Data Representation is one of the tools and techniques of the Plan Resource Management process. A legit question here would be, what is Data Representation of any use as part of this process where we are planning resources?
Charts, be it hierarchical, matrix or text based are used to document and communicate the roles and responsibilities of the team members. Now regardless of the method used, the objective here is to ensure that every work package has a clear owner and everyone in the project team understand their roles and responsibilities.
Here are the most common chart types,
1. Hierarchical Charts
These are your classic chart structures that is used to show relationships in top-down format. Examples include,
Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)
WBS shows how project deliverables are broken down into work packages. Check out more on WBS here
Organization Breakdown Structure (OBS)
OBS lists the project work packages or activities according to the organization’s existing departments or teams. For example, the purchasing department can look into its portion to understand the expected work packages or activities from them as part of the project
Resource Breakdown Structure (RBS)
RBS represents team and physical resources related by category as well as the resource type. Every descending level represents an increasingly detailed description of the resource until the information is good enough to be used in conjunction with WBS. Check out more on RBS here
2. Responsibility Assignment Matrix
A Responsibility Assignment Matrix or RAM shows the connection between work packages or activities and the project team members. One of the biggest advantages of this is the fact that this ensures only one person is accountable for a task avoiding confusion. One example of RAM is a RACI Matrix or Responsible, Accountable, Consult and Inform matrix. This simple chart lists all the activities in the first left column and resources in the first row followed by RACI entries in the matrix
3. Text Oriented Formats
Sometimes detailed descriptions are required and a simple RACI chart won’t do. In that case documents are created clearly outlining descriptive information like responsibilities, competencies, qualifications, position descriptions etc. These documents can be easily reused as templates for future projects as well
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