Sometimes the perfect project plan fails because of poor execution: budgets swell with unexpected expenses, and the team needs extra time to deliver the goods. Having real-time transparency into the allocation of your project resources will help you make project-saving decisions faster, and improve your estimation and execution on future projects.
We're sharing our advice to help you figure out which resources are overloaded or need higher capacity, monitor overruns that are eating into your margins, and identify critical project areas. Use Wrike's resource planning tool for professional services to implement our tips and manage your resources effectively:
1. Track all resources in one table
Wrike's Table View is familiar to all spreadsheet users, and it provides you with a comprehensive overview of your project state. Use it to plan a new project from scratch, view available or unavailable project resources, and build up-to-date reports. You can customize your project view by reordering and hiding/unhiding columns for your various projects. All data in our Table View can be exported to Excel so you can share it with your executives, clients, or stakeholders in a familiar format.
2. Keep accurate time logs
Tracking time spent on tasks is tricky since people often forget to update their records. Wrike's timer takes this administrative task off everyone's shoulders: whenever someone on your team starts working on a task they simply click the timer to start tracking the exact number of minutes they work. This data is aggregated into the Time Spent column in Table View. To add it to your project overview, click on the gear icon. If you're using Wrike Enterprise, create a Custom Field for "Estimated Time", fill it out in the beginning of your project, and compare it to the actual number hours spent working. This side-by-side eye-opener will help you make more accurate estimations on future projects.
3. Adjust your team's workload
If some tasks are at risk to run over schedule, Wrike's Workload view will help you adjust the team's workload to ensure they are delivered on time. You can see which team members are overloaded with multiple important tasks at once, and identify whose schedule has more capacity. Once you've identified risks, rearrange tasks to balance the workload and bring more resources to critical areas.
Detail and Track Project Resources with Custom Fields
Wrike's advanced customization options for Enterprise enable you to track resources specific to your projects. Use Custom Fields to control your expenses, estimate risks, and more.
4. Get control over your budget
Create Custom Fields for estimated budget and actual cost to quickly spot which activities required extra expenses. This will help you adjust your budget for additional projects.
5. Estimate risks
Spotting potential risks in advance will help you deliver results on time, even if the worst case scenario comes to light. Add a special "Risk" Custom Field with "High", "Medium", and "Low" values in the dropdown menu. If assignees feel that a task is likely to go over budget or schedule, or thinks something will impede progress, they can set the risk for this task as "High". When you go to your project Table View, sort your tasks by your Risk column, go through the list to diagnose the problems, and take preventative action. You can also keep these important tasks in a Dashboard widget to ensure they won't fall through the cracks.
Wrike makes managing resources easier
Using these Wrike features to manage your project resources makes planning projects, tracking progress, and coordinating your team's work more accurate and stress-free. If you're already using other Wrike features to manage your project resources, please tell everyone about it in the comments.
Note: Custom Fields and Analytics graphs are available as part of our Enterprise subscription. Try our Enterprise version for free to test drive these features.