Workload plan: Tutorial in a project portfolio

The workload plan is at the heart of resource management and for the success outcome of projects. When a driver turns the ignition key, they quickly glance at the level of the fuel tank on the dashboard. When a PMO launches their PPM software, they quickly go and check the workload plan of their portfolio. It’s a project management reflex! The workload plan is a tool at the crossroads of all project management processes: scheduling, resource management, budget management and risk management. It combines the challenges of “who?” “when?” “how many?” and “what?”.

Do you want to have an overview of your resources, their availability and their assignments to projects and activities?

Do you need to control the ability of your resources to cope with demand?

This tutorial gives you the keys to manage your workload plan

How to manage a workload plan collaboratively

The workload plan is a key tool for PMOs, Managers and Project Managers

The workload plan managers will contribute according to their responsibility in the project portfolio, the project and the project phases:

The execution resources are characterised in the workload plan by:

The execution resources have an indirect but vital action to perform for the workload plan:

How to manage the workload plan in project portfolio mode

A project portfolio workload plan is a tool:

OperationalWho will work on which task? Who will work on the project in the upcoming week, or month? Who will be assigned to other activities?When will the task be finished? How long will it be necessary to work on the task? What will be completed during the week?What is the teams’ level of staffing? What is the risk level on the workload plan?
TacticalWho will be available to work on the project? Who will work on which phase? What are the training needs?When will the different phases of the project be completed? How much will the project cost? Do we have to subcontract part of the project? Do we need to call upon external service providers?How much will the project portfolio cost? How will the resources be distributed per portfolio theme? What are the skills needed?
StrategicWhat are the recruitment needs?When will the project be completed and what will the cost be? Make or Buy? Do we need to do the project ourselves or have it done?What project can we launch? What is the project/recurrent activity distribution? What is the turnover forecast?

How to manage the workload plan

The workload plan is a composite tool grouping a large amount of data:

Therefore, management of the workload plan will be found in:

The workload plan is also particularly managed in a dedicated meeting or project management meeting:

What tools are used to develop a workload plan?

The limits in Excel

Excel quickly reveals its limits when you have a large volume of data to manage:

The benefits of PPM software

A PPM – project portfolio management – tool such as Project Monitor is a project and portfolio management software tool.

The key benefits:

Example of the workload plan – the key functions in Project Monitor:

In addition, PPM software is intuitive for the global monitoring of the portfolio and projects, particularly:

Many professionals think that Project Monitor is essential for their resource management: The City and Metropole of Chartres, Heppner, Brittany Ferries, Maisons & Cités and Butagaz use Project Monitor’s progressive planning function.

“Our schedule is constantly controlled in line with the updating of data relative to capacity and demand”

gestion des ressources plan de charge
Badge Appvizer User Choice gestion des ressources project management

Project Monitor, the resource management software elected User Choice 2021

Manage the ability of your resources to complete the projects in your portfolio

Project Monitor is a resource and project portfolio management software tool. It provides resource management functions including the workload plan, time monitoring and planning. Project managers often use this type of resource management software to analyse the demand and the capacity of the resources in order to create forecasts concerning the projects. Discover our simple online PPM – Project Portfolio Management – tool enabling you to plan, organise and manage the work of your teams from A to Z: budget, schedule, tasks, reporting.

Appvizer, the number one online software comparator, named Project Monitor as its “User Choice” for resource planning.

The prerequisites for efficient management of the workload plan

A workload plan is based on structural data (to be modelled in your workload plan) and circumstantial data. In this context, a PPM platform is essential.

The main structural information – to be updated in case of evolution:

Definition of a workload plan

A workload plan facilitates planning and optimises resource assignment

To successfully complete a project portfolio, a workload plan is a tool for preparation, control and projection into the future of the volume of work to be completed. It also integrates the capacity and skills of the resources.

A workload plan is in a matrix format with multiple dimensions:

The units and indicators of the workload plan

“Workload plan” also means “time”. Time will be broken down into different scales and be found in the main indicators linked to the workload plan.

The planning unit of reference is most often the “day” and it concerns human resources, the “person-day” (abbreviated as “pd”). Depending on the nature of the projects and activities, the unit can be the hour.

This concept of time is also applied to the planning deadline. The further we go into the future, the more global the estimate is.

Thus, when you work on the workload plan for the following week, you work in fractions of a day (or even hour). “Such-and-such a resource will work two hours on Tuesday morning on such-and-such a task”. At an annual planning level, you work more globally, for example in EFT – equivalent full time. However, most often the sizing of projects is based on the day.

The main indicators of the workload plan are: