Meisterplan as a Tool for Tactical Resource Planning
- What challenges prompted you to introduce Meisterplan, and why did you choose this tool?
Before implementing Meisterplan, our resource management was a game of Excel bingo: time-consuming, cumbersome, and error prone.
We researched what resource management tools were available in the market and what would best fit our needs. It was a relatively quick decision, so we proceeded with Meisterplan. The core of the matter is Meisterplan provides clarity where all the big competitors have their weakest point, which is in simulation. The best part about Meisterplan is that it fulfills this niche perfectly.
Meisterplan and itdesign clearly communicate that the point is not to make perfectly accurate plans but to use estimates to get a plan that is rough but good enough to use as a basis for informed decisions. In this respect, Meisterplan fits well with our approach.
Furthermore, Meisterplan is easy to use and looks visually appealing, and human beings are influenced by visuals, which is one of the reasons for its success.
- How do you use Meisterplan in your company today?
Our success story in implementing Meisterplan is quite nice. When we introduced the topic of IT resource management and transferred our data to Meisterplan, we could see for the first time that our planned demand did not match our capacity at all. We were torn because it was obvious that we couldn’t get the projects done with the available resources. We were only able to get the positions approved after we showed with Meisterplan that we would have to cut numerous projects given the current resource availability.
We use Meisterplan in the following way: Every two weeks we hold an IT resource board meeting that brings together all the executives who contribute resources to the projects, which include around 15 to 20 people. We discuss changes to projects, project launches, and new project proposals to be included in the portfolio. Meisterplan is the basis of this discussion and is projected on the wall with a projector or the screen is shared in web meetings. The tool provides us with a live view of the current status of the project. Based on this, we make decisions such as resource allocations.
- How does the bidirectional interface between Clarity and Meisterplan work? How do you evaluate the interaction?
We all agreed on the fundamental principle that basic data will continue to be stored in Clarity. Clarity is the gold mine, while Meisterplan is the simulation tool.
To understand how the bidirectional interface works, let me walk you through the process. First, we take the data from Clarity, import it into Meisterplan and simulate the planning there. We make resource allocation decisions during the IT resource board meeting and the data is then exported back to Clarity into the team’s hard allocations. Previously, getting this data into Clarity alone used to take an hour, but now it takes only ten minutes. At the next resource board meeting, the fresh data is transferred from Clarity to Meisterplan.