The Situation

Program Management Offices (PMOs) are Project-Based Enterprises (PBE’s) within a broader business, delivering multiple projects, often from a portfolio of potential projects.

Managing people numbers by ‘resource management’ is key to a PMO’s success. A snapshot of ‘resource management’ issues relevant to PMOs reveals:

  • Poor estimating and resourcing are more than 25% reasons that project failure.
  • Resource management is the 4th most difficult process to embed and ranks 4th for greatest challenge for PMOs.
  • Implementing resource planning and forecasting processes is the highest priority in 58% of PMOs
  • More than half (59%) of PMOs use contracted resources to manage projects/programs.
  • 39% of project enterprises use resource management only ‘sometimes’ or less.
  • Only 20% of project enterprises use a sophisticated PPM or resource management software solution.


Ref: PMI Pulse of the Profession 2018, Wellington State of Project Management 2017

Resource management

is the common term used in Project Management, Project Controls and PMO’s for managing people numbers, but does not preclude financial and other resource types.

Resource management can include Capability Planning and/or  Allocation process.

Both Capability Planning and Allocation are core processes in

Effort Management.

‘workforce planning’, ‘rostering’ or ‘scheduling’ similar terms used in other sectors.

The problems

There are many Effort Management challenges. Those typically faced by PMOs include:


1. PMO environment

  • Large number of projects – at varying stages in the project life cycle
  • Large number of people – both working resources and project managers
  • Project volatility – projects continually being re-prioritised, approved or delayed
  • The broader business contributes supporting resources (expertise, reviews approvals) – often beyond PMO’s direct control

2. Not having enough people to undertake work due to

  • Lack of evidence to justify more people
  • Premature reassignment
  • Late recruitment
  • Competing priorities, particularly for supporting resources from the broader business

3. Leading to:

  • poor project delivery outcomes – substandard time, cost, quality performance
  • poor people outcomes – being overworked and dissatisfied
  • inefficiency – reliance on less economical contractors
  • Unnecessary distraction to management spent patching resource management

4. Caused by:

  • Poor Capability Planning practices, including:
  • Poor estimation of demand that is decentralized, inconsistent and inaccurate
  • Poor visibility of supporting resources availability
  • Poor Allocation processes including:
  • Inability to find right people and work to share across the PMO, and broader business
  • Lack of Propose, Accept and Approve processes
  • Collation and dissemination of effort management data across project managers, function leaders, HR and people resources.
  • Constant change

Our Solutions

RESRODEL’s Effort Management method is dedicated to resolving the resource management challenges experienced by project based enterprises of which PMOs are a primary example.

We can resolve your PMO’s resource management challenges using RESRODEL’s straight forward Effort Management process to:

1. Overcome challenges of the PMO environment by:

  • Simple structuring of large data for projects, activities and people – with RESRODEL’s ‘resource role model’ built specifically for project environments.
  • Easily updating the constant change in project status – with RESRODEL’s effort modules
  • Expand the PMO’s influence with the broader business that contributes supporting resources – by sharing resource management information.

2. Have just enough people, by:

  • Justifying and securing necessary people with quantitative evidence
  • Earlier advice to recruiters and agencies
  • Reducing need for premature reassignment
  • Forecasting all priorities, particularly for supporting resources from the broader business

3. Avoid poor outcomes of:

  • substandard time, cost, quality performance – by forecasting ability to deliver
  • people being overworked and dissatisfied – by forecasting workload
  • reliance of less economical contractors – by forecasting workforce mix
  • distracting management with resource issues – by using a dedicated resource management solution

4. Remove process problems, with:

  • Better Capability Planning practices, with:
  • Robust, centralised, consistent demand estimation/updating
  • Quantitative insight into people’s general availability
  • Better Allocation practices, with:
  • Identification of right people and work that can engaged across the PMO, and broader business
  • Propose, Accept and Approve processes
  • Access for everyone in the PMO and broader business, to contribute their data and extract decision ready data through self-service analysis.