What is project management?
Project management is the process of leading the work of a team to achieve all project goals within the given constraints. This information is usually described in project documentation, created at the beginning of the development process. The primary constraints are scope, time, and budget. The secondary challenge is to optimize the allocation of necessary inputs and apply them to meet pre-defined objectives.[Wikipedia]
Who is a project manager?
For the best chance at success, every project needs an owner who is responsible for its completion and success. Project managers exist to fill this need, keep a team on task and ensure the project meets the needs of all stakeholders. This designation could be a subset of responsibilities—or an official job title.
A diverse range of industries requires the skills of a talented project manager. You can be a project manager in construction, publishing, finance, professional services, utilities and many other industries. Despite the final result of the projects looking very different across these industries, the steps and skills to keep a team organized fluently translate across the business world.
What does a project manager do?
A project manager is responsible for planning and overseeing projects within an organisation, from the initial ideation through to completion. They coordinate people and processes to deliver projects on time, within budget and with the desired outcomes aligned to objectives.
Project managers also act as a point of liaison between the project team and senior management. They use project management tools such as Microsoft Project to plan, monitor and regularly report to stakeholders on the progress of the project.
A key part of a project manager’s role is to identify and mitigate risks that may impact the successful delivery of projects.
As a project manager, your job will be to coordinate people and processes to ensure that the projects are delivered on time and produce the desired results. This involves selecting and leading a project team and ensuring you are aware of all details so you can keep a client up to date.
As a project manager, you will be responsible for helping to keep projects on a realistic timescale and budget. You will be the go-to person for everything involving a project’s organization and timeline.
What are the duties and responsibilities of a project manager?
A Project Manager’s duties and responsibilities include ensuring teams meet all scope requirements by completing jobs properly according to their contract or agreement with the client. In addition, they must provide concrete guidance on what everyone needs to do and the most efficient way to complete each step.
The duties of a project manager include managing resources, keeping the client requirements in check, coordinating with the team and making sure that the outcomes are delivered on time.
What are the roles in project management?
The roles in project management are risk management, people management, work management, and resource management. These duties also include being in coordination with clients and stakeholders.
The job role of a project manager involves the following duties:
- Understanding what the client or company wants to achieve
- Agreeing timescales, costs and resources needed to deliver a project
- Drawing up a detailed plan for how to achieve each stage of a project
- Selecting and leading a project team
- Negotiating with contractors and suppliers
- Directing a multi-disciplinary team
- Communicating with staff at every level, in a calm, personable way
- Overseeing several projects at the same time
- Ensuring that each stage of the project happens on time, on budget and to a high standard
- Reporting regularly on progress to the client and stakeholders
- Coordinating market and customer research
- Resolving any issues or delays
- Demonstrating knowledge of all areas of construction
- Writing bids for tender
- Managing several projects simultaneously with the support of junior project managers
- Working in an office or on a construction site.
How to become a project manager
There are several routes to becoming a project manager. You can gain the qualifications you need by doing a university or college course, or an internship. If you already have some experience you may be able to apply for a job directly. You should explore these options to find out which is the right one for you.
- You could do an undergraduate degree in construction management, project management, business or IT.
- If you already have a first degree you could study for a postgraduate qualification in project management.
- An internship with a construction firm is a good way into the industry. As an intern, you will be fully employed by your company and expected to work a minimum of 30 hours a week.
- 2 – 3 A levels or equivalent (undergraduate course)
- A first degree in a relevant subject (postgraduate course).
- Relevant professional certificate courses on the subject ( Public Sector Project Management, Operations and Information Management for Project Managers, Advanced Project and Logistics Management, Procurement and Supply Management )