TPG TeamManager: Well-Structured and Truly Complete Resource Planning

TPG TeamManager is a web-based tool to help managers plan resources. It shows every department member’s complete workload plan, including line activities, absences and project work. In matrix organizations, resource managers need to be able to identify free project capacity to enable them to quickly approve resource requests. This is exactly what TPG TeamManager helps them with. It is a SharePoint app that runs in all common browsers.

The illustration above shows the difference in project availability according to the calculation by the team leader (right) and the requests from projects (left). The results differ, so that the team leader cannot commit Project B and C fully. This shows that both team leaders and project managers should have their own planning, but on the same basis. Thus, TPG TeamManager can compare the two plans to determine the availability for projects.

Team leaders specify the project availability of their team. It is calculated as follows:

  • Resource capacity
  • minus absences (sick days, vacation or training)
  • minus the general and individual operations
  • equals project availability
     

FAQ and answers about TPG TeamManager

Planning View for the Team Leader

The planning view for the team leader shows the utilization of the team’s resources and the requested projects in an overview. Ideally, all fields for projects and resources would be green – this would mean all resources are optimally utilized and all project requests committed. In reality, this balancing act is difficult to master completely, but the team leader can immediately see where action is needed from the fields that are not green.

A detailed description of the coordination process can be found here: Using SharePoint for Resource Management.

YOUR BENEFITS

Resource Planning with TPG TeamManager Provides Important Advantages

  • Project and team managers can coordinate, and agree on, resource plans more smoothly
  • Efficient handling of project resource requests and resource allocation in a single tool
  • Increased reliability of project resource plans for project managers
  • Project delays and overbooked / overloaded resources are reduced
  • Overviews provide a basis for decisions on additional resource requirements

    Connection to Projects

    TPG TeamManager combines resource requests from projects and the associated confirmations from the team leader. As a result, he line manager’s published confirmations are displayed in the project. The app gives you a graphical comparison between the confirmations and the requests. Hence, TPG TeamManager provides a solid basis for comparing requests from the project side and confirmations from the line side, making it easier for both sides to come to mutual agreements.

    Clear Resource Utilization Diagrams

    The bar charts show the overall utilization of the chosen resources and activities along with the resource capacity line. The height of the bars and the resource line are always the same in both charts. Users can select resources on the left and activities on the right.

    See below for FAQ and answers about TPG TeamManager.

    Integration with Microsoft Project Server / Project Online

    If required, you can also connect Microsoft Project Server / Project Online – as your project management platform – to the TPG TeamManager SharePoint App. This is how it works:

    1) The app imports the resource capacities from the Microsoft Project Server Resource Pool.
    2) Team leaders plan all non-project related activities and absences for each of their team members in TPG TeamManager.
    3) They import all resource requests from Microsoft Project Server into the app at the project level.
    4) They commit available resources to projects or redistribute activities to optimize the team’s workload.


    The Key Features

    • Graphical traffic-light view of workload for every team member and of the department
    • Charts of resource requests and commitments with upward aggregation
    • Degree of commitment of line resources to projects with traffic-light function
    • Optional integration with Microsoft Project Server, including the permissions model

    Compatibility:

    • App for SharePoint Online
    • App for SharePoint 2016
    • App for SharePoint 2013
    • Webpart for SharePoint 2010
    • High performance on all common browsers
    • Project Online
    • Microsoft Project Server 2016
    • Microsoft Project Server 2013

    Frequently Asked Questions About TPG TeamManager

    1. How do I populate TPG TeamManager with resources?

    TPG TeamManager allows the import of resources via an interface or directly from the resource pool of a Microsoft Project Server / Project Online. This makes sense if you have a large number of staff. We are happy to advise you regarding the possible data formats.
    Of course, you also have the option to add the employees manually.
     

    2. Can I also plan team activities which are not project-related with TPG TeamManager (e.g. operations and absences)?

    Yes, that is possible. TPG TeamManager distinguishes between operations, absences and project activities.
     

    3. Will TPG TeamManager support me in calculating my team’s project availability?

    Yes, TPG TeamManager calculates the project availability in accordance with the following formula:
    Net capacity of the resources
    - line activities
    - absences
    = project availability
     

    4. Can I see what my team members are working on?

    Yes, of course. TPG TeamManager gives you an overview of the planned project and line activities in hours per team or per resource.
     

