9. Project Human Resource Management – A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide), Fifth Edition



Project Human Resource Management includes the processes that organize, manage, and lead the project team. The project team is comprised of the people with assigned roles and responsibilities for completing the project. Project team members may have varied skill sets, may be assigned full or part-time, and may be added or removed from the team as the project progresses. Project team members may also be referred to as the project's staff. Although specific roles and responsibilities for the project team members are assigned, the involvement of all team members in project planning and decision making is beneficial. Participation of team members during planning adds their expertise to the process and strengthens their commitment to the project.

Figure 9-1 provides an overview of the Project Human Resource Management processes, which are as follows:

9.1 Plan Human Resource Management—The process of identifying and documenting project roles, responsibilities, required skills, reporting relationships, and creating a staffing management plan.

9.2 Acquire Project Team—The process of confirming human resource availability and obtaining the team necessary to complete project activities.

9.3 Develop Project Team—The process of improving competencies, team member interaction, and overall team environment to enhance project performance.

9.4 Manage Project Team—The process of tracking team member performance, providing feedback, resolving issues, and managing changes to optimize project performance.

These processes interact with each other and with processes in other Knowledge Areas as described in detail in Section 3 and Annex A1.

As a result of these interactions additional planning may be required throughout the project. For example:

  • After initial team members create a work breakdown structure, additional team members may need to be added to the team.
  • As additional team members are added to the team, their experience levels, or lack thereof, could decrease or increase project risk, creating the need for additional risk planning.
  • When activity durations are estimated, budgeted, scoped, or planned prior to identifying all project team members and their competency levels, the activity durations may change.

The project management team is a subset of the project team and is responsible for the project management and leadership activities such as initiating, planning, executing, monitoring, controlling, and closing the various project phases. This group can also be referred to as the core, executive, or leadership team. For smaller projects, the project management responsibilities may be shared by the entire team or administered solely by the project manager. The project sponsor works with the project management team, typically assisting with matters such as project funding, clarifying scope, monitoring progress, and influencing stakeholders in both the requesting and performing organization for the project benefit.

Managing and leading the project team includes, but is not limited to:

  • Influencing the project team. The project manager needs to be aware of and influence, when possible, human resource factors that may impact the project. These factors includes team environment, geographical locations of team members, communications among stakeholders, internal and external politics, cultural issues, organizational uniqueness, and others factors that may alter project performance.
  • Professional and ethical behavior. The project management team should be aware of, subscribe to, and ensure that all team members follow professional and ethical behavior.