The ‘Resource planning’ section in the Analytics console is an indispensable instrument in the toolbox of project managers. It allows them to make sure that the members of the project team do not have too much project work assigned to them. For each day (or week, or month, depending on the selected zoom level) on which at least one project task is planned for a project member, a color-coded box is shown. These show the percentage of allocated work hours compared to a full day’s work. 4me automatically spreads the planned effort of each project task over its planned duration.
The ‘Resource Planning’ views have now been further enhanced, by letting 4me take out-of-office periods into account. When a person adds an out-of-office period in 4me, the corresponding time entries are automatically created. These periods are then blocked off for project tasks.
In the example above, Michael Burgess has a task assigned with a planned effort of 8 hours and a planned duration of 40 hours. The weekends were already blocked, based on his personal work hours settings. Now, the 2.5 days he had set as ‘out-of-office’ are also blocked, visualized in gray. Note that for June 21, when he will work half a day, only 20% of the task’s work was scheduled, while for June 16 and 22 40% of the work was allocated for each day.
The bars on top of the boxes are also informative. The light gray part of the bar at the top of the box indicates how much project work has been assigned to the person. The dark gray portion of this bar is the percentage of planned work that is part of the project that is currently being reviewed. The diagonally striped bar indicates out-of-office.
When all of the project work assigned to a project team member falls into an out-of-office period, for example if Michael Burgess had planned a longer leave, there is no way for 4me to schedule the work around that. In that case, the project manager needs to reassign the task to another member.