With excerpts from my Project Management Novel, I will illustrate the many processes of the PMBOK. Here is the thirty-fifth one: Acquire Project Team. Use this map to see how this process fits into the scheme of processes.
“What was our biggest problem on the last tower, Fred?”
Fred thought before he replied, “Keepin’ good people. Getting’ them in th’first place and keepin’ them on th’project once we had them.”
“Let’s work on that over the course of this project, then. We need to acquire the project team properly and manage them well once we have them.”
“Aye, that’s true. But don’t tha also think we need to develop th’team once they are with us? It seems like we get a crew to work with us and they build a tower but they are no better for it.”
“What do you mean Fred?”
“Well, look at me. During each project, I learn somethin’. I learned how to read and write. I’m learnin’ somethin’ about projects each time. Why not spend some of th’time teachin’ th’crew somethin’?”
“You’re right Fred. So far I’ve just used people during the project and let them go when done. But you have become much more useful to me because you learn something each project. I should do the same with the rests of my crew so they are more useful in their next job. Not only for the chance that I may need them again, but so that they thank me later when they use those skills on their next job.”
“So it all starts with getting’ th’team in the first place,” said Fred, pulling out his Project Management Guide. “What did tha call it again, acquire?”
“Yes. ‘Acquire Project Team.’ Sometimes we are given the team on arrival at the site. That happened at the first six towers. Let’s call that, ‘Pre-assignment.’ But other times, we have to get our own crew. That happened at the last tower. We can call that, ‘Acquisition.’ And I can imagine times ahead where we might have to negotiate for crew members from the stakeholder. Like pulling skilled people from other projects or other tasks that they’re being used on by our stakeholder. So we’re supposed to build a tower within the castle. Morgause may only give us the people she has to spare, keeping her most skilled workers busy doing something else that she prefers. We’ll have to negotiate for the best people for the job.”
“It could be th’other way around, tha knows.”
“How so?” asked Gwilym.
“Morgause might think this is th’greatest thing ever, this tower, and she’ll give us th’best workers, better than we need.”
“Doesn’t seem like a problem to me.”
“Oh but it is. Have you never worked with perfectionists, all tryin’ to compete with each other over who can do th’best job. We’ll never finish.”
“True enough,” nodded Gwilym. “And that may be even harder to deal with than the way I suggested.”
“What is th’result of these acquisitions and negotiations?”
“We end up with a list of people on the project and a calendar for each person, showing what they’ll be doing on what day.”
Fred was still writing these down in his Project Management Guide. “What shall we call them?”
“Project Staff Assignments and Resource Calendars,” replied Gwilym.