Managing Resources is Key to Driving Business Success
Every organisation is reliant on its resources. Manage them effectively to reduce costs and deliver a more effective product or service.
From large scale manufacturers to online sole traders, every business needs resources in order to deliver outputs to customers on time and to the agreed quality parameters. In some cases, these resources are tangible objects such as raw materials, in others they are intellectual property, ideas and expertise.
Most critical of all, however, is that every business is reliant on one resource that can ultimately make or break a business – the people who are involved in delivering the product or service.
The efficiency and effectiveness with which you manage your resources, whatever form they take, has a direct impact on your ability to serve customers effectively, keep costs under control and make a profit. In other words, it is essential for the ongoing viability of your business. There are some great resource manager tools out there to help you do this better, cheaper and faster than the competition.
Here, we examine five critical principles to keep at the forefront of your mind to guide a successful resource management strategy.
1) Remember the H in HR
It is all well and good talking about optimising resource utilisation and creating charts, histograms and analytical frameworks. However, when the resources in question are people, you cannot expect to get the best out of them if they are seen as just another raw commodity.
Soft skills such as good communication and strong leadership are essential in order to motivate and engage the team. Don’t lose sight of the people behind the data.
2) Ten heads are better than one
The 21st century working environment is a strange beast. On the one hand, individuals increasingly work remotely and spend less time sitting around tables working on team projects. On the other, collaboration and teamwork is more important than ever, only those teams can be spread across the globe and interacting using online platforms.
Resource management tools that facilitate increased productivity and creativity through collaboration and teamwork are vital to success.
3) Transparency and visibility leads to better results
Information is power. The better you can monitor your projects and resources, the more effectively you can deploy them. Tools that facilitate planning and scheduling are just as important for diagnosing and alerting you to potential pitfalls and bottlenecks before they become a serious problem, allowing you to implement the necessary tweaks or productivity measures to keep everything on track.
Always keep in mind, though, that the statistics do not tell you everything. Raise areas of concern with the people involved, to come up with solutions that are realistic.
4) Shared goals and clear objectives
Following on from the above, it is essential to ensure resources are properly aligned and all parties are working toward the same goal. This demands transparency and a shared understanding in areas such as prioritisation of tasks, estimation of timescales and communication of potential risks.
5) Remember the human factor
The fifth principle is to remember the first principle. People are not machines, and need to feel engaged, motivated and appreciated. Get to know your “resources,” find out what inspires them, what interests them and where their real talents lie. Then try to match resource allocation accordingly.