Last edited 21 Jan 2021

Resource allocation in design and construction

Contents

[edit] Introduction

Resource allocation is a business term that describes the assignment of people, materials, plant and other resources to specific projects, tasks or other uses. In design and construction terms, resource allocation can be used to describe the process of assigning people, materials, tasks and so on based on availability and scheduling requirements.

Also see Resource management.

[edit] Proper resource allocation

It is important to determine if the correct number and mix of people are available to be able to deliver the work that has been accepted. Having adequate resources in place to provide clients with a professional service is a requirement of both the ARB and RIBA codes.

Problems with projects can occur where there is poor resource allocation. These difficulties have become more prevalent as buildings have become more technical, the range of products and materials has increased, standards and regulations have become more strict, and there are a greater number of specialist designers, particularly in the early stages of the design process.

To reduce these issues, resource allocation should be pre-planned and, where appropriate, allocated to the specific tasks. Properly scheduling the available resources is crucial in ensuring that the project proceeds correctly and within the established timeframe and budget.

If resources are limited, this can sometimes result in conflicts that can be addressed using allocation methods. Allocation ensures that the resources required do not exceed those available, but on the condition that any resulting delay is kept to a minimum.

Also see Resource leveling.

[edit] Algorithms for resource allocation

Practical problem solving approaches such as the Wiest-Levy method for resource allocation are commonly used and can provide good solutions relatively quickly.

The Wiest-Levy method is based on the scheduling of activities which can be carried out using the resources available. When the load is greater than the available resource, the activity will have to be delayed; amongst the most non-critical activities, the one that solves the problem with the least delay is chosen. If there are two activities with the same conditions, the one with the greatest float is delayed first, meaning that critical activities are only delayed when there is no other option.

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