How do I manage project load capacity to see how many more projects my project managers can handle? is great at managing individual steps of a project. But it doesn't give us a visual overview of all project’s status. We have a unique capacity measuring issue since we’re using 3 external vendors to fulfill the work - not individual creatives with billable hours (that we could solve with Harvest/Forecast app). Issues: 1. Visibility of project management capacity - need to see how many more projects we can manage. 2. No way to know "at a glance" which projects are paused, slowed down and when they’re projected to end because of it. 3. No way to know which have a hard deadline, and which are flexible. 4. No way to know how many projects go over the estimated timeline. (days over = lost opportunity to sell in new slots)


In addition to what has already been said: be sure to weight your projects. Some may be more time intensive than others, or involve certain people more than others.
I find that if you can quantify time and efforts and use that scale to determine capacity it tends to work better than sheer number of projects.

Answered 7 years ago

Complex question. Try having no more than 3-4 project per PM if they are small.

1. Project management capacity is not a robust metric. Optimize project success not load efficiency.
2. Project velocity can be simply color coded. Green for nominal, orange for at risk, red in jeopardy.
3. All deadlines should be hard. If one is missed, diagnose problem, resolve root cause of problem, set new deadline.
4. Same with color code.

The secret is building teams that are empowered to make decisions, accountable and autonomous. It sounds tough, start with focus. Measure only what's important.

We can talk more in detail if you need more help.

Answered 7 years ago


It's great that you've invested in using a project management tool. I've tested out dozens of PMs over the years and so far, what I've found out to be the most efficient (this is what I use to manage 3 companies, including one agency that has multiple clients) is Taskworld.

It has the live chat feature that most PMs lack (no more need for Slack) and overall features from tracking project timeline, calendar overview, color-coded tagging and more.

If you'd like help in migrating your workflow here, let me know!

Answered 7 years ago

The calculation for capacity is based on two variables. Lost time and Standard Work. In my experience projects are created with fluff (Lost time) or with some type of buffer to meet the schedule. The fundamental reason why this happens is because people do not want to manage the project. Managing takes work and effort and this is why lost time is built in. This is incorrect. If you want to know capacity you have determine your standard work. No, I know you cannot possibly observe a 6 month project but you can observe a part of the project. For example, if you observe several days of standard work and you determine that you have 15% lost time and then you can apply that 15% to the entire project. You can then determine you capacity.

Answered 6 years ago

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