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.

Watch this six-minute video to learn about the purpose of Demand Management, the Demand workflow, engaging stakeholders, prioritizing demands, and the decision workflow.

Figure 1. Project resource plan on the project form
The Resource Plan tab on a project form that shows two resource plans in a related list, one for the Core R&D group and one for the Database group
Resource plans progress through several states.
Table 1. Resource plan states
State Description
Planning

Planning is the default state when a resource requester creates a resource plan. 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 to the Planning state.

The resource plans are created in Planning state by default.

Requested Resource requester submits a resource plan for resource managers review by clicking Submit. The resource plan then moves into the Requested state. Resource managers confirm and allocate resources or reject the plan, and finally close the plan.

The resource requester 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 the requested users.

If more than one user or groups are required by the task, multiple resource plans can be created for the given task.

Rejected Resource manager rejects a resource plan by clicking Reject. The resource plan then moves into the Rejected state. 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. The resource plan then moves 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 canceled, 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.
  • The resource manager can edit and delete even a past dated resource allocation when no actual hours are recorded against the allocation record. When a user submits a time card, upon approval of the time card, actual hours are updated for the allocation record.

Completed

After the allocation of resources if there are no more changes, a resource manager can change the status of the plan to complete.

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

Resource plans in Confirmed or Allocated state can be Canceled. When a confirmed resource plan is canceled, 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

You can request a resource plan using one of the following options:
  • 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 that 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.
  • Person days: The request is in terms of person days. When the request type is person days, planned hours are calculated as: Total number of person days * Average Daily FTE Hours/Hours Per Person Day. For example, the Average Daily FTE Hours/Hours Per Person Day is 8 hrs for a group, and you specify the person days as 3. Then planned hours = 8 * 3 = 24 hours.

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.