Teamwork.com is great at managing individual steps of a project. But it doesn't give us a visual overview of all project’s status.
We have a unique capacity measuring issue since we’re using 3 external vendors to fulfill the work - not individual creatives with billable hours (that we could solve with Harvest/Forecast app).
1. Visibility of project management capacity - need to see how many more projects we can manage.
2. No way to know "at a glance" which projects are paused, slowed down and when they’re projected to end because of it.
3. No way to know which have a hard deadline, and which are flexible.
4. No way to know how many projects go over the estimated timeline. (days over = lost opportunity to sell in new slots)
What have you tried so far?
You could try using a modified Kanban board to show which projects are in what stage. E.g. not started, setup, design production, vender 1, vender 2, review, blocked, paused (whatever your project stages are?) By fixing the number of available slots in each stage you could therefore limit the available capacity to reflect what you have available.
You would also be able to reflect which project manager is managing which project and see what stage each of those projects is in.
I've used this technique in a recent project where everything was very fast moving and relied on the input of several independent specialists. It allowed me to see where my resource was being used and at what stage each of my sub projects was at. This meant I could support those sub projects that most needed my help and speed up those that were falling behind.
Using a platform like Trello (https://trello.com/) others platforms available, everyone in the team can have a login and manage their own time.
Happy to talk it through.
In addition to what has already been said: be sure to weight your projects. Some may be more time intensive than others, or involve certain people more than others.
I find that if you can quantify time and efforts and use that scale to determine capacity it tends to work better than sheer number of projects.
Complex question. Try having no more than 3-4 project per PM if they are small.
1. Project management capacity is not a robust metric. Optimize project success not load efficiency.
2. Project velocity can be simply color coded. Green for nominal, orange for at risk, red in jeopardy.
3. All deadlines should be hard. If one is missed, diagnose problem, resolve root cause of problem, set new deadline.
4. Same with color code.
The secret is building teams that are empowered to make decisions, accountable and autonomous. It sounds tough, start with focus. Measure only what's important.
We can talk more in detail if you need more help.