The resource optimization techniques, in project management, are tools that are used to adjust the implementation and completion dates of project activities to adjust the planned resource used and the resource availability. It is a tool used in the Schedule Network Analysis to calculate the schedule compression of the project. There are basically two types of tools used by the resource optimization techniques as follows:
- Resource leveling: This technique adjusts the start to finish dates based on the constraints of the resources. It has a goal of balancing the demand for the resources using whatever supply available. It is used when required resources are available at certain limited times and quantities or when over-allocated. It is also used when the resource is assigned to two or more activities during the same period or if the resource usage needs to be kept at a constant level. Resource leveling often causes the critical path to change.
- Resource smoothing: It is a technique used to adjust the activities of the schedule model. It ensures that the requirements for the allocated resource on the project do not go beyond or exceed the pre-defined resource limits. Thus, the project’s critical path remains the same thus the completion date may not be delayed.
This term is defined in the 5th edition of the PMBOK.