Why finding your shadow resources is key to a successful project.

Following on from our blog on how to manage remote project teams effectively another challenge that becomes even more important with dispersed project teams is resourcing and why finding and utilising your shadow resources is key to a successful project.

In the average business, more than 15 percent of resources are simply not utilised. Why? Because the inefficiencies inherent in organisations such as waste, misallocation and poor static planning lead to under-utilisation.

Drilling down to the detail you need to achieve granular planning and finding those under-utilised “shadow resources” that are hiding in the white spaces inside assignments is invaluable to ensuring you have the ‘best resources’ available for the project.

To make the most of the available resources, project planning must react to changing circumstances, but in many cases this level of ‘what if’ planning is not built into the project plans.

Resources are usually both the biggest cost and constraint on an organisation, so just imagine what would be possible if those ‘hidden’ or ‘shadow’ resources could be found and utilised? The impact will be felt on productivity, efficiency, and ultimately, on your business’s bottom line.

Finding Your Shadow Resources

Implementing resource management software is one potential solution to this problem. A resource management solution that allows you to see the real-time impact of each new project on your portfolio, and constantly optimises your resource allocation, will help to ensure your resources are utilised to the maximum effect. The right resource management software will also help to eliminate the common problems associated with poor resource planning.

This includes:

  • A lack of visibility as to who is doing what;Why Finding your Shadow Resources is Key
  • A lack of understanding of the talent available;
  • Resourcing conflicts;
  • Increased project risk;
  • The under- and over-utilisation of staff.

3 Ways To Optimise Your Existing Resources

The improvement of visibility and control is one of the biggest benefits for any businesses. Staff represent the greatest cost but also the greatest revenue source for most professional service organisations, so having a better understanding of who is doing what, and when, is sure to benefit your bottom line.

How To Improve Project Visibility

The Key Benefits of Utilising Your Shadow Resources

1.   Increased efficiency

Research shows that organisations that improve their project delivery through the implementation of resource management software significantly increase their efficiency and reduce their costs. In professional service organisations, this is a common feature of the highest performers. Resources can be allocated based on specific criteria, which means the right person is always allocated to the right job.

2.  Reduced spend on external contractors and resources

Improving the resource management process can help to identity areas where existing capacity and capabilities are not being used. Gaining real-time visibility into the capability of existing resources allows businesses to identify those shadow resources lost in the white space between projects. It can subsequently reduce spend on external contractors and resources.

3.  Uncover hidden skills for specific tasks

As well as identifying areas where specialist skills are not being used, improving your resource management process will help you identify existing skills shortages and training requirements. This makes it easier for businesses to eliminate the negative impact of potential resource conflicts in the future, and to harness talent that was previously unidentified.


Hydra's resource management software  ensures you incorporate resource management best-practice so you can do more with the resources you have. Using a unique resource-centric algorithm, Hydra gives you a clearer view of your existing resources than an Excel spreadsheet ever could, allowing you to allocate your resources with the maximum efficiency possible. The result is no under-utilisation, no delays and no risk. Get in touch with our team to find out more about how to find your shadow resources.



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