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Project Management in Practice, 5th Edition by Margaret M. Sutton, Scott M. Shafer, Samuel J. Mantel, Jr., Jack R. Meredith

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Allocating Resources to the Project

In this chapter we consider the problem of allocating physical and human resources to projects.* The physical and human resources are granted to and used by the project in order to meet the project's objectives. The amount of resources that can be allocated, of course, depends on the timing of the allocation as well as on the total supply of resources available for allocation. Mainly, resource allocation concerns how we allocate specific, limited resources to specific activities (or projects) when there are competing demands for the same limited resources.

Projects compete with each other for the same resources in two different ways. First, consider a resource that is limited but is not consumed when used, the services of a specific technical specialist for instance. The problem here is which project gets to use the resource first and which must wait. Second, consider a resource that is limited and is consumed when used, a specific chemical reagent for instance. In this case, the second project may have to wait until more of the reagent can be purchased and delivered. In both cases, the project that must wait may suffer a schedule delay that makes it late. Just as projects may compete for resources, different activities of the same project may compete. Two or more concurrent activities might require the same personnel, or equipment, or even work ...

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