Forty percent of workers think burnout is an inevitable part of success. But the truth is, your team can’t perform their best when they’re overworked. You can push hard in the short-term, but eventually the stress and pressure will catch up to you.
Instead, it’s better to manage your team’s bandwidth in order to prevent overwork (or underwork). That’s what resource management is all about—taking control of your team’s schedule to make sure you’re spending time on what’s important.
A resource management template is a reusable guide that helps you manage team bandwidth over the course of a project. It shows you everything your team is working on—so you can see how full everyone’s plate is, if they can take on additional work, or if they need help to get tasks done by the project deadline. Thanks to your template, you don’t have to waste time setting up a resource management plan for every new project. Instead, you can just copy the template, fill it in, and start working.
Resource management is a constantly evolving process. New requests, projects, and absences mean your team’s bandwidth is always in flux—and you need a template that can keep up with these changes. That’s where a digital resource management template really shines.
While static Microsoft Excel templates or Google Sheets quickly become out of date, a digital template updates in real-time as your team’s workload and priorities change. Its functionality lets you make adjustments on the fly, so you can stay in control of your team’s schedule and stop overwork in its tracks.
With a digital resource management template, you can:
See your team’s entire workload in one place.
Visualize how your team’s bandwidth and available resources change over time.
Update tasks, deadlines, and priorities to effectively manage team bandwidth.
Get a Gantt chart view of how long tasks will take in relation to your project timeline.
Visualize project dependencies to avoid future blockers.
Color-code tasks by effort to understand how much bandwidth they require.
Share your template with stakeholders to demonstrate how additional requests impact your team.
Easily add project tasks to your template without having to duplicate work.
Your resource management template should provide a high-level view of what each team member is working on. The easiest way to do this is by creating a separate section for each person. That way, you can add project tasks to each section to see what’s on everyone’s plate. Just be sure to include date ranges for each task so you can visualize how long each deliverable will take to complete.
For more detail, create custom fields to identify the effort each task requires (for example, small, medium, or large) and the status of each task. Each task's status can look different depending on the type of work your team does. It could be as simple as “not started” and “in progress”—or as detailed as “outlining,” “drafting,” “editing,” and “reviewing.” Depending on your team’s needs, you can add additional custom fields to track things like asset type or the Agile sprint this work is planned for.
Finally, add dependencies to identify if your team needs to complete any tasks before another can start. Dependencies allow you to mark a task as waiting on another task, so your team can prioritize work that could turn into a blocker down the line.
A resource management template is a great tailor-made solution for smaller teams. But if you have a large team whose work spans across many different projects, you may need a more bespoke workload management tool. In that case, Asana’s Workload feature can help by automatically providing a visual snapshot of your team’s capacity—so you can see what everyone is working on across different initiatives.
Timeline View. Timeline View is a Gantt-style project view that displays all of your tasks in a horizontal bar chart. Not only can you see each task’s start and end date, but you can also see dependencies between tasks. With Timeline View, you can easily track how the pieces of your plan fit together. Plus, when you can see all of your work in one place, it’s easy to identify and address dependency conflicts before they start, so you can hit all of your goals on schedule.
Custom fields. Custom fields are the best way to tag, sort, and filter work. Create unique custom fields for any information you need to track—from priority and status to email or phone number. Use custom fields to sort and schedule your to-dos so you know what to work on first. Plus, share custom fields across tasks and projects to ensure consistency across your organization.
Dependencies. Mark a task as waiting on another task with task dependencies. Know when your work is blocking someone else’s work, so you can prioritize accordingly. Teams with collaborative workflows can easily see what tasks they’re waiting on from others, and know when to get started on their portion of work. When the first task is completed, the assignee will be notified that they can get started on their dependent task. Or, if the task your work is dependent on is rescheduled, Asana will notify you—letting you know if you need to adjust your dependent due date as well.
Start dates. Sometimes you don’t just need to track when a to-do is due—you also need to know when you should start working on it. Start times and dates give your team members a clear sense of how long each task should take to complete. Use start dates to set, track, and manage work to align your team's objectives and prevent dependencies from falling through the cracks.
Clockwise. With the Clockwise + Asana integration, you can add Asana tasks as time blocks in your Google Calendar. The Clockwise + Asana integration allows you to specify the duration of tasks, when they happen, and whether Clockwise can automatically reschedule them. Add tasks to your calendar and make time to get work done.
ServiceNow. Reduce manual work for IT teams working in ServiceNow by automating task creation in Asana and providing cross-platform visibility into real-time status and context. Internal-facing service teams that use ServiceNow to track and manage employee tickets often receive requests that require actions outside ServiceNow, like fulfilling hardware requests, or responding to a payroll question. This integration makes it easy to connect ServiceNow to actions and updates taken in Asana.
Hubspot. Create Asana tasks automatically using HubSpot Workflows. With HubSpot Workflows, you can use all the customer data in HubSpot CRM to create automated processes. This integration enables you to seamlessly hand off work between teams, for example, when deals or tickets close in HubSpot.
Jira. Create interactive, connected workflows between technical and business teams to increase visibility around the product development process in real-time—all without leaving Asana. Streamline project collaboration and hand offs. Quickly create Jira issues from within Asana so that work passes seamlessly between business and technical teams at the right time.
An Excel resource management template is static, which means you need to manually update it every time project deliverables, timelines, or team availability changes. It’s also separate from your work—meaning you have to constantly switch between different tools in order to monitor your team’s bandwidth. On the flip side, creating your resource management template in a project management tool lets you manage resources and work on different projects all in the same place. You don’t have to switch back and forth between different apps, make manual updates, or duplicate work. Instead, your team has one source of truth where they can see how project workload changes in real time.
Using separate resource management software or a specialized resource scheduling tool poses a similar problem. It’s another tool for your team to learn and use, meaning more context switching and time lost.
If you’re a project manager or team lead, a resource planning template can help you simplify team resource planning and allocation. It helps you balance resource availability with resource needs, so you can make sure your project team has enough bandwidth to complete tasks on time—without getting overworked in the process.
Use your project resource management template at the very start of the project lifecycle, before you plan your project schedule and project budget. That way, you can account for your available team resources when planning how long tasks will take and whether you need to pull in additional help from contractors or other teams.
Every large company is filled with valuable assets—from your most trusted team members to things you don’t even think about. Keep tabs on all company assets by tracking, overseeing, and managing them with an asset management template.
Learn how to create a customizable template in Asana with a free Premium trial today.