Resource planning

Predicting the future also in exceptional circumstances with the help of a resource management tool

Reija Stenroos
Reija Stenroos
Marketing Manager

Resourcing may puzzle many companies, even in everyday life. Where to find just the right expertise for a particular project at the right time? The importance of resource management grows when we find ourselves in exceptional circumstances, whether in one workplace or more widely in the society.

During the Coronavirus pandemic, work has revolutionized in a lot of companies. The corona-induced massive switch to working remotely is a great example of exceptional circumstances – employees starting to work from home at a very short notice. Handy tools become even more important, whether it regards emailing, instant messaging, or resourcing.

When temporary lay-offs are necessary – utilize the data

Every layoff is a tragedy. Companies do not lay off their employees without a reason. However, layoffs can be made based on facts and according to proper plans. Layoffs have not been avoided in many companies during the Corona pandemic.

As such, the layoffs are very unpleasant, and they will lead to reorganization of projects and responsibilities. An additional challenge arises when employees are working remotely from their home offices. In that case, there are many things that are creating confusion – and increase the challenges for all parties of getting the job done. Even at the time of layoffs, projects are moving forward – there are customers, there are projects, there are schedules, there are people. The biggest change compared to normal circumstances is that resourcing needs to be done again.

During layoffs, it is also important to ensure that those at work do not have to bear an unreasonable workload. With the help of a resource management tool it can be ensured that those at work are resilient and that the workload is appropriate. Furthermore, a good resourcing tool is helpful in unfortunate situations. If the company has not enough orders and projects for the upcoming months, there may be some layoffs ahead. A good resourcing tool quite frankly shows that the company needs more work, more sales, and more projects. One does not have to guess the utilization rate. It is known with certainty.

Effective resource management in positive transitions

Exceptional circumstances may not always be just negative. For example, a merger between two companies may be highly desirable. However, also in that case projects and resources must be reorganized. Even the most desired mergers usually create a certain amount of uncertainty for a short period of time.

Suddenly, there are new people working for the company. People play a key role in the new situation. How do we work in new circumstances when there is new talent available? For example, in mergers the resource management tool provides information to the new management about the new company and the expertise of the employees.

How does resource management change in exceptional situations?

As such, resource management does not really change in exceptional situations. Good resource management has clear processes, familiar practices, and a clear cycle at all times. There must be common rules that are followed. It is easy to predict the future when all the information is up to date and in the same place.

It is possible to prepare in advance for resourcing in exceptional times. If resource management is done properly in normal circumstances, preparedness is better when exceptional situations arise. The base must be in order. The communication will get more difficult if the foundation for resource planning is not done properly, and the experts and team leaders are working from different locations. It is different to chat with colleagues in a coffee room and casually discuss the progress of the projects. When communication decreases, the information does not flow so easily. Therefore, the best preparation for resourcing in exceptional situations is that the groundwork has been done carefully and the information is transparently in one place.

In the end, it all comes down to how the companies can predict the future. How does the world and the projects look like in the future? Is there too much work? Or too little? It is obvious that the importance of a good resource planning tool only grows in exceptional times. Truly, we have seen and heard this from our customers during the last months.

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