Capacity Calculator

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A simple tool to understand the capacity of your team members and time spent on tasks.

What is it?

This is a simple tool that helps you to understand the time you have available for your main work activity, e.g. seeing patients or managing a service. It is an excel spreadsheet that calculates this for you if you enter the time spent on various activities.

What does this tool look like?
Example of a Capacity Calendar
Why use this tool?

When analysing and planning capacity, it’s important to look at time available for people to  do the work required. This means understanding how much time people can actually spend on the required tasks. The tool provides a helpful way to understand this for individuals and teams and therefore can help plan work and improve productivity.

Where does this tool fit in the improvement journey?


This tool is relevant at this stage of the Quality Improvement Journey.


This tool is relevant at these stages of the Quality Improvement Journey.

How to use it

Enter the required information in the orange boxes to see how many hours you and your team are able to spend on your main work tasks.

Use the information to start thinking about ideas for how you could increase time spent on your main work for example by testing changes relating to:

  • reducing number of or length of meetings,
  •  improving staff wellbeing,
  • reducing travel time or other non-core activities.

You can also use the tool to see what potential impact a change would have on overall capacity, or show the impact of changes that have been made.

Once you have optimised your capacity use, use the updated information from the tool to create realistic work plans.

It is also worth considering this tool if you are exploring recruitment to increasing capacity. If you hire another team member they will most likely spend the same amount of time on their main work as the others, so you will be increasing capacity by that amount and not the often assumed full hours.So for example, if you have 15 people in the role who each have 15 hours available, you could gain the same capacity by increasing each of their work time by 1 hour as by hiring a new person in the current system.