Resource calculator. How to quickly calculate the capacity of the team? / Hebrew

Resource calculator. How to quickly calculate the capacity of the team? / Hebrew

How often do you need to answer questions, withcan you take on this task?

If often enough, you probably use tools in your work that help you say yes or no. It can be MS Project, task trackers or any other specialized software.

But what if you need to understand the capacity as quickly as possible, and also give proofs to the management, which is used to measuring everything by the clock, and not by abstract story points?

Resource calculator

It was at such a moment that the idea came to me to create a simple and convenient tool that would allow to calculate the actual capacity of the team. This is how the resource calculator was born.

The main type of resources

In the calculator, it was important to enter from two sides.

  1. Calculate the capacity of the team.

  2. Calculate the assessment of tasks.

At the same time, it was important to take into account all factors that affect the available amount of resources – non-productive tasks, vacations, sick days, take into account the dates of the calculation period, holidays, weekends. On the part of tasks – to give an objective assessment, to have the possibility for “expert modifiers” – coefficients for assessments.

And in the end, make a simplified interface that everyone can understand.


In order for simplicity to be understood, I placed a legend in the settings, which by the color of the cell reminds which of them are calculated automatically, and which can be edited.

We adjust dates, holidays and roles in the team

In the settings, we specify the dates for calculation, holidays (weekends are considered automatic), roles and the name of your project.

The calculator provides an opportunity to calculate 2 periods. I use them as precise and simplified plans, but you can use them for example for two projects or teams. The functionality of the calculator for each of the periods is practically identical, so in the article I will talk about one of them as an example.

It seems complicated, but in fact it is worth filling out once and you can only change the dates of the periods and add new holidays.


Next, we go to our resources. Here I have grouped the customizable fields into 3 column groups:

  1. People.

  2. Absence.

  3. Reserves.

Each of the sections contains a corresponding group of columns.
IN People we indicate the names of our employees, choose their role from the previously filled directory and indicate availability on your project. This option allows you not only to use part-time resources, but also to adjust the performance of the resource according to your data.

Resources have been filled

Next comes the group Absences, Here we indicate the planned vacations of the resource and lay down a reserve for potential hospital stays, here it is worth estimating both the average temperature in the hospital (hehe) and increasing the prognosis for especially sick people. If you have jobs, put 0 everywhere.

The next block Reserves or Non-product tasks. Various reserves can be laid here. I believe that people cannot work productively for all 8 hours – they drink tea, smoke, reflect, switch between tasks, etc., so I allocate a quarter of the working time to such activities. You can do as your experience tells you.
And in general, you can rename each of the data columns of the group and fix exactly the reserves that you need.

Basically, you can say: yes, we know how many resources we have!
For this, there is a column with a resource count at the end, as well as the sum of resources by role at the top of the page.

Now we know how many resources we have!


Of course, knowing how much resources we have is great, but how does that help us answer the question we asked earlier: will you be able to take on this task?

In order to answer this question, you need to understand and what works fit into these resources?

Works will be evaluated soon

The worksheet is also a calculator, it calculates the grades of the assignments and maps them to the resources we filled in earlier.

All that is required of us:

  1. Specify the name of the feature or any work.

  2. Indicate her rating in the clock for each of the roles.

  3. If necessary, tighten the coefficients for the desired role.

For evaluation, the calculator has an auxiliary form with a PERT calculator, which is based on the classic formula Pert x4 will allow you to calculate the team score:


This will allow, during the discussion with the team, to immediately put their assumptions into shape and receive a probabilistic estimate.

After we’ve evaluated the tasks, we don’t have any resource utilization magic happen, all because we choose from them as a backlog which task we will take on. This is very convenient, because you can keep grades on all your assignments and optionally guess what is good for you and what is not.

And this is where the magic comes into play.

And where are all the Analysts?

The calculator will kindly calculate and highlight those roles where we have a lack of resources. With this calculation, you can safely go to the sponsor, ask for resources or change the scope of tasks.

Release-forming feature – this is our sign by which we notice works that must be included in the release, and they cannot occupy more than 50% of the labor costs of the basic plan. This is why you need a column and a cell with percentages.

What is your evidence?

As for reporting information to management, you have all the necessary numbers in your hands. You can show clock calculations, where the resources came from, and how much they actually are. For this purpose, the resource section has an auxiliary section that shows the allocation of resources to project and operational areas.

Mathematics of clock distribution


Of course, the calculator has several unpleasant limitations:

  1. It is not possible to calculate calendar terms by feature. Here you need to use the same MS Project that I recommend.

  2. Parallel work with the task is assumed, but this is always the case.

I hope the Resource Calculator will be useful in estimating your projects.

Anton Kuzminykh

Project manager in IS

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