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Staff shortage

Recently, we have started a project with a client, one of our commitments to the client is to provide a staff (an expert to be resident at the client side). usually, we provide such employees from within our company (we have a team for such purposes). However, currently, we don't have the required staff in our company due to shortage of human resources. Moreover, staff reallocation between clients cannot be done. the problem is that the recruitment process in our company is taking forever, even though I've escalated to the management many times, and the client is asking me each and every day where is the expert, so what do you guys advise to do ?
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This isn't comprehensive, but you need to take a multi-pronged approach.

Maintain regular contact with the customer. Don't wait for them to ask you about the status. Create a plan for escalating at your company. Consider sharing this plan with the customer and providing regular status.
Review the contract. Are there penalties if your company causes delays? Prepare to deal with the penalties and make sure the right people on your side are aware of the situation.

Let me add to what Aaron says here and suggest:
-- Don't bid on a contract opportunity without knowing where, and how you will get the employees required.
--If this 'expert' is a new requirement, not in the original RFP? If so, then a client has to understand that bringing in someone outside the scope takes time and a contract mod.
--Conduct a session, if needed, with your boss, and a rep from HR to get this problem fixed, and quickly. If the expert was clearly identified, and you did not have an assignable person, you may indeed be in violation of your contract.

All comes down to the contract, if there is one for this resource. The issue you raise sounds more like an internal HR problem. And since HR have their own process, you are kind of stuck waiting for their process to run its course. Does HR need to be involved for an expert you source to work at the client site? Is this something you could source yourself with contingency funds, if that was allocated for?

Sante, thanks for picking up on something I did not--using contract 'expert' staff is often quicker, but does require funding allowed for it

Thank you all for your responses. Referring to some of what you guys suggested,
I've escalated this through an escalation plan..
I've done everything required such as consider it as a project risk, report it, raise it
I also discuss it with the client... I fell like I'm stuck in the typical HR processes.
The management is not paying enough attention to such issues
And they just placing blame and passing responsibility around..
However, so far I'm using a temporary substitute staff from my analysis team

Always best to ensure the ability to fulfill prior to making an agreement. The customer has to be informed and the contract allowed to be nullified if so desired. Escalation is all well and good, but the customer has been committed resources that don't exist.

I will answer as the client and the provider (you) because I was on both sides of the desk. By honest, no matter what your company is saying you have to find the way to be honest with your client. Is not because of your company. It is because of you. The worst thing is lost credibility from clients mainly when you work on consulting firms. Do not focus on process, focus on find a way to work with your client to solve the issue. Believe me, I was lot of times on your position facing this type of situations because somebody sold something that my team and myself must convert into reality.

Your management might not be taking action as it is hearing a broken record that they have already programmed themselves to filter! My experience is that some organisations do not set the environment for success - they expect the PM/PgM to deliver miracles without resources! My suggestion would be lock in sometime with those who can make an expedited decision/take action, explain the situation and the consequences, use metaphors - my favourite that everyone understands is "I am asked to prepare a meal where the main ingredient is missing - what are we going to eat?"
If management is not taking action, an approach would be for the client to escalate! This might not look good but it will certainly bring attention to the issue at hand.
1 reply by Edward Daniels
Sep 06, 2017 12:32 PM
Edward Daniels
To add to Amany's suggestion, come up with a solution.

Get everyone who can make a decision and give them options that should include you, the PM sourcing for the expert. HR folks are not the most intelligent or intelligent when sourcing for resumes of qualified candidates. Just be ready to commit to prescreening and interviewing this required expert. I have done it and it helps move things along...

thank you all, you helped alot

I want to add a comment here. I am a recent CAPM. I have done Project Management in the past but because it was over 10 years ago it is not counted as "recent" relevant experience, because of that I have not been able to land a job in project management. All the job postings require 3-5 years of experience. I want to suggest that maybe there is something to be done in the way of helping our new CAPMs get into a job which could be exactly what you need Abdulrahman. I am suggesting that we need to think of a path to integrate new people into the field.
1 reply by Erin Cottar
Sep 06, 2017 10:27 AM
Erin Cottar
Thank you Yolanda, also my story. It appears position that I am qualified for, are filled internally with staff that may know the business or procedures, but do not have the certification. Where is a CAPM, with a business degree, years of successful management experience look to pivot a career? I am looking into a construction management certification. Thought the local chapter of NAWIC would be a good start, but that has not been the case. Everyone, everywhere appears to be too narrowly focused to lend any advice.
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