The Staffing Process in Resource Management
John has now finished defining the project structure, the project tasks, and the required project roles. He also has scheduled the project. Now he starts the staffing process: the assignment of business partners to roles and optionally also to tasks. In this lesson, you learn how the staffing process works in Resource Management.
Resource planning in Project Management always refers to projects. To implement resource planning for a project, the project needs at least one project definition to have been already created for it. The above figure shows a schematic of the steps required during resource planning.
After defining a role and assigning tasks to it, you can staff the role with resources, and distribute the role requirements to the individual resources. The project type and the role type decide how the suitable resources are to be determined, and how and by whom the roles are staffed with resources.
You also specify the validity period of this staffing and the work effort that is expected of the resource in this role. Depending on the setting of the role type, the work effort can be assigned in the form of a total required capacity, or distributed to individual periods.
You can use both internal and external resources to staff a role (both represented by business partners in Project Management). You can create business partners manually in SAP Portfolio and Project Management, or you can use SAP Human Capital Management integration to derive them from HR master data.
You can use a resource search to determine suitable resources. The search function transfers all data necessary for the search from the project role definition as search criteria; the search criteria include the validity period and the location, the qualification requirements, or the role requirements.
The search criteria can be changed in the search function without changing the attributes of the project role. In this way, you can specify additional qualification requirements for the search.
You can also enter additional search criteria. For example, you can restrict the search to resources that have already worked for certain customers or ordering parties, or to resources of certain organizational units.
After you have determined the search criteria and started a search, you receive a list of the resources that were determined as suitable candidates. The list of search results provides information and functions that can help you as you continue processing. You have the option of navigating to the detailed data of a resource or view a list of existing assignments to project roles of other projects. The system also displays the manager of each resource in the search result list. When you have decided on a particular resource from the list, you can e-mail the relevant manager of the resource to notify them of the project. You can store resources as candidates or firmly assign them to a project, straight from the list.
As a further preliminary step to the fixed staffing of a role with resources, you can use the reservation of resources for a role. You may want to do this if you do not yet have a contract for the project or the relevant manager has not yet approved the assignment.
Depending on the role type of the relevant project role, there are three different scenarios for role staffing (or for determining candidates):
- The staffing is performed by the project lead while processing the project.
- Users with the authorization Staffing Manager (or Candidate Manager) in a Project Management project perform the staffing centrally in SAP Portfolio and Project Management. The authorizations are assigned by the project manager.
- The staffing is carried out using the extended staffing process. This process is more strict as there is a separation between project planning and staffing. This process uses organizational units and includes status management for staffing.
In the first scenario, the role staffing is carried out for individual Project Management projects, and a cross-project view is not possible. However, in many companies, resources are managed by central organizational units or resource managers. In these cases, functions are required for cross-project and cross-resource staffing. SAP Portfolio and Project Management has fast entry screens for this purpose. There are two fast entry screens, Resources Overview and Staffing Overview.
On the Staffing Overview fast entry screen, there is a list of all projects for which you have role staffing (or candidate management) authorization. If you expand a project in this list, the system displays the roles and any existing role staffing. The role requirements and the distribution of resources over the validity period of the roles, are listed periodically. Yellow and red traffic lights notify if a role is not yet fully staffed or not staffed at all in certain periods.
To reduce the number of projects listed in this fast entry screen, you can use filter functions and favorites. Favorites are summaries of Project Management projects. You can use a favorites list of internal projects and one of the customer projects. You can make further settings for the period to be displayed, the time unit for the display of requirements and staffing, and the period breakdown. You can navigate to the details of the project, the project roles, or the assigned resources.
If you open the Resources Overview fast entry screen in SAP Portfolio and Project Management, you receive a list of all resources for which you are responsible as a resource manager. To make an assignment between resources and resource managers, you should have already defined the corresponding resource pool. If you expand an entry for a resource in the list, the system displays the projects and project roles to which the resource is assigned. The distribution of a resource to the relevant roles and the total and remaining availability of the resource are also displayed periodically. Red traffic lights notify you of an overload of resources.
You can navigate to the details of a resource, the project, and the roles.
Using this fast entry screen, you can also manually distribute work for resources to project roles for individual periods manually or use the extended distribution function.