Task Manager Method

Especially in projects engaging more than five people the workload gets imbalanced. The problem is lacking clear view on the individual use of capacity. An efficient task division is hard to manage. Conventional methods like the GANTT-Method are task-fixated and don't accomodate the relation of task sizes and therefore are not able to keep co-workers balanced in work.

I've developed an operative-oriented visualisation method. It's written into a simple table. The x-axis is time scaled, structured into calender weeks, including a deadline (usually saturday). The y-axis seperates the operatives.

A full-time operative obtains four vertical cells, therefore four time slots. A single time slot contains eight working hours. The remaining eight hours for 40 work hours are planned for general communication and usual meetings, thus not task-oriented. The ratio of commucation to task-oriented work differs from business to business and operative to operative. My 4:1 ratio is a practical value which emerged from my experience in different projects.

An additional line collects all work results due to the calender week's deadline.

The tasks are evaluated and the required time is calculated. The tasks are inbound. A practical tip is to use different colours for different projects. This is recommended, if a project portfolio including a number of project is persued. Below you can see a sample of use:

The use of this method gives everyone a clear view on who's working what problem. Additionaly, the method shows free timeslots and allows a foresightful planning. A tip for the use: always keep free slots for unexpected delays! Recommended is one free slot every two weeks. I've added an excel template into the download section for your personal use.

Tristan Poetzsch

Computer aided cognition and AI specialist, currently working at Nexgen Business Consultants.

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