Time Off, Days Off, and Capacity Planning


Time Off and Days Off affect capacity planning calculations and reports such that an accurate picture of capacity and availability can be attained. The specific mechanics of this part of the system can be quite nuanced and slightly complicated. This document serves to communicate how the system works in this area.

Availability Calculation Formula

As background information for the rest of this article, it is important to be reminded how availability is calculated. Availability is calculated using the following formula: Availability = Capacity - Scheduled (measured in hours). Consider the following example in order to clarify the formula. It is typical for a person's capacity to be 8 hours per work day - this is described as Capacity. If that person is scheduled for 6 hours on a project for a work day, then their Availability will be calculated to be 2 hours for that day.

Time Off Entry

When a person enters time off on their time sheet, an entry is made in the Time table (like all time entries), which allows the time to appear on the person's time sheet, and normally, a related entry is made in the Schedules table. The entry into the schedules table effectively reduces the person's availability. In this scenario, if a person's capacity for a work day is 8 and they enter 8 hours of time off on that day, their availability that day will be 0.

One notable exception to this rule is when time off is entered on a day which is configured as an organizational day off. In this case, an entry is made into the Time table as usual, but an entry is not made in the Schedules table. This is because on days off, capacity is effectively 0. Adding a schedule entry to that day would bring the person's availability to a negative number, which is not desired.

The other exception to this rule is when the time off time type is explicitly configured to not make a schedule entry. This is not the default behavior, but it can be configured  in this manner from the Admin tool. When this option is set such that the time off time type does not make schedule entries, then time off entries never have corresponding entries in the Schedules table. This is a forward-only setting, meaning this will not have retro-active affect on time off schedule entries when the setting is changed. This can be useful in the case where you wish to do capacity planning at a higher level by distributing the expected time off over the course of a year. In this case, you would not need the time off entry to make a schedule entry because you have already accounted for the time off which will be entered by representing it as a general schedule.

Also, it is important to note that this determination is made at the time when the time off entry is entered into the system. This means that if the organizational day off was not configured and a time off entry was made, the schedule entry would be made. Adding an organizational day off after time off entries have been made for a day will not remove existing schedule entries on that day.

Time Off and Schedule Reporting

On reports where schedules can be compared to actual hours, a special table is used which is populated nightly by an automated job. This means that these types of reports can contain data which is not 100% accurate if changes have been made since the last time the job was run.

This special scheduled vs. actuals reporting table is populated with all schedules and all actual hours, with one exception: time off on days off. When time off is entered on days off, we know a schedule entry is not made, and so this is automatically not included in the reporting table. However, a time entry is always made, and so any time off entries which are made on organizational days off are excluded from the reporting table. The reason for this is that the report may show a user having 0 capacity on an organizational day off, 0 scheduled hours (since the time off entry doesn't make a schedule entry), but 8 actual hours (if the person entered 8 hours of time off on this day). Therefore, since these time entries are excluded, in the above scenario, actual hours would show as 0 instead of 8, even though there are 8 hours of actual time off entered on the organizational day off.

One Final Note

This document gives examples of capacity, schedules, and availability on a per-day basis. The system is not this granular; it stores these data points on a weekly basis. Because of this, the differences in calculations are harder to detect at the week and/or month level, the granularity options which most of these types of reports provide. Breaking the calculations down to a day level aids in communicating the mechanics of these calculations.

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Article ID: 3231
Wed 1/14/15 11:16 AM
Thu 12/24/20 11:21 AM