Are you someone who likes planning and scheduling?
Are you someone who would like to have variety in the kind of work you do?
Do you like interacting with different types of people with varying perspectives?
Are you someone who can work within time constraints and deliver your best?
If the answer to these statements is a yes or a maybe, then a career in project management would be a good fit for you. In simple words, just like our school team projects, you would be taking up a project and would be responsible for it right from the first meeting with the client till its outcome. Just like a school project wherein a topic is given by the teacher, the client here would come in with their requirements and would expect you to deliver.
What kind of projects, you ask? So these projects differ depending on the industry you work in as a project manager. For instance, if you are a project manager for an advertising agency, then the project might be that you have to plan out a branding strategy for a soft drink and see through its execution while collaborating with designers, market researchers, branding strategists, and obviously your client.
But how do they do it? How to become a project manager? What are the skills required? All these answers, along with a lot more will be answered in this blog. Continue reading to get the information required about a career as a project manager.
What does a Project Manager do?
An expert who organizes, plans, and manages projects while adhering to constraints like budgets and timetables is known as a project manager. Project managers oversee the work of entire teams, establish the objectives of a project, consult with stakeholders, and see it through to completion. The project manager is accountable for the success or failure of the project, regardless of whether they are managing a marketing campaign, building a structure, creating a computer system, or launching a new product.
Their major responsibilities can be grouped into 5 processes which are commonly called the project life cycle. Here is an overview of these processes the specifics of which differs depending on the kind of project and industry you work for.
Before starting a new project, project managers lay out its major goals, intent, and parameters. Additionally, they identify important internal and external stakeholders, talk about common expectations, and secure the necessary approval to advance a project. Important inquiries made by project managers in the planning stage include:
- What makes the project so crucial?
- What is the precise issue that we are attempting to resolve?
- What is the intended result?
- What standards will the project meet for success?
- Who are the project’s stakeholders? Who is affected by this initiative, or who is affected by it?
After the charter has been accepted, project managers collaborate with important stakeholders to develop an integrated project plan that is centred on achieving the stated objectives. Project managers can better manage scope, cost, timeframes, risk, quality concerns, and communications thanks to the plan developed throughout this process. Project managers will specify major deliverables and milestones at this stage, along with the tasks that must be performed for each.
Team members finish the tasks listed in the project plan during this phase in order to accomplish the project’s objectives. It is the responsibility of the project manager to assign this work and make sure that assignments are finished on time.
- Observing and Regulating:
Monitoring and controlling processes actually start at the beginning of a project and continue throughout the planning, execution, and closing, even though they are classified as the fourth phase. A project manager’s duties throughout the monitoring and controlling phase include: tracking a project’s development, Budget management for the project, ensuring the achievement of important milestones, and evaluating performance against what was anticipated or scheduled.
Project managers work to guarantee that all tasks required to produce the desired outcome are finished during this phase. When a project is finished, the project manager will work together with the client to obtain official approval that the project is finished. Any funds or staff that are no longer required for the project should be released. Additionally, they also finalize contracts and pay invoices, and examine the work of partners or third-party vendors. Lastly, saving project files for usage and reference in the future is the last task for a project.
Job Roles in Project Management:
- Project Analyst:
Project management and planning are assisted by a project analyst. They give the project manager a lot of the information required to make important choices.
- Program Assistant:
A program assistant is essential to the team’s daily assistance of its members. They assist with administrative and logistical tasks like taking phone calls and processing financial paperwork.
- Assistant Project Manager:
An expert who assists the numerous initiatives of the business is an associate project manager. They frequently collaborate with the project manager, who drives teams to meet deadlines and attain corporate objectives.
- Project Coordinator:
Every significant project or program your organization attempts to complete depends on project coordinators to be a success. They create thorough work plans, manage teams, hit deadlines, and communicate the outcomes to key stakeholders on a daily basis. They also link projects with corporate goals.
- Senior Project Manager:
Effective scheduling, coordination, direction, and monitoring of the project are the main responsibilities of a senior project manager, as the title suggests. A project management program is created and presented to team members by senior project managers. Senior project managers provide team members with guidance on every facet of the project so they are fully aware of their obligations and are able to properly carry them out.
- Program Manager:
Program managers are in charge of ensuring that overall organizational objectives are achieved. Without taking direct management of the projects, they coordinate their efforts. Instead, they oversee the primary program, paying close attention to its implementation, delegation, and strategy.
