Methods of Resource Allocation

I’ve recently been made aware of another method of resource allocation.  I’ll throw it out here to see what project managers think.  It’s a simpler method than the traditional task-based resource allocation.

Before getting into that, I’ll briefly describe the resource allocation method I am most familiar with.  In this method, resources are assigned to project tasks that have clearly defined durations and remaining hours. 

The tasks may also have starting and finish dates.  The resource allocation algorithm spreads the remaining task hours over the date range defined by the task.  If you have too many tasks, you are over-allocated.  Too few, and you are under-allocated.

The simpler method I became aware of doesn’t use tasks.  It also doesn’t use start and finish dates.  Projects are assumed to continue forever, and resources are assigned a percentage of their daily scheduled hours.  That’s it, nothing else.

In the simpler method, resources are over-allocated when they are assigned to so many projects that their daily hours are exhausted.  They are under-allocated when there are still a few hours left in their day.