Master Planning streamlines resource management using a single, easy-to-use, visual interface. Unbound visibility into your resources lets you quickly manage change and make better business decisions based on resource supply and demand. After all, we know that effectively managing your resources is one of the primary factors that contribute to the success of your business.
Master Planning gives you the ability to:
- Manage allocations for all resources throughout your organization.
- View workloads and availability across multiple projects at a glance.
- Easily see how efficiently your resources are being used in projects.
- Adjust overallocated and underallocated resources as necessary.
- Track changes to projected budgets in real-time.
- Submit requests for resources.
With Master Planning, you can see how estimated hours from your initial project timeline translate into actual resource schedules. This allows you to more efficiently staff your projects, set baseline resourcing strategies, and assign resources to tasks based on allocations. What’s more, you’ll be able to use performance and historical data to update templates and continually improve future resource management processes.
How to Use Master Planning
The visual Master Planning interface give you a comprehensive overview of resources, project timelines, planned and projected budgets, and team member information—including skills, roles, and allocated hours.
The page is divided into two sections, with the Resources List on the left, and the Allocations Timeline on the right. When initially collapsed, each row in the resource list provides a quick summary of project, resource, and allocation information. However, each row can be expanded to see additional, detailed information, such as the individual projects to which resources are allocated or scheduled (and whether they are over or underallocated).
If Project Colors are enabled in General Settings, the color assigned to each project appears to the left of the project name and in the timeline. These colors—whose meaning your team defines—can be used to represent project types, phases, clients, etc.
The filters and functionality of the resource list and the timeline change depending on whether you've selected the Team Members tab or the Projects tab. This toolbar is located just below the title of the Master Planning page. In addition, the Actions (“ ”) menu located to the right of the calendar controls contains various Display Preferences for the timeline.
- When the Team Members tab is selected, the Resources List displays a list of team members that can be filtered by availability, allocation type, member, role, and skills. Individual team members can be expanded to see the projects to which they’re assigned.
- When the Projects tab is selected, the Resources List shows a list of unarchived projects that can be filtered by group, provider lead, allocation type, status, and color. Each project row shows the project's budget (if Account Permission is Report Viewer and above, or Project Permission is Financial or above) and number of named resources on the project; you can expand these rows to see the individual team members and unnamed resources allocated to each project.
The information displayed on the timeline is largely determined by the Display Preferences accessible from the Actions (“ ”) menu located to the right of the calendar controls.
The Hours View Preference section gives you three choices for viewing the timeline:
Allocated Hours (default)
- When the Team Members tab is selected, you can see an overview of workloads and availability. Each bar is a visual representation of how your resources are allocated over a selected period of time. You'll be able to see the percentage of time and number of hours allocated to each resource, including those which are overallocated. Stripes indicate that the team member has a soft allocation during this timeframe. The shading of each bar gets darker as the total allocated time for the resource increases.
- When the Projects tab is selected, the time allocated to each resource is displayed. At a glance, you’ll be able to see workloads and availability across multiple projects, as well as an up-to-date Estimate at Completion (EAC).
Compare Scheduled vs. Allocated
- When the Team Members tab is selected, you’ll see the allocated hours for each team member, along with their scheduled hours just below that, giving you the ability to instantly see how your project schedule aligns with your allocated hours. When a member’s scheduled hours are more than their allocated hours across all projects for the selected period of time, the bar will turn red.
- When the Projects tab is selected, the total scheduled hours for each project, for the selected period of time, are displayed beneath the project summary bar. Click the arrow to the left of the project name to expand it. You’ll see the allocated hours for all team members and unnamed resources that have been assigned to the project.
- When the Team Members tab is selected, you’ll see the number of hours each team member is scheduled to work for the selected period of time. The shading indicates how many scheduled hours the individual has compared to their capacity; light blue indicates that scheduled hours are below capacity, blue indicates that scheduled hours are at capacity, and red means scheduled hours are over capacity.
- When the Projects tab is selected, the timeline displays the number of resource hours scheduled for each project. Click the arrow to the left of the project name to expand it. You’ll see the scheduled hours for all team members and unnamed resources that have been assigned to the project.
Rows and Pages
You can set Master Planning so that you're viewing 10, 25, 50, or 100 rows at once. Just select your preference from the bottom-right of the page; changes are automatically saved. This can be set separately for the Team Members tab and the Projects tab.
Rows that exceed your selected number are added to subsequent pages. You can scroll through these from the bottom-center of the page.