- Director of Project Management Office (PMO):
They give efforts inside a company or large organization a strategic direction. They manage projects for the entire organization or supervise the work of project managers, oversee and plan the use of the resources required for projects having a clear start and end date, and even decide the overall scope.
Career Paths to becoming a Project Manager
A bachelor’s degree in commerce (B.com) is an excellent method to begin a career in operations management. Through bookkeeping, auditing, and business management classes, you will gain the essentials of running a firm. An MBA can be pursued thereafter, which can enhance your resume.
Business Administration (BBA) or Bachelor of Management Studies (BMS) programs teach the basics of retail customer service, retail supply chain management, marketing, purchasing, inventory control, and display strategy. Similar to method 1, you can combine a bachelor’s degree with an MBA to give yourself a competitive edge.
To know more about how to become a project manager, you can check out our blog.
Salary at different stages of Career as a Project Manager.
The position of a project manager comes after a considerable amount of experience in the industry. Therefore in the initial stages of your career, you can take up the various job roles that we discussed and work your way up to the position.
The salary is therefore likely to be affected by the kind of industry you are in and the organization as well. A general overview of their salary depending on the kind of role is provided in the table below:
|Profile||Starting Salary per annum (in INR)||Mid Level Salary per annum (in INR)||Senior Level Salary per annum (INR)|
|Associate Project Manager||4,81,000||10,00,000||20,00,000|
|Assistant Project Manager||3,71,000||6,68,000||10,00,000|
|Senior Project Manager||10,00,000||20,00,000||30,00,000|
Skills required for Project Management
A project plan serves as the cornerstone of the project management cycle, making project planning an essential project management ability. It contains the project budget, resources, and schedule. The main focus of traditional project management is preparation. As a result, the planning phase of any project establishes the groundwork for all that comes after, including the project’s success or failure.
- Team Management:
In project management, cooperation is key. To keep their teams operating effectively, project managers need to possess strong interpersonal skills. Maintaining teamwork and a positive work environment calls for an awareness of conflict management. It’s usually beneficial to begin projects with team-building exercises to foster relationships that will endure throughout the project’s ups and downs.
- Time Management:
One of the restrictions and crucial technical competence is time. Lack of time management abilities can cause delays and other problems. Project management is all about sticking to deadlines and delivering your products on time. Project managers must be specialists at managing their own time as well as the time of their team and the entire project.
- Risk Management:
Project managers need to have the key skill of risk management, which entails detecting and preparing for potential risks. The most effective project managers are able to spot hazards early on and create effective mitigation strategies in case the risk really materializes.
The project’s energy source is the project budget. Without a project budget, project management is only a concept. However, creating a project budget is only one aspect of the process. Budget management involves keeping track of costs throughout the project’s life cycle and ensuring that actual costs don’t go beyond the budgeted amount.
- Critical thinking and problem-solving:
All professionals could benefit from studying critical thinking, but it is especially helpful in the field of project management. The greatest project managers are proactive rather than reactive, and they apply their critical thinking abilities to steer clear of challenging or unclear assignments.
- Communication skills:
Leadership and communication abilities go hand in hand. If you can’t clearly communicate what you want your project team to accomplish, you can’t manage a project effectively. However, you’ll need to have a clear communication strategy for your clients, stakeholders, and contractors in addition to your staff.
- Negotiation skills:
One of many communication talents is bargaining ability, although it merits its own section here. Negotiation is a crucial skill for managing stakeholders and resolving conflicts in project management. You may, for instance, get requests from stakeholders that have the potential to affect the project’s scope. You’ll need to politely push back so that everyone involved in the project feels that their needs are being met.
Is being a project manager a good career option?
The role of project management in business has always been crucial, and its significance is only growing. Almost every business has projects. Therefore, almost every business could benefit from hiring a project manager. You’ll probably need project management abilities in your profession, whether your interests are in construction, architecture, fashion, design, computer science, robotics, or something else. No matter where your work takes you, you may use these transferable talents to strengthen your portfolio because it’s such a varied profession.
Additionally, 87.7 million people will be needed by companies to fill project management-related jobs by 2027. Almost 15% more worldwide firms now have a project management office to help manage this growing need than they did in 2007. It is obvious that the employment prospects for professionals with project management skills are improving.
