When your teams’ planned efforts exceed their availability, you don’t have that many choices. You should either re-prioritise your projects or hire some new talent to reduce your employee’s workload. But the question is, how would you get that extra budget to hire someone?
Your team is overworked, your projects are accumulating and we’re not even talking about the unexpected ones. Indeed, your team’s capacity has reached its maximum. With no lull in sight, projects keep piling up. In order to deliver more projects, you are going to have to recruit one way or another.
However, if it’s hard to say no to your boss that keeps adding more to your plate, it’s going to be just as hard to get that extra budget to hire new recruits. By overworking them, you’re putting your teams at risk and you won’t be able to achieve your goals.
So, how do you proceed?
1. Evaluate your needs
First of all, to achieve your goal you have to start by drafting a list of all your human resource needs. You will have to evaluate at a high level, the efforts required to carry out the various activities.
Ideally, you should be getting help from the person who has the expertise to carry out the activity, in order to have the most accurate estimations. For example a project manager (person in charge of assigning resources to projects) or a resource manager (person in charge of staffing).
You will have to ask yourself these questions:
- What type of resource do we need? (e.g: Business Analyst)
- How many projects will they work on? How many hours does that represent? (E.g: 100 hours)
- When do we need them? (e.g: April to May)
Before blindly recruiting, you can start by re-scheduling your activities to optimise your team’s workload. If certain activities can’t be moved around to a period with less activity (where your teams still have available time) or if your team’s planned efforts still exceed their availability, then, there’s an obvious need to recruit (unless you can reduce your team’s workload).
You should also have an idea of your needs for the planned period. Now, you just have to convince your boss.
To be able to evaluate your needs more efficiently and improve your project management process you can take a look at this capacity planning tutorial.
2. Prove your case with quantitative data
Well, it’s a good thing you’ve just gone through a planning exercise that will be very useful for your case.
During your meeting, you must be prepared and able to provide your boss with concrete information.
In this situation you would need to have specific details on the resource you want to hire.
You must take into account aspects such as:
- Job Type (Full-time, contract or temporary)
- Job Function (Administration, sales, marketing, engineer)
- Experience Level (Associate, mid-senior level, director)
- Availability (When are they available to start? E.g: Immediately or in 3months)
Once you have all this information, you will be able to present to your boss the different scenarios that will level out the current workload of your teams & help you achieve your goals.
To help you out, we came up with different email templates you can send your boss when you want to recruit someone and prove your point.
Scenario 1: Temporary
Subject Line: Resource Planning
Hello Boss, while taking a look at our team’s planning schedule, I would need to hire two junior business analysts from July to September, for the following reasons:
From July to September, we already have 3 on-going projects.
Each of these projects will require business analysts for 10 hours a week if we want to deliver them on time.
We are planning to start two new projects in July that will also require business analysts for 10 hours / week, which brings the total need for business analysts to 50 hours per week during that period.
During that period, we can only supply 30 hours of business analyst time (Sam is in over-capacity and he is only available to work on Project A for 5 hours a week instead of 15hours like we had planned).
Therefore, we will be unable to cover 20 hours of business analysis work if we don’t hire anyone during that period.
I have attached the candidates I think would be a great fit, we have to narrow it down to two.
Let me know what you think.
Scenario 2: Full Time
Subject Line: Resource Planning
While taking a look at our IT Department’s planning schedule, I realised that I would have to hire a full-time Senior Software Developer starting July, for the following reasons:
PwC renewed their contract for another 5 years, but the project will require some custom development work.
The software development needs to deliver that project will represent an additional 55 hours a week for us to stay on top of schedule.
That brings the total need for software development time to 2,750 hours per year.
Currently our IT Department cannot take on more projects and does not have the level of experience required to work on the PwC project.
Therefore, we would need to hire at least two highly skilled software developers if we want to deliver this project on time and within budget.