This is a guide to project planning covering 4 steps. If you haven't read stages 1 - 3 you can access them here. Stage 1 - Work Breakdown Structures, Stage 2 - Precedence Diagrams, Stage 3 - estimating effort and scheduling.
You have entered all of your tasks and task duration in your scheduling software, so now it is time to add resources. Resources are usually people, but they can also be materials, for example machinery or automated process - on software projects you might have tasks that are completed by an automated script.
Against each task in your scheduling software enter in the name of the person, machine, process or team who will be responsible for the task's completion.
There are several ways to add resources in Microsoft Project. If possible enter a named person, generic terms like Developer are fine if you don’t yet know which developer will be working on your project. However, as soon as you do know the person name them, this will help you to hold them accountable for progress and to manage their work by producing to do lists, calendars and work load profiles.
The skill in project planning comes in balancing two key factors: time and resource. stakeholdermap.com
Plans may show a finish date that is acceptable, but resource may be overloaded to achieve that date. Alternatively resource requirements may be within limits, but the project end date is much later than your Client would like.
This simple example illustrates the common challenge in Project Planning. Let’s say that you are laying a new garden wall. You are going to use reclaimed bricks, which require cleaning and you need to lay a foundation. You will start on 28/06 and you want to complete the wall by 30/06 in time for your barbecue.
The dependencies are:
If we put this into Microsoft Project we can see that the project can be completed in time, but that you will have to work two 12 hour days!We could change the project logic so that the foundation is laid after the bricks are prepared. This would resolve the resourcing issue, but this would move the end date to 01/07.
If any project planning steps are missed or incomplete you considerably reduce your chances that the project will be delivered on time, on budget and to scope/quality. stakeholdermap.com
As Project Managers we often have a background in our industry, but technology and practice changes and we risk missing key tasks and dependencies if we don't involve our teams in project planning. stakeholdermap.com