The old adage “Work smarter not harder” gets thrown around a lot in the software industry. While it’s a concept we can all agree makes sense, finding practical ways to work smarter can be easier said than done when you’re juggling multiple projects, shifting timelines, and allocating resources to get it all done. Luckily, TaskRay offers advanced Resource Management capabilities that give you project people a productivity boost in your daily lives. In this post, we’ll show you how to get that boost using the Flux Planner Contextual Component, a new Resource Management feature that was included for Premium Edition customers in the Fall 2021 Release.
An efficient project team assignment experience for Resource Managers
Does your project assignment process involve sending emails to determine availability and guesswork, or labor-intensive reporting to assess resource impacts? With the Flux Planner, Resource Managers walk through a simple two-step process to select a team member/role to assign and then locate the best resource for the job, all without leaving TaskRay. You have clear visibility into real-time utilization stats that can be toggled to weekly or daily views. You can apply filters to determine impacts to billable utilization and even drill down to see other already-assigned projects before committing to a decision. This is a great way to confidently assign projects in a matter of minutes.
A powerful tool for Project Managers to keep their projects on-track
Project Managers truly have their hands full scheduling customer calls, preparing status reports, maintaining project plans, and keeping resources focused. When it comes to keeping resources focused, often a PM relies on old tactics of peppering team members with emails and Slack messages to keep deadlines top of mind. Flooding resources’ inboxes only adds to the problem.
A PM may have the best opportunity of all to work smarter by using the Flux Planner. With this tool, a PM can shift from herding cats via email to orchestrating project schedules that maximize resource utilization. You would simply open a Project in TaskRay to quickly see all team members’ complete workload and utilization levels. If there is an availability issue on the horizon, such as a vacation or an overbooking illustrated in the screenshot below, the PM can take action by adjusting task dates in TaskRay or reassigning tasks right inside the Flux Planner to balance workloads. Avoiding a scheduling problem before it becomes an issue sure beats presenting a red customer status report two weeks from now – especially with holiday vacation time right around the corner!
A great tool for Resources to understand their responsibilities while also seeing the big picture
In a perfect world, task due dates are clear-cut, you just get the job done by the deadline and move on to the next one. In the real world, delays and changes to scope can create resource constraints and put projects at risk.
What if project team members had tools that empowered them to lend a hand in these situations? With the Flux Planner, you now have the context of other team members’ workload, allowing individuals to make more informed decisions and be better team players.
- If I see that a fellow project team member is overbooked next week, maybe I can offer to get my predecessor work done ahead of schedule so they can get an early start and avoid a crazy workload next week.
- If I’m underutilized next week, maybe I can offer to take on some of the tasks owned by those that are maxed out.
These are just a few ways individuals can use the Flux Planner to grasp the bigger picture and contribute in meaningful ways to keep projects on track.
As you can see, the Flux Planner is a really handy tool for viewing resource capacity and managing assignments for a specific project or team, helping project managers to work smarter, not harder.
Reach out to our Customer Success Team at [email protected] if you have any questions or want information on how to upgrade to Premium Edition to get access to these and other advanced features.