Basic Tips on Project Team Planning

team planning tips
In this article we’ll give a series of project team planning tips presented in the form of a step-by-step checklist. Our tips will focus you only on the basic considerations regarding recruiting project staff members while the details of the team selection process won’t be highlighted in the article (the details of better team management and project resource management will be the matter of our next articles).

Project Team Planning Tips

Below a 5-step checklist of the basic team planning tips for recruiting project staff is presented. You can take these steps and follow the tips to ensure you employ the right candidates for the right roles of within your project.

    Defining Project Roles

    The first and foremost project team planning tip refers to defining and managing the roles that are required for your project. Role management is a complicated enough activity when a project manager needs to focus on designing a job description document that specifies key roles of the project. When you start developing job descriptions, you need to describe the following components of each role:

    • Title and purpose
    • Duties and responsibilities
    • Rules for communication, collaboration and reporting
    • A set of skills, qualifications and experience required for a team candidate to fit into the role
    • Team performance criteria
    • Expected salary, commission and benefits
    • Work environment conditions

    Searching for Team Candidates

    To follow this project team planning tip you’ll need to start the searching process by advertising the roles both internally (within your organization) and externally (the rest world, using mass media). You can take the next few steps to plan the process for searching and recruiting project staff members:

    • Use your job descriptions to write the text of your advertisement as specific as possible
    • All the components of the roles should be included in the advertisement message
    • Try to describe challenges of each role – this will attract only “compatible” candidates
    • Focus the candidates on the benefits of each role but don’t oversell

    Once the advertisement is outlined, you can place it using mass media. Candidates for project staff will review the message and leave their contact information. Meanwhile, you need to plan the team selection criteria – this will be the next tip for project team planning.

    Interviewing the Candidates

    This project team planning tip assumes that you review your list of candidates who’ve left their contact information and then choose between 3-5 candidates for interviewing. To organize a successful interview of the project staff candidates you can take the following steps:

    • Assign date & time for the interview and notify the selected candidates of this information. Also information them of the place where the interview will be conducted
    • Make a list of questions before you start interviewing the candidates
    • Try to cover all areas of your job descriptions during the interviewing process – this is important for reaching the best project team planning.
    • Carefully read through CV of your project staff candidates and talk about both their strengths and weaknesses
    • Be specific and direct while interviewing the candidates

    During the interview you can make notes and specify any information that may be helpful further for making the final decision on recruiting project staff members. To reach the best team planning, you can use task management software for making records and creating to-do lists that help plan the interviewing process.

    Testing the Candidates

    Besides interviewing you may want to test the candidates before making the final decision. Here’re 8 project team planning tips for testing and recruiting the candidates:

    • Run personality, competency and numerical testing of the applicants
    • Ask if the candidate can provide you with 2-3 samples of work completed in the past
    • Propose the candidates to perform specific tasks of your project
    • Organize a second interview between senior management and each project staff candidate.
    • Organize a formal meeting with your team and see how the candidate socializes with the team members
    • Get the candidate to the launch with the team
    • Ask if the candidate can provide you with 2-3 professional references from past employers
    • Talk to the past employers to get confirmation on the candidate’s competency

    Selecting the Candidates

    Considering the results of both the interview and testing, now you can select the best candidates for your team. The final project team planning tip of this checklist refers to the need for analyzing the results, discussing them with senior management and making the final decision. If needed, you can organize additional interviews and testing.

Article Summary

The ability for recruiting project staff members will help you be a successful project manager. Because your project team will play the key role in executing your project, you should work on developing this ability. The given checklist of the project team planning tips has demonstrated you how to organize the selection process for recruiting the best project staff members. I hope the project team planning tips will help you always choose the right people for your projects. If you have any comments and suggestions, please feel free to use the Comments Form below to communicate with me on this article. Thanks.

Daniel Linman

A business consultant working on analysis, planning, implementation and evaluation of projects. Daniel has a broad experience in developing strategies for managing business and project activities. He monitors the market trends, actively participates in various business workshops and contributes to the development of effective communications between teammates and team leaders in the companies he is working for.

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