As businesses across all areas of industry look for more efficient work methods, they often turn to technology and software.
Today, technology has blended with the business world so much that it is impossible to imagine performing the most basic tasks without the use of software or applications.
One popular area now with regards to apps is resource planning software. This software comes in different forms and is sometimes named slightly differently, but all the platforms can help in certain areas such as project management.
So, what exactly is resource planning software, and where would you use it?
What is resource planning software?
These business tools can assist with the allocation of workers to specific tasks or projects. They can help with other areas such as capacity management for instance, but largely they are used to maximize the workforce at hand.
The software allows any user to immediately see which staff are allocated to which project. They can also see how many hours they have used on that project, and how many people it involves.
This means at a glance, anyone can see if there are too few employees working in one area, and too many in another. They can also see if the project is taking up an excessive amount of hours, which can help when it comes to costing a project.
What is resource planning software used for?
This type of software can be used in a variety of industries, but one example might be for an architect.
When an architect firm takes on a project they will need to work out the costs and have the proposal accepted by their client. This needs careful management of materials and personnel.
If too many hours are used up then the project may become unprofitable. Resource planning software can be used in conjunction with project management apps to help these situations go smoothly.
What are the different types of resource planning software?
There are a number of diverse platforms that can be used for different areas of resource planning.
Enterprise resource planning software is used to integrate all levels and processes of a business. This usually leads to more efficient working practices and a more productive workforce.
MRP systems differ from ERP software as they concentrate more on materials resource planning, whereas ERP is involved in more areas including finances and the supply chain.
PSA, or professional services automation, is another piece of software that helps with managing projects and tasks. Techopedia describes a PSA as a way that routine tasks are automated through IT.
How does PSA software help manage resources?
Integration is the big word in business software at the moment. PSA systems allow companies to integrate and deliver on project management.
A PSA will allow the business to manage and control all aspects of a project including the processes and materials being used. This means that the performance of a project can be analyzed and problems spotted.
All data is held and processed centrally, and this means that PSAs are comparable to ERP systems in some ways. Indeed, you may even hear of a PSA being referred to as an ERP sometimes.
Do you require special training to use this software?
Some people balk at a change in the workplace, and some companies even consider training to be something that is not fully necessary.
To run a streamlined, efficient business today requires a mix of technology and an effective workforce. Providing training means giving the employees the skills and knowledge to perform their roles to the best of their abilities.
Someone using a PSA could receive Mavenlink training and then feel comfortable with managing projects and helping to drive stronger margins.
What benefits do employees and businesses gain from resource planning software?
Businesses would get a more efficient and streamlined project if they used resource planning software. If an ERP or PSA was used to its potential then it should result in better work practices, higher morale, and a reduction in mundane tasks.
TLNT believes that high morale leads to better performance and loyalty in the workforce. By providing tools that automate some of the dullest tasks, and remove the need for multiple spreadsheets, you will find that you have happier employees.
They will feel confident in their ability to manage resources and handle new projects, and in turn, will be more productive.
Using software to manage personnel can mean far more effective working methods are being adopted. Pricing a project becomes easier when you can see exactly where your workers are being deployed, and where perhaps they should go instead.
It can also help in some less obvious areas. Today, many people work remotely or off-site. This can make it difficult to keep proper track of what is happening with a project, and even make it hard to reward them. Using software to allocate resources means that recognizing and rewarding remote workers becomes easier, and this can also result in better morale.