Resolving Resource Constraints in Project Portfolio Planning

Joe Wynne is a versatile Project Manager experienced in delivering medium-scope projects in large organizations that improve workforce performance and business processes. He has a proven track record of delivering effective, technology-savvy solutions in a variety of industries and a unique combination of strengths in both process management and workforce management.

When it comes down to selecting the full list of programs and projects that are to be completed in a defined portfolio period (a year or two), it pays to consider the workforce available to complete the actual work.

Many areas of workforce management can present obstacles to success if not thought through at a high level prior to selecting programs and projects—and their start times. But using just total resources needed in programs/projects is a crude metric and may not be all that helpful. There are better ways of managing resource constraints at the portfolio level.

Potential problem: Inadequate number of individuals in critical roles
A more sophisticated approach is to plan around critical roles that are required in the portfolio. For example, you may need enterprise-level architects with many years of experience in specific areas to handle your upcoming more strategic portfolio. Or you may need an unknown extra number of data analysts to fill roles in multiple projects that will need them. There may be a shortage due to high market demand or newness of the area of expertise.

Resolution tactics:

  1. Conduct a critical role assessment. One way is to contact leaders of various areas to get their short list of roles that are creating a bottleneck in work because there are just not enough and hiring is too difficult. An HR or recruiting team (even a …

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