we're currently letting our group manager estimate each developer's workload to report who's available for additional assignments.
How do you measure workload? Do you plan on finding an effective formula for distributing an amount of work throughout an organization? Do you want to be able to, say, take some amount of 'workload' off of employee A and give it to employees B and C?
Read the book Slack by Tom Demarco, its worth it ;)
I love Slack. Unfortunately Management doesn't. Hard to keep up that bottom line if the consultants aren't billing 120%.
OK, on the first question -
There's a side to this thinking that I hate. For me, when I'm asked, "Hey, how much availability do you have?" I want to know just what my options are. "Availability for what?" I hate blindly signing up for stuff. All too often it's some f*cked up design with a stupid deadline, but because I said "Yeah, I've got a couple hours a day, a little more next month." then I suddenly own some crap project. I work for a consulting co so there's usually another dimension in terms of clients, industry and location, so not only can it be some hopeless project but it could be in some heinious part of the country for dismal employer in an industry I despise. I've learned the hard way to be very, very careful under what terms I'll advertise or admit availability, I'm not adverse to dragging on something that's essentially done; which when you get down to it is an illustration of how idiot managers cripple their own group's productivity.
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