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🎬 [VIDEO] Top 3 Reasons for Resource Pools



Your “On-Demand Workfront CSM” is back with a new Top 3 video! This time we’re talking about Resource Pools, and some creative ways to use them.  This topic always inspires discussion, so check out the video below. 




Just getting started with Resource Pools? First things first, what are they? 

  • A Resource Pool is a collection of users that are needed at the same time for the completion of a project. 
  • A Resource Pool can be shared across multiple projects, programs, or portfolios when it is associated with all the projects in the programs and portfolios. 
  • After you populate your Resource Pools with users, you can associate them with projects and templates, and you can associate as many Resource Pools as needed with a project, template, or user. 
  • For more info, check out the Resource pools overview article. 

There are several genius-level examples of why the Experience League Workfront Community is so amazing and this topic is no exception.  Just another plug to post your questions or start a discussion when something doesn’t seem right, and help will be on the way. 

As I mentioned in the video, Resource Management tools can take a village, so here’s my Oscar speech thanking all the folks that inspired this video. Special thanks to @MelanieM1@Doug_Den_Hoed__AtAppStore@skyehansen@Madalyn_Destafney@Lyndsy-Denk, and @KellieGardner for the discussions and @RandyRoberts  for tagging me. Also, thanks to @Ross_Barton for bringing the topic back on the radar, and @CorinnaJ  for being the coolest person (in general) and, of course sharing her Resource Management brain with me!  

4 Replies


Level 10


Mmmmm...resourcing. Delicious! Thanks @CynthiaBoon!


Ever the contrarian, I'll kick things off. In contrast to my Right Answer on the related thread above (assuming that isn't overturned upon appeal, citing this post), I do not use Resource Pools personally, for several reasons:


  • managing skills (via roles with % per role per person) is more granular and practical
  • over time, such organizational constructs invariably change (see "reorg" for more information), causing dissonance and confusion between the Old Way and the New Way, and (eventually) extra work to "catch up" the former to the latter...assuming there hasn't been another New New Way in the meantime
  • in contrast.."One word: Assignments" which in my opinion and experience are a far superior means of conceptualizing, discussing, filtering, and managing Resources within Workfront...so much so, in fact, that it lead to the creation (with our like-minded clients' insights) of our Capacity Charts solution, which I'd be happy to chat about via doug.denhoed@atappstore.com, or perhaps present sometime to those on this thread interested in learning more


I look forward to additional conversation here as it unfolds.





Level 7

Thank you, @CynthiaBoon, for trying to address this.

Two things:

  1. I've only heard reasons why resource pools can be helpful; not why they're required. If we don't use Resource Pools, does Planner not fully function?
  2. What if we don't yet know what the resource pools should be for projects? In my organization's case, we're trying to assess our capacity at a more general level. One of the questions we're trying to answer during our exercise is, "Which resource pools should we use?" Are we putting the cart before the horse? If so, how do we do capacity planning on all projects, even the ones without resource pools?

Maybe that's where @Doug_Den_Hoed__AtAppStore comes in?



Hi @Lyndsy-Denk - let me see if I can answer your questions.  


  1. Yes, you do need to use Resource Pools to have accurate data in the Resource Planner.  I think there are several reasons Resource Pools are required but probably the most important is that they cordon off resources so that a particular role or resource that your team is using is not counted as a resource for another team or group or vice versa.  Resource Pools are a really easy way to show the resources your team or department actually has access to and connect those resources to the projects they are or will be working on.
  2. I think it's always crucial to think through Resource Pools and Job Roles.  Please note that you can have more than one Resource Pool attached to a project and similarly, users can be in more than one Resource Pool.  I think the important question to ask is, "What is the RM data you or your leadership wants to see?"  That should inform how you structure your Resource Pools.  


Hi @Lyndsy-Denk,


Yes, exactly: although in the long run some overlap does tend to occur, we design our solutions to compliment Workfront's built in As Designed features. In the case of our Capacity Charts solution, all you need in order to get going is a minimal set of Workfront information:


  • Users
  • Schedules
  • Roles
  • Tasks
  • (Optional) Personal Time Off


With those in place, our Capacity Charts can help you visualize your mid and long term staffing needs against real projects and make decisions such as (e.g. for crunch times) whether to hire extra skills or defer projects to allow some breathing room. As you get control of your data and plans, you can also introduce Workload Balancer and/or the Resource Planner in parallel, using those features where they fit best with your processes. Happy to chat further at doug.denhoed@atappstore.com