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Capacity planning software that really works

Capacity planning software that really works
23
.Β 
January 2024

Clear capacity planning is essential to maintain an overview of all team members and projects. It enables resources to be allocated efficiently, bottlenecks to be recognised early and thus projects to be successfully implemented on time. With clear planning, workloads can be balanced, productivity increased and employee satisfaction maintained.

[.b-important-block]Capacity planning in a team is a process in which the available resources, such as the time and skills of team members, are analyzed and coordinated in such a way that goals can be achieved efficiently. It helps to avoid overloads and ensure that each member receives appropriate tasks according to their capacities.[.b-important-block]

[$tag]πŸ‘‰ What is capacity planning?[$tag]

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In today's world of work, where flexibility and agility are required, dynamic capacity planning is indispensable. It forms the basis for smooth project work and makes it possible to react quickly to changes.It also helps to create transparency and improve communication within the team and with stakeholders. Capacity planning software can support this by visualising complex data and automating planning processes.

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Selecting capacity planning software

Using resource planning software is helpful in mastering clear capacity planning for all team members and projects. This type of software supports you effectively in your capacity planning. It allows you to visualise the availability of your team members and allocate resources optimally. This makes capacity planning easier, as you can see in real time which working hours are available for new projects. This allows you to react quickly and flexibly to changes and adjust your planning without having to rethink everything.

Let's take a look at an example employee

πŸ‘‰ Let's assume your planning period covers a quarter of exactly 12 weeks.
πŸ‘‰ Now let's assume someone who has a 40-hour week.
πŸ‘‰ This person needs 10 hours a week for ongoing projects.
πŸ‘‰ 8 hours are spent on daily business and meetings.
πŸ‘‰ The person is also on holiday for 2 weeks. (-6.6 hours)
πŸ‘‰ You have set your sickness rate at 1.5 days per person per quarter. (-1 hour).
πŸ‘‰ This leaves a capacity of 14.4 hours per week for this person to work on your priority targets. At least in theory.

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Capacity planning example for one teammember with running projects, daily business, vacation and illness
So far so good... But now please do this for all team members in a bundled overview?

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Enter the team members and their resources

Your team members work full-time, part-time, on a working student basis and all have different weekly hours? That can get pretty confusing.

To give you a real overview of capacities, use workload management tool and enter the corresponding weekly hours for each team member once. With a smart calendar integration of the individual team calendars, appointments and absences are then collated directly in the workload view so that you get an exact overview of the really available capacities.

Capacity planning in detailed planer view in awork
awork connects project management with the team's calendars.

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The result: project tasks and calendar appointments are included in the workload. πŸš€

‍Capacity planning differentiates between daily business, meetings and real time for project work. Holidays, illness and other absences are simply transferred from the calendars and the corresponding hours are blocked in capacity planning.

[.b-button-primary] Discover the awork team scheduling [.b-button-primary]

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Recording the projects and their requirements

When creating a clear capacity plan, it is important to accurately record the various projects and their requirements. You should collect all relevant information about the projects, such as the scope, deadline and required resources. Also take into account the skills and the workload of your team members to ensure effective resource planning.

If you store the data centrally in a tool that is accessible to the entire team, you ensure that everyone is on the same page and resources are optimally distributed. Define clear priorities for the projects to help with planning and avoid conflicts between different tasks and resources.

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Create the capacity for each team member and project

Once all projects and team members have been created, the planning in the workload management tool works automatically. ‍

  1. ‍Assign the projects and their tasks to your employees based on their skills and available capacities.
  2. Make sure that the workloads are realistic and overbooking is avoided. The visual representation allows you to get a better overview.
  3. Review progress regularly and adjust plans as needed to respond to changes or unforeseen events.

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Monitor resource availability and adjust the plan

Make sure that you regularly monitor the availability of resources and your capacity planning. If you notice that resources are becoming scarce or availability is changing, adjust the plan accordingly. Be proactive and communicate changes quickly and clearly to the team. This helps to avoid bottlenecks and distribute the workload evenly. Make sure that the adjustments are realistic and do not jeopardise the overall goal of the project.

If a colleague calls in sick spontaneously, the remaining capacities of other team members are visible at a glance and the important to-dos can be redistributed in an instant.

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Simple planning of an urgent customer request in capacity planning
You can also plan spontaneous customer enquiries at a glance by reprioritising tasks and seeing exactly which tasks free up the necessary block of time for your team.

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Our tip: Record the project hours as well as the daily business in the capacity software. This allows you to check whether the previous hours estimate was realistic or whether tasks took longer than expected. This helps you to estimate times more accurately in the long term and create more specific quotations.

And best of all, you can quickly download the data for invoicing with an Excel export.

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[.b-button-primary] Discover the awork time tracking! [.b-button-primary]

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Advantages of clear capacity planning with software

Clear capacity planning with the help of software offers numerous advantages.

βœ… Optimised resource planning allows the workload of all team members to be distributed efficiently, resulting in improved utilisation and productivity.

βœ… Capacity management software makes it possible to adjust projects and resources in a timely manner, increasing the team's flexibility and responsiveness.

βœ… Misjudgements of resources are avoided and transparency regarding availability is created.

βœ… Better collaboration, as everyone in the team has insight into the current status of projects and capacities.

βœ… Reduce costs by helping to avoid bottlenecks and optimise the use of resources.

βœ… And all in all, clear, efficient capacity planning provides the best basis for happier teams.

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[.b-button-primary] Capacity planning in awork [.b-button-primary]

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Why happy teams use awork

Rated excellent by customers! These are the most frequently mentioned advantages of awork:
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πŸ‘‰ Wonderful, intuitive design
πŸ‘‰ Quick & easy to implement
πŸ‘‰ Perfect for planning teams
πŸ‘‰ GDPR-compliant, hosted in Germany
πŸ‘‰ Excellent and personalised support

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I especially like the calendar integration. It allows for perfect resource allocation, showing which colleague still has capacity. Moreover, you can prioritize tasks, which significantly eases the workflow throughout the day.
Kai Behr, CMO @IGA OPTIC

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[.b-button-primary] Curious? Try awork for free! [.b-button-primary]

About the author
Dorte
Talent Acquisition Lead
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