6th Edition PMBOK® Guide–Process 9.1 Plan Resource Management: Tools and Techniques

What are the tools and techniques you use when you are creating the Resource Management Plan?   Remember, this planning process creates guidelines that will help in doing all of the other processes for this knowledge area.

There are certain tools and techniques which I call “generic”, meaning that they are used in all planning processes, such as “expert judgment” and “meetings.”   The other tools and techniques are those that are specific to this process of creating the Resource Management Plan. Expert Judgment

You will want to consult with experts who have expertise in the following areas:

  • Determining the resources needed to meet project objectives
  • Estimating lead times required for acquisition of resources, based on lessons learned and market condtiions
  • Negotiating for the best resources within the organization
  • Complying with applicable government and union regulations
  • Determining reporting requirements based on the organizational culture
  • Identifying risks associated with resource acquisition, retention, and release plans
  • Managing sellers and the logistics effort to ensure materials and supplies are available when needed
  • Talent management and personnel development Data Representation

The goal is that each work package in the WBS is assigned an unambiguous owner and that all team  members have a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities.  The data representation techniques are mainly charts that document these team member roles and responsibilities.

  • Hierarchical charts
    • Work Breakdown Structure or WBS (shows the project deliverables and the WBS dictionary is where you designate the team member assigned to be the owner of that deliverable, i.e., the person who is responsible for getting the work done)
    • Organizational breakdown structure or OBS–this shows the work packages and project activities assigned to each department within the organization
    • Resource breakdown structure or RBS–this is a hierarchical list of all team and physical resources used on the project.   This just lists the types of resources, but does not indicate which work packages or project activities they are being assigned to.
  • Assignment Matrix–A responsibility assignment matrix (RAM) shows the project resources assigned to each work package.   One useful form of this RAM is the RACI chart, where RACI stands for Responsible-Accountable-Consult-Inform.   You are responsible for the work package if you are one of the resources working on it.  You are accountable if you are the overall “owner” of the work package–there can only be one Accountable person for each work package, but there may be several people assigned to it who are Responsible for getting the work done.   Consult means that you are contacted before a decision relating to the work package in order to get your input.   Inform means you are contacted after a decision relating to the work package in order to let you know what is going on.
  • Text-oriented formats–most often used in position descriptions that indicate the resource’s responsibilities, authority level, competencies, and qualifications. Organizational Theory

Organizational theory is useful for gaining insight into how people behave in teams and organizations.   It is useful for learning how to motivate your team members.   There is a lot of information here that is on the PMP exam but is NOT included in the PMBOK guide.  For a review of this important information, see my previous article:

https://4squareviews.com/2013/06/29/5th-edition-pmbok-guide-chapter-9:  theories-of-motivation/ Meetings

This is a generic tool and technique used in ALL planning processes, not just the one for this knowledge area.

Let’s move on in the next post to the outputs of this process.



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