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whether the technology to communicate and share documents is available
(see Chapters 18 and 19 for more about this). Also, give some thought to how
well each resource you choose will work as part of the team, and whether the
resource can be considered dependable.
In Project, you have several ways to flag and find resources, categorizing
them by skill or other criteria:
Use the Resource Notes area to record information about a resource’s
skills and abilities. Then use the Find feature to search note fields for
words such as highly skilled, dependable, and trainable.
Use the Code field in the Resource Information form to rank resources
by skill, cost, or ability to work well with others.
Create Custom Fields for resources to note specific skills and search for
resources by those skills.
Sometimes it’s worthwhile to consider using a less-experienced, cheaper
resource to save money — just be sure to factor in the time and money
needed for any training required.
Balancing workload
Another important part of resource management is managing the assignment
of resources so that nobody is as overbooked as a CPA at tax time. Although
occasional overtime is expected of most workers, constant overtime causes
burnout and poor work quality. Keep in mind that a less skilled worker will
take longer to do a task than a skilled worker. Take that into account when
scheduling the time that resource might need to complete his or her work.
You get the scoop about making resource assignments in Chapter 9, and
more about resolving resource overallocation in Chapter 10.
You can do three main things to stay aware of resource workload when
working with Project:
Keep an eye on your Project plan. Various tools such as a Resource Graph
view (as shown in Figure 7-8) allow you to spot overbooking on tasks.
Track the workload of individual resources. When tracking activity on
tasks, you will receive an accounting from resources (see Chapter 13 for
how to gather this accounting) about the actual time they’re spending
on tasks. Notice the people who have to constantly put in overtime to
keep their heads above water.
Ask people. That’s right. This isn’t a feature of Project, but it’s an
oldfashioned communications device that works amazingly well. Check in
with resources often and ask whether things are going okay — including
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