Introducing Resource Management in Professional Services

Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Introduce Resource Management in Professional Services

Introduction to Resource Management

Request

The purpose of resource management in the context of project management is to facilitate the process of assigning a resource (typically an employee or contingent worker) to a request arising from a project.

The request typically consists of certain basic information:

Header Information
Any information describing the context of the request including project data (name, work package, work item), the customer (if relevant), and the originating organization (service organization, cost center). For example the request is from Project Alpha for Customer Greenworks and it comes from the U.S. Consulting Services organization.
Role
The type of resource being requested. For example a senior consultant.
Effort
The number of hours for which that resource is being requested. For example a senior consultant is needed for 160 hours.
Distribution
The days/week/months over which the effort is spread. For example a senior consultant is needed for 160 hours where that 160 hours is defined as the first and third week of January and February 2025 at 40 hours a week.
Skills and proficiencies (optional)
The skills, attributes, qualifications, certifications, and so on, that the resource must/should possess and the level of proficiency they have in those skills and so on, – if no skills are specified, it’s assumed that the role alone will be used for staffing. For example, the senior consultant must be a certified SAP S/4HANA Consultant and should have basic ABAP knowledge, intermediate integration knowledge, and advanced retail industry experience.
Organizational requirements (optional)
Information describing what part of the organization the request relates to–usually, if this isn’t specified, it will be assumed that the requested organization is the same as that of the project. For example the request for a senior consultant is from a project in the U.S. but the senior consultant should come from the German part of the organization.
Staffing instructions/descriptions (optional)
Any additional information needed to assist the resource manager in making a decision related to which resource to assign to the request. For example, the senior consultant must be an internal employee.

Employee Profile

Conversely, employees that will be assigned to project work must have a profile that corresponds to the request information above.

This typically includes:

Employee master data
The key information related to the resource, which includes their name, the part of the organization to which the resource belongs, their cost level, their manager, and so on. For example Perry John is part of the U.S. Consulting Services organization and cost center.
Availability
The time that the resource is available for project work, which is based on the employees employment contract, their work/country calendar, and their booked leave. For example Perry John is contracted to work 8 hours a day from Monday to Friday based on a U.S. work calendar (that is minus U.S. public holidays) and they’ve booked the days between Christmas and New Year as holiday.
Skills and proficiencies
as above but specifically for the resource in question. For example Perry John is an expert in Waterfall and Agile project management methodologies, is certified in PMBOK, and has advanced SAP S/4HANA Cloud experience.
Experience
Relevant experience from previous projects and employments. For example Perry John worked at a utilities company managing IT projects internally.

With the above in mind, it's clear that we need a means of maintain the data for a role/project request and resource profiles so that it’s possible to effectively match up a request with an appropriate resource profile.

It's also clear that it's necessary to have a means of seeing which resources match a request, including the matching information (that is availability match, skills match, and others) to make an informed decision on which resource is the most appropriate for assignment.

While the ability to match a request with a resource is the most fundamental purpose of resource management, there are numerous ways in which this can be achieved as well as varying levels of sophistication in the process.

Project-Based Scenarios

SAP provides two resource management solutions for project-based scenarios:

  1. Decentralized Staffing in Projects as part of scope item J11 in the standard SAP S/4HANA Cloud Public Edition
    1. Staffing is performed directly within a project (typically by a project manager) based on the role, skills, effort & monthly distribution defined in theSAP SAP S/4HANA Cloud customer or internal project.
    2. Resource profiles are updated based on the assignments that they're assigned to or via the API.
  2. Centralized Resource Management through the SAP S/4HANA Cloud for projects, resource management application
    1. Staffing assignments are carried out by a resource manager as part of a centralized resource management function.
    2. Requests are generated from the project role planning and can be refined/enhanced before being published for the resource management to staff.
    3. Resources have the ability to manage their profiles and view/update their assignments.
Note
If an external resource management application is used, Decentralized Staffing using SAP S/4HANA Cloud will no longer be possible.

The SAP S/4HANA Cloud for project, resource management application is seen as an external application so it isn't possible to use both Decentralized and Centralized Resource Management options concurrently.

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