GMCS resource planning
Andrey Vedeshin, Head of Business Intelligence Systems at GMCS, shared our experience of using the Timetta product for project management tasks.
About the company
The main profile of GMCS — implementation of business applications and increasing business efficiency, using leading and advanced technologies, as well as in-house solutions. The company's clients are organizations from the fuel and energy sector, industrial sector, transport and logistics, telecommunications. Among them there are state and companies with state participation.
Industry: Architecture and engineering.
Company size: 150 employees
Revenue in 2021: 180 million rubles.
“We have been using Timetta for over two years now. Thanks to the product, we have practically eliminated resource wars, which was one of the main goals of implementing the resource management system. Previously, as in many other IT consulting companies, we often had disputes between project and area managers about the priority of hiring employees for their own and project tasks. Now this is all reflected in the system.
Also unnecessary and costly communication between managers has disappeared, there is clarity on the load of employees, both in the past and in future periods. The transparency of utilization plans has increased employee utilization, and it has become convenient to analyze financial indicators in the plan-actual context. Timetta has allowed us to see a clear and transparent picture of project work”.
Andrey Vedeshin, Head of Business Intelligence Systems at GMCS
In our consulting business we take a client-oriented approach. When there is a new customer, it is important to understand what their needs are, what difficulties they have, and how we can help them. Business-directors of a corresponding direction start to cooperate with the customer and in view of this information a commercial proposal is composed for the customer.
During the project, the customer may need additional functionality, and in this case we quickly expand the previously proposed solutions. Sometimes representatives of one department or subdivision come to us, and after the introduction of software products in their work, other departments are also beginning to think about automation and we are together selecting appropriate solutions.
After implementation, we are interested in further cooperation with customers to support them, to develop the functionality of implemented systems and offer new products and services. By the way, we have been working with some customers for over 10 years, and about half of our customers work with us for over 5 years on average. We strive for such long-term relationships.
From the very beginning of our company's founding, we formed our own system for recording employee labor hours. However, our tool recorded only the actual time spent by specialists on project tasks and other activities. The company grew rapidly, and now we have several hundred employees. Often specialists from one division are hired for the project tasks of other divisions. Such a complex distribution of resources required the introduction of a new system for time planning and accounting. We wanted to forecast the workload so that employees could be utilized as much as possible, so that resource managers and heads of departments could clearly understand on which project, at what time interval, at what percentage or hourly rate a particular specialist will be working. At the same time, we wanted the scheduling to be flexible, as well as visually convenient and informative.
Before choosing Timetta, we analyzed various time tracking systems, including Western ones. One of the main drawbacks of foreign counterparts is that they are not localized. Also, the Western system of labor organization and HR is very different from the Russian one. Not finding suitable ready-made solutions, we tried to develop a system on our own, using as a base the task management system. We also tried Excel, business intelligence systems. We found that all these solutions were not suitable for us and, most importantly, required significant revision for the tasks of resource management and this would have spent a lot of time and effort. After searching, a domestic service appeared on the horizon, then called WorkPoint, which later became known as Timetta. We took a test period, looked at the system's functionality, and after all the tests we liked it a lot.
We saw in Timetta that it had an easy-to-use visual resource planning schedule, useful feature of requesting the right resources, reporting system, financial block, clear reference management system, external integration options. We were also impressed by the fact that the system was developed in Russia and the pricing plans seemed quite convenient.
The implementation of Timetta did not take long, but there were some peculiarities.
First, we had to define all the directories and functions that we needed in the system.
Second, we had to integrate our own labor accounting system. Thanks to the API and skilled professionals on our staff, this went smoothly and fairly quickly.
There were some minor bugs at the initial stage, which is quite natural. We fixed them during the test operation: we put the integration processes in order, simultaneously made some changes to our timeshift system, and everything worked! In terms of time it took 3-4 months. At the same time, we did everything ourselves, and only used Timetta tech support for advice.
We now have two main slices of data in Timetta. The first is the actual information which comes from our internal system: directories, locations, employees and their attributes, projects and subprojects, departments.
The second slice is planning and booking employees by resource managers and project managers. So far in Timetta, we don't account for actual work hours, but we get them from our internal system. Nevertheless, in Timetta we can analyse the data we receive, compare the plan and the fact, and plan the workload. Today there are about 120 people working in the system, just the supervisors and resource managers.
Our internal system provides Timetta with the actual project workload of employees, financial data on closed contracts, advance reports and expenses of employees on projects, business trips, vacations, and absences. Thus, in Timetta we have project P& L in terms of plan and fact. The system also allows us to do financial planning: plan revenues, make resource plans, and forecast expenses. One of the main metrics is project profitability. You can look at it over a certain period or over the entire period of work on it; Timetta makes it all rather convenient. We also constantly analyze the utilization of our employees-this data helps us understand how successful our projects are and how busy our employees are, and where else we can send them.
Project managers already have a plan for the employees involved, their rates and qualifications in the system at the start of their work, and they can also see how much the project will cost. All this allows to optimize resources and costs in advance, if necessary.
Source: timetta website, April 2023