Resource plans

Resource plans are the key element in resource management.

Resource requesters, such as project managers, create resource plans to ask for resources, track effort, and track costs. Resource managers modify and approve resource plans before the plans are used.

All resource plans for a task appear on the Resource Plan related list of the Project task form, where resource requesters can access them.

Figure 1. Project resource plan on the project form
Resource plans progress through several states.
Table 1. Resource plan states
State Description
Planning

During the Planning state, resource requesters create resource plans. Any plan in this state can be edited. Requested Allocations are created when a resource plan is in Planning state.

When a resource requester asks for a change to a plan that was already submitted, the plan reverts back to the Planning state.

The resource plans are created in Planning state by default.

Requested

After the Planning state, resource requesters send resource plans to resource managers for review. This moves the resource plan into the Requested state. Resource managers confirm and allocate resources or reject the plan, and finally close the plan.

The resource plan can request a group, specific users in a group, or a specific user to work on the selected task. After you submit the plan for review, a resource manager can confirm, and then allocate some or all of the requested users.

Multiple resource plans can be created for the given task, if more than one users or groups are required by the task.

Rejected The resource manager rejects the plan. Rejected plans stay in that state until changes are made and the requester can re-request the resources.
Confirmed

After the plan is requested, the resource manager can block/confirm the resources for future projects and demands. This moves the resource plan into the Confirmed state. Only a resource manager can modify the plans in Confirmed state.

Soft allocations are created when the resource plan moves to the Confirmed state.

Allocated

After the plan is confirmed, the resource manager can review the plans, view availability, change resource preferences and perform the resource allocation. Then the plan becomes allocated. Once a plan is in the Allocated state, it can only be cancelled, completed or modified by the resource manager.

Soft allocations are converted to hard allocations when the resource plan moves to the Allocated state.

Note: You can also set a plan to the Allocated state directly from the Requested state using Confirm and Allocate option.
Completed

After resources are allocated, if no more changes are required, the resource manager can change the status of the plan to complete.

Cancelled An allocated plan can be cancelled if the allocations are no longer required. This removes all future allocations. The past allocations are not cancelled or removed. A cancelled plan can be brought back to the Planning state if it has no past allocations.

Resource plans in Confirmed or Allocated state can be Cancelled. When a resource plan in Confirmed state is cancelled, all soft allocations are deleted.

Figure 2. States in Resource Management
States in Resource Management
Note: When a resource requester wants to change a plan that was already submitted for review (in Requested or Confirmed state but not yet allocated), the requester can request a change. The plan then moves back to the Planning state.

Resource Management supports time zones, which are important in the My Calendar and Resource Workbench modules.

Modifications in Confirmed or Allocated state

Only a resource manager can modify a resource plan in the Confirmed or Allocated state.

  • The effects of modification on a resource plan form in Confirmed state are:
    • All soft allocations are deleted.
    • Requested allocations are re-created with changed values.
    • Resource plan moves back to the Requested state.
  • A resource plan in Allocated state can be modified only if the resource plan start date is in future. Hard allocations that have start date in future can also be modified by resource manager. The effects of modification on a resource plan form in Allocated state are:
    • All resource allocations (soft as well as hard) are deleted.
    • Requested allocations are re-created with changed values.
    • Resource plan moves back to the Requested state.
Note: The resource plan does not move back to the Requested state if the changes are made to allocation records only.

Request type

There are two types of resource requests that you can make:
  • Hourly: The request is in terms of the number of hours the resources are necessary.
  • FTE: The request is in terms of an equivalent value that represents full time work. When the request type is FTE, planned hours are calculated as: Average Daily FTE * number of working days in resource plan * the FTE value. The average daily FTE hours are specified in User and Group records. If there is no value specified at User or Group record, the average daily FTE hours is taken from the Default Average Daily FTE property.

    The number of working days is calculated based on the users schedule for a user resource or the default schedule for group resources. The default schedule is taken from Default Schedule Name property.

    For example, the average daily FTE hours is 40 hrs for a group, the resource plan dates are from Sep. 01 2015 to Sep. 10, 2015. and you specify the FTE as 0.5.

    Then planned hours = 40 * 8 * .5 = 160 hours. This assumes there are 8 working days between Sep. 1 and Sep. 10.
    Note: Capacity is not derived from FTE, but from schedules. Both FTE and schedules must be in synchronization with each other.

Resource plan costs

Resource plan costs can be tracked directly in the resource plan record. Resource plan costs are divided into planned, allocated, and actual.

Resource plans use functionality in the Cost Management application, including rate cards. Resource plans also use the Time Card application.

Projects and Demands can have multiple resource plans. The aggregated costs for all resources plans roll up to the Planned Cost and Allocated Cost fields and the Resource Cost section of both projects and demands.