The Capacity Planning Template for Smart Pipeline Management

March 21, 2018 By

We’ve all experienced work-related anxiety. But when it comes to your project delivery, this anxiety is heightened with people-centric uncertainties. Picture this. You’ve just secured yourself multiple contracts. You’ve even documented a comprehensive project portfolio listing out the projects that will add business value. But now, you’re suddenly unsure if you actually have the right quantity of qualified hands. What choice are you left with when you don’t? At this late hour, you can’t afford to decline new opportunities. So it’s either hasty hires or dumping new work on the remaining members, even as your dream team shrinks.

This move lowers productivity because your staff were unexpectedly overburdened. Not only do they now have to deal with any additional task changes but they also have to intensify their efforts on them. This, assuming their skills and knowledge help them pick up the pace!

To prevent this frequent project derailment in future, it’s time to consider planning your resource capacity against the pipelined work. If you’d like to get the basics right before transitioning onto a smart resource management solution, the capacity planning templatethe capacity planning template is your best bet. Given how familiar the majority of us are with Excel, you’d have no trouble knowing how project and resource information can be updated as per project requirement.

Use this post to discover what demand forecasting and capacity management really involve!

The Resource Capacity Versus Demand Forecasting Gauge

Planning for your future projects sharpens your decision-making ability. It allows you to take a proactive stance when it comes to tracking changes in people’s movement in the market.
While demand forecasting categorizes your future projects by their nature, length and complexity, capacity planning helps you identify and deploy resources needed to meet these demands.

Though your staff aren’t physically bound to their cubicles, frequent attrition and turnover rates are a cause for concern. The resulting talent deficits create a resource imbalance across the enterprise cyclically. Moreover, your skills inventory becomes outdated by the time information on missing resources is relayed.

Read on to the next section to prevent delivering piecemeal projects. What’s more, use actionable data to generate transparency in your reporting mechanisms!

An image showing 2 managers discussing the reports they have extracted from the capacity planning template.

Comprehensive View of Template Columns

The capacity planning template lets you practice smart resource allocation. It presents an overview of your staff and the projects they’re allocated in a standard format.
This way, for those times your resources aren’t available, you can find and allocate the next line of skilled staff on standby. Meanwhile, you can even schedule tasks for your resources to take up upon their return. Here’re the particulars you can expect to work with:

1. Demand Collation

Demand forecasting studies the likelihood and nature of project occurrence. In your pipeline, you can expect quite the diversity. You can have both projects similar to ones worked on in the past or completely different themes. As such, this column can be subdivided by

  • Nature
  • Estimated start and end dates
  • Total input hours needed
  • Skills Utilized

This works for projects several months down the line, as you always need to be on the lookout for the right and relevant people. That way, if there’s a shortage or excess of a particular skills set, you can accordingly reshape your enterprise.

2. Start/ End dates

This signifies when the project starts. Based on the completion length, the end dates can be estimated, which gives a realistic timeframe for project managers to set their expectations by. You can fill in the new start and end dates for individual tasks if schedule disruptions occur, so that information remains current despite ad hoc changes.

3. Project Manager

This is essentially who signs off on the project and justifies the business value it brings in.

4. Task

A project can be broken down by the tasks in order to factor in any secondary or additional skills from several departments at once. For example, in a software project, there will be developers, testers and technical authors to document the instruction manual. These would need IT and marketing departments to create and promote the final product, respectively.

Resource Capacity Particulars

1. Team Information

  • Name and role: The name of your staff and their job profile.
  • Department: The department function they’re part of. For example, a tester is a technical role in the IT department.
  • FTE: The full-time equivalent of each staff based on their resourcing type and hours invested.
  • Job Type/Emp Contract: An overview of the resourcing contract, be it full-time or part-time staff. This gives out different availability hours and prevents over or under allocation.
  • Total Requests: The number of times resource requests for a particular member was noted.
  • Total hours: These are the hours worked by your staff against their allocations.
  • Location: This is a primary consideration to help you filter out resources based on their geographical mobility.

2. Project Information

  •  Project Type: The nature of your project lets you determine which department should take over.
  • Resources: This refers to your staff who are further classified by their skills, availability, utilization rates and level of experience/ seniority.
  • Methodology: Whether you recently adopted an agile framework or rely on a traditional method, both instances can be recorded here.

Now that you have a fair idea of what is proposed here, you can have a bird’s eye-view of all your staff needed to execute projects regardless of the business landscape. However, despite your familiarity with Excel, you may struggle with extensive computations on spreadsheets. For example, it’s easy to calculate staff utilization rates for small and mid-sized teams. But as you add more staff and departments to your template, a simple math function becomes a time-consuming affair.

Over time, you’ll find yourself wanting a sturdier companion for your journey into the fascinating world of smart Enterprise Resource Management. With Saviom, you can mix and match your resources to your organizational priorities. After all, with a single window of truth across the enterprise, visibility over staff and work becomes a reality! And what’s more, you’re prepared for the future with a resource pool that’s engaged, driven and productive irrespective of market volatility.

What are you waiting for? Fill out the form and download your free capacity plan templatedownload your free capacity plan template today!

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The Capacity Planning Template for Smart Pipeline Management

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Namratha Mohan

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