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Case Study 12.2: “First Come, First Served”: Resource Challenges for Sunrise Restoration

This case is intended to highlight the challenges in resource assignment, particularly in the common cases where project managers within the same firm are competing with each other for the use of scarce and valuable human resources to accomplish their tasks.  Without clear guidance from top management and a valid priority system, the ability to acquire resources is often the result of chaotic bargaining and negotiation among equals. This case is based on a real situation and the outcomes were very much in line with the way they are described in the case.  The business owner did not want to simply invest in more resources for fear that they would be underutilized.  He much preferred the system of negotiating among his project managers, even if that led to inefficient utilization of the resources that were available.  Students can be asked to take the side of the owner or Tyler to debate the options that Sunrise can use to manage its resources.

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Questions

  1. Describe some of the resource constraints that Sunrise and its project managers are facing.
  2. Is Sunrise’s current model of prioritizing resource assignments viable?  Why or why not?
  3. How could technology alleviate some of Sunrise’s resource management issues?
  4. Would Tyler’s suggestion to hire additional technicians and purchase more equipment solve the resource problems at Sunrise?  Why or why not?

Project Management: Achieving Competitive Advantage

Fifth Edition

Chapter 12

Resource Management

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Learning Objectives

12.1 Recognize the variety of constraints that can affect a project, making scheduling and planning difficult.

12.2 Understand how to apply resource-loading techniques to project schedules to identify potential resource overallocation situations.

12.3 Apply resource-leveling procedures to project activities over the baseline schedule using appropriate prioritization heuristics.

12.4 Follow the steps necessary to effectively smooth resource requirements across the project life cycle.

12.5 Apply resource management within a multiproject environment.

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P M B o K Core Concepts

Project Management Body of Knowledge (P M B o K) covered in this chapter includes:

  1. Estimate Activity Resources (P M B o K 6.4)
  2. Plan Human Resource Management (P M B o K 9.1)

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Types of Constraints

Physical

Time

Resource

Mixed

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Table 12.2 Activity Precedence Table

Activity Description Duration Predecessors Member Assigned
A Assign Bids 5 days None Tom
B Document Awards 5 days A Jeff
C Calculate Costs 5 days A Jeff
D Select Winning Bid 1 days B,C Sue
E Develop P R Campaign 4 days D Carol
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Figure 12.2 Sample Activity Network with Conflicts

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Figure 12.3 Resource Usage Table Demonstrating Overallocation

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Resource Loading

The amount of individual resources a schedule requires during specific time periods.

Once the Work Breakdown Structure and activity networks are developed, create the resource loading form (or resource usage calendar)

The resource usage table shows:

Project team members

Tasks they are assigned to

Time each activity is expected to take

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Figure 12.5 Resource Usage Table

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Figure 12.6 Example of Resource Usage Table with Overallocation

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Resource Leveling

A process that address the complex challenges of project constraints (A K A resource smoothing).

Objectives:

To determine the resource requirements so that they will be available at the right time

To allow each activity to be scheduled with the smoothest possible transition across resource usage levels

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Resource Leveling Heuristics for Prioritizing Allocation

Smallest amount of slack

Smallest duration

Lowest I D number (F C F S)

Greatest number of successor tasks

Requiring the most resources

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General Procedure for Resource Leveling

Create a project activity network diagram.

Develop resource loading table.

Determine activity late finish dates.

Identify resource overallocation.

Level the resource loading table.

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Construct a Resource-Loading Chart

To construct a time-limited resource-loading chart for resource scheduling, there are six main steps to follow:

Create activity network.

Produce table for each activity, resource requirements, duration, early start time, slack, and late finish time.

List activities in order of increasing slack.

Draw an initial resource-loading chart with each activity scheduled at its earliest start time.

Rearrange activities within their slack to create a profile that is as level as possible.

Use judgment to interpret and improve activity leveling.

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Figure 12.17 Sample Project Network

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Creating Resource Loading Charts: Resource Staffing

Table 12.7 Resource Staffing (Hourly Units) Required for Each Activity

Activity Resource Duration Early Start Slack Late Finish
A 6 4 0 0 4
B 2 1 4 0 5
C 2 3 4 4 11
D 7 4 5 0 9
E 3 2 9 0 11
F 6 1 11 0 12
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Resource-Loading Chart

Figure 12.18 Resource-Loading Chart for Sample Project

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Figure 12.19 Modified Resource-Loading Chart When Splitting Task C

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Managing Resources in Multiproject Environments

Schedule Slippage

Resource Utilization

In-Process Inventory

Resolving Resource Decisions in Multiproject Environments

First In Line

Greatest Resource Demand

Greatest Resource Utilization

Minimum Late Finish Time

Mathematical Programming

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Summary

Recognize the variety of constraints that can affect a project, making scheduling and planning difficult.

Understand how to apply resource-loading techniques to project schedules to identify potential resource overallocation situations.

Apply resource-leveling procedures to project activities over the baseline schedule using appropriate prioritization heuristics.

Follow the steps necessary to effectively smooth resource requirements across the project life cycle.

Apply resource management within a multiproject environment.

Copyright © 2019, 2016, 2013 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Copyright

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