What is resource planning? Good question. Depending on whom you're talking to, resource planning can mean something different to just about everyone. So for this article we'll just discuss resource planning in general terms.
A great way to think of resource planning is the organization of people, equipment and other critical assets to complete a task. This could be a task for school, organization or in the workplace. It's used for managing many simple tasks and also complex projects, like building a spaceship. Most of the time you won't need to plan out simple tasks and projects, but when things start to get complicated you'll be glad you had a simple to use resource planning tool like allocatehq.com.
Resource planning is most essential for when you're in charge of a time-sensitive project that requires a team of people, lots of equipment and has multiple phases before the project is complete. Below are few key areas resource planning can come into play. We'll be using a couple different real world scenarios to illustrate these points.
Imagine you're the production director of a video production studio. You have been asked to submit a proposal for seven 30-second commercials in four weeks. This could mean a great deal of money to your firm, but does your company have the bandwidth to take on such a large short-term project?
Before submitting a proposal, you should probably find out what the availability of your production crew is, what production facilities are open and what equipment is unavailable. You need to have all of this information at your fingertips in a simple organized system.
Using a tool to manage all of these resources can help you determine which projects you have the bandwidth for. Because there's nothing worse than taking the time and resources to bid for project you can't complete because you overlooked what resources are available. This will save you time and money.
Avoid Losing Money & Making Clients Mad
A video production company is just one example of how a company can use resource planning in the discovery phase of a project.
Let's now pretend you're already knee deep into a project and you have a situation pop up where you need to act fast to keep everything running smoothly while keeping the client or customer off your back.
Pretend for a minute that you're now the construction site manager for the newest Dunkin' Donuts to be built in the great city of Providence.
You're three days away from the building being complete when one of your flat bed trucks breaks down.
This is a big problem. You have to deliver the Dunkin' Donuts sign for the outside of the building. This could keep the entire job from being complete for an extra couple of days if you have one single resource to transport that sign.
By more effectively planning your resources, you can reroute a secondary flat bed truck that was on its way back from another job site, preventing a needless delay and keeping your client pleased! And we all need another Dunkin' Donuts, right?
Keeping Contractors Happy
So you've saved the day in both your video production and construction companies but there is another area that resource planning can have a huge impact on. Keeping your contractors happy.
Much like a maitre d' in a restaurant, you need to spread the work around to keep your waiters (in your case, contractors) happy. Resource planning lets you know who's doing what and who's available to handle something new.
Steady work keeps contractors happy and more reliable and makes your organization run like a well-oiled machine. It makes business sense to use resource planning.
So we hope we answered your question. It's a topic that's near and dear to our hearts. How does resource planning fit into your workflow? How does it save you money? Lets us know in the comments!