Operational Excellence

What is Resource Management? Benefits, and Why It’s Important

Written By: Ray Waldron
March 21, 2024
10 min read

Have you ever gotten halfway through a project only to realize you've used three-quarters of the budget, multiple tasks sit untouched, and one of your key people is about to go on vacation? You could have avoided all the frustration and chaos with tools that ensure proper resource management.

What is resource management?

Resource management is the process of regulating internal and external resources to ensure efficient, effective project execution. It includes:

  • Estimating and forecasting resource needs

  • Identifying currently available resources

  • Allocating resources based on budget, timelines, and availability

Prudent resource management is essential for finishing projects on time and within budget. Without it, you risk overburdening your teams, exceeding your budget, and failing to deliver timely results.

Why is resource management important? Key benefits for efficiency

Effective resource management impacts project efficiency and outcomes by:

  • Pairing people with tasks that match their skills. Team members familiar with relevant tasks and procedures can work quickly and get things done right the first time. If you don't have the right in-house skills, you can bring in outside help to ensure your team is well-equipped before launching into a project.

  • Directing money toward cost-effective materials and software. When you know exactly what you need to complete a project, you can identify the most cost-effective options for tools, equipment, and materials. Making all the necessary purchases up front prevents delays and bottlenecks later on.

  • Improving project ROI. Strategic planning reduces project expenses and timelines, which allows you to take on more work and become more profitable.

These benefits of resource management are most evident in complex industries like construction. Identifying critical resources at the start of a building or installation project can lower equipment and materials costs, ensure team members and subcontractors are available, and prevent delays in project timelines.

The Benefits of Resource Management for Project Success

Other industries with diverse project needs, including IT, manufacturing, and property management, rely on resource management for a variety of tasks in their day-to-day operations. Across these complex industries, proper resource management offers a variety of benefits for businesses.:


Being able to see exactly where a project stands is critical to its success. By having a visual single source of truth for workflows, businesses can see precisely which steps are moving smoothly, which are stuck in bottlenecks, and which employees or departments need to push the project to the next phase. By visualizing current workloads, businesses can take a more streamlined and efficient approach towards resource allocation..

Tracking Internal Resources and Identification of Necessary Equipment and Materials

For businesses in industries like manufacturing and construction, there’s a multitude of resources that must be tracked and analyzed to understand their performance. For example, manufacturing project managers must know which plants are operating efficiently, how their pieces of equipment are performing, and where the inventory of supplies and materials stands. Effective resource management tools allow businesses to see which equipment, supplies, and team members have already been assigned to projects and determine if the remaining resources can support additional work.

Skill Determination

Knowing which folks are most qualified and capable to complete a job is paramount to that job or project being performed properly. By visualizing and making clear each step in a workflow, businesses can asses who needs to be on the job and assign the most proficient, reliable team members.

Map Resource Availability to Project Milestones to Prevent Unexpected Delays

These tasks require a solution that combines project data with resource information to enable strategic decisions, such as Quickbase's platform for resource management. Here's a look at how Quickbase works in some of the most demanding industries:

  • Construction: Visualize current resource allocation to ensure equipment, materials, and team members are available when needed. Easily shift resources between projects to minimize delays and keep projects on schedule. Monitor budgets across projects to reduce overspend. Track resource use and employee performance to cut waste and boost productivity.

  • Manufacturing: Remove silos between teams to improve communication and streamline task management across departments. Closely track scrap to identify inefficiencies, improve resource allocation, and save money on materials. Increase productivity and reduce errors by pairing employees with tasks that best suit their skills. Monitor employee availability and make strategic staffing decisions to reduce downtime on the floor.

  • Solar: Coordinate installation, service, and maintenance schedules to minimize costs. Manage complex supply chains to ensure parts and other assets are available before installation dates. Track project milestones to reveal bottlenecks and improve time management. Tackle large, dynamic infrastructure projects with centralized communication that connects teams across areas. Strategically coordinate resources between multiple teams to keep projects moving on schedule.

  • Government: Consolidate and synthesize complex documentation and automate permissions for more efficient information access. Leverage real-time reporting tools to assess resource use and make strategic forecasts for future projects. Automate workflows to minimize repetitive tasks and increase productivity across departments.

  • Education: Transition from messy, time-consuming spreadsheets to a single dashboard for all projects and programs. Eliminate repetitive tasks, reduce the risk of human error, and save money on administrative work. Remove communication barriers to facilitate productive collaborations between stakeholders and bring projects to completion faster.

  • Legal: Organize and store important documents in a single location for faster access. Leverage templates to save time on document creation. Set up automated alerts and reminders to ensure client work stays on track. Monitor project profitability to determine the most lucrative practice areas and focus more time and resources on projects with high ROI.

Techniques for Modern Resource Management for Dynamic Enterprises

Old, static resource management frameworks tend to leave project information scattered across platforms, making resource assessment tedious and error-prone. You're likely to miss critical data, which can lead to delays that undermine project efficiency.

