The success (or failure) of a project is often the result of its project manager. Therefore, getting the right person for the job is crucial. In the planning stages of a new project, it might be tempting to assign responsibility to someone within your team. Although there’s nothing inherently wrong with this decision, it may end up costing you more in the long run. Which is why hiring a confident and dedicated project manager is a must.
As the job title suggests, a project manager is responsible for managing projects within your business by delivering them to budget and deadline. To do this, they will:
- Develop timelines
- Organise and understand all the moving parts of your project
- Consider risk
- Track budgeting requirements.
In addition to these things, a project manager will lead your team and keep them motivated. To help you get the most out of your next hire, we’ve put together a list of seven key ways a project manager can add value to your next project.
Just as you wouldn’t expect an IT support assistant to take over your responsibilities as a business owner, you shouldn’t expect your marketing manager to take on the role of project management. By hiring a dedicated person, you’ll be able to take advantage of their many skills while ensuring that your project is completed within budget and to the deadline.
A great project manager will have expertise in spades. Though their experience may be varied due to the nature of project work, they’ll lend their wealth of experience to your project. This means you’ll be able to take advantage of what they’ve learned about what has and hasn’t worked for them in the past.
Planning – and overseeing expectations – is a key component of a project manager’s role. Whether it’s a small or large task, it’s their job to know the project inside out. And, if it’s necessary, they’ll also adapt its scope once underway.
4. Conflict resolution
No working situation is ever perfect, and its likely conflict may arise during your project. Cue your project manager. They’ll assign roles to your team and ensure that communication is clear. Ultimately, though, conflict can be a useful thing. It may help you identify if something is unhelpful, which can lead to a better outcome or process for future projects.
Like planning, budgeting (if not monitored effectively) can make or break business’ project. A project manager will be able to deliver on your budget, or as close to as possible. If things change, you’ll know about it right away and your project manager will be able to adjust things to make sure everything is running smoothly again before too long.
6. Align the project with business goals
With your project manager’s experience and dedicated skillset, they’ll make sure that any project aligns to your business’s goals. This will help you to prioritise what’s being worked on.
7. More effective resourcing
Capacity planning is another important part of your project manager’s role. Their in-depth knowledge of the work required will enable them to best plan out who will play a part in helping it along to completion.
Don’t forget about soft skills
Soft skills are a combination of attributes that generally enable people to work well together. More often personality traits than learned skills, soft skills include the ability to communicate and interact with others to achieve goals. Hard skills, on the other hand, are easily quantified and may include having a degree, knowing a foreign language, or being able to use specialised software.
When hiring a project manager, some key soft skills to look out for are:
- the ability to communicate clearly
- leadership potential
- influence and power to motivate others
- interpersonal skills.
The benefits of these skills are tangible, with some estimates attributing 85 per cent of a project’s success to soft skills. Keeping these essential skills in mind will assist you in finding a project manager who best fits your business.
Project managers are an essential part of successful business projects. Whether you’re looking for a change of career or to further your study, that is why having someone with credentials in project management with an IT specialisation from a top tier university can help your business prosper.