Managing Increasing Demands

  • Started
  • Last post
  • 2 Responses
  • duckseason

    I'm part of a small, 4 person, in-house design team. We recently found out that our budget and head count will not be increasing over the next FY as the company seeks to invest more heavily in other areas. This investment in other areas will undoubtedly lead to an increase in work for our team which is already stretched a bit thin.

    I'm curious if any of you out there that may work in-house, be part of a small studio, or have just gone through this in the past have any tips or ideas on how to deal with or brace for this while at the same time not totally burning out.

    Our processes in terms of project management, while improving, are far from perfect. Internally, this has already been a hot topic and we're planning to re-focus on it a bit in the coming weeks/months.

    Outside of that does anyone have any ideas, thoughts, suggestions, horror stories they'd care to share? I'm not looking for or expecting a one-sized-fits all solution, more so starting a conversation that can hopefully help me think about and approach this problem in ways I may not have thought to think of.


  • ETM0

    Who's at the top of your group? A CD? Are they the project manager as well? Sounds like there is no official PM experience. A good resource can be They offer courses and talks etc. Choosing and practicing an appropriate methodology is important. Best by a person who has actually worked in industry trenches so they have realistic expectations and goals, rather than a general PM come in.

    Another key thing will be balance/reward and team building so you all rally together under pressure rather than fall apart. Do you guys do many group lunches, after work drinks, paintball/laser tag nights or anything like that?

    • We have no official PM (one of the hires we were gunning for this year). Our team is also bi-coastal for the time being so team outings are a lil tough, lol.duckseason
    • That being said, we're pretty close and supportive of each other all things considered.duckseason
    • Right now all requests filter through CD who then delegates accordingly. From there the individual designers sorta take over managing the project - working withduckseason
    • ...stakeholders/vend... getting approvals etc.duckseason
  • monNom0

    If possible, use data to make your point. IE: if you know how many projects/size of projects you've been doing in the past, you are in good position to push back when future demands exceed that figure. Make it their responsibility to prioritize, or add more resources.

    If you don't have that data, take some time and gather it. Otherwise you're stuck talking about your feelings, and it's not all that convincing.

    • Agreed - having data is the best way to justify workload and staffing.bulletfactory
    • Good point. I believe the project tracking software we use can spit something out - requests, projects completed, hours etc.duckseason