Type of Industries hiring project managers
As we have established project managers are required in every field, and the type of industries hiring for them are vast. Some of the industries that you can try include:
- IT companies
- Banking sectors
- Government agencies
- Financial Services
- Designing companies,
- Construction and Engineering
- Advertising and Marketing agencies
Top Recruiting Companies for Project Managers
Some of the major recruiting companies hiring project managers are
- Bank of America
- JPMorgan Chase
- Southern California Edison
Courses to Upskill as a Project Manager
You can take a few online courses to see if a career in project management is suited for you if you’re not sure or as a way to upskill yourself. You can enrol in these classes even after completing your tenth-grade education because there are no prerequisites. You can look into a couple of the courses listed below:
|Professional Certificate in Project Management||Approximately 6 Months|
|Introduction to project management||2 hours|
|Become a Project Manager||11 hours|
|Project Management Principles and Practices||3-6 Months|
|Fundamentals of Project planning and management||1-4 weeks|
|Project Management Foundations||3 hours 20 mins|
|Project Management Simplified||1 hour 44 min|
While you’re at it , Also Do check out our Clever Harvey- JuniorMBA Founder Program which provides you with industry experience.
Qualifications required to become a Project Manager
Degrees in India:
The route to becoming a project manager in India is quite straightforward. Any business degree is enough to begin your journey toward being a project manager. The point of significance that makes your journey smooth is the number of years you spend in your preferred industry. Thus, take time out to analyze your interests and reasons for the same.
As mentioned consistently across the blog project management is specific to the industry you want to be a part of, the undergraduate degrees would be based on that. For instance, if you like to be a project manager in IT then pursuing a bachelor’s degree in BSc (IT) works the best. However, a general business degree would also help. So if you don’t have any preference then the following degrees would help:
|BBA/ BMS||3 Years|
The same formula applies to higher education as well. For example, an M. Des works best if you want to be a project manager for a fashion house. However, a more general degree would work if you are not sure about the industry. A few of them include the following:
Project management abroad is also an option that you have. Their structure, curriculum, and approach toward teaching differ as compared to India. Some of the degrees that you can try include BSc (Hons) in Project Management, Bachelor of Business Administration – Project Management, BA in Leadership – International, Bachelor of Arts in Project Management, and BSc (Hons) in Project Management with Foundation Year. These courses range from 18 months – 6 years, depending on the country you apply to.
You can even apply for a Master’s program abroad. Some of them include degrees like MSc Project Management, MBA – Project Management, or even pursue graduate certificate programs. These Master’s courses are usually 1-2 years long, depending on the country you apply to.
Entry into these courses will require you to give language proficiency test scores of IELTS, TOEFL, PTE, SATs, etc along with an SOP (Statement of Purpose) and LORs (Letter of Recommendation). Want some help with SATs? We have got you covered. Read this blog to know more!
Want to know more? Check these out
- Movie: The Lego Movie
What to expect: The movie is a subtle take on what not to do while being a project manager- micromanage.
- Movie: Apollo 13
What to expect: The movie portrays a good lesson on crisis management- one of the important skill required for a project manager.
- Movie: Steve Jobs
What to expect: A biography oF the greatest persona (not the person)- Steve Jobs
As a result, project managers are in greater demand everywhere. Since the pace of economic and technological change has accelerated, organizations have been devoting more of their attention to projects than to routine tasks. Senior executives and HR managers view them as crucial to the success of the company because they are some of their most valuable resources and highly trained professionals.
FAQs- Frequently Asked Questions about the Career as a Project Manager
What qualifications do you need to be a project manager?
An undergraduate degree in management is sometimes required of project managers, and some have a master’s degree as well. Internships, on-the-job training, or prior experience in other facets of company management are also beneficial.
How long does it take to become a project manager?
A four-year degree, a minimum of 4,500 hours of work experience (about 2.5 years in a full-time position), and project management training are the first requirements.
Can I be a project manager with no experience?
Even while you might discover that many project manager positions demand experience, it is still feasible to work in project management without experience, particularly if you can demonstrate your dedication to the field and that you have the necessary abilities.
Can I be a project manager without a degree?
The quick response is no. A bachelor’s degree is not required to work as a project manager. However, if your sole qualification is a PM certification, it will be difficult for you to obtain employment. A degree demonstrates to a potential employer that you are capable of handling the duties of an open position.
Is project management a good career?
Yes, project management is a lucrative career with high compensation and a wide variety of tasks to complete, but it’s also tough and occasionally very stressful.