Change Specialists - Simplifying Change

The Importance of Skill Alignment Over Availability in Project Teams

In the world of project and change management, the composition of your team can make or break a programme. The Importance of skill alignment over availability in Project Teams shouldn’t be underestimated.

Traditionally, there’s been a tendency to default to resource availability when selecting team members.

While this is a pragmatic approach, it is often not the most effective one for achieving project success. Our CEO John Dean delves into why it’s crucial to align the right skills and experience with your project needs, even if it means acquiring new talent or contracting specialists.

The Pitfalls of Availability-Centric Team Formation

Resource Misalignment

When we pick team members based on availability, there’s a high likelihood of skill and experience misalignment. You might have a highly capable team, but if their expertise doesn’t match the project’s unique requirements, then the entire project may falter.

Reduced Efficiency

An improperly skilled team can lead to increased time and resource wastage. Tasks that should be straightforward become overly complicated, requiring more time and effort to complete, thus compromising efficiency.

Diminished Quality

Quality is often the first casualty when a team is not adequately skilled to meet the project’s needs. The end product or solution might fall short of client expectations or may not meet the intended objectives.

Why Skill and Experience Alignment is Vital

Expertise Equals Efficiency

With the right skills in place, team members can execute their tasks more efficiently. They know the best practices, tools, and methodologies to apply, reducing the learning curve and expediting project completion.

Fosters Innovation

A team of experts who align with the project’s needs is more likely to offer innovative solutions. They can identify opportunities for improvements and propose creative solutions, thanks to their specialised knowledge.

Mitigates Risk

Having a team with the necessary skills and experience helps mitigate project risks. They can foresee potential issues and provide solutions before problems escalate, thus ensuring smoother project progression.

Achieving the Right Skill and Experience Alignment

Skill Gap Analysis

Before project kick-off, conduct a thorough skill gap analysis to identify the specific skills and experiences needed for your project. This can serve as your guide in acquiring the right talent.

Leverage Contractors and Specialists

If you don’t have in-house talents who fit the project requirements, don’t hesitate to contract specialists or hire new staff even if it’s just for the project duration. The cost of acquiring skilled personnel is often justified by the high quality and timely delivery of the project.

Gain Stakeholder Buy-In

Securing the necessary budget and resources often requires stakeholder buy-in. Make a compelling business case for why investing in the right talent is crucial for the project’s success.


While resource availability will always be a factor to consider, it shouldn’t be the driving force behind your team selection process.

Prioritising skills and experience over availability can be the differentiator that sets your project up for success. Investing in the right talent might be costly in the short term, but the long-term benefits, including project success, stakeholder satisfaction, and a strengthened brand reputation, are well worth it.

Contact us to discuss the composition of your project team.

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