This article provides an overview of the five resource assignment types. This mixed media article provides an overview.
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Resource Managers: One of the biggest benefits of using Portfolio and Resource Management is a better understanding of resource utilization on project work and non-project work. Once I understood the differences between the different resource assignment types, data just seemed to jump off the screen at me.
Work Managers: When I’m setting up my projects, Portfolio and Resource Management makes resource planning easy through the use of different types of effort assignments. Long-range planning is done by assigning a non-named resource as a requirement. Specific resources can be assigned to the project by the respective resource manager. As the work manager, I will then decide which tasks these approved resources are to be assigned. This allows my organization to get a complete picture of the resource utilization on all work.
E-learning: Overview of Assignment Types
This training video gives an overview of the four assignment types, and explains the differences between each type.
Key Concepts and Best Practices
Your organization may use all or just some of the available assignment types (Figure 2).
A common use of resource assignment types (in an organization that uses all of them) is that the work manager builds the project plan and creates requirements for the types of resources that are needed for each phase. Each requirement is addressed to a resource manager to fill.
The resource manager reviews the requirements that were addressed to him or her and fills the requirements with reserves (named resources) for each phase. This serves as a soft booking to block the calendars of the resources and can be used for costing and manual resource leveling.
- The effort for the reserve decrements from the requirement.
As time passes and the work date approaches, the work manager allocates resources (hard booking) to specific tasks, based on the approved reserves (soft booking) at the phase level. Allocations created at the task level for the same resource approved by the resource manager at the phase level will result in the allocation’s being automatically approved.
- The effort for the allocations decrements from the reserve.
The resource allocated to the task completes the work and fills out a timesheet.
- The effort from the timesheet (actual effort) decrements from the allocation.
Depending on the effort assignment process, allocations and reserves can also be used independently with or without a requirement. In this scenario, allocations and reserves in the requested status are approved by the resource manager. If an allocation is created without an approved reserve, the resource manager will see this come through as a request and can review and approve or deny it.
Authorizations are generally used for unplanned or non-project work. Authorizations allow work managers to assign one or more resources to a single task or a parent work item so that the resources can report time to tasks when work is completed. Authorizations are not reflected on the resource utilization, and therefore are commonly used in conjunction with reserves or standard activities.
Another way that authorizations are created is when resources are assigned to cards in a Projectplace workspace connected to a project and card synchronization is enabled. The assignments will come in via the Projectplace Connector and be assigned as authorizations at the relevant activity (or the project level, if no activity is assigned).