Most resource management tools provide the capability to perform resource management at a micro level, i.e., managing each individual resource allocation and the associated duration for a defined set of tasks or needs. However, resource managers are required to efficiently manage and allocate their resources for the long term, ensuring they are effectively utilized and not just applied for a short-term requirement. This is where the concept of “Resource Profiling” may be able to help.

Resource profiling is a methodology that inverts the traditional process of resource management. Resource profiling begins by taking a “macro” view of an organization’s or company’s resource needs by aligning efforts or initiatives against a plan or roadmap. The result of this alignment can be then analyzed and dissected, providing a “micro” view of resource allocations that can then be managed individually

The first step in resource profiling is to identify the various profile types that are indicative of the work that an organization performs. These profile types are a critical component in determining various resource profiles that can then be applied to the existing plan or roadmap.

A profile type is a classification of the resource need based on a given set of assumptions, a defined scope of work, a timeline for implementation, a given budget or cost and/or an expected outcome. Upon identification of the various profile types for an organization, the next step is to further refine them into sub-types until the breakdown accounts for a significant percentage of effort or need in the organization.
The art of resource management will always have its challenges and a level of uncertainty. However, resource profiling can help to minimize these. By analyzing the “forest” instead of the “trees,” resource managers can gain additional insight into their resource requirements and take the appropriate actions to plan for variances, freeing up valuable time for other activities.

Finally, when considering the definition of what is considered a “resource,” the process defined within this white paper is not limited to just man power. It can be applied to any type of resource in any Industry, including: hardware, bandwidth, transaction load, or even cement.

The process of moving from a “macro” to a “micro” level is completed with the development of a utilization map. A utilization map is a detailed breakdown of the individual resource allocations based on the results of profile alignment. The resulting output from profile alignment can be extracted into a report that details an individual resource’s allocation against a specific effort over time

The method of resource profiling can be used to aid product managers in defining and delivering on their overall product needs. Each initiative that is undertaken for a given product will have a defined scope, an allocated budget and a set timeline for completion. If each initiative can then be aligned to an associated resource profile, the resulting profile distribution can help product managers in determining their ability to successfully achieve commitments or identify areas for further investigation or revision.