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Project Human Resource Management Mohammad A. Rob. What is Project Human Resource Management?. Project human resource management includes the processes required to make the most effective use of the people involved with a project.

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What is project human resource management
What is Project Human Resource Management?

  • Project human resource management includes the processes required to make the most effective use of the people involved with a project.

  • This includes all stakeholders - sponsors, customers, partners, team members, and others

Managing people
Managing People

  • Dealing with people is an ongoing process in a project. It includes abilities such as:

    • Leading, communicating, negotiating, problem solving, and influencing.

    • Delegating, motivating, coaching, and mentoring

    • Team building and dealing with conflicts

    • Performance appraisal, recruitment, retention, labor relations, health and safety regulations

  • Most of these activities are common to human resources, but in a project, many of these are of temporary nature as a project is temporary

Problem solving and decision making
Problem Solving and Decision Making

  • Problem Solving: Problem solving involves a combination of problem definition and decision-making.

  • Problem definition requires distinguishing between causes and symptoms. Problems may be internal or external; or it can be technical, managerial, or interpersonal.

  • Decision-making includes analyzing the problem to identify viable solutions, and then making a choice from among them. Decision also has time element to them – the “right” decision may not be the “best” decision if it is made too early or too late.

Influencing the organization
Influencing the Organization

  • Influence the Organization: Influence means the ability to “get things done.”

  • It requires an understanding of both the formal and informal structures of all the organizations involved – the performing organization, customer, partners, contractors, and others.

  • Influencing the organization also requires an understanding of the mechanics or power and politics.

Human resources management processes
Human Resources Management Processes

  • There are four processes in project human resources management:

    • Human Resource Planning

    • Acquiring the Project Team

    • Developing the Project Team

    • Managing the project Team

Human resource hr planning
Human Resource (HR) Planning

  • HR planning involves identifying, documenting, and assigning project roles, responsibilities, and reporting relationships

  • Input to this process mainly includes staffing requirements - kind of people and competencies needed in necessary time frame

  • Outputs include:

    • project organizational charts

    • work definition and assignment process

    • responsibility assignment matrixes

    • resource histograms

Hr planning
HR Planning

  • Project organizational charts: After identifying important skills and types of people needed to staff a project, the project manager creates an organizational chart for the project

  • It is a hierarchical chart describing the roles and reporting structure of the people or people group in the project

  • It includes the project manager, deputy project manager, sub-project manager or group leaders, and individual team members such as programmers, engineers, and analysts

Hr planning1
HR Planning

  • Work definition and assignment process: After creating an organizational chart, the project manger works on to develop work assignments.

  • The assignment of work leads from the following activities or steps:

    • Requirements Finalization: a request for proposal (RFP) from the sponsor starts the process. It leads to a project charter that recognizes the project. A scope statement is then created that describes the project’s products and deliverables

    • How the work will be done: Technical approach such as product-oriented or phase-approached, in-house development or outsourcing,

    • Breaking down the work: The project is then broken down into manageable elements of work or a work breakdown structure (WBS) is created.

    • Assigning the work: The project manager then creates an organizational breakdown structure (OBS) which describes the assignment of work to organizational units according to best fit. A responsibility assignment matrix (RAM) is then created that describes the people responsible for performing the work described in the OBS and WBS.

Hr planning2
HR Planning

  • Staffing Management Plan:

    • In addition to the organizational breakdown structure (OBS) and responsibility assignment matrix (RAM), another output of organizational planning is a staffing management plan.

  • A staffing management plan describes when and how people will be added to and taken off the project team

  • It includes the type of people (programmers, business analyst, technical analyst, database analyst, technical writer) needed and the number of people needed each month

  • It typically includes a resource histogram, which is a column chart that shows the number and type of people needed over time

Acquiring the project team
Acquiring the Project Team

  • After developing a staffing management plan, the project manger works with other people to assign particular personnel to their work or acquire additional personnel

  • Organization should have a good staffing plan, which includes the number and type of people who are currently in the organization and the number and type of people anticipated for the project

  • An important component of staffing plans is maintaining a complete and accurate inventory of employee’s skills

  • If necessary for the project, existing personnel needs to be sent for training

  • It is also important to have good procedures in place for hiring contractors and hiring new employees

Effective staff management
Effective Staff Management

  • Once people are assigned to the project activities, there are two techniques available to help use project staff most effectively: resource loading and resource leveling

  • Resource loading refers to the amount of individual resources an existing project schedule requires during specific time periods

  • Resource histograms show resource loading, which can be very helpful in determining staffing needs or identifying staffing problems

  • Over-allocation means more resources than are available are assigned to perform work at a given time

Effective Staff Management

  • Resource leveling is a technique for resolving resource conflicts by delaying tasks

  • The main purpose of resource leveling is to create a smoother distribution of resource usage and reduce over-allocation

  • Project managers examine the network diagram for areas of slack or float, and to identify resource conflicts

  • Resource leveling aims to minimize period-by-period variations in resource loading by shifting tasks within their slack allowances

Developing the project team
Developing the Project Team

  • It takes teamwork to successfully complete most projects

  • The main goal is to help people work together more effectively to improve project performance

  • Training can help people understand themselves, each other, and how to work better in teams