    5. Can I see which of my resources is available in a certain period of time, e.g. when a request from a project comes in?

    Yes, that is easy to identify. An easy-to-read graphical display with the look & feel of Excel facilitates this in TPG TeamManager. The table cells are color-coded depending on the workload of the person.
    You can configure the colors and the point at which a color change occurs according to your preferences.
     

    6. Can I see who is scheduled to work on which project? And when and for how long? And what about scheduled vacation, absences and training?

    Yes, you can easily see this in the overview. TPG TeamManager distinguishes between absences, operations and project activities. These are shown in the timeline.
     

    7. Can I view the scheduled assignments of my team along the timeline?

    Yes, TPG TeamManager supports planning in the following time intervals: days, weeks, months, quarters or years.
     

    8. Can I also plan for external staff with the tool?

    Yes, that is possible. TPG TeamManager treats external and internal resources identically. You simply enter both as resources.
     

    9. Who can access your planning in TPG TeamManager and see the contents?

    TPG TeamManager is a SharePoint App. Thus, there is always one SharePoint page per team. You can define the access privileges for this page (read and / or write) yourself via the SharePoint authorization concept.
     

    10. Can my team members see their own workload and that of their colleagues in TPG TeamManager?

    In principle, that is possible. But certain prerequisites have to be fulfilled before each team member can view their own workload as well as that of all colleagues on the team. This functionality needs to be explicitly required and it needs to be preset in the SharePoint authorization concept.
     

    11. Can I import the actual hours from time tracking into TPG TeamManager?

    Yes, that is possible. TPG TeamManager includes an interface for importing e.g. actual hours from other systems or directly from Microsoft Project Server / Project Online, if TPG TeamManager is connected to a relevant system. We are happy to advise you regarding the possible data formats.
     

    12. Can I portray the general availability of my team members, e.g. in the case of part time staff?

    Yes, that is actually advisable. You should enter the availability of each team member individually in hours per day, hours per week or hours per month. Thus, you ensure that the calculation of the project availability is correct. This is easy when you are using Microsoft Project Server / Project Online, and it is linked to TPG TeamManager. In this case, the information is maintained in MS Project and automatically imported to TPG TeamManager.
     

    13. I have neither Microsoft Project Server nor Project Online available. Can I still use TPG TeamManager?

    Yes, of course. TPG TeamManager exists in 2 versions:
    1) for the collaboration with Microsoft Project Server / Project Online – you can import the project requests directly to TPG TeamManager. The project manager will see your resource commitment in a separate view in the web browser.

    2) as an independent SharePoint App – in that case, the automatical import of project requests from Microsoft Project Server / Project Online is not possible. You will have to enter these manually or possibly draw on a different data source. But all other benefits of TPG TeamManager are fully at your disposal.
     

    14. I work in a matrix organization where project and line managers plan separately. Can I use TPG TeamManager for resource planning in this scenario? 

    Yes, TPG TeamManager was actually specially developed for the matrix organization. It provides optimal support for the coordination process between the resource owner, i.e. the line manager, and the person from the project environment who places the request.
     

    15. Can I see whether the capacity in my team is sufficient for a project request? 

    Yes, that is possible. First, projects are imported generically as requests into TPG TeamManager (if the relevant interface has been set up) or created manually. As the responsible team leader, you will only assign team members to a project manually after you have checked if it is possible. This allows you to optimize the workload of your team and to avoid overload.
     

    16. Will overload situations for my team be transparent for me, allowing me to take the appropriate measures?

    Yes, of course. TPG TeamManager offers powerful reports on the utilization from the project and resource perspective. You can also export all plan data in order to exploit the additional potential of e.g. Excel or Power-BI.
     

    17. Our head of department needs an overview of the utilization of all teams. Does TPG TeamManager provide support for this?

    Yes, the tool provides excellent support for this scenario. TPG TeamManager does not only offer personal reports within one team. It also supplies aggregated reports per team at principal department or department level. Again, the access is regulated by the SharePoint authorization concept. In addition, it is possible to export the data for display in any other tools.
     

    18. Can I import data from any external system?

    Yes, that is possible. TPG TeamManager has an import function to import data automatically, such as resources, master data, availabilities, actual values, or project requests. We are happy to advise you regarding the possible data formats and necessary efforts.