Complete Guide to Project Human Resource Management

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Complete Guide to Project Human Resource Management

“Great Vision without great people is irrelevant”

Jim Collins

Have you ever been a project lead? If yes, then you might be fully aware of the meaning of this quotation by Jim Collins. In fact, this might have happened with you many times. You have a great idea in your mind but you do not have to right people to turn that idea into reality. That is where the role of human resource management comes into play.

With HR motto being “Hiring the right people for the right job”, project human resource management becomes a critical part of your project and will greatly influence the outcome of your project. In this guide, we will cover project human resource management in detail.

What is Project Human Resource Management?

Project human resource management is the set of processes involved in making the best use of people who are taking part in the project. This includes all the project stakeholders including sponsors, customers, partners, team member to name just a few.

Key Processes

Project human resource management can categorized into three major processes.

1. Organizational Planning

2. Staff Acquisition

3. Team Development

Organizational Planning

Organizational planning involves identify project roles, document it and assign roles and responsibilities to team members. Organizational planning is done during the initial phase to ensure smoother execution of project activities because everyone knows their role and responsibility. Organizational planning is directly linked to communication as it also defines the communication channels and how information will flow.

1. Inputs

2. Tools and Techniques

3. Outputs

1. Inputs

Establishing formal and informal reporting mechanisms among different individuals and departments is the input of organizational planning. Defining the skill set required and number of people required to complete project successfully are also inputs of this process. Evaluating challenges and constraints beforehand will give you some leeway to reduce their negative impact.

2. Tools and Techniques

For organizational planning, you can use organizational theory, follow good human resource practices and you can develop templates to define roles and responsibilities for your human resources. These tools and techniques increase the efficiency of the organizational planning process and save you more time to focus on other important activities. If you can structure your project team according to organizational theory, then you will be able to cater to project requirements in a much better way. Ensure proper implementation of HR policies, guidelines and procedures in order to run operations smoothly.

3. Outputs

The result of organization planning phase comes in the form of assigning roles and responsibilities to team members. Make sure that all the roles and responsibilities coincide with the project scope. Moreover, a staffing management plan is also developed which tells when a resource will be engaged and when he or she would be taken off the project. Finally, an organizational chart will be developed to visually depict the project reporting relationships. The level of detail of all these organizational planning output depends upon the nature of the project.

Staff Acquisition

Since, we have identified the resource requirement and skill set required to complete projects before the deadline, it is time to acquire those resources. Project managers should ensure that they get the right resources inducted in the project team to get good results.

1. Inputs

2. Tools and Techniques

3. Outputs

1. Inputs

The input from staff acquisition process is closely associated with staff management plan. A pool of available resources is created after judging the experience, interests, personal characteristics and availability of resources in mind. Identify which recruitment practices will help you select the best candidates.

2. Tools and Techniques

When you are picking some resources from a particular department of the company to work on your project, project managers will have to negotiate with the immediate boss of that employee. Project procurement management comes into play when you want to acquire services of an individual for your projects. This shows that project procurement management is not restricted to physical items but it is also involved in procuring human resource and their services for a project.

3. Outputs

At the end of the staff acquisition process, all the project resources will be staffed full time or part time, depending on the requirements. In addition, a project team directory is created with the names of all the project team members and other project stakeholders.

Team Development

Team development involves measures to enhance the capabilities of individuals and as a team to achieve desired results. A team is made up of individuals therefore, it is imperative to polish the skills of each individual so that they can work cohesively to achieve the common goal.

1. Inputs

2. Tools and Techniques

3. Outputs

1. Inputs

Inputs of team development process include a project plan that describes the technical context for team operations. The focus is on skill development, both for individuals or group. Performance reports and external feedback to monitor project progress and measure the performance of each resource.

2. Tools and Techniques

When you have hired the right people to work for you, now it is time to start team building activities to create a strong between your team members. Establish a reward and recognition system, which prevent good efforts of team members from going unnoticed. This reward and recognition system must create a healthy competition among the team and management should create a link between performance and reward. Collaboration among team members is vital and team collaboration software can help you in that regard. Organize training sessions, seminars, and workshops for your employee development so they can contribute towards success of your team.

3. Outputs

All the activities performed during the team development phase will result in positive improvements in skills of team members, improve the team behavior, and enhance efficiency and productivity of your team. All this will translate into better number for the business and projects. Finally, the outputs from the team development process become the input for performance appraisal for each employee. This helps human resource department to conduct transparent appraisal so that the deserving employees gets rewarded.


With so many contrasting personalities in a single team, it is extremely difficult to keep them on the same page let alone using them efficiently in order to achieve project goals. If you can run the whole process of project human resource management efficiently, you cannot only be able to keep all the project stakeholders happy but can also drive your project to successful completion. Is this guide helpful? Feel free to share your valuable feedback in the comments section below. We look forward to hear from you.


Posted on: May 12, 2017 02:54 AM | Permalink

Comments (11)

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Thanks Atif. Very important to focus on the 'Team' aspect. Although the team requires a leader, the actions to move toward the goal is a collective one.

Thank you sir for appreciating. i totally agree with you role of leadership is extremely important in this regard.

Thanks Atif, the team is an important resource, and must be planed, and adquired with careful to cover the project requirements

Thanks for sharing.

One of the best rewards for a team member is a simple Thank You. I don't agree with the competition, since most will focus only on the rewards and not the work to achieve that reward. Thanks for sharing.

Human is the most important part of project, team members or stakeholders.

My Pleasure Karthik :)

Dear Ed Tsyitee Jr, you are right but this is not the complete picture. There is another side of the coin too. Increased competition
also increase productivity in many organizations.

This is great!

Thanks Atif! Detailed enough description of important things to plan HR in the project. Can be used as a memo!
Does anyone know something similar that will regard to material resources?

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