Effective resource management tools should enable businesses to:

  • Synthesize information from diverse sources and eliminate the risk of error from manual data transfer.

  • Identify patterns in project execution, resource management, and resource allocation, and make informed decisions that lead to successful outcomes.

  • Update data in real time so teams have the information they need to adapt to changes without affecting progress.

  • Visualize details from multiple projects and adjust resource allocation as needed.

  • Automatically assign unfinished tasks so projects can get completed faster.

Adopting these tools for resource management is important in a dynamic work environment where multiple projects fight for attention and priorities can shift on short notice. The more efficient you can become, the better the ROI on each project. Some techniques to help businesses achieve that ROI include:

  • Highlighting bottlenecks to inform strategic allocation decisions

  • Preventing scheduling mistakes that can stall project progress

  • Revealing opportunities for smarter resource management

  • Enabling clear budget tracking based on project data and resource pricing information

  • Providing detailed reports that can improve forecasting and reduce costs

Without this degree of clarity, you can easily find yourself stuck in the chaos of chasing down project details in a sea of emails, making frantic last-minute resource requests, and trying to track down team members to handle overdue tasks.

Benefits of using software for resource management challenges

An efficient, easy process for assessing resource needs at the start of each project can help you tackle some of the most common management challenges. These can include:

  • Capacity visualization and management. Resource management tools reveal whether you have enough people, money, and materials to undertake new projects. You can quickly forecast each project's requirements and prevent issues with skill gaps or supply chain delays.

  • Resource allocation. Bringing project and task data together in one place gives you complete visibility of available funds and skills so you can effectively map resources to project requirements.

  • Cost control. Historical data allows you to predict resource costs for new projects and avoid wasting money on last-minute purchases.

  • Bottlenecks. Quick access to comprehensive project data alerts you to potential disruptions in resource availability.

  • Meeting deadlines. The combined power of future forecasting and resource visibility gives you a clear understanding of how many people you need to assign to each project, how long vendors will take to deliver critical resources, and how quickly critical tasks can be completed.

But, resource management is just part of the larger project management ecosystem. To truly get the benefits, you need a solution that addresses all aspects of the project lifecycle. Businesses need to establish a central hub that handles all your project management needs, including:

  • Workflow automations that streamline data access permissions, manage task assignments, and automate resource allocation

  • Compliance monitoring to identify potential risks, align workflows with regulations, and keep compliance documents up to date

  • Tracking tools that monitor resource use, enable strategic budgeting decisions, and inform allocation adjustments

Resource management in action: Quickbase use cases across industries

Thomas Christianson, Business Development & IT Manager at Vertical-One, has experienced the benefits of Quickbase for resource management firsthand. With some projects requiring turnaround times as short as a week, the. telecommunications construction company couldn't afford to lose time on complex financial calculations required for proper resource management.

“[Quickbase] saves our team countless hours trying to figure out if ... projects will be profitable for us," says Christianson. Today, Vertical-One can perform the same calculations in 20 minutes or less—a massive change from the company's previous approach.

Effective resource management can also yield substantial revenue benefits, as it did for Verité, Inc. The nonprofit used Quickbase to create a system of dashboards, alerts, and notifications that reduced delays and improved overall project management, increasing revenue by $2 million in just three years.

"Quickbase makes everyone's job easier and more satisfying, including mine," says Jenn Stachnik, Verité's Manager of Accounting & IT. Thanks to Quickbase, the nonprofit can take on additional projects and deliver solutions to more clients.

How to improve resource management: Takeaways for project managers

But what does better resource management look like for your company? How can you go from the insanity of chasing down team members, frantically assigning last-minute tasks, and losing sleep over budget calculations to a streamlined, repeatable process that increases efficiency and profits?

Remember that you already have resources. You just need to take smart steps to allocate them to the right places. Here's how to get started:

  • Assess your current project management tools and their limitations

  • Talk with teams and executives to pinpoint known delays in the project management process

  • Note any resource management complexities unique to your business or industry

  • Identify areas where better resource management can improve project outcomes

  • Implement a platform that addresses your specific project management needs

  • Track resource allocation and use over time to determine if your new system has a positive impact on ROI

Discover more resource management solutions from Quickbase

Quickbase's tools simplify resource management through a centralized platform that curates project data for fast access across teams. You can quickly see what resources are available, check project progress, and make adjustments to move projects along.

With built-in solutions to connect disparate systems across your company and workflow automations that minimize time-consuming tasks, you can use strategic data insights to fast-track critical project management functions. Data, analytics, and reporting draw on past project data to inform future resource management decisions—and finally tame the chaos.

Get started with a 30-day free trial today, and see how Quickbase can transform your resource management process.

Picture of Associate Content Marketing Manager Ray Waldron set against a lochinvar background
Written By: Ray Waldron

Ray Waldron is an Associate Content Marketing Manager at Quickbase.

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