually numerous others. And you will find that whilst every Project Manager thinks their project is the most important, Stream Leads have no choice but to try to resource all of them as best they can, unless a Programme Manager makes priority calls on which projects are the most important. I should mention that in the real world this tends not to happen!

How to Write a Project Plan 5/5 Resource Type & Quantity Required - Tip

Workstream Leads are great for determining what resource types will be needed and how many. However don't assume that you shouldn't push back on these estimates. I find Stream Leads tend to seriously over-estimate how many resources will be required to deliver the work because it makes for an easier life for them. So push back and you'll be surprised at how fast estimates can come down. In one recent instance the Test Team admitted they had given an over-estimate. On reviewing it they reduced it from 5 full-time testers for 20 days, down to 2 full-time testers for just 5 days. That certainly helped the project budget as well as the the timeframes!

01.How to Write a Project Plan 1/5 - Long or Short?
02.How to Write a Project Plan 2/5 - Milestones & Tasks
03 How to Write a Project Plan 3/5 - Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)
04.How to Write a Project Plan 4/5 - Detailing Dependencies
05.How to Write a Project Plan 5/5 - Resource Type & Quantity Required

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