  • Team-based reward and recognition systems can promote teamwork

  • Focus on rewarding teams for achieving specific goals

  • Allow time for team members to mentor and help each other to meet project goals and develop human resources

Developing the project team1
Developing the Project Team

  • Five stages of Team Development by Bruce Tuckman:

    • Forming: involves introduction of existing or new team member

    • Storming: team members communicate and collaborate, as well as have arguments, conflicts, and mistrusts

    • Norming: Team members ultimately develop a common ground to work together and develop a trust on each other

    • Performing: Team members work together towards a common goal of completing the project

    • Adjourning: Break-up of the team after successful completion of the work

General advice on team development
General Advice on Team Development

  • Focus on meeting project objectives and producing positive results

  • Fix the problem instead of blaming people

  • Establish regular, effective meetings

  • Nurture team members and encourage them to help each other

  • Limit the team size to three to seven members

  • Acknowledge individual and group accomplishments

  • Plan some social activities between the team members and other stakeholders

Managing the project team
Managing the Project Team

  • The project manager must lead the team

  • Assess team performance

  • Decide if any change is needed

  • Apply corrective or preventive action

  • Update on HR management plan

  • Motivate and manage each team member

Managing people1
Managing People

  • Leading and managing:Leading and managing go hand to hand. Managing is primarily concerned with “consistently producing key results expected by stakeholders.” Managing involves:

    • Establishing direction – developing both a vision of the future and strategies for producing the changes needed to achieve that vision.

    • Aligning people – communicating the vision by words and deeds to all those whose cooperation may be needed to achieve the vision.

    • Motivating and inspiring – helping people energize themselves to overcome political, bureaucratic, and resource barriers to change.

Managing people2
Managing People

  • Communicating: Communication involves exchange of information. It has many dimensions such as:

    • Written and oral, listening and speaking

    • Internal (within the project) and external (to the customer, the media, the public)

    • Formal (reports, briefing) and informal (memos, ad hoc conversation, etc.)

    • Vertical (up and down the organization) and horizontal (with peers and partner organizations)

Managing people3
Managing People

  • Negotiating: Negotiating involves conferring with others to come to terms with them or reach an agreement. Negotiation occurs around many issues, at many times, and at many levels of the project.

  • During the course of the project, the project manager is likely to negotiate for:

    • Scope, cost, and schedule

    • Changes to scope, cost, or schedule

    • Contract terms and conditions

    • Assignments

    • Resources.

Keys to managing people
Keys to Managing People

  • Psychologists and management theorists have devoted much research and thought to the field of managing people at work

  • Important areas related to project management include

    • motivation

    • influence and power

    • effectiveness


  • Frederick Herzberg wrote several famous books and articles about worker motivation. He distinguished between

    • motivational factors: achievement, recognition, the work itself, responsibility, advancement, and growth, which produce job satisfaction

    • hygiene factors: cause dissatisfaction if not present, but do not motivate workers to do more. Examples include larger salaries, more supervision, and a more attractive work environment

Influence on projects thamhain and wilemon s ways
Influence on Projects: Thamhain and Wilemon’s Ways

1. Authority: the legitimate hierarchical right to issue orders

2. Assignment: the project manager's perceived ability to influence a worker's later work assignments

3. Budget: the project manager's perceived ability to authorize others' use of discretionary funds

4. Promotion: the ability to improve a worker's position

5. Money: the ability to increase a worker's pay and benefits

6. Penalty: the project manager's perceived ability to dispense or cause punishment

7. Work challenge: the ability to assign work that capitalizes on a worker's enjoyment of doing a particular task

8. Expertise: the project manager's perceived special knowledge that others deem important

9. Friendship: the ability to establish friendly personal relationships between the project manager and others

Ways to influence that help and hurt projects
Ways to Influence that Help and Hurt Projects

  • Projects are more likely to succeed when project managers influence with

    • his or her expert knowledge

    • providing challenging work

  • Projects are more likely to fail when project managers rely too heavily on

    • using his or her authority

    • money

    • penalty


  • Power is the potential ability to influence behavior to get people to do things they would not otherwise do

  • Types of power include:

    • Coercive: punishment, threat (fire from job)

    • Legitimate: expectation based on position

    • Expert: personal knowledge/expertise

    • Reward: use incentives (money, promotion)

    • Referent: personal charisma

Improving effectiveness covey s 7 habits
Improving Effectiveness:Covey’s 7 Habits

  • Project managers can apply Covey’s 7 habits to improve effectiveness on projects

    • Be proactive: anticipate problems and changes, hence plan accordingly

    • Begin with the end in mind: focus on the achievement after completion of a work

    • Put first things first: do things that are important, not urgent (develop project plan, maintain relationships to stakeholders)

    • Think win/win: work together for all-win situation

    • Seek first to understand, then to be understood: Listen to others

    • Synergize: create a collaborative work environment

    • Sharpen the saw: retrain, reenergize, relax to avoid burnout

Software to assist hr management
Software to Assist HR Management

  • Software can help in producing resource allocation matrix (RAM) and resource histograms

  • Project management software includes several features related to human resource management such as

    • viewing resource usage information

    • identifying under and over-allocated resources

    • leveling resources